Dental Therapy

Dr. Louis Sullivan visits the School of DentistryDivision of Dental Therapy Director Karl Self, right, talks with former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Dr. Louis B. Sullivan (next to Dr. Self)

In 2009, Minnesota became the first state to establish licensure of dental therapists, with the primary purpose to extend dental health to underserved populations. A dental therapist is a licensed oral health professional who practices as part of the dental team to provide educational, clinical and therapeutic patient services. Dental therapists provide basic preventive and restorative treatment to children and adults, and extractions of primary (baby) teeth under the supervision of a dentist. Dental therapists work primarily in settings that serve low-income, uninsured and underserved populations or in a dental health professional shortage area.

Minnesota legislation created two types of dental therapists: a licenced Dental Therapist (DT) and a certified Advanced Dental Therapist (ADT). The scopes of these two provider types are very similar; the major difference lies in the level of supervision.

Contact us

We're located on the East Bank of the University of Minnesota’s Twin Cities campus. 


Moos Health Sciences Tower 
515 Delaware Street 
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Phone: 612-625-4310


In September 2009, the University of Minnesota became the first dental school in the nation to educate dental therapists. We educate over 60% of Minnesota's licensed dental therapists