Dentists are medical professionals and, as such, there’s quite a big earning potential if this is a career path you’re interested in. In fact, dentists starting out in the NHS can make as much as £30,132 – and that’s just for their training year! This then increases with experience and seniority, with specialised dentists making anything between £75,249 and £101,451.
What’s important to remember is that although we tend to overlook the social aspect of being a doctor, dentists need excellent communication skills as they need to effectively communicate with patients.
To become a successful dentist, of course, you need a lot more than just people skills. You also need an excellent education and qualifications. To help you pick the best education available, we’ve put together a list of the 10 best dental schools in the world.
10. University of Gothenburg
As one of the most important universities in northern Europe, the University of Gothenburg in Sweden is a reputable organisation with approximately 37,000 students and 5,900 staff members. The university focuses on scientific disciplines with 40 different departments. It is also renowned for its cutting-edge research in a number of areas.
The faculty of dentistry focuses on preparing students to work in the field professionally. Programmes are both theoretical and practical as students are encouraged to work independently on patient care and treatment.
9. KU Leuven
Also known as the University of Leuven, KU Leuven is a research university located in Flanders, Belgium. The university counts well over 30,000 students and it’s renowned for its research facilities. The oral health sciences department aims to provide students with a deep understanding of the science behind dentistry, as well as the necessary skills to enter the professional world.
There is essentially one programme offered at this university, the Master of Forensic Odontology, which allows students to specialise in the multifaceted field of forensic odontology. This programme is also dedicated to multidisciplinary interaction with forensic medicine, judicial bodies and insurance companies. It aims to train aspiring dentists not only in their field but also the legal aspects that concern this profession.
8. Academisch Centrum Tandheelkunde Amsterdam
ACTA is an initiative of the Faculties of Dentistry at the University of Amsterdam and the VU University Amsterdam. This institute is responsible for conducting innovative research, as well as providing educational programmes and delivering care for patients.
ACTA’s curriculum focuses on high-quality patient care as there are approximately 300 patients who receive care from the University on a daily basis. This institute is also focused on its research programme, while it’s also dedicated to training aspiring dentists to become professionals.
There is basically one programme available for dentists, the MSc in Oral Health Sciences, which focuses on endodontology, oral implantology, oral kinesiology and periodontology.
7. Karolinska Institutet
Based in Sweden’s capital, Stockholm, Karolinska Institutet offers a wide array of medical and health science programmes in English. This university has a growing reputation for its innovative and teaching methods. Students graduating from this university generally have a high employment rate as it’s an institute that employers tend to favour.
Their Department of Dental Medicine offers two programmes for aspiring dentists, one on the Bachelor’s level and the other on the doctoral level. The Bachelor’s programme focuses on dentistry, dental hygiene and dental technology, while the doctoral degree comprises of 20 weeks of formal education and research carried out by the students.
There are many specialisations on offer, including dental hygiene, technology, periodontal disease and implant treatments.
6. University College London
UCL has an international reputation for its top-level quality in research and teaching. As an institution, it is dedicated to promoting the belief that disciplines can inform and enrich one another, and this belief is woven into the syllabus of each programme.
It’s conveniently located in the centre of London, which essentially means that students can benefit from everything this world capital has to offer.
UCL offers a wide selection of specialisations which all focus on creating innovative and challenging programmes. These specialisations include dental public health, restorative dental practice, dental sedation and pain management, endodontics, paediatric dentistry, oral medicine, periodontology and advanced aesthetic dentistry.
5. Harvard University
As the oldest institution of higher education in the United States, Harvard University is renowned across the world. In fact, some of the most influential personalities of our century, including Barack and Michelle Obama and Mark Zuckerberg, have walked its halls.
Apart from its reputation as one of the most important higher education institutions in the world, Harvard is also renowned for its excellence in research, innovation and social responsibility.
The School of Dental Medicine offers its students with a truly unparalleled opportunity to draw on the university’s vast resources and specialise in dental science. Amongst the specialisations offered are endodontics, oral and maxillofacial pathology and surgery, orthodontics, paediatric dentistry, periodontics and prosthodontics.
4. King’s College London
As one of the top universities in the UK, King’s College London enjoys a reputation of a world-class teaching and cutting-edge research institution. This university is particularly distinguished for its programmes in health sciences, especially psychiatry, medicine, nursing and dentistry. It also has significantly influenced many advances in modern medicine – for example, the discovery of the structure of DNA.
The Dental Institute at King’s College is the largest dental training school in the UK and it ensures that its students have access to a wide range of medical and dental activities and events. Amongst the specialisations offered are minimum intervention dentistry, aesthetic dentistry, endodontics, fixed and removable prosthodontics, and maxillofacial prosthetic rehabilitation.
3. Tokyo Medical and Dental University
The Tokyo Medical and Dental University is one of the best universities in the world and it ranks third in dentistry mainly because of the cutting-edge research conducted here. The University is renowned for the innovations it makes to the field and although it only has 5,000 students, it is truly one of the best places to study if you want to become a dentist.
Of course, unless you speak Japanese, you may have a hard time studying here as the courses are only offered in the Japanese language.
2. University of Michigan
Rated for excellence in research, employability and social responsibility, the University of Michigan is one of the best universities in the US. It ranks second for dentistry thanks to its dedication to educate dental hygienists in the theory and practice of their chosen profession, as well as innovate the field through research.
The curriculum offers classes in social, behavioural and social sciences to help prepare students for a broader spectrum of careers. There are many specialisations offered, including dental hygiene, endodontics, oral health sciences, orthodontics, paediatric dentistry, periodontics and prosthodontics.
1. The University of Hong Kong
The University of Hong Kong is no stranger to innovation and research and, as such, enjoys the reputation of one of the best universities in the world. Studying here will give you the opportunity to work and learn with some of the best researchers in the world, while you will also get to join a diverse community with more than 9,000 international students.
The undergraduate programme in dentistry focuses on small groups, facilitating discussions drawing from problem-based and case-based formats.
Studying in any one of these best dental schools will increase your employment opportunities, but wherever you choose to study, keep in mind that what matters most is to develop a passion for the field.
Do you think you’d make a good dentist? Let me know in the comments section below.