Course Comparison

Course BDS Dental Surgery BSc (Hons) Dental Therapy and Hygiene
Award Bachelor of Dental Surgery - BDS Bachelor of Science - BSc (Hons)
Duration 5 years 3 years
Course type Full-time Full-time
Placement (with placements) (with placements)
Location Plymouth Plymouth
Provider Peninsula Dental School Peninsula Dental School
Entry requirements

Interviews for the 2019 application cycle are expected to take place in the weeks commencing 25 November 2019, 16 December 2019 and 13 January 2020. Equal consideration will be given to all applicants invited for interview.

Direct school leaversFacuk

The entry requirements set out in this section apply to you if you completed your GCE A levels, or equivalent qualifications, within five years of the start of the application cycle, e.g. qualifications completed since 2014 would still be valid when applying in 2019. If your qualifications fall outside these criteria please refer to the Non-direct school leaver section below.

Please note that none of the typical offers listed in this prospectus is necessarily the threshold for selection for interview. Other factors, including the number of applications received, and performance in the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT), influence the threshold for selection for interview.

The school reserves the right to use all information on the UCAS form including evidence of social engagement and insight into dentistry in the selection process for interview.

GCSEs

Applicants need to achieve 7 GCSE passes at grades A-C/9-4 which must include English language, mathematics and either GCSE double award science or two from single award chemistry, biology, or physics.

Plus suitable level 3 qualifications as outlined below.

GCE A level

The typical offer is A*AA – AAB at GCE A level which must include an A grade in biology and one further science from chemistry, physics, maths, and psychology. Your third GCE A level can be from any subject area including the humanities, languages, music, sport, science and the social sciences. 

The University of Plymouth is committed to widening access (WA) and ensuring that all students with the potential to succeed, regardless of their background, are encouraged to apply with us. The additional information gained through contextual data enables our admissions advisory panel to recognise a student’s achievements and identify their potential to succeed in the context of their background and experience. The contextual data we will consult when determining to issue an AAB offer are listed below. Applicants will need to meet a minimum of three from the following WA indicators to be considered.

  • Living in a low participation neighbourhood as determined by your postcode (POLAR4 quintiles 1 & 2).
  • Living in an area categorised as being in Indices of Mass Depravation (IMD) 1 – 4 or 20% most deprived as determined by your English postcode. Northern Ireland postcode, Scottish postcode, and Welsh postcode.
  • Attending or attended a low performing school/college whilst completeing your level 3 qualifications in England e.g. 16-18 performance in the ‘below’ or ‘well below average’ classifications. If you attend a secondary school or college in Northern Ireland, Scotland, or Wales, please contact meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.       
  • In receipt of a UCAT bursary – the admissions team will receive this data directly from UCAT.
  • Being in receipt of free school meals - evidenced by a letter from your school or college submitted at the point of application to meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.
  • Significant engagement in either our Peninsula Pathways programme or another widening access intervention.

Please note that the typical offer is not necessarily the threshold for selection for interview, which may vary depending on the number and quality of applications received by the faculty.

International Baccalaureate

The typical offer is 36-38 points overall including six in biology and one further science from chemistry, physics, maths, and psychology at the Higher Level.

Scottish Advanced Highers

Grades AAA-AAB including a grade A in biology and one further science from chemistry, physics, maths, and psychology.

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma

A pass in the Diploma, plus grades A*A/AA in biology and one further science from chemistry, physics, maths, and psychology. General studies at A/AS level is not included within any offer.

Cambridge Pre-U Diploma

D3, D3, M1 including biology and one further science from chemistry, physics, maths, and psychology at D3.

GCE A levels and Cambridge Pre-U Diploma

Applications will be assessed on an individual basis according to the subjects studied. Chemistry must be achieved at D3 in lieu of grade A at GCE A level. For a non-science subject a minimum grade M1 is required. 

Other UK qualifications

Other UK qualifications will be considered on an individual basis and you are advised to contact the Admissions team on +44 1752 437333 or email: meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Applicants offering the following qualifications will need to take the Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT). Please see entry requirements for non-Direct School Leavers:

  • BTEC National Diploma
  • Advanced Diploma
  • Access to HE Diploma


Extended entry requirements


Re-sit Applicants 

Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences welcome applications from re-sit applicants providing a minimum attainment has been achieved at the first attempt. For example: A level candidates need to have achieved ABB for dentistry in the first attempt. For other qualification re-sit criteria please contact the admissions team at meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk. Please note that applicants undertaking re-sits must achieve their final qualification profile for consideration in no more than three academic years i.e. allowing for 1 re-sit year attempt only.

Qualifications completed outside of the UK

Please contact the Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences Admissions Team if you have studied outside of the UK so we can advise on the suitability of your qualifications.

University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT)

As part of our commitment to a fair and transparent admissions process, the Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences uses the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) in order to make more informed choices from amongst the many highly qualified applicants who apply for a place on the BDS programme. UCAT test results will be used, alongside the academic information contained on your UCAS form to select direct school leavers for interview. You will be required to meet a minimum overall target score which is set and reviewed annually by the Admissions Advisory Panel.

Please note: If you are re-applying for a second year with achieved grades, you will need to register and complete a new UCAT test as part of your application.

The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) threshold score applied to determine candidate selection for interview can alter each year and is influenced by overall candidate performance in the UCAT and the number and quality of applications received. Below are examples of the score thresholds applied during the 2015-2019 admissions cycles and the requirement for 2020 entry.. 

Year of entry Verbal reasoning Quantitive analysis Abstract reasoning Decision analysis Overall
2015 entry 500 620 570 560 2280
2016 entry 480 610 560 550 2280
2017 entry - - - x 1790
2018 entry - - - - 2230
2019 entry - - - - 2190
2020 entry - - - - 2280
The Peninsula Dental School will again be applying an overall target score methodology in this application cycle for entry next September to facilitate selection for interview. We do not currently include the SJT banding score.

If you have sat the UCATSEN please be aware that you will need to provide standard evidence of your entitlement to this additional time by submitting;

  • If still in education, an official letter from your school, college, University that states that on the basis of a diagnosis from a qualified medical practitioner, educational psychologist or specialist teacher the candidate is currently entitled to additional time in public examinations (or have had additional time in public examinations within the last 2 years);

Or,

  • If you are no longer in education, a post-16 year’s diagnosis or report from a qualified medical practitioner or educational psychologist that explicitly recommends additional time in public examinations.

UKCAT Website

Candidate Preparation Toolkit

Information

Widening access to Dentistry

As part of our commitment to widening access to dentistry, the Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences undertakes a programme of outreach activities with local schools in Cornwall, Devon and Somerset. For further information please visit our outreach pages.

The School is also represented at the UCAS Higher Education Conventions in the UK.

Non-direct school leavers

The entry requirements set out in this section apply to you if your current suite of qualifications do not meet those published above in the Direct School Leaving section or more than 5 years has lapsed since achieving them.

Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT)

Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences uses the Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT) as the entrance requirement for non-direct school leavers. GAMSAT assesses your academic aptitude for the study of dentistry. Results from the test will be used alongside the other information contained on your UCAS form to select non-direct school leavers for interview. The results are valid for two years.

GAMSAT is a 5 and a half hours written test that assesses your reasoning in humanities, social science, biological science, physical science and written communication. As this test only assesses academic aptitude, if you're successful you'll still need to show us at interview that you have the appropriate personal qualities to train and practise as a dentist.

If you'd like to know more or to register for the test, please visit the GAMSAT website. Although the school does not accept responsibility for the content, you may also find the following leaflet of interest.

Below are examples of the score thresholds applied in previous admissions cycles.

  2014 entry 2015 entry 2016 entry 2017 entry 2018 entry 2019 entry 2020 entry
Section 1 51 47 50 51 50 50 49
Section 2 51 48 51 54 50 54 56
Section 3 40 42 42 47 43 52 49
Overall 48 47 48 54 49 56 54
Graduates from the University of Plymouth BSc (Hons) Dental Therapy and Hygiene (DTH), who achieve a distinction, are invited to apply to join Year 2 of the Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) degree. This entry route is valid for two years post BSc completion and all applications must be submitted through UCAS between 1 September and 15 October. All eligible applicants will be subject to the standard selection interview for the BDS course and all offers will be conditional. For DTH graduates who do not achieve a distinction the current process, which requires you to sit the GAMSAT exam to apply to join Year 1 of the BDS course, will remain.  

International student admissions

If you're an international applicant you need to meet the equivalent admissions criteria described for home students. Applicants applying with overseas qualifications should contact the Admissions Team at meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk prior to submitting an application through UCAS. In addition international applicants need to be fully proficient in English language.  All teaching at our school is in English, so if you are an international applicant and you do not have a GCSE or IGCSE pass at grade A in English language, or a suitable English as a first language qualification, you must have one of the following qualifications. If you are unsure whether your English Language qualification is suitable, please contact meddent-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk:

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) band 7.5 or above with at least 7.0 in each of the speaking and listening sections, taken within 12 months prior to entry;
  • IB score of 6 in English B at the standard level

We understand that university life is a challenge for any student but especially when you're a long way from home. You'll find the Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences friendly and supportive. The Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences has a nominated academic tutor to coordinate the induction and academic support provided to international students. The international office at the University of Plymouth also provide support and can help you with any non-academic issues. There are student welfare support and counselling services, wardens and student health centres on hand if you need them.

Student visas

If you have an offer of a place at the Faculty of Health: Medicine, Dentistry and Human Sciences you should apply under the Tier 4 (General Student) category. Further information is available on the UK Border Agency's website.

For detailed selection and admissions process guidance please review our technical manual for the current application cycle

Selection and admissions process

We have outlined our selection and admissions process, providing information from interviews to deferred entry.

For detailed selection and admissions process guidance please review our technical manual for the current application cycle.

Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise

Please view our Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise page.

  • A minimum of six GCSE passes A-C/9-4 which must include English language or literature, mathematics and either GCSE double award science or two from single award chemistry, biology, or physics. Plus suitable Level 3 qualifications as outlined below.
  • The typical offer is ABB at GCE A level which must include biology. General studies at GCE A/AS level is not included in any offer.
  • Applicants holding a National Certificate or Diploma in Dental Nursing will need a minimum of 2 A levels at grades BB, one of which must be biology.
  • BTEC National Diploma in a predominantly science subject area predicted or achieved at a minimum D,D,M.
  • Access course in a predominantly science subject area to include 45 level 3 credits, 33 of those at merit or distinction to include 15 in biology or human biology.
Please note that the typical offers above are not necessarily the threshold for selection for interview, which may vary depending on the number of applications received by the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry.

For information regarding all other accepted qualifications (International Baccalaureate Diploma, Scottish Advanced Highers, Irish Leaving Certificate etc.), please contact us, tel: +44 1752 437333.

For detailed selection and admissions process guidance please review our technical manual for the current application cycle.

Extended entry requirements


Selection and admissions process

We have outlined our selection and admissions process, providing information from interviews to deferred entry.

For detailed selection and admissions process guidance please review our technical manual for the current application cycle.

Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise

Please view our Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise page.