Units of Credit

One unit of credit is awarded for ten hours of lecture or seminar, twenty hours of laboratory or clinic, or thirty hours of independent study per term. In the predoctoral programs (DDS and IDS), students are assigned to comprehensive care clinics for approximately 650 hours during the second year and 1,000 hours during the third, in addition to specialty clinic rotations. Units of credit are assigned in the comprehensive care clinical disciplines in proportion to the amount of time an average student spends providing specific types of care for assigned patterns.

Full-time enrollment in the predoctoral programs at the School of Dentistry (DDS and IDS) is defined as 16 or more units per term.  Full-time enrollment in the graduate residency programs in orthodontics and endodontics is defined as 20 or more units per term.   All residents in the Advanced Education in General Dentistry are considered full time.  

Pacific’s orthodontics residency program, instituted in 1971, is fully accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation, and is recognized for educational eligibility by the American Board of Orthodontics. The program’s courses prepare the resident to provide excellent treatment based on contemporary biologic orthodontic principles.

Faculty members foster the humanistic atmosphere with informal professional relationships and mutual respect with the residents. Clinical instruction and practice are conducted in the orthodontic clinic.

Didactic courses include principles of orthodontics, cephalometrics and 3D imaging and airway consideration, facial growth, biomechanics, craniofacial biology, cleft lip and palate,  research methodology, appliance laboratory, pediatrics, statistics, anatomy, bone biology and clinical use of temporary anchorage device, TMD, orthognathic surgery, restorative-orthodontic relationships, practice management, and periodontic/orthodontic care. The faculty fosters a collegial atmosphere and mutual respect between residents and faculty.

Clinical instruction and practice are conducted in the school’s orthodontic clinic in six half-day clinics per week which include treatment for children, adolescents, adults, and multidisciplinary (integrated with periodontal and restorative procedures) patients. Adult patients constitute about one fourth of a student’s caseload. Each resident starts approximately 50-55new patients and 50-60 transfer patients during the residency program. Residents are also rotated through the Children's Hospital Oakland Craniofacial Panel as well as the Stanford Sleep Surgery clinic. Fixed appliance treatment employs the edgewise technique, although instruction permits a wide latitude of clinical variation based on patient needs and special faculty expertise. Experience in treating the entire range of orthodontic problems is provided. Each resident also starts multiple cases utilizing micro-implant anchorage, including MARPE (microimplant-assisted rapid palatal expander) appliances. From 1998 to 2002 the orthodontic department was the initial testing site for the new Invisalign technology, and today provides a state-of-the-art approach to treating a wide variety of patients with Invisalign. Each resident generally starts more than 10 patients with this clear appliance. Complete 3D digital records are obtained from Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) scan, iTero intra-oral scan, and 3D facial scan.  Digital orthodontics and 3D printing technology also allows residents to perform 3D digital set-up, 3D printed indirect bonding, and in-house clear aligner treatment.

Each resident engages in a research project and completes a thesis to qualify for the Master of Science in Dentistry degree. These are submitted for publication in scientific journals.

Residents are scheduled for didactic and clinical instruction five full days per week and full participation is required. While there is no prohibition of weekend private dental practice, residents’ commitments during the program seriously limit this opportunity.

More information on the program, including admissions requirements, curriculum and schedule, graduation and certification requirements is available here.

MSD (Master of Science in Dentistry) / Certificate in Orthodontics

  • Initiate and complete a research project to include critical review of the literature, development of a hypothesis and the design, statistical analysis and interpretation of data
  • Research expertise under the guidance of a faculty member and thesis committee, culminating in a thesis and its defense

A graduate of an advanced specialty education program in orthodontics is competent to:

  1. Integrate biomedical and clinical knowledge to improve oral health.
  2. Think critically; use the scientific method to evaluate established and emerging biomedical and clinical science evidence to guide practice decisions.
  3. Practice Evidence based Orthodontics - critically evaluate the literature and other information pertaining to this field.
  4. Treat all types of malocclusion, whether in the permanent or transitional dentitions
  5. Treat and manage developing dentofacial problems which can be minimized by appropriate timely intervention
  6. Use dentofacial orthopedics in the treatment of patients when appropriate
  7. Treat and manage major dentofacial abnormalities and coordinate care with oral and maxillofacial surgeons and other healthcare providers
  8. Provide all phases of orthodontic treatment including initiation, completion and retention
  9. Manage patients with functional occlusal and temporomandibular disorders
  10. Treat or manage the orthodontic aspects of patients with moderate and advanced periodontal problems
  11. Coordinate and document detailed interdisciplinary treatment plans which may include care from other providers, such as restorative dentists and oral and maxillofacial surgeons or other dental specialists
  12. Develop and document treatment plans using sound principles of appliance design and biomechanics
  13. Use dental materials knowledgeably in the fabrication and placement of fixed and removable appliances
  14. Develop and maintain a system of long-term treatment records as a foundation for understanding and planning treatment and retention procedures
  15. Practice orthodontics in full compliance with accepted Standards of ethical behavior
  16. Understand current three dimensional (3D) imaging techniques to evaluate the developmental and functional inter-relationships between TMJ, occlusions, airway, and facial growth
  17. Understand the following supporting knowledge:
    • Biostatistics
    • History of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
    • Jurisprudence
    • Oral Physiology
    • Pain and Anxiety Control
    • Pediatrics
    • Periodontics
    • Pharmacology
    • Preventive Dentistry
    • Psychological Aspects of Orthodontic and Dentofacial Orthopedic Treatment
    • Public Health Aspects of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
    • Speech Pathology and Therapy
    • Sleep physiology and Sleep Disordered Breathing
  18. Engage in ongoing quality assurance to improve patient outcomes.
  19. Behave professionally: manage personal behavior and performance in accordance with standards of the school and the profession. 
  20. Practice in accordance with current local, state, and federal laws and regulations.
  21. Demonstrate ongoing reflection, self-assessment, continuous learning, and professional development.
  22. Participate in professional activities to promote the profession and serve individuals and communities.

Please note: Courses are taught on a permanent or interim (continuing) basis. Course numbers followed by the letter 'I' indicate interim courses which are taught over two or more quarters. Units assigned to interim courses build upon each preceding quarter's unit value and culminate in a final and permanent unit value. The final unit value is transcripted with the permanent course.

Year 1
Summer Quarter (1)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
BMS 401Research Philosophy and Design I10
OR 401ICephalometrics20
OR 404IResearch Practicum and Thesis I10
OR 410IBiomechanics10
OR 412IOrofacial Clefts and Abnormal Craniofacial Development10
OR 414IIntroduction to Contemporary Orthodontics20
OR 421ICurrent Literature Seminar I10
OR 422Anatomy10
OR 423IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar I10
OR 424ITreatment Planning Seminar I20
OR 426IPrinciples of Orthodontic Technique02
OR 430ISurgical-Orthodontic Treatment10
OR 431IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar I10
OR 432IMultidisciplinary Seminar I0.50
OR 441IOrthodontic Treatment of Craniofacial Anomolies0.50
OR 442IClear Aligner Technique I10
OR 443IDental Sleep Medicine I0.50
OR 444IPeriodontic-Orthodontic Relations10
OR 456IClinical Orthodontics I08
OR 457IMixed Dentition Orthodontics I02
OR 458ISurgical Orthodontics I01
OR 459IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies01
Autumn Quarter (2)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 401Cephalometrics40
OR 403ICritical Thinking10
OR 404IResearch Practicum and Thesis I10
OR 410IBiomechanics30
OR 412Orofacial Clefts and Abnormal Craniofacial Development20
OR 414Introduction to Contemporary Orthodontics40
OR 421ICurrent Literature Seminar I20
OR 423IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar I20
OR 424ITreatment Planning Seminar I40
OR 426Principles of Orthodontic Technique05
OR 430ISurgical-Orthodontic Treatment20
OR 431IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar I20
OR 432IMultidisciplinary Seminar I10
OR 440IImaging in Orthodontics, TMJ & Airway Consideration10
OR 441IOrthodontic Treatment of Craniofacial Anomolies10
OR 442IClear Aligner Technique I20
OR 443IDental Sleep Medicine I10
OR 444IPeriodontic-Orthodontic Relations20
OR 456IClinical Orthodontics I015
OR 457IMixed Dentition Orthodontics I04
OR 458ISurgical Orthodontics I01
OR 459IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies01
Winter Quarter (3)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 402IFacial Growth20
OR 403ICritical Thinking20
OR 404IResearch Practicum and Thesis I10
OR 410IBiomechanics50
OR 411IGenetics in Orthodontics10
OR 420IBone Biology and Microimplant20
OR 421ICurrent Literature Seminar I30
OR 423IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar I30
OR 424ITreatment Planning Seminar I60
OR 430Surgical-Orthodontic Treatment40
OR 431IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar I30
OR 432IMultidisciplinary Seminar I1.50
OR 440Imaging in Orthodontics, TMJ & Airway Consideration20
OR 441IOrthodontic Treatment of Craniofacial Anomolies1.50
OR 442IClear Aligner Technique I30
OR 443IDental Sleep Medicine I1.50
OR 444IPeriodontic-Orthodontic Relations30
OR 456IClinical Orthodontics I023
OR 457IMixed Dentition Orthodontics I06
OR 458ISurgical Orthodontics I02
OR 459IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies02
Spring Quarter (4)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 402Facial Growth40
OR 403Critical Thinking - Research Design30
OR 404Research Practicum and Thesis I20
OR 410Biomechanics70
OR 411Genetics in Orthodontics20
OR 420Bone Biology and Microimplant40
OR 421Current Literature Seminar I40
OR 423Comprehensive Case Analysis Seminar I40
OR 424Treatment Planning Seminar I80
OR 431Orthognathic Surgery Seminar I40
OR 432Multidisciplinary Seminar I20
OR 433Retention Seminar I10
OR 441Orthodontic Treatment of Craniofacial Anomolies20
OR 442Clear Aligner Technique I40
OR 443Dental Sleep Medicine I20
OR 444Periodontic-Orthodontic Relations40
OR 456Clinical Orthodontics I030
OR 457Mixed Dentition Orthodontics I08
OR 458Surgical Orthodontics I02
OR 459Clinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies I02
Year 2
Summer Quarter (5)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 501IPrinciples of Orthodontics20
OR 502Microimplant I10
OR 503IResearch Design I0.50
OR 504IResearch Practicum and Thesis II10
OR 521ICurrent Literature Seminar II10
OR 523IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar II10
OR 524ITreatment Planning Seminar II20
OR 531IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar II10
OR 532IMultidisciplinary Seminar II0.50
OR 541IOthodontic Treat Cranio Anm II10
OR 542IClear Aligner Technique II10
OR 543IDental Sleep Medicine II0.50
OR 556IClinical Orthodontics II010
OR 557IMixed Dentition Orthodontics II02
OR 558ISurgical Orthodontics II01
OR 559IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies II01
Autumn Quarter (6)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 501IPrinciples of Orthodontics40
OR 503IResearch Design I10
OR 504IResearch Practicum and Thesis II30
OR 512IPreparation for Specialty Examination10
OR 521ICurrent Literature Seminar II20
OR 523IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar II20
OR 524ITreatment Planning Seminar II40
OR 531IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar II20
OR 532IMultidisciplinary Seminar II10
OR 541IOthodontic Treat Cranio Anm II20
OR 542IClear Aligner Technique II20
OR 543IDental Sleep Medicine II10
OR 544IMultidisciplinary Course10
OR 556IClinical Orthodontics II019
OR 557IMixed Dentition Orthodontics II04
OR 558ISurgical Orthodontics II01
OR 559IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies II01
Winter Quarter (7)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
BMS 502Biomedical Science10
OR 501IPrinciples of Orthodontics60
OR 503IResearch Design I1.50
OR 504IResearch Practicum and Thesis II40
OR 511IPractice Management I10
OR 512Preparation for Specialty Examination20
OR 514Temporomandibular Joint Disorders10
OR 521ICurrent Literature Seminar II30
OR 523IComprehensive Case Analysis Seminar II30
OR 524ITreatment Planning Seminar II60
OR 531IOrthognathic Surgery Seminar II30
OR 532IMultidisciplinary Seminar II1.50
OR 541IOthodontic Treat Cranio Anm II30
OR 542IClear Aligner Technique II30
OR 543IDental Sleep Medicine II1.50
OR 544Multidisciplinary Course20
OR 556IClinical Orthodontics II030
OR 557IMixed Dentition Orthodontics II06
OR 558ISurgical Orthodontics II02
OR 559IClinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies II02
Spring Quarter (8)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 501Principles of Orthodontics80
OR 503Research Design I20
OR 504Research Practicum and Thesis II50
OR 511Practice Management I20
OR 521Current Literature Seminar II40
OR 523Comprehensive Case Analysis Seminar II40
OR 524Treatment Planning Seminar II80
OR 531Orthognathic Surgery Seminar II40
OR 532Multidisciplinary Seminar II20
OR 533Retention Seminar II10
OR 541Orthodontic Treatment of Craniofacial Anomalies II40
OR 542Clear Aligner Technique II40
OR 543Dental Sleep Medicine II20
OR 556Clinical Orthodontics II038
OR 557Mixed Dentition Orthodontics II08
OR 558Surgical Orthodontics II03
OR 559Clinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies II03
Year 3
Summer Quarter (9)Didactic UnitsLab/Clinic Units
OR 602Microimplant II10
OR 603Research Design II10
OR 604Research Practicum and Thesis III60
OR 611Practice Management II20
OR 612Ethics10
OR 613Orthodontics Speaker Series10
OR 621Current Literature Seminar III10
OR 623Comprehensive Case Analysis Seminar III10
OR 624Treatment Planning Seminar III20
OR 631Orthognathic Surgery Seminar III10
OR 632Multidisciplinary Seminar III10
OR 656Clinical Orthodontics III09
OR 657Mixed Dentition Orthodontics III02
OR 658Surgical Orthodontics III01
OR 659Clinical Orthodontics in Craniofacial Anomalies III01