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Admissions to Orofacial Pain Program

Thank you for your interest in the Specialty and Advanced Education Programs at the University of Minnesota. Become a professional in the area of orofacial pain.

Application Dates and Deadlines

September 1, 2020 for start on June 1, 2021.

Degrees Offered

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Certificate (MS)

  • This two-year program option leads to a Certificate in Orofacial Pain, and an optional Master of Science degree (M.S.) in Dentistry.
  • The program involves clinical, didactic, and research training and is designed for dentists interested in clinical, academic or teaching careers. The program focuses on acquisition of strong clinical skills in evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of a wide variety of TMD and orofacial pain disorders as well as the treatment of sleep apnea and snoring with intraoral appliances.
  • Most of the student's time will be spent in the clinic. Additional time is spent attending courses in pain management, neuroscience, pharmacology, behavioral sciences, and other biomedical areas, as well as journal reviews, seminars, and participation in research projects.

Certificate (No MS)

  • As one option, we offer a two-year program that leads to a certificate degree in Orofacial Pain, but no M.S. degree in Dentistry. It is designed primarily for the dentist interested in clinical training.
  • This program requires completion of all of the courses offered for the Master of Science, but no thesis credits or research project.


  • Ph.D. programs and post-doctoral research positions are offered through the Oral Biology Program at the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry.
  • Funding is available through the individual faculty's research projects. This program offers a five-year combined research and clinical program as well as post-doctoral training. Candidates with United States citizenship or permanent residency status may qualify for government funding from the NIH/NIDCR supported Minnesota Craniofacial Research Program (MinnCResT).
  • In this program, students attend the clinic leading to a certificate in Orofacial Pain, no longer than four years, and complete Ph.D. coursework and thesis research concurrently for an estimated period of five years.
  • Please contact Ann Hagen, Assistant Program Director, or Dr. Raj Gopalakrishnan, Program Director, regarding the Oral Biology Program.
  • Please contact Dr. Mark Herzberg, Director, regarding the MinnCResT program.

Courses and Curriculum