About Us

The UCLA School of Dentistry was established in 1964 in response to the need for a public school of dentistry in the greater Los Angeles area. The Class of 1968 became the first graduating class, with 28 Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) degrees awarded. Although the UCLA School of Dentistry is fairly young, our achievements and accolades rival, and even surpass, those of other research intensive dental schools that have been around for more than a century.

Since our inception, we have focused on achieving and maintaining excellence in four main areas: a comprehensive dental education, cutting-edge research, quality patient care and public service. Over the past five decades, these four main areas of focus, along with our dedicated and talented students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends, have propelled the School of Dentistry to being one of the premier dental schools on the national and international stage.

Mission Statement

The mission of the UCLA School of Dentistry is to improve the oral and general health of the people of California, the nation, and the world through education, research, patient care, and public service.

Excellence in Education

The highest achieving applicants, from a variety of backgrounds, are consistently admitted into our academic programs to learn from our renowned faculty. Since that first graduating class in 1968, nearly 4,400 DDS degrees have been awarded. We receive approximately 1,900 applications every year for the 88 available slots for the incoming 4-year DDS program and more than 700 applications for the 20 available slots for the 2-year Professional Program for International Dentists program. Our Residency programs are among of the best and most competitive in the world. We offer 15 specialty and general dentistry programs and have more than 100 active residents at any given time.

Quality Patient Care

Our patient care services are an integral part of our teaching process and service efforts. Providing quality, affordable care to our patients, at substantially reduced fees, is what sets the School of Dentistry and the UCLA Dental Clinics apart from the private sector. Our patients receive quality dental services, prescribed under comprehensive treatment plans and options of care. In the 2012-2013 fiscal year, nearly 142,000 patient visits were conducted by our dental students and faculty, throughout 30 different clinics.

Cutting Edge Research

Our cutting-edge research is internationally acclaimed in the health sciences field. Our research Centers of Excellence are focused on cancer, bone biology, bioengineering and biotechnology, molecular microbiology, neuromuscular problems and public health. In the 2012-2013 fiscal year, grants to faculty from the National Institutes for Health and other funding agencies reached $16 million.

Commitment to Public Service

A commitment to public service is emphasized throughout the School of Dentistry. As part of the curriculum, our students are required and given numerous opportunities to interact with the population at large in order to experience first-hand the oral health challenges and needs associated with groups in the community. In the 2012-2013 fiscal year, our dental students, residents and faculty administered free dental care and oral hygiene instructions to more than 2,000 community members at various health fairs and clinical care sites throughout the Southern California region.

Now that you know more about the UCLA School of Dentistry, we invite you to discover the School of Dentistry's recent news, academic divisions and our Annual Report.