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Professor David Dymock

Professor David Dymock

Professor David Dymock
B.Sc.(Dund.), Ph.D.(Cran.)

University Education Director (Quality)

Professor of Dental Education

Lower Maudlin Street,
Bristol, BS1 2LY
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 34 29608



Dave is Professor of Dental Education, currently BDS Programme Director and Head of Teaching for Bristol Dental School, and also Undergraduate Education Director for the Faculty of Health Sciences. Trained originally as a molecular microbiologist with a Bachelor’s degree in microbiology and a PhD in bacterial genetics his focus is now principally on leadership and delivery of education in dentistry, medicine, and veterinary sciences. His remit also includes intercalation programmes and oversight of educational provision from the Centre for Applied Anatomy and Teaching and Learning for Health Professionals. He has been co-Director for the Centre for Health Sciences Education since its inception in 2015. He has received Faculty Teaching and Learning (2008, 2017) and Association for Dental Education in Europe (ADEE) Excellence in Dental Education (2012) awards.  


Dave's research has encompassed a wide range of microbiology-related projects including bacterial gene exchange, genetic manipulation and infection studies of crop plants, molecular approaches to identify and type oral bacteria, including those not yet cultured, and monitor ecological shifts in dental plaque bacterial populations, and investigations of periodontopathogen virulence factors. He has chaired (2005-8) the Oral Microbiology and Immunology Group (OMIG) of the British Society for Oral and Dental Research. Dave's current research is education-focused, particularly on student reflection and mental health.



Dave is an expert in curriculum review, design and delivery. As Chair of the Dental Education Committee (2006-9, 2016-present) and, more recently, as Head of Teaching (2010-present) for Bristol Dental School he has led implementation of a revised (2006-10) and restructured (2012-13) BDS (undergraduate dentistry) curriculum, and also for new and restructured postgraduate dental programmes. Dave has provided leadership for BDS Oral Biology teaching (2006-16), and has pioneered the use of eAssessment, now utilised throughout the School, within this Unit. Dave has acted as critical friend for major revisions to the BVSc (undergraduate veterinary) programme, and has made a major contribution to curriculum review for the MBChB (undergraduate medicine) programme leading to the launch of the revised 'MB21' curriculum from September 2017.  Dave co-led development of the new widening participation 'Gateway' programmes into medicine, dentistry and veterinary sciences (recruiting from 2016), and is developing a new International Foundation Programme for entry into medicine and dentistry (open from 2019).


Dave has a strong interest in encouraging students to engage with research within the University and has been a member of the INSPIRE committee since 2012. Project mEDent, devised and delivered with Dr Kate Whittington, sought to develop new programmes aligned to research strengths, to improve marketing of our educational provision, and to create a community of valued and supported education providers within the Faculty. New programmes derived from Project mEDent include intercalated BSc programmes in Health Sciences (from 2014) and Genomic Medicine (from 2016), and the MRes in Health Sciences Research (from 2014). Improved marketing has resulted in a significant increase in numbers of students intercalating, and the Centre for Health Sciences Education provides a focus for promoting and supporting innovation and excellence in education.


Dave has significant experience in quality assurance and enhancement of education. He was a member of the Faculty Quality Assurance Team (2000-5), has been external examiner for three dental and one BMedSci programmes, and as Faculty Education Director engages in annual quality assurance visits of MB ChB clinical academies. He has significant experience in accreditation visits having provided academic leadership for the 2014 General Dental Council inspection of the BDS programme, met panels for the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (2015) and American Veterinary Medicine Association (2016) reviews of the BVSc programme, and set up and was a member of the preparation Task Force, and met with reviewers for the 2016 General Medical Council inspection visit for the MB ChB programme. Dave has also been a Fitness to Practise case investigator since 2011.


In addition to curricular changes Dave's educational innovations have included use of online discussion boards for collaborative literature review projects, monitored and evaluated transition from written examinations to eAssessments, themed provision of feedback from eAssessments, peer review of units within Annual Programme Review, programme-level mapping of assessments to accreditor learning outcome domains, development of a Dynamic Laboratory Manual (eBiolabs) for Dental Skills teaching, and development of an online interactive curriculum map for professional programmes.


As Faculty Education Director (FED) Dave contributes to University-level strategic development and operational delivery of educational policies. He has implemented functioning governance structures within a restructured Faculty to ensure formal lines of communication and approval processes, and encouraged student representation, co-creation, and partnership in decision-making at Faculty level. Co-directorship of the Centre for Health Sciences Education provides Faculty-level support for staff to develop as education providers. Dave sits on Faculty Board, University Undergraduate Studies Committee, Taught Code Review Group, School Executive, and a number of education-related working groups within the University.



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