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forensic dentistry

Course Information


Course name: Forensic Dentistry

Course Director: Dr. Robert B.J. Dorion, Assistant Professor, McGill University

Course Description: The examination, interpretation, and presentation of dental and oral evidence for legal purposes

Forensic Dentistry Foundational Issues:

  • Human identification by comparative dental analysis

  • Human age assessment by dental analysis

  • Analysis of the suspected pattern of dental origin

  • Comparison of bitemarks to the dentition

  • Oral and facial injuries

  • Human abuse and neglect (Child, Sexual, Intimate Partner and Elder)

  • Dental Litigation (Fraud, Malpractice, Personal Injury, Expert Witness, etc.)

Forensic Dentistry Involves: 

  • Dental Age Estimation (DAE)

  • Identification of the living and the deceased

  • Bitemark identification, analysis, and comparison

  • Lip print identification, analysis, and comparison

  • Rugae print identification, analysis, and comparison

  • Patterned injury identification, analysis, and comparison

  • Identification of dental specimens at a crime scene or elsewhere

  • Evaluation of oro-facial trauma and compensation

  • Malpractice and negligence in dentistry


Forensic Dentistry Means of Identification:

  • TEETH: natural and synthetic (fixed and removable)

  • BONE: trabecular pattern, tori and osseous anomalies

  • PRESENCE OF FOREIGN BODIES: implants, unretrieved amalgam particles, surgical instruments, bullets, fragments of various origins

  • SINUS CONFIGURATION: maxillary and frontal


  • SOFT TISSUE FEATURES: rugae (rugoscopy) and lip (cheiloscopy, quieloscopy) prints

  • PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPARISON: facial or dental superimposition or approximation



Course Type: Distance learning course*

Course Objectives:

The course provides theoretical and practical knowledge in forensic dentistry. In addition, registrants who successfully complete the four modules should attain the necessary knowledge, education, training, and experience to partially fulfill the requirement for board eligibility for the American Board of Forensic Odontology

Course Schedule:   

  • August 11 - September 14, 2024         Module 1

  • September 15 - November 2, 2024     Module 2

  • November 3 - December 7, 2024        Module 3 

  • January 12 - April 12, 2025                  Module 4


Course Fees and Registration: See the Schedule & Fees page.

Course Modules: 

All modules receive Continuing Education Credit from the Quebec Order of Dentists (ODQ) and can be applied as a credit to The American Academy of Forensic Sciences’ Odontology Section, and the  American Board of Forensic Odontology in partial fulfilment to exam eligibility.

Course Awards: A registrant who completes the time requirements, theoretic, analytic, practical assignment and the examination components of a module receives:

  • a Continuing Education attestation on successful completion of a module, or

  • a Continuing Education certificate in Forensic Dentistry following successful completion of all four modules.


McGill Continuing Dental Education is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider.


Course applicants:

Course applicants must possess a DDS, DMD or equivalent degree from a recognized academic institution. All course registrants must possess a license to practice dentistry and have at least 5 years of clinical experience. Course applicants must have a working knowledge of Photoshop / Creative Cloud(c) (Adobe Systems Inc).


The faculty reserves the right to accept applications (or not) after the application deadline. For late applications contact

Course Registrants:

Course registrants must partake in weekly webinars /chats with fellow registrants and/or individual instruction/discussion with the Course Director.

Course Equipment:

Course registrants must possess a notebook/portable PC/iPad or comparable computer, a variety of software programs including Adobe Photoshop or Creative Cloud Adobe Systems, Inc. subscription, a digital camera with downloading capabilities and high-speed Internet access.

Course Restrictions:

McGill University, the Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences, and the Course Director all reserve the right to limit the number of modules offered in any given year, to cancel a module, and to restrict the number of registrants in any given module.

General Considerations:

All course material, lectures, and correspondence are in the English language.
All listed fees/dues are in Canadian funds.

Course History:

*McGill University, Faculty of Dental Medicine and Oral Health Sciences, is proud to have been the first academic institution to offer a forensic odontology/dentistry online course since 2004. The advantages of a distance learning course include arranging your professional and personal schedule without disruption, without loss of income as a result of having to refuse patients, pay wages to personnel, as well as the costs of travel, ground transportation, accommodation, other additional expenses, delays, time lost, and other external factors over which one has no control such as pandemic travel restrictions, flight cancellations, etc.

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