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Global leaders in health education

  • No.1 in Australia

    The University is ranked first in Australia and fourth in the world for graduate employability in the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020.

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  • Australia's first dental school

    The University has been providing education, training and research to oral health and dentistry students for over 100 years.

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Overview

The Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Special Needs Dentistry) is aimed at qualified local and international dentists who wish to practice at the specialist level in field of special needs dentistry.

Your studies will be primarily clinical based with didactic sessions, complemented by a research project in the field of special needs dentistry under the supervision of an academic staff member. You will receive training for specialist dental treatment of patients with the full range of disabilities, including those which are: physical, medical, and neuro-sensory or intellectual, including sensory, cognitive, mental-psychiatric and emotional impairments.

Why study special needs dentistry here?

  • World-ranked – ranked number 33 in the world for dentistry,* the University of Sydney School of Dentistry is Australia's first dental school and has been training dental practitioners for more than 100 years.
  • Learning  all our postgraduate dentistry courses are patient-centred, evidence-based, integrated with research and responsive to community needs. You will be trained by our by our expert oral health professionals and researchers.
  • Clinically-based - you will also enjoy the benefit of a rich clinical training environment at Westmead Hospital in the Department of Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology and Special Needs Dentistry, in the Westmead Centre for Oral Health
  • Graduate qualities – our graduates are engaged and globally aware and have the capability to become leaders in oral health, dentistry and research.
  • Accreditation – the Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Special Needs Dentistry) is accredited by the Australian Dental Council (ADC).

*Source: QS World Rankings by subject, 2018.

Who should study this course?

The Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Prosthodontics) is suitable for qualified local and international dentists preparing for a career in special needs dentistry.

Subject areas

There are no specialisations for this course.

Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your entry requirements

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission requirements’ section on this page.

Your fee

How to apply

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Application dates

Applications open - 1 September, 2 years prior to the commencement year

Applications close - 31 March of the preceding year

We strongly encourage applicants to apply as early as possible, offers are made on a rolling basis and places are limited. Separate scholarship deadlines apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (January)

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

Application dates

Applications open - 1 September, 2 years prior to the commencement year

Applications close - 31 March of the preceding year

We strongly encourage international applicants to apply as early as possible to allow time for visa and travel arrangements. Separate scholarship deadlines may apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (January)

What you'll study

The Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Special Needs Dentistry) is a three year full-time course. Students will enrol and complete all units of study outlined for each semester. This course is primarily clinical based with didactic sessions and a research component in each semester.

Work component

This course has a mandatory work component totalling 1824 hours that must be completed as part of the award requirements for the degree.

Units of study

Work component

Mandatory work component = 1,824 hours.

This translates to 38 hours per week.

This mandatory work component must be completed as part of the award requirements for the course.

Capstone (compulsory project)

A capstone experience comprises one or more units of study designed by the faculty to provide students with an opportunity to draw together the learning that has taken place during the award, synthesise this with their prior learning and experience, and draw conclusions that will form the basis for further investigation, intellectual and/or professional growth. For the Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Special Needs Dentistry) all students will complete a thesis as a capstone experience. The research project is undertaken throughout the course.

Admission requirements

A successful applicant for admission to the Doctor of Clinical Dentistry (Special Needs Dentistry) will hold a Bachelor of Dentistry, Doctor of Dental Medicine or Bachelor of Dental Surgery from the University of Sydney or equivalent institution; or an equivalent qualification that is recognised by the Australian Dental Board (Limited Registration for postgraduate training/supervised practice) and with a curriculum acceptable to the school. Applicants must demonstrate commitment to the particular specialty that they are applying for, such as through participation in short courses or continuing education programs aligned to that particular specialty.

In addition to these requirements, admission to this course requires:

  • at least two years general dental practice;
  • completion of the primary Fellowship Examination of the Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons or its equivalent is desirable;
  • all applicants must be registered with the Australian Dental Board for practice (limited registration for international candidates) prior to admission to the program.

All applications will be ranked according to academic merit after the application closing date. Successfully ranked applicants will be invited to participate in an interview with the Sydney Dental School. Some specialist programs also require applicants to sit an examination as a component of the selection process.

Inherent requirements

To assist students to make informed choices about their study, we have identified and set out the inherent requirements for coursework award courses in dentistry.

The University of Sydney welcomes and encourages applications from students with disabilities, and from diverse social and cultural backgrounds. Where there are physical, intellectual, cultural, religious or other factors that impact on a student's ability to meet the inherent requirements, the University will make reasonable adjustments to assist the student to meet the requirements. Please read the inherent requirements carefully as you consider your course choices.

Please note that places in this course are limited and subject to strict enrolment quotas.

Important information

Disclaimer

Please note the Sydney Dental School regularly reviews the admission criteria and application processes for its courses. It reserves the right to change these criteria and processes without notice. Information on this website provides advice about the currently applicable criteria and processes, and may not be correct for future application periods.

Other requirements

  • As registered dental practitioners, applicants are required to be up to date with basic life support and CPR training, so a first aid certificate should be readily available on request. Find out more.
  • Before you attend a placement in a NSW Ministry of Health facility, you will need to meet certain requirements to be verified by the NSW Ministry of Health to ensure your safety and that of other students, staff and patients. Find out more. 
  • The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) has announced that all health disciplines will be required to demonstrate English language skills at IELTS level 7 or equivalent. Please note that this standard applies to all applicants for initial registration as a medical practitioner or medical specialist. Find out more.

Deferral

Applications for the deferral of enrolment following an offer of a place in this course will only be considered under exceptional circumstances, and require the approval of the PG Course Coordinator.

Transfer

Transfer of enrolment between dental schools or from a medical program is not possible due to our unique units of study, continuous long learning and assessment in dentistry at the University of Sydney. All students must apply through the standard admission pathway.

Change in immigration status

International applicants and students who change from international to domestic status are advised to refer to clause 39 of the University’s Coursework Policy 2014.

Impermissible conduct

The Sydney Dental School reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to vary or cancel an offer of admission if your conduct prior to enrolment causes the school to form the view that you are unsuitable for admission to its programs.

Examples of conduct that might make you unsuitable for admission to Sydney Dental School programs include (but are not limited to):

  • Failure to treat University of Sydney employees, students, applicants or other members of the University community with respect and courtesy, including failure to use appropriate language and tone in your written or verbal communications;
  • Failure to act honestly and ethically in your dealings with University of Sydney employees, students, applicants or other members of the University community;
  • Conduct that results in you being suspended or excluded from the University of Sydney;
  • Conduct that gives the Sydney Dental School reasonable cause to believe that enrolling you in clinical training may place you, your peers, or members of the public at risk of harm; and
  • Conduct that results in you being charged with a criminal offence.

 

Professional accreditation

Doctor of Clinical Dentistry courses are accredited by the Australian Dental Council (ADC).

Future study options

The training in research component of this course will provide a basis for an academic career, which would involve further research training through a Doctor of Philosophy.

Career Pathways

This course is designed to prepare candidates for a career at the specialist level in special needs dentistry, and to provide a basis to pursue a career pathway in research and/or clinical academic positions.

Domestic students

International students

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.