Accreditation | Commission on Dental Accreditation

Accreditation

A look at CODA’s role in the accreditation  of U.S. dental, advanced dental and allied dental education programs.

How Accreditation Works

The Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) employs a collaborative peer review accreditation process to evaluate the quality of over 1,400 dental and dental-related education programs nationwide, including dental, advanced dental and allied dental programs.

The accreditation process begins when a sponsoring institution submits an application to CODA. The institution then completes a comprehensive self-analysis and self-study report detailing its resources, curriculum, policies and operational standards.

The next step is an on-site review conducted by CODA team members selected for their expertise in the program area. They conduct interviews with administrators, instructors, staff and students to verify information in the self-study and ensure that the program meets minimum accreditation standards.

CODA team members then write a detailed site visit report based on their findings and share it with both the sponsoring institution and CODA officials. CODA meets twice a year (usually in January/February and July/August) to review site visit reports and other program reports, and make accreditation decisions.

All accredited programs receive a follow-up site review every seven years, except for advanced dental education programs in oral and maxillofacial surgery, which are reviewed every five years.

Procedures to follow in preparing and submitting an application to CODA.
Consultation and accreditation services for predoctoral programs outside the U.S. 
Full details on CODA’s fee schedule for accreditation.
Dates for upcoming CODA meetings, past meeting minutes, policy reports and more. 
The official newsletter of CODA.
An overview of our mission, vision, values and frequently asked questions.

Accreditation Updates

General Updates

Information about CODA’s activities is available to everyone. We meet twice a year, usually in the winter and the summer.

View Upcoming Meeting Dates and Related Materials

Following each meeting, communities of interest are notified via email that the Summary of Major Actions and CODA Communicator are available. This CODA Communicator newsletter is available to all of CODA’s communities of interest.

If you have not received a notification regarding the CODA Communicator, please contact Marjorie Hooper and she will add your email address to CODA’s distribution for the next issue.

Read the Latest Issue

Hearings on standards are conducted to provide an opportunity for communities of interest to comment on proposed revisions to Accreditation Standards. Follow this link to learn more about submitting comments.

Share Your Comments

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

CODA Pursues Alternative Site Visit Methods

At its August 2020 meeting, CODA considered ongoing operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact on site visits. The Commission directed that it pursue alternative site visit methods, as needed to employ in 2021. The Commission further directed investigation and development of policies and procedures for alternative site visit methods, with a report to CODA in Winter 2021.

Following a review of the report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Alternative Site Visit Methods at its February 12, 2021 meeting, the Commission adopted a number of actions regarding the use of alternative site visit methods, including but not limited to establishing new policy on the use of virtual site visits, creating new site visitor and program manuals covering alternative site visit methods, and producing new educational webinars.

View CODA Policy on Alternative Site Visit Methods

CODA Begins Online Commentary Process

CODA now accepts comments on proposed revisions to standards in circulation for public review via a dedicated Online Comment Portal only. CODA no longer accepts comments via email, U.S. Postal Service or overnight shipping services. To submit comments on any standard in circulation, follow this link.

Comment on Proposed Accreditation Standards

COVID-19 updates

Unofficial Report of Major Actions, 4/26/21

This report is based on CODA’s Special Closed Meeting, 4/26/21.

View Unofficial Report 


COVID-19 Update on CODA Application Process, 12/14/20

At its Summer 2020 meeting, CODA directed development of an electronic system to accept applications and other types of program reports (for program submission, CODA staff retrieval, site visitor access, as needed). We further directed that program materials be submitted electronically, solely, upon development of the electronic system. CODA further directed that, upon implementation of the electronic document submission system, the Commission’s acceptance of applications for accreditation be resumed.

CODA tentatively expects the electronic document submission portal will be available on or after January 20, 2021, and the CODA application process will be resumed when the portal is open. Information and instructions to request a secure portal access link will be provided in early January 2021. Please continue to monitor this website for more information.

Guidelines for Reporting an Interruption of Education Related to COVID-19 for the Class of 2021

View Guidelines 

Video of Dr. Sherin Tooks Summarizing the Class of 2021 Guidelines 

Guidance Documents: Temporary Flexibility in Accreditation Standards to Address Interruption of Education Reporting Requirements Resulting From COVID-19 for the Class of 2021 (10-20-20)

Below are Guidance Documents regarding Temporary Flexibility in Accreditation Standards to Address Interruption of Education Reporting Requirements Resulting From COVID-19 for the Class of 2021, as adopted by the Commission on Dental Accreditation at its Special Meeting held on October 13, 2020.

View Guidance on COVID-19 Interruption of Education Class of 2021 CODA Alert (PDF)

Predoctoral Dental Education (PDF)

Dental Assisting Education (PDF)

Dental Hygiene Education (PDF)

Dental Laboratory Technology Education (PDF)

Dental Therapy Education (PDF)

Advanced Education in General Dentistry (PDF)

Dental Anesthesiology Education (PDF)

Dental Public Health Education (PDF)

Endodontics Education (PDF)

General Practice Residency Education (PDF)

Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology Education (PDF)

Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Education (PDF)

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Education (Residency and Fellowship) (PDF)

Oral Medicine Education (PDF)

Orofacial Pain Education (PDF)

Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics Education (Residency and Fellowship) (PDF)

Pediatric Dentistry Education (PDF)

Periodontics Education (PDF)

Prosthodontics Education (Prosthodontics, Maxillofacial Prosthetics, Combined PROS/MXPROS) (PDF)

Unofficial Report of Major Actions (10/20/20)
This Unofficial Report is based on the Commission’s Special Closed Meeting held on 10/13/2020.

View Unofficial Report

Actions Regarding Ongoing Operations and the Impact on Educational Programs as a Result of COVID-19 (8/14/20)

At its August 7, 2020 Meeting, the Commission adopted multiple actions regarding the Coronavirus pandemic. Some of these actions include:

  • Affirmed its intent to extend the current flexibility in the Accreditation Standards related to Interruption of Education (i.e., Class of 2020 flexibility) to the Class of 2021; however, the Commission also directed special meetings of all 14 Review Committees and the Commission in Fall 2020 to consider any necessary changes to the current flexibility guidelines for the Class of 2021. The Commission's final decision on this matter will be made by mid-October.
  • Extended the current flexibility for temporary use of distance education through December 31, 2020, with no further reporting required by programs.
  • Directed development of an electronic system to accept applications for accreditation and other types of program reports. Materials will be accepted solely by this electronic method, upon development of the electronic system. Upon implementation of the electronic document submission system, the Commission’s acceptance of applications for accreditation will be resumed. Directed Hearings on Standards and the Winter 2021 Commission meetings be conducted virtually.
  • Directed that CODA pursue alternative site visit methods, as needed to employ in 2021.
  • Directed establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee to investigate and develop policies and procedures for alternative site visit methods, with a report for consideration by CODA in Winter 2021. The Ad Hoc Committee will obtain input from the Commission’s 14 Review Committees related to elements of a site visit that may be conducted virtually versus elements that must be reviewed on-site.

For details on these and other Commission actions related to the pandemic, please refer to the COVID-19 Excerpt from the August 2020 Unofficial Report of Major Actions.

View Excerpt

Accreditation Actions Report (7/30/20)

This Report is based on the Commission’s Special Closed Meeting held on July 9, 2020.

View July 2020 Special Meeting Accreditation Actions

Guidance Document: Temporary Flexibility in the Accreditation Standards for Dental Assisting Education Programs to Address Interruption of Education Reporting Requirements Resulting From COVID-19 for the Class of 2020 (7/21/20)

This Guidance Document is based on the Commission’s Special Meeting held on July 9, 2020.

Read the Guidance Document

Unofficial Report of Major Actions (7/21/20)

This Unofficial Report is based on the Commission's Special Closed Meeting held on July 9, 2020.

Read the Unofficial Report

Interruption of Education Webinar Materials Available (4/23/20)

Follow this link to view slides from the COVID-19 Webinar on Interruption of Education Guidelines.
Interruption of Education Guidelines Slides

Guidance Documents: Temporary Flexibility in Accreditation Standards to Address Interruption of Education Reporting Requirements Resulting From COVID-19 for the Class of 2020 (4/14/20)

Below are Guidance Documents regarding Temporary Flexibility in Accreditation Standards to Address Interruption of Education Reporting Requirements Resulting From COVID-19 for the Class of 2020, as adopted by the Commission on Dental Accreditation at its Special Meeting held on April 13, 2020.

Guidelines for Reporting an Interruption of Education During COVID-19 for the Class of 2020 (4/3/20)

Guidance on COVID-19 Interruption of Education Class of 2020 CODA Alert

Temporary Flexibility in Accreditation Standards for the Class of 2020

Predoctoral Dental Education

Dental Assisting Education

Dental Hygiene Education

Dental Laboratory Technology Education

Advanced Education in General Dentistry

Dental Anesthesiology Education

Dental Public Health Education

Endodontics Education

General Practice Residency Education

Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology Education

Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Education

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Education (Residency and Fellowship)

Oral Medicine Education

Orofacial Pain Education

Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics Education (Residency and Fellowship)

Pediatric Dentistry Education

Periodontics Education

Prosthodontics Education (Prosthodontics, Maxillofacial Prosthetics, Combined PROS/MXPROS)

Unofficial Report of Major Actions (4/8/20)

This Unofficial Report is based on the Commission's Special Closed Meeting held on April 2, 2020.

Read the Unofficial Report

Post-CODA Meeting Directives Related to Site Visits (4/3/20)

Post-CODA Meeting Directives Related to Site Visits CODA Alert (4/3/20)

Post-CODA Meeting Guidance on Interruption of Education Related to COVID-19 for the Class of 2020 (4/3/20)

Guidelines for Reporting an Interruption of Education During COVID-19 (4/3/20)

Guidance on Interruption of Education CODA Alert (4/3/2020)

Further CODA Guidance on Interruption of Education Related to COVID-19 (3/30/20)

CODA Statement on Dental Clinic Operations during COVID-19 (3/23/20)

General CODA Updates (3/20/20)

Update on Potential Temporary Flexibility in Site Visit Process and Other Accreditation Updates During COVID-19 (3/18/20)

CODA Staff Telecommuting During COVID-19 (3/16/20)

Statement to CODA-Accredited Programs (3/13/20)

Statement to CODA Site Visitors (3/13/20)

CODA Communicator Newsletter
Annual Reports

CODA publishes an Annual Report for communities of interest, summarizing activities for the year. The report contains data associated with accredited programs, highlights of CODA activities during the report year, accreditation actions, standards revisions and more.

2021 Annual Report

2020 Annual Report

2019 Annual Report