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Dentistry (BDS)

  • A200

5/6 years (full-time) / n/a (part-time) / n/a (distance / e-Learning)

Our BDS programme is delivered in the only dental school in Wales, and is one of the highest ranked in the UK. The School is based in the Dental Hospital at the University Hospital of Wales, with outstanding facilities, expert tuition, and early exposure to patients from your first year. Employment prospects are excellent, with typically 100% of graduates in employment within six months.

Key Facts

UCAS Code A200
Duration 5 years
How to apply
Accreditation  GDC
Typical places available 80
Typical applications received 800
Scholarships & Bursaries
Typical A-level offer AAA
Admissions Tutors Dr R. McAndrew
Tel Number 029 2074 2468
Email address
School website

Renowned for excellence in teaching and research, our School of Dentistry offers outstanding facilities and a friendly atmosphere, so it is no surprise the BDS course attracts students from throughout the world.

The School is located at the Heath Park campus and is based in the Dental Hospital, which is part of the University Hospital of Wales. This means the School has a close working relationship with the NHS.

Our integrated dental curriculum gives you early contact with patients – in Year 1 you will spend one day a week at the Dental School, while the foundation year of the six-year programme (Year 0), and most of Year 1 for the five and six year programmes are taught in Cardiff School of Biosciences at the Cathay’s Park campus.

In Years 2-5 you will be based in the School of Dentistry, and there are increased opportunities to practice in community clinics, district general hospitals and satellite academic units
throughout Wales.

As the only School of Dentistry in Wales, there is a seamless link with the Dental Service Group of the Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust based in the University Dental Hospital, which provides the majority of the clinical experience you will gain during your studies, providing advice and treatment for patients from Wales and from neighbouring parts of England.

The course structure is as follows:

The Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) is an integrated course with no separation between the basic science and clinical subjects, and, within the clinical subjects, teaching within the various topics draws expertise from all relevant divisions and from other schools within the University.

Year One

You will spend most of the first year studying in the School of Biosciences learning the basic sciences of Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry, which are the foundation for the practice of Dentistry. Teaching is delivered through a series of lectures, seminars, and practicals. You will also
spend one day per week at the University Dental Hospital observing clinic activity, learning about clinical procedures, professionalism and dental terminology, as well as learning about the role and responsibilities of the Dental Team. You will also undertake Library, IT and study skills
training at the Dental Hospital.

Year Two

Following successful completion of the first year, you will continue to learn about the foundation topics that become integrated with the Oral Ecosystems Theme, which covers the basic sciences relevant to the mouth, including the development, physiology and biochemistry of oral and dental
tissues. These themes are enhanced and supported by the Human Diseases Theme through which you will learn those aspects of Medicine, Pharmacology and Surgery required by a dentist. You are also introduced to Clinical Dentistry, commencing with the Pre-Operative Techniques course

in the Pre-Clinical Laboratory which is required before progressing to work with your own patients in July of the second year. You will cover areas such as Radiology, Dental Pathology, Periodontology, Dental Materials, Cariology, Paediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics. The Dentistry in the
Wider Community theme covers the Behavioural Sciences and Ethics required to work within the community, as well as continuing the Family Study programme which you started in the first year.

Years Three and Four

In the third and fourth years, you will follow the Clinical Dentistry, Human Diseases and Dentistry in the Wider Community themes, covering topics such as Integrated Restorative Dental Care, Endodontics, Prosthodontics, Periodontology, Paediatric Dentistry, Orthodontics, Statistics,
Oral Surgery, Medicine and Pathology and Dental Public Health. In addition to this, you will increase the amount of time spent in the clinics treating patients and developing interpersonal and clinical skills. Students also start work on a final project to be submitted in the final year. The Project aims to provide you with experience in research methodology, critical appraisal of literature and scholarship

Year Five

The final year provides a substantial amount of time for training outside the School of Dentistry. You will spend your time in the dental units of district general hospitals, local and outreach community dental clinics and a primary dental care unit remote from the School.

Visit the Cardiff School of Dentistry website for more information about modules and credits.

The School of Dentistry provides a high-quality, evidence-based, research-led, innovative and student-centred educational experience. The School delivers modern, efficient and effective programmes that produce high calibre graduates who can make a positive impact on society by enhancing patient care and advancing dental science.

Typical A-level Offer  AAA, including Chemistry and Biology
Typical WBQ Offer Grade A in the Core, Plus AA grades at A-level to include Chemistry and Biology
Typical Int Bacc Offer  36 points, with a minimum score of 6 at Higher Level in Chemistry and Biology
Other Applications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Please see detailed information about alternative entry requirements here

Please find here further information about admissions and selection criteria for this degree programme.

In 2010, 100% of the School’s graduates were in employment within six months of graduation.

Employers included a variety of NHS Trusts and higher education institutions. Career destinations included: Specialist dental practice, community dental practice and medical research posts.

Next intake: September each year

School Contact

Name: Dental Admissions Officer  

Telephone: +44 (0)29 2074 2468 

Fax: +44 (0)29 2074 5004 


School Website:

More information