Student Research

DDS Student Research Programs

The DDS Student Research Programs were established to motivate and encourage NYU College of Dentistry students to become involved in oral health related research (basic, biomaterials, clinical, or behavioral) at NYU Dentistry. These research programs are flexible to fit the diversity of projects and changing goals of our students as they progress through the dental school curriculum.

The annual Summer Research Fellowship held at NYU College of Dentistry introduces incoming dental students to research at an early stage in their careers — inspiring them and helping them see that research can be an exciting and fulfilling career trajectory. Participants in the summer program work with faculty mentors on their research studies full time and attend seminars once a week during the four-week program. Seminar topics include health disparities, ethics, lab safety, DNA, animal research, and evidence-based practice to name a few.

The rationale for the program is the concept that dental students should be able to understand the science behind what they are doing and apply it to their practices. "We want to capture those who are turned on by science," says Louis Terracio, PhD, Vice Dean for Academic Affairs and Research, who adds that starting people early in research changes their thinking fundamentally. "Whether you're a dentist or a stockbroker, you should want to look at data critically and make good decisions based on it." The program began in the summer of 2001 with a small group of students and funding from the National Institutes of Health with its goal to encourage dental students to consider careers in academia.

Apply to the 2020 Summer Research Fellowship >>>

If you have any questions regarding the Summer Research Fellowship, please email dental.research@nyu.edu.

Dental Academic Research Experience (DARE)

This course is designed to provide selected first year dental students with the opportunity to participate in a research project being conducted at NYU Dentistry. This course is a 6 credit elective, graded as Pass/Fail and runs from mid-February till the end of June. Some of the topics covered as lectures include the basics of clinical and basic research, lab safety, bioethics, animal issues, and career opportunities. There are two mechanisms to complete the course requirements:

  • Mechanism 1: First year dental students will attend lectures and work on their research projects with their mentors for three hours per week during the spring semester.
  • Mechanism 2: First year dental students are eligible only if they have successfully completed the four-week summer research program as incoming dental students. They will spend five hours per week working on their research projects with their mentors during the spring semester.

Both mechanisms require full-time (~35 hrs/week at the College) participation in the four-week summer program between the D1 and D2 years. Students will be selected for admission to this course based on the quality of their application and availability of mentors and research projects.

Applications are due mid-January, notices of acceptance are released at the beginning of February, and the program runs from approximately mid-February to the end of June. For further details about the courses, credits and deadlines, visit DARE Courses.

Students must identify a mentor BEFORE applying to this program. Mentors are full-time faculty members at NYU Dentistry and most research faculty members are available as mentors. Please visit the Faculty Research page for a listing of faculty members' areas of research.

Once students find a research topic that interests them, they must consult with potential mentors about possible projects to obtain the faculty member's permission to apply to the program. Students can also refer to the NYU Dentistry chapter of the Student Research Group for additional guidance and help in establishing connections to the like-minded researchers. After these avenues have been explored, students can contact the course coordinator, Dr. Lukasz Witek, for further assistance.

Once accepted into the program, students and their mentors sign a mutual contract and provide a copy to the course director before they begin working on their projects.

This research program is designed to provide selected students with the opportunity to be involved in a research project being conducted at NYU College of Dentistry. Students who have participated in the D1 DARE program will have the opportunity to continue or change research directions and thus be active in research throughout their dental education at NYU College of Dentistry. Students who have not participated in previous research programs have the opportunity to gain research experience at NYU College of Dentistry.

There are two research courses that differ in their intent and requirements. The Guided Research course is a three-credit course, while the Independent Research course is a one-credit course; course descriptions are listed below. Both courses must be applied to each semester, with deadlines on July 17 for the fall semester and January 1 for the spring semester.

Students must identify a mentor BEFORE applying to this program. Mentors are full-time faculty members at NYU College of Dentistry and most research faculty members are available as mentors. For more information please visit the Faculty Research page to see a listing of faculty member's areas of research.

Once students find a research topic that interests them, they must consult with potential mentors about possible projects to obtain the faculty member's permission to apply to the program. Students can refer to the NYU Dentistry chapter of the Student Research Group for additional guidance and help in establishing connections to like-minded researchers. After these avenues have been explored, students may contact the course coordinator, Dr. Lukasz Witek, for further assistance.

Upon acceptance into the program, the student and their mentor sign a mutual contract and provide a copy to the course director before they can be registered and begin working on their projects. A project summary, approved by the mentor, must be submitted to the course director by the end of each semester for a grade to be posted.

  • Guided Research: This course is a three-credit course that requires a commitment of nine hours/week for 15 weeks or a total of 135 hours/semester. The intent of this course is for students to be involved in a research project and gain hands-on laboratory and/or clinical experience as well as an understanding of the science behind their projects through readings of the scientific literature. In consultation with their mentor, students will work on their projects with a goal of being able to present their project to their peers and the faculty at the NYU Dentistry Annual Research Days, usually held in mid-April, as well as outside the college, e.g., at national meetings. Please note that clinical projects require IRB approval prior to application.
  • This elective course is open only to select students in good academic standing and with the permission of the faculty member, who will guide the research project, is required for registration.
  • Independent Research: This course is a one-credit course that requires a commitment of three hours/week for 15 weeks, or a total of 45 hours/semester. Students should track their time. This course is designed to provide students with the opportunity to be involved in clinical, educational, and/or evidence-based research being conducted at NYU College of Dentistry. The intent of this course is for students to be introduced to research practices and gain experience with in-depth literature searches and evidence-based practices as well as an understanding of the significance of their projects. This course may be used as a prequel to the guided research course, or to prepare an IRB proposal for clinical research projects. In consultation with their mentor, students will work on their projects with a goal of producing a document that summarizes their results and that may be presented as a poster to their peers and the faculty at the NYU Dentistry Annual Research Days, usually held in mid-April.
  • This elective course is open only to select students in good academic standing and with the permission of the faculty member, who will guide the research project, is required for registration.

Please visit the DDS Research Courses page for a full listing of Research courses, credits and deadlines. >>>