Dentistry

We have been educating dentists for over 100 years and produce exceptional dental professionals, giving you a firm foundation for your future career.

Outstanding facilities

Teaching and training take place within the University of Bristol Dental School, a centre for excellence providing routine and specialist clinical dental services.

Renowned department

Dentistry at Bristol is ranked in the UK’s top 10 by both the Times Good University Guide 2021 and Complete University Guide 2022.

Student satisfaction

90% of surveyed BDS Dentistry students found the course intellectually stimulating and 92% said they have applied what they’ve learned (NSS 2020).

Dentistry courses for 2022

Single Honours

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Dentistry at Bristol

Bristol Dental School is committed to the highest standards in education. Our courses accredited by the General Dental Council (GDC) and cover all aspects of the GDC guidance for preparing to practise as a dentist. You will gain a thorough understanding of relevant biomedical sciences and have the opportunity to begin treating patients from your second year.

You will experience technology-enhanced learning and best educational practice while on this course. Our spiral curriculum lets you progressively learn the knowledge and skills that are essential to your practice as a dentist. You will revisit topics at a higher level of understanding and application as the course progresses so that they become embedded in your practice.

You will hone your skills in primary care and community settings. Clinical teaching commences in the Bristol Dental School and later you will gain community-based teaching experience. You will develop teamwork skills and gain vital insights into work in practice by training alongside hygienists and therapists.

Bristol Dental School is a diverse, welcoming environment and has been awarded a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of its ongoing commitment to gender equality.

Our one-year Gateway to Dentistry course is a Widening Participation initiative for UK students who have the potential to become dentists but do not meet the academic entry criteria to apply directly to our BDS Dentistry.

The facilities at the Dental School are brilliant. We are exposed to clinical practice early on and it is a great learning environment. I have gained a lot of skills, and all my experiences have prepared me for my career.

Serena, BDS Dentistry

Career prospects

After foundation training you may choose to practise in the NHS or in a community-based dental clinic. Alternatively, you may wish to work privately or in a dental hospital where you can specialise in areas such as oral surgery, orthodontics, or restorative or paediatric dentistry.

BDS graduates will also have the opportunity to serve in all branches of the armed forces.

You may progress to further study for postgraduate qualifications, enabling you to undertake research at universities or teach in a dental school.

Within 15 months of graduating, 90% of surveyed BDS Dentistry students were in work or further study (Graduate Outcomes survey, 2017/18 graduates).

What our students do after graduating

Course structure

There is a continuous core of clinical activity from years one to five, with supporting knowledge and scientific methods integrated throughout.

In year one you will study the foundations of dentistry, culminating in a student-led conference. You will also participate in peer-work clinical sessions, underpinned by relevant health and social sciences teaching.

In your second year you will practise dental skills in the laboratory and learn about common oral diseases to support your first adult patient treatments in the second term. Radiography and paediatric clinical observations will expand your dental experience, and you will acquire understanding of broader aspects of human health and disease.

In year three you will provide a broad range of general dental treatment for your patients. You will continue to study prevention and treatment of dental disease, restorative and paediatric dentistry, orthodontics, and oral surgery.

You will have the option of intercalating for a year to follow a specific interest, engage with research and expand your career opportunities.

In years four and five you will see patients across the disciplines, practising whole-patient care; you will observe expert clinicians working in their specialities in consultant clinics; and you can undertake a community project of your choice in Bristol or further afield.

Diverse experiences

As a dental student at Bristol, you will benefit from our state-of-the-art teaching and learning facilities.

On-campus teaching and clinical placements in Primary Care clinics and local hospitals will give you experience of dental care across a variety of settings.

Dentistry

Dentistry courses for 2022

Single Honours

You will benefit from our £15 million refurbished, state-of-the-art teaching and learning facilities as well as early clinical contact and team-working opportunities with hygienists and therapists.

Why study Dentistry at Bristol?

Bristol Dental School is committed to the highest standards in education. Our courses cover all aspects of the General Dental Council (GDC) guidance for preparing to practise as a dentist. There is a continuous core of clinical activity from years one to five, with supporting knowledge and scientific methods integrated throughout.

You will gain a thorough understanding of relevant biomedical sciences and have the opportunity to begin treating patients in year two.

Technology-enhanced learning and best educational practice are instrumental to the delivery of the course. Our spiral curriculum ensures that you learn progressively the knowledge and skills that are essential to your practice as a dentist. You will revisit topics at a higher level of understanding and application as the course progresses so that they become embedded in your practice.

You will hone your skills in primary care and community settings. Clinical teaching commences in the Bristol Dental School. Later you will gain community-based teaching experience in a purpose-built facility at South Bristol Community Hospital.

Health and Disclosure and Barring Service check
Certain health conditions may be incompatible with careers in dentistry. Before starting your degree you will need to complete a health assessment questionnaire and pre-course screening for blood-borne viruses. These blood tests are to identify the few whose health status may place them and/or future patients at risk.

Practising dentistry demands the highest standards of professional and personal conduct. In accordance with General Dental Council guidelines all dental students must complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. For more information, please visit our guidelines for students at DBS disclosure.

Please note that as part of your training you will come into contact with human and animal cadavaric material.

What kind of student would this course suit?

A dental student must enjoy communicating, interacting and empathising with people of all ages, social backgrounds and cultures and those with special needs. You will need to have an excellent academic record, particularly in the sciences, and good time management and organisational skills.

Dentistry suits those with artistic flair who can demonstrate manual dexterity and the ability to carry out detailed work. Hand-eye coordination is essential.

Joining this profession requires a lifelong commitment to continued professional development, so dedication to learning is paramount.

If you are interested in pursuing a career in dentistry you should find work experience to learn more about the career and the profession.

How is this course taught and assessed?

You will receive support and regular feedback throughout your professional development. You will usually have the opportunity to undertake a community-based project in the UK or abroad.

Teaching is delivered through lectures, small-group tutorials, supervised clinical skills training and patient treatment, and e-learning resources. Our e-portfolio enables you to learn and receive feedback from each clinical encounter and track your progress.

We use a wide range of assessment methods and pride ourselves on the quality of the reflective process and the feedback we give our students to support their professional development.

What are my career prospects?

After foundation training you may choose to practise in the NHS or in a community-based dental clinic. Alternatively, you may wish to work privately or in a dental hospital where you can specialise in areas such as oral surgery, orthodontics, restorative or paediatric dentistry.

BDS graduates will also have the opportunity to serve in all branches of the armed forces.

You may progress to further study for postgraduate qualifications, enabling you to undertake research at universities or teach in a dental school.

Find out more about what our students do after graduating.

Disclaimer

Important disclaimer information about our courses.

Every day my inbox is flooded with opportunities – internships, research projects, extra-curricular activities – all of which are the University getting students involved. The University is constantly updating its facilities, which reinforces its friendly and inclusive environment.

Alexandra (LLB Law)

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