Doctoral (PhD) Dentistry

The program is research-oriented, consisting of didactic courses, original research carried out under supervision, and preparation and completion of a thesis.

It is not a clinical program leading to clinical specialization and is unrelated to licensure.

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Application Information & Deadlines

For September Admission

For January Admission

Applications open: January 1

Applications close: May 1

Applications open: May 1

Applications close: July 1

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all required documents are received by the application deadline noted above or the application will not be considered for admission.

Once you submit and pay for your application, you can use the GSMS Portal (Not Bear Tracks) to check the status of your application, determine if references have been received, replace referees, and upload documents. To access the portal, please sign in using the e-mail address and password initially used when you created your account.

Once you submit and pay for your application, your referees will receive a notice from the online application system requesting that their reference be submitted within two weeks of receiving the request.

Admission Requirements

Meet the eligibility requirements established by the Faculty of Graduate Studies, Graduate Dentistry Program Admission Subcommittee, and the Medical Sciences Graduate Program Committee. Admission to the graduate program is dependent upon the recommendation of the department's Graduate Committee.

An academic record that satisfies the basic entrance requirements does not necessarily guarantee admission. Enrollment in our graduate programs is limited and the number of qualified applicants greatly exceeds the number of positions available. Admission will be based on demonstrated academic excellence, evidence of previous research experience, and the letters of recommendation.

Completion of a Master's Degree and Minimum GPA

The School of Dentistry requires an undergraduate degree, in any discipline, and a Master's degree with a minimum admission GPA of 3.0 on the 4-point scale from the University of Alberta, or an equivalent qualification and standing from a recognized institution.

A Master's is required except in exceptional cases, which will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Admission GPA will be calculated using the last *60 of graded coursework completed, or on the equivalent of the last two years of full-time graded coursework.

For education completed outside of Canada, see the Minimum Academic Requirements by Country for equivalent qualifications.

English Language Proficiency (ELP)

English is the primary language of instruction and communication at the University of Alberta.All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission either by:

  • Possession of an undergraduate degree or its academic equivalent from an academic institution recognized by the University of Alberta, in which the language of instruction is English, or;

  • A satisfactory score on an approved English language examination as described below.

    • TOEFL internet-based minimum score of 95 with at least 21 per section

    • IELTS (Academic) minimum score of 7.5 with at least 6 on each band

    • MELAB minimum score of 91

    • CAEL minimum score of 70 with at least 70 on each subtest

Test scores must be valid and verifiable. Test scores cannot be more than two years old.

For application purposes, unofficial test results may be submitted. If admitted to the program, official standardized test results must be issued directly from the testing office.

Required Documents

All required documents must be received by the application deadline.

Applicants should submit supporting documents though the online application portal. Please confirm that your documents meet the Application Requirements for Academic Documents. Documents that are not in English must be accompanied by a certified English translation.

Applicants are required to submit the following:

  • Unofficial transcripts of all academic work in progress or completed at all post-secondary institutions attended.

  • Degree certificates must accompany transcripts that do not clearly indicate that a degree has been awarded/conferred/granted, and the date on which the degree was conferred.

  • if applicable, a letter from your Dental School noting your graduation ranking (it should include the number of students in your graduating class and your ranking within the class) is expected if available. Stronger consideration may be given to those that provide such ranking. The letter can be either uploaded directly to your online application as a single pdf document or the Dental School can send the letter directly to

  • Proof of English Language Proficiency.

  • Curriculum vitae (resume) which includes education, qualifications, publications, community involvement, and previous professional and research experience.

  • Letter of intent describing why you wish to pursue graduate studies at the University of Alberta.

  • Applicants must identify a willing faculty supervisor, a potential thesis topic, and potential funding prior to submitting applications. Potential supervisors are listed in the section below. Once your Supervisor is confirmed, the Applicant/Supervisor Checklist should be completed and submitted with the application. Please note that this form requires the signature of the confirmed supervisor.

  • To be considered for admission to our PhD programs, applicants must demonstrate a minimum of $25,000 in secured stipend funding (either from their supervisor or an external professional, national, international, or academic body) each year for the first four years of the program. Applications must include verifiable proof of funding at the time of submission. This documentation should clearly outline the source and amount of available funding. 

Official documents (transcripts, degree certificates, etc.) may be required upon receiving the conditional offer of admission letter. Documents must be sent directly from the post-secondary institution to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research office.

Selection Process

Applications that meet the minimum entrance requirements are reviewed by the Dentistry Admissions Subcommittee. Candidates are invited for an interview with the Subcommittee.  

Admission to the PhD Dentistry program is dependent upon the recommendation of the Dentistry Admissions Subcommittee, the Department of Dentistry Graduate Studies Committee, and the Medical Sciences Graduate Program Committee. The Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research makes the final decision. 

Tuition & Fees

Candidates should be prepared to support themselves for the duration of their selected program. Applications for funding from scholarships and studentships may be obtained through a competitive basis and are encouraged prior to or during the tenure of the program.

Information on the tuition and fees for Graduate students can be found on the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research Website.

Information on the cost of living in Edmonton can also be found here.

Program Information

The PhD Dentistry program has the following requirements:

  • The School of Dentistry requires that students reside in Edmonton for a minimum of two years. Residency for the remainder of the program is dependent on discussions with your Supervisor, requirements of research, and course offerings (some students may be asked to take courses outside the Department and those courses may not be offered online). Oral examinations may be required to be in-person.

  • The maximum time permitted to complete the program as set by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research is six years.The time required to complete the PhD program will vary; however, four years is considered the average.

  • Students are required to complete a minimum of *12 of graded coursework, consisting of *6 in required courses and *6 in elective courses. Course requirements are recommended by the Supervisor and Supervisory Committee based on the background of the student and the area of specialization to be undertaken in the thesis research.

  • Successfully complete a Candidacy examination

  • Complete and successfully defend a thesis

  • Participate in and attend the Discovery Dental Sciences Seminars and the Graduate Student Research Day.

Potential Supervisors

Faculty contact information can be found under Our Researchers.

Dr. Maryam Sharifzadeh-Amin (Program Director)

Dr. Khaled Altabtbaei

Dr. Ava Chow

Dr. Tarek El-Bialy

Dr. Carlos Flores- Mir

Dr. Monica Gibson

Dr. Manuel Lagravere Vich

Dr. Hollis Lai

Dr. Liran Levin

Dr. Paul Major 

Dr. Camila Pacheco-Pereira 

Dr. Minn-Nyoung Yoon