UW School of Dentistry


Physical Examination I

Beatrice Gandara

1 Credit / Quarter 2 (Winter, First Year)

Course Description

This is Part 1 of a course that occurs over two quarters (winter and spring). The design of the course-at-large includes lectures, seminars and clinical sessions that provide instruction on the techniques and interpretation of medical history taking and physical examination. Part 1 will include lectures and clinical opportunities to learn the techniques of general survey, assessment of vital signs and interviewing patients with psychosocial problems.

Educational Objectives

At the completion of this course, the student should be able to:

  • Recognize signs that a patient has psychosocial problems such as depression, substance abuse, eating orders, mental status deficits, etc.
  • Ask appropriate questions to gather information from patients with psychosocial problems.
  • Complete a general survey assessment of patient by observation of the general appearance, demeanor and state of the patient.
  • Perform vital signs assessment.

Course Outline

The course consists of 3 lecture sessions in the D1 laboratory and 1 clinical practice rotation in B229 in which students will assess vital signs of fellow classmates. In this session, he or she will also interview and assess vital signs of a patient in the Oral Medicine Clinic.

Course Expectations

Attendance at lectures and assigned clinical session. Passing score on one quiz.

Effective Winter Quarter 2007, completion of on-line course evaluation is a requirement of this course. Failure to comply will result in an “Incomplete” grade being assigned.

Competencies Addressed

  • UWSOD Competency 1: Examine a patient using contemporary diagnostic methods to evaluate the head and neck region and to reach a diagnosis of the patient’s oral and craniofacial health status.
  • UWSOD Competency 15: Assess the teeth and supporting structures and provide preventive services.
  • UWSOD Competency 22: Utilize critical thinking in assessing technical and scientific information for use in identifying patient needs and treatments.


  • Course Website
  • Syllabus for Oral Medicine 516-517 – based on the website

*last updated: 2/12/2013