Graduate Program in Orthodontics

The UNC Adams School of Dentistry Graduate Program in Orthodontics is a 33-month curriculum designed to provide a combined clinical experience and a critical thinking and research experience that leads to a certificate in orthodontics and a Master of Science degree.

Graduate Program in Orthodontics

The mission of the Graduate Program in Orthodontics is to prepare residents for community-based or academic practice who demonstrate excellence in their practice and leadership in their profession and community.

The curriculum also includes an extensive practice management seminar series which features a practicum to visit private orthodontic offices in California. Learn more about our practice management curriculum in this video!

All senior residents present their research at the school’s Research Day and are encouraged to submit an abstract to the professional societies (e.g., AADR, ADEA, AAO). Students must complete the requirements for the master’s degree prior to being awarded the specialty certificate.

The UNC Adams School of Dentistry Graduate Program in Orthodontics is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association.

Interested in becoming a patient with an orthodontics resident? Click here to learn more!

Meet the Faculty

Kelly Mitchell

Kelly Mitchell


Graduate Clinic Director

Laura Jacox

Laura Jacox


Graduate Research Director

Tung Nguyen

Tung Nguyen


Graduate Program Director

Garland Hershey

Garland Hershey


Adjunct Professor

Shoji Ayumi

Ayumi Shoji


Clinical Instructor, Craniofacial Team Member

Mitchell Levine

Mitchell Levine


Associate Professor

Admissions Information

Application Deadline: August 15

Applicants must utilize the Postdoctoral Application Support Service (PASS) administered by the American Dental Education Association and the Postdoctoral Dental Matching Program (MATCH).

Click here to access the PASS application materials and instructions. Click here to access the MATCH application materials and instructions.

Application to the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School is not required until after students have been selected for the program. This application typically opens on or after August 1. 

Admissions Requirements

All prospective students must hold a DDS, DMD or equivalent degree from a dental school.

Admission criteria are applied equally to all applicants regardless of race, sex, color, national origin or religion. Minority students are encouraged to apply.

International Students

In addition to the above items, international applicants must include the following in their PASS application:

  • Foreign transcripts evaluation
  • TOEFL examination scores

International students are required to take the TOEFL exam with a minimum of 90 on the internet-based test, or the IELTS with a minimum score of 7.5. The exam score must be less than two years old.

When you register for any tests, you should indicate the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School (institution #5816) as a score recipient. If you did not specify the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School as a score recipient at the time of taking the test, you must promptly ask ETS to send your scores to us (institution #5816). No departmental code is required.

Applicants should take the test no later than May to ensure that scores arrive by the application deadline, unless listed here as an exception.

When requested to do so by the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School, international applicants must submit official academic records bearing the signature of the registrar or another academic official and either a raised or ink stamp or seal of the issuing institution. Records must be issued in the original language and be accompanied by certified English translations. International applicants must also submit verification that the degree has been awarded or a copy of the degree award.

International applicants seeking admission must complete and upload an international student data form and financial certification worksheet, available here. Applicants may submit financial certificate documentation at any time during the application process or they may wait to upload the documentation until they have received your admittance notification from the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School. Please note these documents must be received and approved by the International Student and Scholar Services office before visa documents can be prepared.

Tuition, Stipend Support and Benefits

The cost of attending graduate school includes tuition, fees, and health insurance, for which the student is billed directly. Tuition and fees for the master’s programs in the Adams School of Dentistry are available through the University Cashier.

Graduate students must pay tuition and fees during all years of study and training. These charges are subject to change at any meeting of the NC Board of Trustees and a yearly increase of 5-10 percent should be anticipated each year. Estimates for living expenses are available through the Office of Scholarships and Student Aid.

Out-of-state students and international students with permanent resident status (“green card”) are encouraged to establish legal residence in North Carolina and to apply for classification as a state resident for tuition purposes. Guidelines and application forms for establishing residency are available from the UNC-Chapel Hill Graduate School.

In addition to health insurance, the following stipends* are provided:

  • Year One: $14,000
  • Year Two: $17,632
  • Year Three: $21,000

*Stipend amounts subject to continued availability and approval

Regardless of the availability of stipend support, teaching responsibilities are required as a part of the program.


Click here for the course catalog. If the page does not automatically direct you, click “ORTH” at the top.

North Carolina Licensure/Intern Permit

Students who are not graduates of an ADA-accredited dental school must complete a simulation exam as part of their NC intern permit process. Such candidates must pass and complete the simulation exam within two months of their formal matriculation in the program. If a candidate does not pass the simulation exam within the two-month interval, they cannot advance in the clinical program and will be subject to dismissal from the program.

Contact Us


Program Director: Tung Nguyen, DMD, MS
Phone: 919-537-3764