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Dental Student Clinics

The following information is a summary of the College of Dentistry patient policies. For detailed information read our Patient Information Booklet.


Pre-doctoral Clinic treatment is performed by student doctors under the direct supervision of experienced University of Tennessee Health Science Center faculty dentists. The University of Tennessee College of Dentistry faculty and students provide dental services to adult and children patients who are selected from a screening process that determines whether the patient is a teaching case for students. Our dental programs cover the entire range of oral healthcare services. 

Patients are required to attend a screening appointment before being accepted for treatment. Screening appointments include a comprehensive exam and radiographs. New patients who are examined in the Screening Clinic are classified as to dental needs and suitability for the teaching program. Patients screened acceptable are placed in the patient pool for admission into the treatment program. When a patient becomes available that matches the student's needs, the patient is assigned to a student for comprehensive dental care.

The College of Dentistry cannot guarantee acceptance as a patient or assignment to a student. After reading this, if you are interested in becoming a patient, please go to our Patient Application Form. 


Pre-doctoral, Hygiene and Emergency fees are typically less than the fees of a private dental office. Graduate program fees are also usually below private practice fees. University Dental Faculty Practice fees are at the same level of other practices in the Mid-South. You do not pay for all the treatment you need at one time. You pay for the service when it is started.

We accept cash and personal checks. The total amount of a personal check must be applied toward payment of clinic fees. Post-dated, payroll, or two-party checks cannot be accepted for payment.

We also take VISA, MasterCard, and Discover.

The College of Dentistry attempts to keep fees as low as possible. However, rising costs of providing care may require fee increases. Fees may increase without notification. You will always be advised of the fee for a procedure before it is started.

It is against college policy for students to pay for any patient treatment; therefore, please do not ask your student doctor to pay for any treatment you receive. Any violation of this policy may lead to the patient being dismissed from the college treatment program.

Billing and Insurance

Patients needing to have a better understanding of their dental benefits should contact their insurance company directly to gain additional knowledge of how the company reimburses for specific procedures.
Patients seen in the undergraduate and graduate clinics are responsible for payment of services rendered at the time of appointment.

Payment can be made via:

Once your student doctor has seen you in the Oral Diagnosis clinic, completes your treatment plan, and payment of services has been allocated, the billing/insurance office is able to provide you with a pre-treatment estimate claim to be submitted to your insurance company.
For services rendered and receipt of payment for procedures, a claim is then able to be printed off by the billing department and given to the patient for submission to your insurance company.

Pre-Doctoral Student Work

All dental work is done by student doctors and examined by a qualified dentist. Because we are teaching students, you will find our clinic is different from a private dental office. Even though we do things somewhat differently, you will receive the same standard of dental care at a lower cost. Care is usually provided in at least two steps. The first step is to treat any active disease in your mouth: we may clean your teeth; treat your gums; fill cavities; or, take out teeth that cannot be saved. After we complete step 1, we will consider replacing any missing teeth you might have. If we can do the work and you want your missing teeth replaced, we will continue your treatment.

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status in provision of education or employment opportunities. This policy extends to patient acceptance and patient assignment to student doctors.

A request for a student doctor based upon race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, or handicap will not be honored and such a request indicates you will be better served by a private dentist.


Because our students are learning to provide good care and our faculty doctors must examine each step, your appointments will be longer and it will take more appointments than at a private dentist. For your extra time, we provide your care at a lower cost.

You should plan to be here a half day every other week for your dental treatment. Our morning hours are 9:00 till noon, and the afternoon from 1:00 till 5:00. We are open Monday through Friday.

Our students have classes they must go in addition to taking care of patients. Their time is limited, and it is important that patients work with their students and meet their appointments.

Children MUST have their parent or legal guardian with them on the screening appointment and the first appointment after screening. They must have a responsible adult with them for each visit. It will be necessary for children to miss some school time if they are treated at the College of Dentistry.

Missing Appointments

If you miss an appointment, your student cannot make up that time. Loss of clinic time can keep a student from graduating. Missed appointments may cause us to stop your treatment.

If it is absolutely necessary to cancel your appointment, you should do so at least 24 hours before the time of the appointment. Your student will give you a cell phone number. You can also leave a message at 448-6468 for your student to call you.

Dental Clinic Orientation Video

Jul 13, 2023