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University of Pittsburgh (School of Dental Medicine)

Founded in 1787 as a small, private school, the Pittsburgh Academy was located in a log cabin near Pittsburgh’s three rivers. In the 220 years since, the University has evolved into an internationally recognized center of learning and research.

Private through much of its history, Pitt became a state-related university in 1966. Today, the University of Pittsburgh system consists of the 132-acre Pittsburgh campus and regional campuses in Bradford, Greensburg, Johnstown, and Titusville.

The University’s 12,000 employees, including 3,800 full-time faculty members, serve about 34,000 students through the programs of 15 undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools.

Teaching Methods

The School of Dental Medicine employs innovative teaching methods for enhanced didactic and clinical experiences.

  • Problem-based learning (PBL) is introduced and reinforced throughout students' studies in the residency programs, the First Professional Program and the Dental Hygiene Program.

  • First professional and dental hygiene students benefit from the school's Simulation Clinic, an 80-unit facility providing a seamless transition between didactic studies and the clinical setting.

  • Also essential to the clinical transition is the vertically-integrated Comprehensive Care Program in which third- and fourth-year first professional students have the opportunity to provide comprehensive dental care under the supervision of a module leader, simulating an atmosphere similar to that of a private general practice.

  • The Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), developed by the Department of Pediatric Dentistry, presents the dental student with photographs of relevant clinical situations and evaluates their decision-making process.

  • Residency program curricula stress comprehensive treatment planning and multi-disciplinary conferences in addition to individualized attention from specialty area faculty.

  • Inter-school collaborative programs allow predoctoral dental students to initiate studies leading to one of four masters degrees:

    • Master of Education in Higher Education Administration

    • Master of Studies in Law

    • Multi-Disciplinary Master of Public Health

    • Graduate Certificate in Geriatric Dentistry


The School of Dental Medicine (SDM) is one of six health sciences schools at the University of Pittsburgh. The facility occupies Salk Hall and the adjoining Salk Hall Dental Annex and is located on the University of Pittsburgh upper campus; near UPMC hospitals and the School of Medicine.

  • Lecture Facilities—All Salk Hall lecture facilities have recently been renovated. They include comfortable seating and new teaching stations with multimedia support areas.

  • The Robinson Student Computer Center—This state-of-the-art computer laboratory/classroom offers a contemporary environment for teaching and developing skills in information technology.

  • Simulation Clinic—This unique teaching laboratory offers faculty and students an educational environment in which practical dental treatment skills can be developed using patient simulation. Skills developed in this area are then transferred into patient care in our clinics. Incoming classes will be supported with computers at these workstations.

  • The Salk Hall Dental Annex/Adjacent Clinics—Our clinics are constantly being revised and renovated. We currently have 254 operatories for general and specialized dental treatment. Most are semi-private treatment rooms. New renovations include the Multidisciplanary Implant Center and the Center for Patients with Special Needs which are scheduled to open this summer.

  • Student Lounge—Our student lounges provide students with an accessible and useful place to study and socialize. The private lounge is equipped with a small kitchen and e-mail kiosks for easy access to the Internet.

  • The Health Sciences Library System (HSLS)—This extensive reference consortium supports SDM faculty, students, and researchers with a wide array of information, services, educational opportunities, and resources in print and electronic format.

School name:University of PittsburghSchool of Dental Medicine
Address:3501 Terrace Street
Zip & city:15261 Pennsylvania
Phone:(412) 648-8437

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