What Grades Do I Need to Apply for Dentistry?

What Grades Do I Need to Apply for Dentistry?

A Dentistry degree gives you a broad education in all aspects of the dental profession including human disease, medical science, clinical studies, and clinical dentistry.

During your course you’ll develop and learn the skills, knowledge, and attributes needed for an exciting and successful career in dentistry after graduation.

The undergraduate degree course for Dentistry takes five years and as well as classroom based learning you’ll also have plenty of opportunity to get hands-on experience in a clinical environment.

If you’re considering a future career in the dental profession then it’s important to ask yourself the question, “What grades do I need to apply for Dentistry?”

Essential A Levels

The majority of Dentistry degree courses will ask for potential students to have taken Chemistry or Biology – sometimes both. Some universities may also ask students to have taken a Maths A Level.

It’s vital that you check with each university that you’re interested in before applying to make sure that you meet the entry requirements. You don’t want to be disappointed when you’re not offered a place because you haven’t taken the A Levels they ask for.

Here’s a breakdown of the essential A level combinations and what they mean:

  • If you take Chemistry, Biology, and Maths and/or Physics all Dentistry courses will be open to you with the right grades.
  • If you take Chemistry and Biology, but not Maths or Physics, then the majority of Dentistry courses will be open to you with the right grades.
  • If you only take Chemistry or Biology, but not both, you’ll have a limited number of Dentistry courses that will accept you.

Due to the popularity of Dentistry nearly all dental schools and universities offering Dentistry require AAA grades from potential students.

Non-essential, but still helpful, qualifications

Of course you’re limited to the qualifications on offer at your school or college and if you choose to take Chemistry, Biology, and Maths/Physics you probably won’t have time for any further study.

However, other helpful qualifications, especially if you didn’t take A Levels include Oral Health Sciences and Dental Technology.

If you don’t have the required A Levels four dental schools (Bristol, Manchester, Dundee, and Cardiff) offer a foundation year or “pre-dental” year to enable you to gain the skills to need to apply for their undergraduate course.

Are there any other entry requirements for Dentistry?

You may find that you need to take the UKCAT admissions test and have an interview as part of the application process.

Currently the universities that ask applicants to take the UKCAT test are:

  • Dundee
  • King’s College, London
  • Queen Mary College, London
  • Cardiff
  • Glasgow
  • Manchester (plus pre-Dental course)
  • Newcastle
  • Sheffield

However, this list may change so it’s important to check with each university you apply to so you know what you’ll be expected to do as part of the application process.

Where can I study Dentistry?

There are only 16 dental schools in the UK, spread across the country, so competition is fierce for places on Dentistry courses.

Universities offering Dentistry are:

  • University of Aberdeen School of Medicine & Dentistry
  • Barts & the London, Queen Mary School of Medicine & Dentistry
  • Birmingham University School of Dentistry
  • University of Bristol School of Oral & Dental Sciences
  • Cardiff University School of Dentistry
  • University of Dundee School of Dentistry
  • University of Edinburgh Postgraduate Dental Institute
  • University of Glasgow Dental School
  • King’s College, London Dental Institute
  • University of Leeds Dental Institute
  • University of Liverpool School of Dental Sciences
  • University of Manchester School of Dentistry
  • Newcastle University School of Dental Sciences
  • Queen’s University, Belfast Centre for Dental Education
  • University of Sheffield School of Clinical Dentistry
  • University College London Eastman Dental Institute
  • Peninsula Medical School and Central Lancashire University (graduate entry only)

What can I do with my Dentistry degree?

The most common career option is to of course become a dentist either in the NHS or private sector after you’ve completed your undergraduate degree.

However, you may also choose to specialise in one of the hospital specialities, move into teaching, work in the community dental service, or in one of the armed forces.

Do I need to do any postgraduate study to become a dentist?

After completing your undergraduate degree you’ll need to complete another year of vocational training before you can register with the General Dental Council and are qualified to practice as a dentist.