Licensure in NYS

Information obtained from The New York State Education Department, Office of the Professions


Education Requirements

To meet the education requirements for licensure, you must present evidence of completion of:

  1. not less than 60 semester hours of preprofessional education, including courses in general chemistry, organic chemistry, biology or zoology, and physics; and
  2. a program of professional education consisting of either:
    • at least four academic years, or the equivalent thereof, in a program registered by the Department as licensure qualifying or accredited by an accrediting organization acceptable to the Department (see below for information about accredited dental programs); or
    • at least four academic years of dental education satisfactory to the Department, culminating in a degree, diploma or certificate in dentistry recognized by the appropriate civil authorities of the country in which the school is located, as acceptable for entry into practice in the country in which the school is located.


Experience Requirements

Beginning January 1, 2007, all applicants for initial licensure must complete an approved clinically-based dental residency program of at least one year's duration. A clinical (practical) examination such as NERB will not be accepted for initial licensure after December 31, 2006.

Dental Residency Programs

The Department must receive, directly from the residency program director, verification of completion of an approved residency program accredited for teaching purposes by an acceptable national accrediting body. You should confirm with your residency program director that the residency program is participating in this route to licensure.

If you participate in a residency program in New York State, you must obtain a limited permit to practice within the residency program.

You may complete a residency program in either a clinical specialty or in general dentistry. The dental residency program requirements are:

  • Specialty Clinical Dental Residency Program The dental resident applicant must complete a clinical specialty residency program in one or more of the following specialty areas: endodontics, oral and maxillofacial pathology, oral and maxillofacial radiology, oral and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics, pediatric dentistry, periodontics or prosthodontics. If the specialty residency program is not in one of these specialty areas, 50% of the program completed by the resident must include clinical training in one or more of these specialty areas or general dentistry to meet New York State requirements.
  • General Dentistry Residency Program The dental resident applicant must complete a general dentistry program. During the residency program, the dental resident applicant must complete 9 dental procedures - 2 full crowns, 2 endodontically treated teeth (root canals), 4 restorations (2 anterior, 2 posterior), and 1 periodontal case (Type 1) - independently and to generally accepted professional standards.


Examination Requirements

For licensure, you must obtain passing scores on both Parts I and II of the National Board Dental Examination. The Department must receive verification of your passing scores directly from the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations. You are responsible for contacting the examination agency for obtaining appropriate information and forms.

Normally, dental students take Parts I and II of the National Board Dental Examination in the final years of dental study and their dental schools assist in the arrangements. If you completed a program of dental education in an unregistered and unaccredited dental school outside the United States, contact the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations for information on taking the examinations.

For an application to take the National Board Dental Examinations or for transmittal of scores to the New York State Education Department, contact the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations.


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This document is informational only and does not constitute legal advice.Dentists must consult with their private attorneys for such advice.