Certificate in Geriatric Dentistry

The Certificate in Geriatric Dentistry online program is designed to prepare practicing dentists and dental hygienists who have already completed their professional training in general or advanced dentistry or dental hygiene to acquire a greater understanding of gerontology and geriatrics.

Dental hygienists must have a minimum of a baccalaureate degree in order to apply for the program. The hybrid online/on-campus program consists of a total of 12 units of course work in which the students will gain knowledge about older adults from a variety of perspectives, focusing on those topics that will have a direct impact on professional practice.

Clinical privilege status is not required for any of the course work. Students admitted to the non-degree certificate program are expected to enroll each semester until the program is completed.

There are seven required courses (six online and one residential) and no electives. As part of the required curriculum, all students will attend USC for a two-week period during the summer trimester following completion of the didactic courses, for a knowledge assessment course (GDEN 710). This course will consist of reviews, practical demonstrations and assessment activities.

Career Outcomes

Graduates can find careers in the below fields:


Faculty positions in public and community health academic programs


Specialized knowledge to provide the depth needed to promote and address the oral health crises and health care challenges


Positions available in schools and universities, private practice, non-profit organizations, medical centers, community health centers as well as local and state departments


Research being conducted related to community and oral health at health institutes, local and national public health departments and private companies


Workplace advancement opportunities in federal, state, local, private, non-profit and non-governmental organizations

Clinical Practice

Clinician to address the needs of vulnerable populations in hospitals, universities, governmental agencies and private businesses


Private companies and governmental organizations seek those with knowledge on emerging importance for oral health in all communities

Experiential Learning Requirement

(90%) online learning and (10%) educational activities. There is a week long on-site bootcamp in the summer at the end of the program.

Earn your Certificate in Geriatric Dentistry online. Request information today.