Welcome to the Department of Operative Dentistry!

The Department of Operative Dentistry provides an important role in the College of Dentistry establishing the foundational concepts of dentistry to the pre-doctoral dental students in caries diagnosis, prevention, repair and restorative techniques. The primary focus of the Department of Operative Dentistry’s to provide the knowledge, technical skills, critical thinking and judgment for the diagnosis, prevention and management of dental caries, non-carious dental defects (attrition, abrasion, erosion, abfraction, developmental abnormalities, discoloration, and trauma), and elective esthetic smile enhancements. We also serve an equally important position in providing national leadership in dental research and advanced restorative technology both in its collective faculty efforts and through the Graduate Program in Operative Dentistry.

All full time faculty in the Department of Operative Dentistry have advance training in Operative Dentistry. We firmly believe that each field of dentistry is best taught by those with advanced training in that particular domain. These faculty are recognized for their teaching, research and clinical expertise. This is evident in the large number of articles published in leading peer-reviewed journals, the research presentations at national meetings, and in the many continuing education courses given both nationally and internationally by the faculty. Many of the faculty have served or are serving in leadership roles in dentistry, both locally and nationally. All of the faculty in the department are active in private patient care and many are involved with basic, translational and clinical research.

The department has access to well-equipped laboratories for basic and clinical translational research. In addition, there are excellent clinical facilities for the development of clinical techniques and for clinical research. These laboratories and clinical areas are routinely used by the faculty and the graduate students as well as by a select number of pre-doctoral students.

Although the departmental faculty have been involved in many areas of biomaterials research in operative dentistry, they have been especially recognized for their leadership in the area of composite resins and their contribution to bonding technology and minimally-invasive techniques over the past twenty years. Early involvement with these materials and techniques has been beneficial both in clinical experience and in research studies, and has resulted in many clinical publications. The department has been among the first in the nation to incorporate caries risk assessment, minimally-invasive techniques, and resin-based composite technology, such as bonded cast appliances, posterior esthetic restorations, dentin bonding, and esthetic courses, into its pre- and post-doctoral curriculum, .