In its teaching, research, and service activities, the Department of Dental Public Health continually develops, evaluates, and disseminates information and methods to meet the needs of dental healthcare providers and the public.
The major areas of teaching responsibility are the history of dentistry, oral healthcare delivery, evidence-based practice, and practice administration for the pre-doctoral dental program. The Department is also responsible for coordinating the dental externship program and teaching evidence-based practice for the dental hygiene program.
The Department conducts research in a variety of areas that relate to dental public health, health services administration, and health policy, and is also responsible for all operations of the National Museum of Dentistry (NMD). The NMD is a Smithsonian Affiliate Organization, has one of the most comprehensive dental collections in the world, is the national collection for the social, cultural, economic, scientific and technological history of dentistry and represents the origins and development of dentistry in the United States as well as a significant portion of its development in the rest of the world. The museum received Congressional designation as the official museum of the dental profession of the United States in 2003.