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The Ohio State University College of Dentistry  

Postdoctoral Observership

The Postdoctoral Periodontal Program at The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Dentistry offers a formalized short-term educational experience for foreign trained dentists. This short-term educational experience is an "internship” program, formally called “Observership in Periodontology".

The Observership in Periodontology is a fixed duration (3, 6, or 9 months) program for foreign trained dentists. Three months is the absolute shortest period for which a dentist may apply and 9 months the longest. This program is considered a "Continuing Education" (CE) course and a tuition fee is required to attend. Regardless of the number of trimesters one attends, a certificate of attendance with the specific attendance dates is provided upon completion of the program.

The Observership follows the exact schedule of the residency, with the exception that clinical activities are limited to assisting and observing, while the residents provide direct care. Observers attend all classes/seminars the residents attend. Therefore, the only difference, besides not receiving graduate school credit, is the fact that observers are not directly treating patients. In individual cases, an Observership of at least 6 months may also be combined with research activities, for qualified individuals who might be so inclined.

The Observership program has accepted foreign trained dentists from various countries, such as Brazil, China, Egypt, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey. Foreign trained dentists who have participated in this CE program have found it to be very useful, especially in terms of: periodontal and implant surgery exposure; broader experience with US dentistry; opportunity to practice and perfect their English language skills; and helping them decide whether pursuing a formal residency in the US is what they really want to do. Most past participants decided to pursue and successfully completed a formal periodontal residency (certificate) program in the US, while a few past participants opted to pursue a US dental (DDS) program for foreign trained dentists.

Completion of this CE program will likely help the foreign trained dentist who subsequently decides to apply to formal training programs, since he/she will be able to a) demonstrate interest in the specialty, b) assert exposure to advanced periodontal and implant surgery procedures, c) show awareness of US clinical practices and d) possibly receive reference letters from the program faculty when applying to other programs.

Foreign trained dentists considering the Observership program should keep in mind two unique aspects of this educational experience: a) the OSU periodontal program is surgery intensive (including implant surgery), and b) the cost of living in Columbus is very reasonable (and far less than in cities such as Boston, Los Angeles, or New York), despite the fact that Columbus, which is the 15th largest city in the US, is the center of a fast-growing metropolitan area with a population close to 2 million people. More information on the city of Columbus can be found here.

If this educational opportunity is of interest to you, please contact via email the Program Director (