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State Licensure Spotlight: New York

Tim CalnonDr. Tim Calnon, Buffalo ’13
2012-13 chair, Leadership Development Work Group

This content was originally published in the July 2014 issue of Advocacy Brief.

Navigating the dental licensure process can be an exhausting, yet essential, task when you have countless other requirements to complete before graduation. It is my hope that this brief summary of licensure requirements in New York will offer some insight as you plan the next steps in your future.

In 2003, the New York State Dental Association began to accept a one-year Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) approved residency program in lieu of a clinical licensure exam. Beginning in 2006, this changed to a mandate. Since then, a post-graduate year (often referred to as a PGY-1) has taken the place of any regional board exam. Upon completion of the CODA-approved residency program, you may then apply for a New York State license. If you have chosen to specialize, you must complete the entire training program before applying for a license. An important point to note is that the residency training does not have to occur in New York State to be eligible for licensure. You can review this list of all the advanced programs and their accreditation status in the United States and Canada.

The Office of Professions falls under the umbrella of the New York State Department of Education (their website lists all of the requirements for licensure). Here’s a break down the six criteria listed by the Office of Professions:

  1. Be of good moral character
  2. Be at least 21 years of age
  3. Meet education requirements:
    • At least 60 credit hours of pre-professional education with courses in chemistry, organic chemistry, biology and physics
    • At least four years, or the equivalent, in a professional program that is registered by the Department of Education and deemed acceptable
    • If you previously completed a dental education program in a foreign country, you must complete at least two academic years in a registered or accredited dental school program
  4. Meet examination requirements:
    • You must obtain a passing score on Parts I and II of the National Dental Board Examination. Additionally, you must submit verification of your scores directly from the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations.
  5. Meet experience requirements:
    • Your residency director must submit verification of completion of an approved residency program. You should confirm with your program director that the residency program is participating in this route to licensure before entering.  
    • If you are licensed in another jurisdiction, and have not completed a CODA-approved residency, you must have practiced lawfully for at least two years (full-time) following initial licensure. Eight months of this time practicing must have been in the two years preceding your application. This allows you to apply for licensure by endorsement.
  6. Complete coursework or training in the identification and reporting of child abuse, and infection control, offered by a New York State approved provider. Every dentist must complete this training.

Upon meeting all of these requirements, write a check to the New York State Education Department for $377 with a suggested memo of “Saving Teeth!” (kidding about the memo part). You are well on your way to earning what you continually work so hard to achieve.


Find out about licensure in other states by visiting our licensure map.

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