Summary Decision making in oral rehabilitation is often based on diagnoses related to impairment of different oral functions. In making the decision when to treat, the dentist must work in cooperation with the patient. By incorporating patient-generated aspects into the decision making process, the dentist finds it easier to decide if and why treatment should be undertaken and what treatment modality to use. The purpose of this study was to describe the potential of an interview method, the ‘Schedule for the Evaluation of Individual Quality of Life-Direct Weighting’ (SEIQoL-DW), and compare it with a traditional history taking, in generating information to be used in decision making in oral rehabilitation. Fifty-seven participants in need of oral rehabilitation were enrolled in the study. The participants underwent a traditional history taking and were interviewed using the SEIQoL-DW method. The SEIQoL-DW generated a high number of cues for all participants. Significantly more cues and additional information were generated by the SEIQoL-DW than by the traditional history taking. The additional information concerned consultation and dentist issues, psychological aspects and treatment preferences. A high percentage of the participants were positive towards the use of the SEIQoL-DW method in their treatment planning. The SEIQoL-DW was considered to be a viable tool for decision making in oral rehabilitation.