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CODA Communicator: Summer/Fall 2019

An Introduction from the Chair Upcoming Hearings, Events and Meetings 
Summer 2019 Commission Meeting Highlights  CODA Extra  
Major Actions of Interest Deadlines for Program Reports
Actions of General Interest  CODA Staff

An Introduction from the Chair

image of Dr. Arthur C. JeeI am very pleased to share that the Commission on Dental Accreditation held a productive two-day meeting on August 1-2, 2019, which lead to a number of strategic planning initiatives.  In addition to taking accreditation actions on various dental programs and adopting updates to accreditation standards (details of which are contained in the Unofficial Report of Major Actions), the Commission also:

  • Directed the appointment of an ad hoc committee to study the Commission’s Review Committee and Board of Commissioners structure and function, with a report in Summer 2020.
  • Directed the formal study of the use of sites where educational activity occurs (domestic and international) for all programs under its purview, with a report on progress in Winter 2020 and culmination of the study through a Commission-only Mega Issue Discussion in Summer 2020.
  • Directed that three (3) ad hoc committees be formed to continue review of the validity and reliability survey data and potential revision of Accreditation Standards for dental hygiene, dental laboratory technology, and endodontics, respectively.

Also of note, the Commission on Dental Accreditation granted an accreditation status to a fully operational international predoctoral dental education program based outside the United States.  Read the enclosed article in this issue of the Communicator for more details on this development.

I was honored to be re-elected as Chair of the Commission for the coming term. I once again look forward to working with my fellow Commissioners to support the continuous quality and improvement of dental education programs.

Dr. Arthur C. Jee, Chair, Commission on Dental Accreditation

Summer 2019 Commission Meeting Highlights

This year’s Summer 2019 Meeting was held on August 1-2, 2019. The Unofficial Report of Major Actions provides a summative review of the major activities during this meeting.

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Major Actions of Interest to All Accredited Programs 

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The Commission reviewed accreditation reports and took 381 accreditation actions on dental, advanced dental, and allied dental education programs and recorded five (5) mail ballots on dental assisting, dental hygiene and general practice residency education programs.

A total of two (2) new programs were granted accreditation.

One (1) advanced education in general dentistry, four (4) general practice residency, two (2) advanced education in pediatric dentistry, one (1) oral and maxillofacial surgery (residency), one (1) orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics (residency), one (1) clinical fellowship training program in craniofacial and special care orthodontics, one (1) dental hygiene and eight (8) dental assisting programs received a formal warning that accreditation will be withdrawn in January 2020 unless the requested information, demonstrating compliance with the accreditation standards or Commission policy, is submitted prior to that time.

The Commission affirmed the reported voluntary discontinuance effective date or planned closure date of one (1) advanced education in general dentistry, two (2) general practice residency, one (1) periodontics, one (1) prosthodontics, one (1) combined prosthodontics and maxillofacial prosthetics, four (4) dental assisting, and three (3) dental hygiene programs, at the request of their respective sponsoring institutions.

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Additional Commission Actions of General Interest

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CODA Directs an Ad Hoc Committee to Study the Commission’s Review Committee and Board of Commissioners Structure and Function

At its Summer 2019 meeting, the Commission considered the report of the Standing Committee on Quality Assurance and Strategic Planning (QASP) related to a request that was received by the Commission to develop a separate Review Committee for dental anesthesiology. The Commission’s current Policy on Changes to the Composition of Review Committees and the Board of Commissioners and Review Committee Structure permits changes to the Board of Commissioners or its Review Committee composition when necessary “to reflect changes in the makeup of the dental profession workforce and to provide standards and quality accreditation services to the educational programs in these areas.” The policy also provides a mechanism to request a change in the structure of CODA’s Board of Commissioners or its Review Committees, with some examples of circumstances under which CODA may elect to make a change in its structure. However, the Commission noted that there appears to be no established criteria to assess the need for a change in CODA’s structure or how a change in structure may be implemented.

Recognizing that as dental education and practice continue to evolve, the Commission believed it should review its current Review Committee and Commission structure and composition, along with appropriate policies, including the potential development of new policies to assess the need for a change in CODA’s structure and how a change in structure would be implemented. 

Therefore, the Commission directed the formation of an ad hoc committee of Commission members to further study this matter, with a report to the Commission in Summer 2020. The Commission has postponed action on the request for a separate Review Committee for dental anesthesiology until the work of the ad hoc committee has been considered by the Commission.

CODA Directs the Formal Study of the Use of Sites Where Educational Activity Occurs (Domestic and International) for All Programs under its Purview

The Commission directed the formal study of the use of sites where educational activity occurs (domestic and international) for all programs under its purview, with a report on progress in Winter 2020 and culmination of the study through a Commission-only Mega Issue Discussion in Summer 2020.

The Commission further reaffirmed that international sites are not permitted at this time to provide education related to program goals, objectives or educational requirements, and may not impact program length. The Commission continues to believe that use of international sites for supplemental (non-educational) experiences, such as mission trips, to enrich a student’s experience, is permissible as long as the international enrichment does not interfere with the educational program (program content or length).

The Commission further directed that through the study of educational activity sites, the Commission will also study the Policy Statement on Reporting and Approval of Sites Where Educational Activity Occurs as it relates to the classification of “supplemental” sites for required community service and/or service learning requirements, as well as sites that are owned by the sponsoring institution or where the sponsoring organization has legal responsibility and operational oversight.

CODA Accredits First International Predoctoral Dental Education Program

At its 2019 Summer Meeting, the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) granted an accreditation status to an international predoctoral dental education program based outside the United States.

The international predoctoral dental education program, sponsored by King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, received the status of “approval without reporting requirements,” the first time an international predoctoral dental education program based outside the United States has received accreditation from the Commission.

Prior to applying for accreditation by the Commission, an International Predoctoral Dental Education Program must undergo an international consultation and preliminary accreditation consultation visit (PACV) process, which includes: 1) completion of the PACV Survey, 2) observation of a CODA dental school site visit and individual consultation, 3) PACV Self-Study and consultation visit, and 4) application to the Commission’s accreditation process.  The Commission’s Standing Committee on International Accreditation assesses the program’s progress through stages one through three; however, a positive determination from the Standing Committee does not guarantee the application to the Commission will be successful.  The Commission assesses the application for accreditation at stage four, using the same policies and procedures in place for U.S.-based programs.  The Commission has the sole authority to grant accreditation to a program under its purview.

Requirements for International Predoctoral Dental Education Programs accredited by the Commission are equivalent to requirements for U.S.-based programs. Also, similar to U.S. programs, licensure for a graduate of an international program accredited by CODA is dictated by state practice acts; the final authority on licensure requirements continues to rest with the individual state.

A primary benefit of CODA accreditation to international predoctoral dental education programs is the ability to benchmark against Accreditation Standards used by the Commission for programs in the United States.

For additional information on CODA accreditation standards, policy and process, visit  Questions may be directed to Dr. Sherin Tooks, director, Commission on Dental Accreditation at 312-440-2940 or

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Proposed Standards Circulated for Public Comment are due December 1, 2019, or June 1, 2020, as applicable. Read Hearings on Standards/Comments Due for the list of standards open for comment and their respective due dates.

2019 American Dental Association (ADA) Annual Meeting Hearing on Standards

The Commission will conduct a hearing on accreditation standards at the 2019 ADA Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA, on Friday, September 6, from 11:00 a.m. to Noon, Marriott Marquis Hotel, Lower B2 Level, Yerba Buena Salon 8. The agenda and other details are published on the Commission’s website as noted above. 

Winter 2020 Commission on Dental Accreditation Meetings:

  • Review Committee Meetings – January 6-10, 2020
  • Commission Meeting – January 30, 2020 (Closed Session) and January 31, 2020 (Open Session)

For a comprehensive list of all upcoming meeting dates, read Review Committee and CODA Meeting Dates.

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CODA Extra

CODA to Publish Annual Report

In accordance with a governance change for the Commission on Dental Accreditation, CODA will develop an Annual Report to distribute to CODA’s broad communities of interest.  The CODA Annual Report will feature information that is relevant to all of the Commission’s communities of interest. The first CODA Annual Report will be distributed later this year.

CODA to Initiate Mandatory Annual Site Visitor Training in Fall 2019

Beginning late 2019, all active site visitors of the Commission will be required to complete a mandatory, annual, web-based training program.  Completion of the annual training program will further support the Commission’s effort to ensure that site visitors are calibrated on the most current Commission policies, procedures, and Accreditation Standards when conducting on-site accreditation reviews.  More information will be provided to active site visitors later this year.

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Deadlines for Program Reports

*Deadlines for many Program Change Reports are December 1. Please refer to the Program Changes and Other Report Guidelines page for details. The Commission expects programs to adhere to published deadlines. These deadlines allow sufficient time for the appropriate Review Committees and the Commission to review the report and determine whether the change could impact the program’s potential ability to comply with the accreditation standards. You may also contact Commission staff with specific questions about reports and deadlines.


Applications for programs pursuing CODA accreditation. The first opportunity for the Commission to consider the program,
provided that the application is in order, could be approximately 12 to 18 months following the application submission date.

November 15, 2019 Deadline for Progress Reports related to Site Visits
December 1, 2019  Deadline for Initial Response to Site Visit Reports
December 1, 2019 Deadline for:
Program Change Report
Request for Authorized Enrollment Report
Sites Where Educational Activity Occurs Report
Teach-Out Report
Other reports for Commission review in Winter 2019

NOTE:  Program reports and documentation must not include Patient Protected Health Information (PHI) or Personally Identifiable Information (PII).  A $4,000 administrative fee will be assessed if a program submits documentation that does not comply with the CODA policy on privacy and data security.  A resubmission that continues to contain PHI or PII will be assessed an additional $4,000 administrative fee. Review the Policy on Privacy and Data Security Summary for Institutions/Programs on CODA’s website. 

Programs are also reminded that they must comply with CODA’s Electronic Submission Guidelines

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Staff Contact Information

Commission staff are available to assist you.