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Membership for Recent Dental School Graduates

It's Easy and Affordable ($0 for many) to Join

Here's what to do:

Photo of a dentist in her clinic.Step 1: Still in school? Stay in touch with the ADA. Update us on your post-graduation plans and new contact information.
Step 2: Complete an ADA Membership Application anytime after you graduate and before December 31.
Step 3: The ADA or your state society will process your application.
Step 4: Keep an eye out for more membership information in your mailbox. ASDA and ADA student members: your membership is valid until December 31 of your graduation year.

Reduced Dues Program

Recent graduates can join the ADA for as low as $0 through the Reduced Dues Program.

If you earned your D.D.S. or D.M.D. in 2017, your year 1 is 2018.

  • Year 1: You pay $0 in dues.
  • Year 2: You pay 25% of full national dues.
  • Year 3: You pay 50% of full national dues.
  • Year 4: You pay 75% of full national dues.
  • Year 5 and thereafter: You pay the full national dues amount.

Recent graduates who enter into a graduate or residency training program within the five years following dental school graduation pay the graduate student rate of $30 a year during the program, and are eligible to either begin or resume the Reduced Dues Program schedule upon completion of their training.

Membership Options and Applications

The membership category that's right for you depends on your next move out of school.

Going into Private Practice?

Tripartite Membership brochure cover

  Tripartite Membership
Tripartite membership means that you hold membership at the local, state and national levels.

If you will be in private practice as an associate, an employee or on your own, in a group practice or clinic, or on the faculty of a dental school, tripartite membership is for you.

$0 dues at the national level, first year after dental school graduation.

Apply here or contact your state dental society.

Continuing your Education?

Graduate Student Membership brochure cover

  Graduate Student Membership
Continue graduate student membership throughout your training and pay $0 in national dues the year after your training is completed.

If you will be going in to a graduate program, residency or specialty training program that lasts at least one year, graduate student membership is for you. (Tripartite membership may be available.)

$30 national dues/year. Payment applies to year after dental school graduation.

Apply here or contact your state dental society.

Military, U.S. Public Health Service or VA?

Federal Dental Services Membership brochure cover

  Federal Dental Services Membership
As a federal dentist, you can join the ADA directly. If you will be completing residency training while in the federal services, be sure to fill out the Advanced Education Program section on the application.

If you will be in the Army, Air Force, Navy, U.S. Public Health Service, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, or other full-time federal employment, Federal Dental Service (FDS) membership is for you. (Tripartite FDS membership is available in many states.)

$0 dues, first year after dental school graduation.

Apply here

Taking time off? Not sure?


Provisional Membership
If you need a second year for your transition period, your dues will be just 25% of full dues.

Licensed dentists who are relocating, or taking time off for family or other responsibilities are eligible for provisional membership.

$0 dues, first year after dental school graduation.

Apply here