Primary Dental Care, M.Sc.

  • N/A
    Application Deadline
  • 36 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Year)
    Tuition (Year)
  • English (take IELTS)
University rank #41 Online
This part-time, online Primary Dental Care modular programme at The University of Edinburgh provides masters-level education for primary care clinicians, with a particular emphasis on restorative dentistry. The structure of the degree is designed to meet the needs of dental practitioners from all over the world..


The Primary Dental Care modular programme at The University of Edinburgh is modular with each module worth either 10 or 20 credits. This means that 60 credits must be completed to become eligible for a Certificate, 120 credits for a Diploma with an additional research or project module worth 60 credits to be completed to be eligible for the Master of Science Degree.

Each module will run over a period of six or twelve weeks (depending on the credits) with participation in on-line discussions and completion of timed tasks a compulsory part of the process. There will be an annual clinical skills course lasting for up to 10 days on each of the first two years of the programme. These will be based at Edinburgh Dental Institute.

We will run 60 credits consecutively each year, so it will take one year to reach Certificate level, two years for the Diploma and a third year to complete the research module and gain the MSc.

The programme is supported online by a virtual learning environment (VLE) and all the educational material is available online. Coursework for assessment is uploaded to the site and there is an active student discussion board available alongside tutor- led discussions. The University of Edinburgh provides full library and student support through its own online facilities.

Learning Outcomes
  • Reflect critically on the relationships between theory and practice.
  • To develop an evidence-based approach to their clinical practice.
  • To develop an understanding of how to assess the quality of primary dental care.
  • To be able to provide the highest quality of primary dental care.
  • To establish principles that promote self-criticism and monitoring.
  • To contribute to professional development at both a personal and local level.
  • To have an understanding of the relevant literature and of the methods for its assessment.
  • To gather relevant data through the application of appropriate methods of enquiry

Programme Structure

Available Modules:
  • Introduction to clinical evidence
  • Diagnosis and treatment planning
  • Direct restorations
  • Occlusal management of the restored natural dentition
  • Endodontics in primary dental care
  • Periodontal management in primary dental care
  • Indirect restorations
  • Restoration of the edentulous space
  • Dental clinic management
  • Research or clinical project
How you will be taught

Each module will provide a review of current literature supporting the topic, an update of knowledge and an opportunity to practice specific clinical skills. There will be reading material, lecture material and interactive tutorials on all of the topics. There will be a requirement to carry out clinical procedures on your own patients and photograph and document these cases in order to maintain a log-book or portfolio of cases.

Students will be required to have access to a dental clinical camera and a semi-adjustable articulator in order to maintain the log-book of cases. Please email the programme team for further information.

During the on-line seminars and tutorials existing clinical skills will be reviewed and then discussed and updated in light of the prescribed reading and current evidence. You will be expected to make changes to your clinical practice and demonstrate that change in the cases that you present. We will provide guidance on what is required and the submitted course work will be assessed and marked together with feedback on the procedure to assist in your progression.

Each module has prescribed reading: this will be mainly in the form of original papers from the literature. We will provide on-line library access to these papers. You will be asked to read these before the start of each module as they will provide the essential introduction and background to the teaching.

How you will be assessed

At the end of each 20 credits, you will be required to produce a piece of written work, either an essay, a critical review, or a reflective account on the topic of the modules. In addition you will be asked to submit a selection of clinical cases from your log-book in the form of pdf documents that you will upload to the VLE (Virtual Learning Environment).

Obtaining credit for the module will depend on the satisfactory completion of

a) the written submission

b) participation in the tutor- led discussion board

c) participation in a group project

d) maintaining a reflective diary

There is no formal written examination

Each module will be assessed separately as above and credits awarded towards the degree. Tutors will be part of the team of internal examiners and each piece of course work will be assessed by two internal examiners. All standards will be independently assessed by an external examiner appointed by the University of Edinburgh from another institution. The University marking scheme will be applied to all aspects of the assessment.

The final assessment for the research module will involve the submission of either:

  • Two clinical case reports of approximately 5000 words each or
  • A literature review of approximately 10000 words and a clinical case report or
  • One clinical case report and one management project based on your clinical environment.

Guidance will be given as to suitable topics.

Satisfactory completion of this final module will give eligibility for the award of the degree of Master of Science in Primary Dental Care of the University of Edinburgh.


This course is suitable for any dentist (with the correct entry requirements) who wishes to advance their dental knowledge and clinical care.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Deadline and start date Application deadline and start date were not specified by the programme.
  • Study intensity Part-time
    • Intensity 15 hrs/week
    • Duration part-time 36 months
  • Credits
    180 alternative credits

    60 credits must be completed to become eligible for a Certificate, 120 credits for a Diploma with an additional research or project module worth 60 credits to be completed to be eligible for the Master of Science Degree.

  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    • Time flexibility
      Fully structured
    • Attendance
      Regular mandatory meetings
    • Teacher support
      Continuous support with feedback on request
    • Student interaction
      Individual work/assignments (with online group discussions)

English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score: 7

    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test

    StudyPortals Tip: The UK government has confirmed new English-language testing requirements for visa and immigration purposes. Learn more

  • Minimum required score (Grade C): 185

    The CAE test – or the Cambridge Advanced English – is an exam for applicants who wish to get a Certificate in Advanced English. To receive the Advanced certificate, test-takers must score between 142 and 210 on the Cambridge English: Advanced test. Read more about CAE.

    Note: degree programmes and applications may require a more specific minimum score for admission.

  • Minimum required score: 100

    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

A Bachelor of Dental Surgery degree or equivalent primary dental qualification is required along with a minimum of two years post qualification experience in primary dental care. In order to complete the distance clinical practice element of the programme you must be working in a clinical environment that allows you to treat a full range of patients with a variety of treatment needs. Where applicable, you will also be required to meet any language requirements in accordance with the University of Edinburgh's regulations.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections; the 'Enabling Skills' sections are not considered)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

Work Experience

At least 2 year(s) of work experience are required.

Technological Requirements

Minimum computer specification: PC or Mac (1.2GHz or faster processor, 256MB of RAM). USB headset with a microphone (or separate headphones and microphone). Webcam desirable. Internet connection (240kbps or faster). Broadband is essential for full use of all tools. Wires work better than wireless for maintaining a high-quality connection without any delays, so if you can connect your computer by cable, it will ensure a good quality experience. Current versions of the following free programs: Adobe Reader, Adobe (Macromedia) Flash Player, Office suite capable of reading and creating Word documents, Other requirements: JavaScript must be enabled, Cookies must be enabled, Popup windows must be enabled.

Getting a Student Visa

This is an online programme. You don’t need a visa to study in this programme.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • GBP 5800 International
  • GBP 5800 National


  • There is no specific scholarship for our programme or for any Edinburgh Dental Institute degree programme but there are a number that you may be eligible for.
  • In addition to financial assistance provided by UK Government agencies and external funding sources, the University offers a number of general and subject-specific funding schemes. International students can compete in a variety of funding schemes.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.