About

A distinguished legacy

The Indiana University School of Dentistry is one of the oldest dental schools in the nation. Our history dates back to 1879, when the Indiana State Dental Association established the Indiana Dental College in Indianapolis. In 1925, Indiana University assumed ownership of the college, and it became the Indiana University School of Dentistry.

For 140 years, we’ve made a difference in the lives of the people of Indiana, the U.S., and the world—and we’re just getting started. Under the leadership of Dean John N. Williams Jr., we’re continuing to advance oral health by preparing the next generation of oral health professionals, conducting innovative research that’s shaping the profession, and providing oral health care to thousands of people each year.

The Indiana University School of Dentistry Class of 1927

Our mission, vision, and goals

The mission of the Indiana University School of Dentistry is to advance the oral and systemic health of the people of the state of Indiana and globally through excellence in teaching and learning, research and creative activities, patient care, civic engagement and service.

The vision of the Indiana University School of Dentistry is to be one of the best dental schools for the twenty-first century.

Teaching and learning
  • Attract and support a well prepared and diverse student population for all School of Dentistry oral health profession programs
  • Enhance student learning and develop graduates who are competent clinicians, critical thinkers, and lifelong learners who are ethical, socially aware, and culturally sensitive oral health professionals
  • Attract and retain quality faculty and provide support to enhance effective teaching and learning in clinical, laboratory, classroom, and service learning settings
Research and creative activities

Excel in high-quality, innovative research and scholarly activities that engage faculty, students, and staff; attract external funding; increase our national standing; and lead to improvements in oral and systemic health

Patient care

Provide comprehensive, evidence-based, quality oral health services to individuals from any socioeconomic or cultural group

Civic engagement and service

Serve local, state, national, and global communities through partnerships involving clinical care, service learning, and community-engaged scholarship in addition to serving the university and the profession

Educating tomorrow’s oral health professionals

The School of Dentistry is the only dental school in Indiana, and it trains 80 percent of the state’s dentists. In addition to the D.D.S. program, our academic programs include undergraduate programs in dental assisting and dental hygiene, a master’s degree in dentistry, and a Ph.D. in dental sciences. We also offer an International Dentist Program for dentists from other countries who want to become licensed to practice in the U.S.

The school is home to nine academic departments with nearly 300 faculty who teach, conduct research, and provide clinical care. Our world-renowned faculty are leading authorities in their fields, and some of them have literally written the book on their areas of expertise.

Conducting life-changing research

Researchers at the School of Dentistry played a key role in one of the most significant public health advancements in human history: the development of the first fluoride toothpaste. In the 1950s, Dr. Joseph Muhler led a team that patented a toothpaste that used stannous fluoride and a calcium pyrophosphate abrasive—the formula that became Crest toothpaste, which Procter & Gamble began selling nationally in 1956.

Today that spirit of innovation is alive and well at the School of Dentistry. The Oral Health Research Institute, which was established using royalties from the sale of Crest, is a globally recognized center for preventive dentistry research and product testing. School of Dentistry researchers also are making strides in emerging areas ranging from dental informatics to bone and tissue engineering.

Learn about our research

Providing high-quality, patient-centered care

Each year more than 19,000 patients receive care from students training to become dentists, hygienists, and other oral health professionals at the School of Dentistry. We offer a full range of oral health care services, including general dentistry, advanced care, and emergency care, in the state-of-the-art Fritts Clinical Care Center, which opened in 2018.

We also have a range of community outreach programs that allow us to bring oral health care services to underserved populations in Indianapolis, throughout the state, and around the world.

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Your contribution helps us ensure that the School of Dentistry can continue to be a leader in advancing oral health worldwide.

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