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Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS)

Key information

Level of study:
Bachelor's Degree
Tuition fees:
Duration:
5 years
Start date: 28-February-2022
Campus:
University of Otago
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Course details

Summary

Most graduates in Dentistry enter general practice on their own or in association with others. Some undertake postgraduate study and research training in preparation for an academic career. Others obtain further experience and complete postgraduate clinical qualifications before entering specialist practice.

Why study Dentistry?

Dentistry is a challenging profession that combines a high degree of manual dexterity and precision with a thorough understanding of craniofacial biology and pathology, and excellent communication skills.

The dentist is the leader of the oral health team and can diagnose and carry out treatment planned to each patient’s oral needs.

If you’re considering a career as a dentist, you should be prepared for lifelong learning to maintain your practising standards.

As a graduate, there are opportunities for full- or part-time work in New Zealand or overseas; and opportunities include private general or specialist practice, academic careers, or hospital- or defence-based practice.

Dentistry teaches you:

The scientific foundations in anatomy, physiology, and oral biology

About public health dentistry and how to develop your communication skills

Clinical skills, first in simulation classes in the Faculty of Dentistry’s cutting-edge simulation laboratory, and then in patient sessions

About a wide range of clinical dental disciplines including prosthodontics and clinical cariology, endodontics, periodontics, paediatric dentistry, orthodontics, oral medicine, oral surgery, oral pathology, and special needs dentistry

What will I study?

After selection from Health Sciences First Year (HSFY), or from other entry categories, you commence studies in second-year Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS).

There are three themes that run through the entire course.

In second year, the largest theme is Biomedical Sciences, which lays the scientific foundations in anatomy, physiology, and oral biology for the introductory clinical work you will undertake in the second theme, The Dentist and the Patient.

In the third theme, The Dentist and the Community, you will learn about public health dentistry and about how to further develop your communication skills.

In third and fourth year, The Dentist and the Patient is a major component of the curriculum. Here you will develop your clinical skills, initially in simulation sessions in our state-of-the-art simulation laboratory and then in patient sessions.

You will cover a wide range of clinical dental disciplines including prosthodontics and clinical cariology, endodontics, periodontics, paediatric dentistry, orthodontics, oral medicine, oral surgery, oral pathology, and special needs dentistry.

To underpin your increasing clinical experience, the biomedical sciences papers will cover general and oral pathology, growth and development, medicine, surgery, and therapeutics. In The Dentist and the Community, you will explore epidemiology and determinants of oral health and culture, and ethnicity and oral health.

In fifth year, you will consolidate your clinical experience and undertake a research project, either in Dunedin, elsewhere in New Zealand, or overseas.

Entry criteria

Applications for admission may be made under the following categories: Health Sciences First Year, Graduate, Alternative.

The minimum requirement for students is the completion of a high school qualification plus satisfactory completion of one year's study at an approved tertiary institution or successful completion of New Zealand Foundation Year programme.

We also accept the following International qualifications: International Baccalaureate: IB Diploma with a minimum of 24 points; GCE Advanced Levels: minimum grade of 8.

If your first language is not English you need to meet our English language requirements as follows: IELTS score of 6.0 in the academic module (with no individual band below 5.5); Internet-based TOEFL: Score of 80 (writing 20), Paper-based TOEFL: Score of 550 (TWE 4.5), we also accept a number of other English language tests. Due to COVID-19, we currently accept IELTS Indicator Test, and TOEFL iBT Special home Edition.

Don’t meet the English language requirements? The University of Otago Language Centre "English for Otago" programme offers a pathway for Undergraduate and Postgraduate students to meet the English language requirements for undergraduate and postgraduate study.

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