Research Programs


Research is an integral component of the school's research portfolio. From national fellowships and presentations to awards and recognition, CU's dental and graduate students expand their knowledge of evidence-based dentistry in the lab and clinic.

Clinical training and oral health research serve to improve the dental care provided to the public. Continuous progress in dental research enhances accuracy in diagnosis and improves patient management.  

At present, the School of Dental Medicine does not offer a DDS/PhD degree option. However, dental students are encouraged to participate in oral health research.

Summer Research Scholarship Program

Incoming dental students may apply for the Summer Research Scholarship Program. This program enables eligible students to experience basic science or clinical research for a sustained period of time during the summer prior to beginning their dental studies. The student conducts a research project for eight weeks under the direction of a faculty member in the School of Dental Medicine. Participating students are hired as student employees and are provided funds for supplies.

AADOCR Student Research Group

Dental students may also participate in the Colorado Chapter of the AADOCR National Student Research Group (NSRG), a program that serves to increase the student’s awareness of research to evidence-based dentistry. Students are actively involved in various research projects. They also attend workshops on how to search for and critically interpret literature, how to write scientific abstracts, how to present a poster, and how to give an oral presentation.

NSRG participants are eligible to compete for cash prizes at annual research competitions such as the School of Dental Medicine’s Research Day or the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus Research Forum. Scholarships recognizing research engagement are available from the Colorado Chapter of the ARCS Foundation. At the national level, students are offered the opportunity to compete for the Hatton or SCADA Awards while participating in the annual meetings of the AADOCR/IADR as well as ADEA and others.