What students say about dentistry
Dentistry is demanding whichever university you choose to study at. External parties aim to maintain a uniform qualification between the country's few dental schools. This standard set is high. 9am starts are the norm. Some evenings you may even have a last lecture finishing at 6pm. The first year has limited reference to oral biology and concentrates on the body's organ systems - cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, nervous... It's a tough but interesting challenge. One day a week is spent at the dental hospital with introductory lectures and observation sessions. As the years pass, clinical presence increases.1st year, University of Birmingham
My dentistry course has many diverse topics in the first year, including anatomy, physiology, chemistry, microbiology and genetics, and each topic jostles for position as the most crucial. Time is divided between lab work, lectures, dissection sessions and sessions in the dental hospital once a week, and you'll find you're always busy. This is a hugely rewarding course, but to keep on top of coursework, assignments and lecture notes, many evenings will be sacrificed.1st year, Cardiff University
My course is very full-on - often it feels like having a 9 to 5 job without being paid! In the pre-clinical years there are lectures and practical classes all day most days. In the clinical years the day is split between lectures and seeing patients. It's an extremely challenging course, with regular exams and a very heavy work load, but it is also very rewarding. We are graded based on the quality of our patient treatment, and on exam papers - there are very rarely assignments that have to be completed.3rd year, University of Dundee
What you need to get on a course
Subjects you need
A-levels (or equivalent) usually required
Useful to have
Here's a guide to what to expect from the application process - also check individual university entry requirements, as these may differ.
- January application
- October application
- Personal statement
- Entry test
- Work experience
Personal statement advice
Your personal statement is a core part of your university application, and getting it just right takes time. Before you start work on yours, take a look at our five quick tips on writing a personal statement. We'll help you past that writer's block!
- Health professionals
We don't have the average graduate salary for this subject yet.
Longer term career paths
Jobs where this degree is useful
- Medical researcher
- Reconstructive surgeon
Other real-life job examples
- University Lecturer
- Medical instrument designer
What employers like about this subject
Studying for a degree in dentistry will give you skills in basic anatomy, physiology and biochemistry, in investigation and diagnosis of medical conditions and in the principles, practice and ethics of dental care. You will also develop useful transferable skills such as good communication, problem-solving and decision-making skills. Most dentists work in dental practices, but you can also find them in hospitals, the Armed Forces, or working for universities.