International Dentists

International DDS ProgramMany dentists and dental students educated outside the United States wish to obtain a dental license to practice in the U.S.

There are numerous resources available to help qualified individuals navigate the paths that may be open to them to obtain a dental license in those states that have such pathways.

Individuals must first determine the state(s) where they wish to obtain a license and contact the state board(s) of dentistry to obtain specific licensure requirements and a sample application.

The American Dental Association maintains an interactive tool that may ease the initial discovery process for individuals interested in learning more about opportunities in the United States.

Click here for requirements by state.

Contact the US dental schools you are interested in attending to understand their requirements. The application and list of available programs can be found on ADEA’s CAAPID site. Please note: some dental schools do not use CAAPID to administer their application process.

Apply to an accredited dental school with an advanced standing program to earn a DDS or DMD degree. Reference this list of the U.S. dental schools that offer an AS/IDP program for contact information.

Complete a clinical licensing examination administered by a state or regional clinical testing agency accepted in the state where you wish to be licensed. Review the licensure laws and regulations from the individual state board websites for real-time information about which exams are accepted where licensure is sought.

International Dentists may also qualify to enroll in graduate dentistry programs in the United Staes. Most university based programs have ready availability to enroll qualified foreign educated dentists. Hospital or community based programs generally are limited to whatever individual state requirements exist for temporary or limited licensure that may or may not allow foreign trained dentists to obtain the kind of license necessary for graduate dental study.

Individuals can begin their state specific search at STATE DENTAL BOARDS.

The important thing to remember is that there is frequently a pathway for a highly motivated individual to navigate in order to obtain a full and unrestricted dental license for clinical practice in the United States.