Graduate Certificate in Oral Health Science

Advance your career in oral health

Our adult population’s oral health needs are many and varied. We need trusted experts who know how to keep dental patients healthy, now and into the future.

This certificate provides oral health therapists with the specialised knowledge and skills needed to contribute further. The qualification will allow you to deliver adult therapy as part of your clinical practice, opening doors to advanced career opportunities.

What will you do?

Our unique combination of intensive contact time and distance learning lets you maintain a healthy work-life balance while studying. You will:

  • complete 18 weeks of flexible full-time study
  • learn from industry experts across a range of innovative online, face-to-face, simulation and clinical environments
  • gain key skills for oral health assessments, treatments, management and prevention in adult patients
  • have the opportunity to build a close professional relationship with a clinical mentor.

  • Australia's #1 Dental School^
  • Extend your clinical practice with adult therapy
  • Hand-on experience in clinical placements

^QS World University Ranking by Subject, 2021

Entry Requirements

For our students who are studying offshore in 2021 and 2022, the University will continue to offer high-quality access to the learning resources remotely for most programs. This includes all lectures, tutorials and other support material. Students will be advised in advance if there are course components that cannot be provided in remote mode and, wherever possible, offered alternative courses. Please refer to the COVID-19 FAQ page for a list of programs where in-person attendance is required.

Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
I am a:

Domestic applicants

SATAC Code 3GC078
Deferment Yes - 2 year
Intake July
Enquiries Future Students team

Selection Criteria
Graduate entry

Additional Entry Requirements
The Graduate Certificate in Oral Health Science has a limited number of places. The program is open to registered dental and oral health therapists. Eligible qualifications include: - Bachelor of Oral Health (or equivalent) and the curriculum must include restorative skills - Diploma in Dental Therapy (or equivalent) - Certificate in Dental Therapy Applicants must: - provide evidence of current APHRA registration - provide a copy of current radiography licence - provide evidence of professional qualifications - provide a CV and details of work experience - provide a personal competency statement - provide contact information for two referees. Within ten days of submitting a formal SATAC preference, applicants must provide all required additional information on line directly to the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the following link: http://health.adelaide.edu.au/admissions/gcorhlthsc/appform.html
How to Apply
SATAC Code: 3GC078

Fees and Scholarships

Choose your applicant type to view the relevant fees and scholarships information for this program.
I am a:

Domestic applicants

Indicative annual tuition fees
Australian Full-fee place: $21,500

Scholarships

These scholarships, as well as many others funded by industry and non-profit organisations, are available to potential and currently enrolled students.

Find a Scholarship.

Careers

Career Readiness

The program will provide dental and oral health therapists with an expanded career pathway by providing additional skills, knowledge and understanding required to support the changing practice environment in order to meet the dental needs of the Australian population in the future. Graduates will be well equipped to work in both public and private dental clinics.

The University of Adelaide Careers Service prepares, inspires and empowers students to achieve successful career transitions and connect with industry.

Graduate Attributes

The objective of this program is to produce graduates with specific attributes as outlined in University of Adelaide Graduate Attributes.
  1. Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth
  2. Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving
  3. Teamwork and communication skills
  4. Professionalism and leadership readiness
  5. Intercultural and ethical competency
  6. Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural competency
  7. Digital capabilities
  8. Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

Industry Placement

Placements are compulsory for successful completion of the Graduate Certificate in Oral Health Science. During the degree, students will work in a clinic area as members of a dental team. There will be 4 weeks where there is 1 session of clinical observation and reflection and  8 weeks of clinical placements for two days per week in addition to completing on-line learning and assessments. Integration of clinical experiences and academic learning is fostered through the input and interaction with academic staff and clinical mentors. All costs associated with clinical placement including but not limited to uniform, travel and clearances, are the responsibility of the student.

In order to be accepted into the degree, applicants must have identified a clinic mentor who has agreed to provide mentorship during the clinical placement, and have organised approval from a clinic location to undertake their observation and clinical placement. The clinic mentor will be required to attend a workshop session to assist them in the clinical mentor role.


Professional Accreditation

The program has been accredited by the Australian Dental Council and approved by the Dental Board of Australia. All students in the Graduate Certificate in Oral Health Science will be registered with the Dental Board of Australia, which has the responsibility of ensuring that all persons permitted to practise in the area of dentistry are fit and proper persons who maintain appropriate professional standards.


Potential careers

Dental Therapist, Oral Health Practitioner, Oral Health Therapist, Dental Practitioner

Degree Structure

The program comprises two 6-unit courses. The scientific components of this program (Dental & Health Science IVOH) will underpin and integrate with the clinical components of the program (Clinical Practice IVOH). The instructional approach is a blended learning approach and will consist of a variety of case-based integrated learning activities complemented by other learning activities including class meetings, tutorial, on-line learning modules, workshops, small group discovery, clinical and simulated clinic sessions. The academic program aims to provide an overview and development of comprehensive oral health examination, treatment planning, prevention and restorative care for adults.

Dental & Health Science (Adult Therapy) IV OH (6 units)
This course will involve an interdisciplinary approach to management of the ageing dentition. In addition to a cariology and root caries update, students will learn to identify and understand the nature of the forms of non-carious loss of tooth structure including erosion, attrition and abrasion. The principles of examination, diagnosis and treatment planning for periodontal disease are also covered. The course will focus on how to clinically assess patients, identify their risk factors and plan short and long-term management.

Clinical Practice (Adult Therapy) IV OH (6 units)
The topics in this course cover both the theory and practice of restorative dentistry.  They explore new and existing techniques, case selection and treatment planning. Dental materials important to this discipline are also covered. Topics covered include aesthetic dentistry, adhesive materials, bonding systems, mechanisms of adhesion of materials to teeth, simple direct restorations, and reasons for success and failure of adhesive and metallic restorations. A variety of current operative/restorative techniques will be explored.

Clinical Placement
The time commitment required in this graduate certificate approaches 40 hours per week, including contact and non-contact preparation time.

During the program, students will work in a clinic area as members of a dental team. There will be 4 weeks where there is 1 session of clinical observation and reflection and  8 weeks of clinical placements for two days per week in addition to completing on-line learning and assessments. Integration of clinical experiences and academic learning is fostered through the input and interaction with academic staff and clinical mentors.

Before attending clinical placement, students must have certification in the areas listed below:

1.  Prescribed communicable infections (PCI) screening
2.  Current immunisation history
3.  Tuberculosis (TB) screening
4.  Criminal history.

Placements are compulsory for successful completion of the Graduate Certificate. All costs associated with clinical placement including but not limited to uniform, travel and clearances, are the responsibility of the student.

In order to be accepted into the degree, applicants must have identified a clinic mentor who has agreed to provide mentorship during the clinical placement, and have organised approval from a clinic location to undertake their observation and clinical placement. The clinic mentor will be required to attend a workshop session to assist them in the clinical mentor role.

Students will be required to purchase a set of replacement teeth for practical activities.  The cost will include a Bond fee (reimbursed at completion provided no loss or damage beyond normal wear and tear) and a non-refundable hire fee.

Academic Program Rules

The Calendar is a comprehensive handbook of the University's academic program rules.

Example Study Plan

Indicative study plan
Semester 1 ORALHLTH 5000 Dental & Health
Science (Adult Therapy) IV OH
Semester 2 ORALHLTH 5001 Clinical Practice
(Adult Therapy) IV OH

Assessment

Assessment will be based on a combination of on-line methodologies, clinical cases, clinical assessment, oral assessment and examinations.

All assessment tasks are designed to enable students to develop and demonstrate their understanding of core concepts and principles related to managing the adult dental patient within the oral health therapists’ scope of practice. Student assessment, both formative and summative, will be closely matched to the integrated learning and teaching activities and to the clearly defined outcomes and objectives. An emphasis will be placed on the development of self-assessment skills. 

Related Degrees

Testimonial

This degree will flip you off your axis and reconfigure you in the best way possible. In learning emotional depth and how to support others, it is also an opportunity to reflect on yourself and grow as a person. My favourite aspect of the program has been the opportunity to counsel trained actors as if they are real patients. I know I will be confident in using these skills in real practice in my future.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.

Last updated: Saturday, 25 Sep 2021