Pediatric Residency Overview

The advanced education program in pediatric dentistry at MUSC's James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine is designed such that successful completion of program requirements will qualify graduates for certification by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry.

Pediatric Dentistry Residency Content

In order to meet our curriculum goal of providing a wide range of clinical and didactic experiences grounded in a process of critical analysis, the program provides the following:

Clinical Pediatric Dental Care

This includes the diagnosis and treatment of infants, children and adolescents in the primary, mixed and young permanent dentitions to include: preventive care, advanced restorative techniques, pulp therapy, management of traumatic injury, management of dental emergencies, pediatric oral pathology, space supervision and guidance of eruption, interceptive orthodontics and oral surgical procedures.
Direct pediatric dental patient care is scheduled:
First Year – eight half-day per week basis supported by two half-days per week seminar schedule, including 1 day a week in OR
Second Year – nine half-day per week basis supported by a half-day per month seminar schedule, including 1 or 2 days a week in OR

Behavior Guidance Methods

Non-pharmacologic and pharmacologic techniques for control of apprehension and pain management support the treatment activities encountered in pediatric dental care.

Oral Sedations

The clinical application of pharmacologic conscious sedation (oral sedation) using a wide range of sedation medications and techniques, are realized on approximately 35-65 patients by each individual resident over the course of the two-year program.

IV Sedations

The program has incorporated the use of outpatient IV sedation as a behavior guidance modality for our patients. We have a dental anesthesiologist who does cases with the residents two days a month.

Patients with Special Health Care Needs

Residents are provided with extensive experience in the comprehensive dental and multifaceted behavioral management of patients with special healthcare needs.

Craniofacial Anomalies

Residents experience clinical management of children and adolescents with craniofacial anomalies in the program's role as a primary care component of the MUSC craniofacial team. The craniofacial anomalies clinic is scheduled two half days per month with residents attending during their second year on a rotational basis.
Developmental Pediatrics
In addition to the rotation in pediatric medicine, residents attend the Down Syndrome clinic one half day per month on a rotational basis during the second year of the program.

Operating Room (OR) Experience

Residents provide treatment to children with extensive disease, complex dental problems and/or special healthcare needs using general anesthesia five days per week. Our program has dedicated time at the Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital (SJCH) three days a week and at the outpatient medical center Summey Medical Pavilion (SMP) two days a week. At SMP we treat patients classified as ASA 1 & 2 only, while complex cases are seen at SJCH. The typical experience involves OR dental management of 175 to 200 patients over the course of the two-year program by each resident.

Growth and Development

Residents manage the developing occlusion through integrated diagnostic, treatment planning and biomechanical orthodontic applications. This is approached with a clinical involvement of two half-days per month for both first- and second-year residents. These clinical orthodontic experiences involve interceptive, multiple-phase, growth modification and comprehensive levels of biomechanical orthodontic treatment. The clinical experiences are supported by a structured orthodontic curriculum of seminar and laboratory exercises.

Case Presentations

All residents select a group of case reviews that document the clinical management of pediatric patients in addressing major treatment issues common to advanced specialty care. Besides documenting the resident’s performance in the delivery of quality dental care, the experience enhances the resident's ability for critical analysis and patient documentation.


Residents participate in both clinical and didactic experiences with predoctoral students. Predoctoral students treat patients alongside residents in a “private-practice” style environment throughout the program. During the second year of the program, residents assist with teaching a lab course, creating and presenting didactic lectures to predoctoral students, and teaching the rotating students a clinical examination and treatment planning seminar.


The program provides residents with dedicated seminar time one half day a week. During this time a comprehensive curriculum is provided following all the CODA required content.

Interdepartmental Seminars

First-year residents participate in a curriculum of classes in biomedical and clinical core sciences to supplement their knowledge base.

Anesthesia Rotation

A four-week anesthesia rotation with the Department of Anesthesia of the Medical University of South Carolina Hospital, Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital.

Pediatric Medicine

A minimum of 14 days with the Department of Pediatrics of the Medical University of South Carolina Hospital. This includes the following clinics: cardiology, emergency medicine, inpatient care (wards), primary care, hematology-oncology, developmental pediatrics and pulmonary medicine.


All residents conduct a research project that involves data collection and a comprehensive literature review/case report. The report is expected to be of publishable quality. Besides providing informational service to the profession, the experience of conducting research will enhance the resident's ability for critical analysis. Residents are expected to present a poster at the AAPD Annual meeting.

Practice Management

Second-year residents receive a comprehensive practice management seminar course including shadowing experiences at local practices to prepare them for opportunities after graduation.


Second-year residents have a seminar to discuss issues important to advocacy for pediatric oral health.

Resident Schedule

The residency program operates from July 1 through June 30 of each academic year. There are no fixed quarters or semesters as such, but the program will follow the academic calendar of the College of Dental Medicine. The residency program should be considered a seven-day-a-week, 24-hour-a-day commitment.

The formal schedule for resident clinical patient care and seminars in the program will be from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, while in the clinics. General anesthesia cases will start at 7 a.m. and residents are expected to be there by 6 a.m. on those days. Residents are provided with dedicated research time each week. Residents are expected to attend all scheduled courses without exception.

Additional Program Information

The mission of the Postgraduate Program in Pediatric Dentistry at the Medical University of South Carolina is to provide carefully selected dentists with the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct an ethical, patient-centered, evidence-based practice in the specialty of Pediatric Dentistry. The MUSC Postgraduate Program in Pediatric Dentistry offers a curriculum designed to foster individual resident strengths and talents and to take full advantage of the integrated research, education and practice resources of the James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine and the MUSC Medical Center.

Recognizing the evolving nature of contemporary pediatric dental practice and the varied interests of residents, the MUSC Pediatric Dentistry Postgraduate Program strives to provide a full range of clinical experiences in pediatric dental care which are supported by an in-depth, critical, and scholarly appraisal of the specialties knowledge base. The resident is assured of extensive clinical opportunities in diagnosis, treatment planning, behavior management, conscious sedation, hospital dentistry, general anesthesia, pediatric medicine, care of developmentally and medically compromised children, trauma management, growth and development, orthodontic diagnosis and biomechanics, craniofacial anomalies, and other special areas of pediatric dental care for the child and adolescent patient. The clinical resources of the James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine and the MUSC Medical Center will enhance program experiences. The clinical experiences will be supported by a structured didactic and laboratory curriculum designed to provide an in-depth, critical, and scholarly appraisal of the specialties knowledge base.

The program curriculum and experiences are designed to prepare graduates for successful entry into the contemporary practice of Pediatric Dentistry as well as for future growth in the field. The MUSC Pediatric Dentistry Program will provide an intellectually stimulating environment where small class size and a strong faculty of practicing dental specialists, scientific investigators and educators unite to promote the scientific and humanitarian practice of pediatric dentistry. The MUSC Pediatric Dentistry Program will strive to produce knowledgeable and compassionate practitioners who have the skills and desire for lifelong learning and who will play a leadership role in specialty governance, education, research, and community activity.

The two-year Postdoctoral Program in Pediatric Dentistry, administered by the pediatric dentistry section of the Department of Advances Specialty Sciences, is designed to offer a balanced clinical and didactic curriculum in advanced infant, child, and adolescent dental care. Affiliated with the James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine of the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, the residency program is clinically based in the MUSC James B. Edwards Clinical Educational Facility. A certificate of specialty education in Pediatric Dentistry is awarded upon successful completion of the program that qualifies the resident for examination by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. The program is fully accredited by the Commission on Dental Education of the American Dental Association.