Continuing Education Program

Dentists are required to renew their licenses every two years, beginning April 1 of each odd-numbered year. In that two-year period, dentists must obtain 30 credit hours of continuing dental education.

To help members meet their CE requirements, PDA and its district and local societies sponsors educational events in several locations throughout the state, including Wellsboro, Greensburg and Danville. Some topics include risk management, infection control and all phases of clinical dentistry.

In June of each licensure renewal year, PDA distributes a CE tracking folder to all active PDA member dentists. This folder helps members track the CE credits they have earned toward relicensure.

Our online calendar includes an extensive list of CE courses across the state. You can sort all events by type, or search by keyword such as topic or location.

Earn CE credits now!  "Radiology Update" PowerPoint Presentation
PDA’s Environmental Issues Committee has developed a complimentary online CE PowerPoint for our members and their staff to use in order to demonstrate compliance with Department of Environmental Protection regulations requiring CE every four years. Upon review of the presentation, members and their staff will have the option to complete an online radiology quiz. Those that successfully complete the quiz will earn 2 CE credits in radiology.

Relicensure Requirements

A maximum of 50 percent of the required credit hours may be taken through individual study or by serving as an instructor or author of a book, article or CE program. Instructors are awarded two additional credit hours as preparation time for each credit hour of instruction and for actual instruction. Authors are given 50 percent of the required hours by being published in a peer-reviewed professional journal.

The remaining credit hours must be earned through attendance at lectures, clinical programs or live webcasts that allow attendees to communicate with the presenter and the other attendees. However, up to 100 percent of the requirement may be earned in this manner. PDA, its district and local societies and Pennsylvania's dental schools offer a variety of CE courses throughout the year to help dentists meet their relicensure requirements.

Under Act 31 of 2014, dentists, hygienists and EFDAs must complete 2 hours of approved continuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting in the two-year period preceding license renewal. The 2 hours of child abuse recognition and reporting will count toward the total hours required to renew a dental license. A licensee will not be permitted to renew their license until electronic verification is received from the approved course provider and processed by the Department of State/State Board of Dentistry (SBOD). Processing can take up to 14 days from the date you take the child abuse recognition and reporting CE course. PDA is an approved course provider. Please visit for more information. 

In addition to the required number of credit hours, licensees must obtain current certification in infant, child and adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). PDA suggests the American Heart Association’s “Healthcare Provider” course or a course offering a certification card that states “Infant, Child and Adult CPR." The CPR requirement is a separate requirement for relicensure and is NOT an acceptable CE subject area.

Acceptable Subject Areas

CE credit hours must be completed in subject areas directly related to the maintenance of the clinical competence of a dentist, dental hygienist or expanded function dental assistant (EFDA). Some examples follow:

  • Clinical and technological subjects.
  • Emergency procedures other than CPR  certification.
  • Diagnosis and treatment of oral pathosis.
  • Infection control.
  • Abuse and neglect.
  • Medical and scientific subjects.
  • Laws and regulations pertaining to dentists, dental hygienists and EFDAs.

Credit hours will not be awarded in non-clinical subjects, including the following:

  • Practice building.
  • Billing.
  • Office management.
  • Communication skills.
  • Insurance reimbursement.

For more information on PDA's CE program, contact Rebecca Von Nieda, director of meetings and administration, at (717) 234-5941, ext. 117.