About Us

The only dental school in the Hoosier state, Indiana University School of Dentistry (IUSD) offers an extraordinary learning environment in which teaching, research, and community service come together in the best way possible for the preparation of tomorrow’s dental professionals.

The school is located at the center of Indiana, and in the heart of the state capital of Indianapolis. It is situated at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), one of eight campuses in the IU system. IUPUI shares its location with the world-renowned IU medical school and its partner, the IU Health academic health center. Many of the dental school’s faculty members have established strong collaborative ties with physicians and other scientists in the medical center facilities.

Dr. John Williams Jr., joined the IU School of Dentistry as dean in 2010. Prior to his IU appointment, Dr. Williams served as the dental dean at the University of North Carolina (2005-2010) and as a professor and administrator at the University of Louisville for nearly two decades, including six years as dean (1999-2005). He earned both his dental and business degrees from the University of Louisville. The Tennessee-born Williams has childhood ties to the Hoosier state, having lived in New Castle, Anderson, and Connersville in the 1960s. He was named an IU School of Dentistry honorary alumnus in 2013 in recognition of his work with IUSD's faculty and staff in developing a strategic mission for the school and for his efforts in organizing a building campaign for new clinical and research facilities. In November 2013, he assumed the chair of the American Dental Association's Commission on Dental Accreditation, after having served three years as a commission board member.

2017-2018 Academic Year

DDS CLASS of 2021
1284      Applicants
106        Accepted
65/41     Residents/Nonresidents
54/52     Male/Female
3.51       GPA Overall Average
19.66     Average DAT AA

IDP - DDS CLASS of 2019
558      Applicants
16        Accepted
1/15     Male/Female

27          Dental Assisting
40          Dental Hygiene
32          Public Health Dental Hygiene
462         Dentistry
(44)          International Dentist Program (includes class of 2019 which begins Jan 2017)
112         Graduate/Hospital Programs
673        TOTAL

196         Graduates from 15 U.S. States and Territories and 13 Nations:
  33         Dental Assisting
  40         Dental Hygiene
  13         Public Health Dental Hygiene
  99         Dentistry (72 Indiana Grads)
  36         Specialty/Advanced Dentistry Programs

 16           Dental Assisting (Campus)
   5           Dental Assisting (Distance Learning)
 37           Dental Hygiene 
 40           Public Health Dental Hygiene
 16           International Dental Program
 37           Graduate/Hospital Programs

TUITION(2017-2018 Academic Year)
Dental Assisting: $8,255 Residents
Dental Hygiene:  $8,255 Residents 1yr - $9,355.78 2yr
DDS and Graduate Students: $33,676 Residents / $73,923 Nonresidents / $93,923 IDP
*excluding ancillary fees

  19,214  Patient Population
  86,817  Patient Appointments

Statewide Mobile Preventive Dentistry Program
March 2003–June 2017
1,572 Visits to Schools and Programs\
30,277 Child Appointments
48,633 Sealants Placed

Free Saturday Clinic Started by Dental Students
Complements Student-Run Medical Clinic
228 Dental Student Volunteers in FY 16-17
151 Patients Treated
2,977 Hours of Dontated Services
Winners of $100,000 USA Today Grant May 2017

106   Full-time Faculty
125   Adjunct (Part-time) Faculty
129   Volunteer Faculty (IUSD Site)
227   Full-time Staff
182   Part-time Staff (Including 150 Student Employees)

GENERAL FUND (Fiscal 2017)
$45 Million: Total Operating Income, Including:

State Funding (26.36%)
Tuition/Fees (51.57%)
Clinic Services (18.73%)
Research Indirect Cost Recovery (1.37%)

RESEARCH (July 1, 2013 - March 30, 2014)
Extramural Funding ($3,709,032)
Internal Funding ($102,590)

DEVELOPMENT (July 1, 2013-April 22, 2014)
$3,30,521    Gifts and Pledges
470 Members: Indiana Dean's Society*
Largest Membership in Dean's Society History
*recognizes gifts of $1,000 or more



IUSD is one of the oldest dental schools in the nation. It got its start as the Indiana Dental College in 1879 and was acquired by Indiana University in 1925. In 1933, IU built a facility to house the school at its current site. Today this sprawling, five-story edifice is composed of the original building plus two major additions – the first addition was dedicated in 1962 and the second a decade later.

During 2011 the lower level of the 1972 portion of the school was completely renovated and its preclinical laboratory space substantially expanded. Fall Semester 2011 opened to a new, state-of-the-art Indiana Dental Association Preclinical Laboratory composed of three labs and equipped with 106 patient simulators, digital radiography, CAD CAM technology, and experimental haptic technology designed to provide students with interactive virtual sense of touch experiences while they learn dental procedures.

The IU dental school has more than 12,500 living alumni pursuing careers throughout the United States and in about 30 other countries.

The IU Alumni Association counts dentistry among its most supportive groups. IU grads have been named to prestigious leadership posts in organized dentistry and in dental education throughout the world. For example, alumna Carol Turner (DDS’75) was appointed chief of the U.S. Navy Dental Corps in 2003, becoming the first woman to hold the Navy’s top position in dentistry (until August 2007). Another IU graduate, Elaine Wagner (DDS’80, Pediatric Dentistry Cert’82), currently holds this distinguished post. Other examples of notable alumni include Jeffrey Dalin (DDS’80), co-founder of the American Dental Association’s Give Kids a Smile, a program in which volunteer dental professionals across the country provide free dental services to children in need; and Stephen Ralls (M’81 Periodontics), executive director of the American College of Dentists.

During the 2013-2014 academic year, 682 students are pursuing degree and/or certificate programs in dental assisting, dental hygiene, dentistry, graduate dentistry, and hospital residencies. Three other IU campuses (in Gary, South Bend, and Fort Wayne) also offer certificates and degrees in allied dental programs.

The dental school has 297 faculty members contributing to IUSD’s teaching and research programs, including 114 holding full-time positions and 54 who teach as volunteers, primarily in the Comprehensive Care Clinics.

Five professors and one emeritus faculty member hold endowed faculty positions: William Browning, Indiana Dental Association Endowed Chair of Restorative Dentistry; Jeffrey Dean, Ralph E. McDonald Professor of Pediatric Dentistry; Katherine Kula, Joseph R. and Louise Ada Jarabak Endowed Professor of Orthodontics; Jeffrey Platt, Ralph W. Phillips Scholar in Dental Materials; Kenneth Spolnik, Samuel S Patterson Professorship of Endodontics; and Myron Kasle, Howard Riley Raper Professor Emeritus of Radiology.

Patient Care

Most of the dental school’s patients are treated on four floors of the dental building, but the school also provides treatment at several other outstanding patient care facilities, including the pediatric dentistry clinic at Riley Outpatient Center, which is part of IU’s acclaimed Riley Hospital for Children; the dental and oral surgery clinics at University Hospital and the Health Science Building (formerly Regenstrief); and Cottage Grove and Grassy Creek, two clinics located in community centers.

In fall 2011, working under their own initiative with the guidance of faculty mentors and in collaboration with People’s Health and Dental Clinic (HealthNet), IU dental students set up a Saturday dental clinic that they are managing and staffing at People’s 10th street clinic, where patients receive dental care from the students for free. Representing an entirely voluntary effort that now involves more than 250 students, the Saturday clinic is a key example of the success and continual expansion of the IU dental school’s community outreach program.

The clinical dentistry program at IU is one of the strongest in the country, gathering its strength from IU’s time-honored traditions in educational excellence and drawing on a patient population of about 31,500 persons. A Comprehensive Care Clinic, divided into seven sections, is contained on the third floor of the school. More than 117,000 appointments for dental patients are scheduled annually.


The school’s reputation for excellence took firm root in the 1940s, when pioneering dental dean Maynard Hine and several key teachers and researchers began long and prolific careers on the dental faculty. It was during this era, for example, that three IU scientists, including dental professor Joseph Muhler, created the first successful stannous fluoride formula that became the active decay-preventing agent in Crest toothpaste. Dr. Muhler and other IU pioneers (e.g., oral pathologist William Shafer, materials scientist Ralph Phillips, and pediatric dentist [and future dean] Ralph McDonald) contributed a body of groundbreaking work that drew worldwide attention to Indiana University. Each man left a legacy of knowledge that helped build the foundation for contemporary dental science.

In 2009, the IU School of Dentistry celebrated the 40th anniversary of one of its most famous textbooks: Dentistry for the Child and Adolescent, originally edited by Dr. Ralph McDonald. In 1969, the new book ignited IU’s international reputation in pediatric dentistry, and by the 7thedition, published in 2000, the text surpassed all other pediatric dentistry texts in the nation in number of editions. Dr. David Avery joined Dr. McDonald as a co-editor for the 3rd edition, and Dr. Jeffrey Dean joined the McDonald/Avery editorial team for the 8th edition. The 9th edition, published in March 2010 with a 2011 publication date, has been renamed McDonald and Avery’s Dentistry for the Child and Adolescent.

IUSD has a significant multidisciplinary research program. In all, nearly 40,000 square feet of research space divided into more than a dozen facilities, including the Oral Health Research Institute, has been devoted to wide-ranging research activities supported by more than $6.4 million in external funding last year.

Built in 1968 from royalties generated from the sale of Crest toothpaste, the Oral Health Research Institute is also one of the best-known product-testing sites in the world. The Institute’s longtime director was renowned scientist Dr. George Stookey, who now holds IU’s prestigious title of Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Preventive and Community Dentistry. Since 1999, the Institute has been under the fine leadership of Dr. Domenick Zero, and continues to build on its international reputations for studies on fluoride, early caries detection, and caries prevention. In 2011, Dr. Jack Windsor of the Oral Biology department and Dr. Mythily Srinivasan of the Oral Pathology, Medicine, and Radiology department were named Faculty Research Fellows to assist in the advancement and expansion of the IUSD research program.


IU stresses to its students the importance of becoming professionally engaged with the community at large, and the dental school seeks to continually broaden the scope of its outreach efforts and thus the students’ exposure to community populations having special needs.

In the summer of 2011, Dean Williams named Dr. Karen Yoder, former director of the Division of Community Dentistry, to a new post: director of Civic Engagement and Health Policy. In this position Dr. Yoder promotes health policy skills and advocacy among students and faculty and works to facilitate local, national, and international service-learning programs, secure grant and foundation funding to enhance civic engagement, and serve as a central point for public inquiry about the dental school’s many outreach programs.

An article Dr. Yoder wrote about IUSD's annual Oral Health Policy Forum for dental students with the eminent Dr. Burton Edelstein, president emeritus of the national Children's Dental Health Project, was published in December 2012 by the Journal of Dental Education. The article examines a replicable program model for student involvement in oral healthcare advocacy in order to offer best practices for future implementation at other institutions.

IU's Community Dentistry directorship is held by Dr. Angeles Martinez-Mier, who was appointed interim chair of the Department of Preventive and Community Dentistry in September 2013.

IUSD has developed long-term relationships with various community agencies in Indiana, and in 2001 the school added an international component to its service-learning program. With guidance on site from IUSD faculty mentors, dental and dental hygiene student volunteers have gained a global perspective on patient care and the profession of dentistry by treating underserved patients in other nations through the dental school’s International Service-Learning Program. Groups of volunteers served in Haiti from 2001 to 2003 and in Calnali, Mexico, from 2001 to 2011. A team of volunteers has conducted service-learning missions to Ecuador since 2004. In 2007, the program was expanded to include sites in Guatemala and Brazil, and in 2009 sites were added once again in Haiti as well as Honduras. The program grew further in 2010, with new teams heading to Eldoret, Kenya, as part of the collaboration between IU and Moi universities; Yucatan, Mexico; and the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana. A dental group joined an IU medical group on a trip to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, in 2012. The school's students and faculty have served patients in nine nations on four continents.

One of many examples of IUSD’s service-learning efforts closer to home is participation by faculty, staff, and student volunteers in an ongoing program that provides dental sealants to children residing in several city shelters housing homeless persons and victims of domestic violence. Through the second-year dental hygiene Community Dental Health course and other programs the school has established mutually beneficial relationships with a variety of clinics and centers in central Indiana.

IU's dental students and faculty are participants in the award-winning IU Student Outreach Clinic, an initiative launched primarily by IU's health sciences students to bring free medical and dental care to patients in need in a near eastside Indianapolis neighborhood. The dental school's students and faculty volunteer their time in the HealthNet dental clinic on 10th street on two Saturdays every month. In one year's time, 256 dental students played a role in running the Saturday clinical sessions. In fall 2013 the IU Student Outeach Clinic was honored by Indiana Governor Mike Pence with a Governor's Service Award. 

In 1996, volunteers from the school began providing oral healthcare to Amish children in several northern Indiana communities by using the dental office of an IU dental graduate in Elkhart. That commitment, in combination with a series of grants obtained by IU faculty, resulted in the construction of a new clinic for the Amish in Shipshewana, Ind., a facility that flourishes today with a director and six-member staff. IU’s dental students continue to serve one Friday every month at the clinic, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2009 with help from Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels.

The Seal Indiana program, launched by IUSD in early 2003 in collaboration with the Indiana State Department of Health, is the centerpiece of the school’s community outreach program for low-income children. Dr. Armando Soto has directed the program since 2011. Operating year-round, the mobile program travels across the state with IU dental staff and students to apply sealants to the teeth of children enrolled at schools that serve low-income families and in programs associated with community centers. Examinations are also provided to youngsters participating in Head Start. As of September 2013, the Seal Indiana team has cared for 27,000 youngsters and made about 1,350 visits to schools and programs.

In 2010, Seal Indiana launched a partnership with the Indiana Dental Association to bring additional services to children in need. Through the new program, Hoosier dentists agree to provide comprehensive care at no cost each year to one or more children who have no other access to care. Seal Indiana works with school nurses and parents to identify children in greatest need of services, and to link the families with local dentists.

For its outstanding efforts in providing dental care to children in need, the IU School of Dentistry was honored as "Affiliate of the Year" by the National Children's Oral Health Foundation in February 2012.

In 2008 IUSD launched its urban Dental Summer Institute, an educational camp introducing careers in dentistry to minority high school and college students in an effort to help address the national shortage of underrepresented minorities both in dental school degree programs and in the dental profession. The institute was expanded a year later to include a rural component, which draws participants from areas of the state where there are shortages in the health professions workforce.

The dental school is also proud to extend a hand of friendship to the global community through its relationships with other schools of dentistry around the world. The school has enjoyed warm relations with many international schools for decades. The first formal Agreement of Friendship and Cooperation took place in 1985, when an agreement was sealed with Matsumoto Dental College (now Matsumoto Dental University) of Shiojiri, Japan. Today, IUSD has contracts with schools in 12 countries, including eight dental schools in Thailand. The most recent agreement was signed in 2007 with Centro Universitario Positivo – UnicenP (now Universidade Positivo) in Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil.

The dental school’s strong group of international alumni has been key to the success of these programs. The agreements typically have led to student and faculty exchanges and to the pursuit of collaborative research projects.

In 2012 Michael Kowolik, formerly associate dean for Graduate Education, accepted an expanded administrative appointment as associate dean for Graduate Education and Global Engagement. In this post he leads the dental school's latest internationalization efforts, including building and/or strenghening Dentistry components for the university and IUPUI's existing Strategic Partnerships in Kenya and China and exploring new relationships in such nations as Saudi Arabia.

"About Us" updated Septmber 10, 2014