Choose an orthodontic course that meets your needs and expectations.
You’ve decided to offer orthodontics in your dental practice, but now you’re searching for the best orthodontics course, so you can begin your educational journey. And, in order to find the best course for you, you’re doing your homework to learn what each course has to offer and what the long-term benefits will be for your dental practice.
You no doubt recognized that the different courses and programs available to help you learn these new skills are not all created equal. But what exactly should you look for as key benchmarks for evaluating course offerings?
Today, we’re sharing 5 signs that you’re on the right track and you’ve found the best orthodontic course for you and your practice, both in the short term, and in the long term.
1. The Orthodontic Course Is Accredited
Before you invest in orthodontic training, check to make sure that the class you’re enrolling in is accredited by an industry-leading organization. This way, you can ensure that the orthodontic course material will follow all requisite regulatory guidelines, standards, and principles.
For example, all courses offered through the American Orthodontic Society (AOS) are accredited and approved by the American Dental Association’s Commission for Continuing Education Provider Recognition (ADA CERP).
This accreditation acknowledges that the AOS meets all standards and criteria set forth by the ADA CERP and its program objectives. In addition, it also allows our courses to count toward the professional continuing education (CE) credits your state dental board requires you to obtain.
2. The Orthodontic Course Gets Great Reviews
Did you know that 84% of people now trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from their friends and family members? While some orthodontic course providers will share written testimonials on their websites, don’t be afraid to dig a little deeper to find the feedback you need.
Check the entirety of the provider’s online footprint, including their social media profiles. These platforms usually have their own, separate review sections where you can glean even more information on what past students have to say about the courses.
For instance you can find our course testimonials on YouTube. In these videos, real dentists who have taken our courses in the past share what they’ve learned and how it’s impacted their practice, as well as their overall professional growth. If the course provider you’re considering isn’t openly willing to share success stories like these, then consider this a red flag and continue your search elsewhere.
3. It Includes Hands-on Practice
The best orthodontic course is one that includes more than just studying a textbook or watching a video and taking an exam. While that style of learning might be effective for the short-term, we retain information better when we’re actively applying the material.
This is because hands-on learning activates both sides of our brains. Listening and analyzing takes place in the left hemisphere, while visual and spatial processing happens in the right hemisphere. When both sides are engaged, the neural connections formed are stronger and longer-lasting, capable of storing more relevant information.
The orthodontic program you enroll in should allow you the opportunity to apply the skills you’ve learned in a real-world setting. At AOS, our orthocourses routinely include hands-on workshop practice.
In our basic course alone, you’ll learn everything you need to competently integrate straight wire orthodontics into your practice and treat 70% to 80% of orthodontic cases. From diagnostics to bracketing and wire placement to the straight wire orthodontic appliance system, we’ll cover it all and help you learn by doing, so you can retain that knowledge long after the course ends.
4. The Course Material Is Easily Accessible
When you sign up to take an orthodontic course, you shouldn’t have to guess what you’ll be learning. Instead, the course material and schedule should be clearly accessible and easy to understand. This way, you can rest assured that you’re choosing a course that aligns with your needs, skill level, and experience.
To share this information with prospective students, most providers will have a dedicated page where they list all of their upcoming courses. Here, you should see short summaries of each course, as well as a separate page that will tell you more about the subjects it covers.
If you don’t see these details listed anywhere online, you can call the provider directly to learn more about their offerings. The representatives should be willing to freely share this information and answer any questions you might have.
5. You Can Communicate Before Enrolling
Speaking of asking questions, check to make sure that you can contact the course provider before enrolling. Often, dentists will need to verify a few details before signing up, and it should be easy and straightforward to do so.
Be wary of any course provider that requires a financial commitment before speaking with you or sharing information about the material you’ll be learning. Their contact information should be clearly listed on their website, and you shouldn’t need to go through hoops to speak with someone with the knowledge you need.
When you reach out, the provider should respond to your message in a timely manner. Professional orthodontics associations understand that this is a major commitment of time, money, and energy, and they’ll go out of their way to clear up any confusion and answer all of your questions.
Our AOS representatives are available to speak with current and prospective students, and are ready to share information about each course with anyone who asks. You can reach us easily by calling 972-234-4000.
Enroll in the best orthodontic course today.
Still not sure? Our Basic Orthodontic Course, as well as the follow-up Intermediate Course are both taught by Dr. Bradford R. Williams and have received raving reviews. They are probably our most loved courses, not just because they are comprehensive and hands-on, but because Dr. Brad speaks with engaging clarity, makes sure nobody gets lost along the way, and goes above and beyond in providing all the help you need to get started immediately.
Adding orthodontics to your general or pediatric dentistry practice is a great way to bolster your professional growth and draw more patients to your office.
While there are many options, the best orthodontic course will meet all of the criteria above. It should come from an accredited provider, be well-reviewed, include a hands-on component, and be easy to assess online. At AOS, we’re proud to offer courses that meet and exceed these requirements. Become a member and elevate your career today!
To learn more about our popular orthodontics courses for pediatric and general dentists, check out one of the upcoming events below.