ASDA COVID-19 Feature

ASDA COVID-19 Licensure Information

ASDA remains focused on COVID-19 ramifications that are affecting dental students. Information related to ASDA’s action on licensure by State, updates from regional testing agencies and other stakeholders, recent licensure reform victories and more can be found on this page.
ASDA's COVID-19 Webinars
  • COVID-19 Licensure Update Town Hall

    Apr 7, 2020 at 7:30 PM

    Questions about licensure during the COVID-19 outbreak? ASDA's Executive Committee will review association efforts to advocate for reform and speak about solutions that work for current fourth year dental students. Attendees will learn about current licensure alternatives and will have the opportunity to ask questions.
4.3.2020 - Message from the President: Licensure Reform Victories

ASDA is pleased to report that after years of advocating for the removal of human subjects in live clinical testing scenarios, external agencies are releasing non-patient based alternatives. 

In 2015, ASDA Past President Christian Piers submitted a request for the ADA Council on Dental Education and Licensure (CDEL) to develop a business plan to create an OSCE exam. Five years later and the ADA announced expedited plans to release the Dental Licensure Objective Structured Clinical Exam (DLOSCE) in light of this national crisis. This is a huge win for dental students and the dental community. 

Additionally, the Central Regional Dental Testing Service (CRDTS) announced their release of an all-manikin exam that can be administered for licensure. ASDA is also in communication with all other testing agencies that have plans to fast-track the development of their own manikin exam. 

However, there is still work to be done. Each state dental board needs to accept these as pathways to licensure. That’s why ASDA is working on a state by state strategy with chapter advocates to advance reform. 

ASDA believes that an ideal exam should include a manikin assessment, an objective structured clinical exam and a portfolio. However, we see these recent developments as critical in paving the way to achieve our ideal. 

We will be holding a COVID-19 Licensure Update Town Hall on Tuesday, April 7 at 7:30 pm CT to answer all questions and look forward to you joining. In the meantime, stay safe and celebrate these advancements in licensure reform. 


Sydney Shapiro

2020-21 ASDA President

3.21.2020 - Statements to ADA, ADEA, AADB, Dental School Deans, Regional Testing Agencies and State Dental Boards

ASDA is aware of the issues you face as a dental student during these difficult times. We continue to monitor the developments around COVID-19 and are respecting the guidelines and mandates from the federal government and the CDC. Our first priority is the health, safety and well-being of everyone.

ASDA remains focused on COVID-19 ramifications that are affecting dental students. We have been in contact with the American Dental Association (ADA), American Dental Education Association (ADEA) and American Association of Dental Boards (AADB) about the following issues:

  • The postponement of graduation and clinical examinations aimed at protecting the health and safety of everyone
  • Concern about loans and losing the loan deferment period due to the postponement of several licensure exams

ASDA is advocating for regional testing agencies and state dental boards to endorse a licensure process involving a manikin-based assessment along with a diagnostic skills assessment, available for fourth year dental students when schools re-open.

ASDA is also recommending testing agencies and state boards consider providing 2020 graduates of CODA-accredited programs with preliminary licensure, allowing graduates adequate time to prepare for a clinical examination. Please review the correspondence that has been distributed to the ADA, ADEA, AADB, Dental School Deans, Regional Testing Agencies and State Dental Boards. 

ASDA sent a letter to House and Senate leaders, encouraging them to consider deferring interest on federal student loans for dental students while in dental school, or a residency and deferring all monthly payments on federal student loans for all health care professionals, including dentists, without penalty. Please review the letters

Regarding future national meetings, the ASDA April 3-5, 2020 Spring Council and Board meeting has been postponed until a later date. ADA Dentist and Student Lobby Day has been cancelled. We will refund registrations that we received for this meeting. 

Please check our website for updates on these issues.  ASDA continues to advocate on your behalf.  


Sydney Shapiro
American Student Dental Association

Regional Circle

COVID-19 State Licensure Information

Several states are responding to licensure concerns in light of COVID-19. Below you will find executive actions, state dental board announcements as well as letters ASDA leaders have sent to advocate for reform.

For a summary of the actions taken by each state, read the past two issues of the Advocacy Brief. For those interested in connecting with your state dental board review ASDA’s guide on upcoming state dental board meetings.

See Licensure Requirements by State as well as learn about States modifying their licensure requirements in light of COVID-19

dental equipment

Non-patient Based Licensure Alternatives 

As the effects of COVID-19 became more pronounced in mid-March, ASDA began communicating with external stakeholders with renewed urgency on the support for a non-patient based licensure alternatives.

External stakeholders have responded to ASDA’s concerns and announced the expedited release of non-patient based licensure alternatives. Please see below for more information.

Central Regional Dental Testing Services (CRDTS)

Central Regional Dental Testing Services (CRDTS) all manikin exam. This exam is an option for the Periodontal and Restorative procedures traditionally administered on a patient.

Commission on Dental Competency Assessments (CDCA)/ADEX

American Board of Dental Examiners (ADEX) CompeDont DTX. It is a non-patient-based restorative examination that utilizes the CompeDont™ DTX, a new manikin tooth technology developed by the CDCA and Acadental, Inc.

Council of Interstate Testing Agencies (CITA)/ADEX

American Board of Dental Examiners (ADEX) CompeDont DTX. It is a non-patient-based restorative examination that utilizes the CompeDont™ DTX, a new manikin tooth technology developed by the CDCA and Acadental, Inc.
Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations (JCNDE)
On April 2, JCNDE announced the Dental Licensure Objective Structured Clinical Exam (DLOSCE) will be available for use in 2020. The DLOSCE was projected to be released for piloting this year and available for testing in 2021. The exam was released early because of COVID-19 with the hope that some state dental boards will accept it as an alternative to live patient-based exams as a pathway to licensure. More information regarding the DLOSCE can be found here.

Southern Regional Testing Agency (SRTA)

Southern Regional Testing Agency (SRTA) manikin-based restorative skills module using cutting-edge dental products that are highly effective in simulating a live patient’s dental procedures.

Western Regional Examining Board (WREB)

Western Regional Examining Board (WREB)'s announcement to fast track a non-patient-based exam.