Dentistry at University of Birmingham Dental School (A200 BDS)
Overview of Birmingham University Dentistry
At Birmingham, the ongoing strand of whole patient care in Clinical Practice enables you to integrate specialty teaching and perform the most appropriate treatment for your patients.
University of Birmingham Dentistry requires excellent communication skills in order to treat patients effectively as individuals. A sound understanding of the biological basis of oral disease and preventive approaches to care are essential foundations of dental practice. All of which you will be taught during your Dental Surgery degree at Birmingham.
Continuous advances in technology and dental materials have increased the scope of practice in dentistry. In addition to this, the expansion in the numbers of Dental Care Professionals (DCPs) has led to an emphasis on the dentist’s role as a diagnostician and team leader. Dentists now tend to focus on undertaking more complex treatments, rather than carrying out routine dental treatments.
You will be based at Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry, located just a mile from the University's main campus in Edgbaston. The £50 million hospitals provide world-class research facilities and a modern learning environment. Facilities include a fully computerised phantom head laboratory where you will learn how to manage dental decay and restore teeth amongst other practical tasks.
The early part of the course lays the foundation for clinical practice. A range of biological science modules provides a systems-based approach to understanding the human body, incorporating a wide range of different subjects. These are delivered by the Medical School and they provide an important foundation for the Human Diseases modules covered later in the course.
The second year of the course builds on the first, with an increased amount of time being spent at the School of Dentistry. You will undertake further sessions alongside
senior students, assisting them during their patient care. These modules are assessed at the end of the spring term.
At the start of the third year, you will begin to treat your own patients under supervision within the dental hospital and start to put into practice the skills and knowledge that you have developed in the early years. This core of Clinical Practice, where you have your own small list of patients, continues through until the final year and enables you to understand the importance of continuing care and integrated clinical practice and working with a dental team.
During your fourth year of the Dental Surgery course, you will be introduced to two new specialty teaching areas; paediatric dentistry and oral medicine. In paediatric dentistry you will learn how to adapt the clinical and patient management skills you have already gained to children within the Dental Hospital. Later on in the year, you will do this again but in an outreach clinic setting.
In this final year of your BDS course, whole patient care is the focus of your clinical work and a program of tutorials and lectures prepares you for practicing once you have qualified.
Birmingham Dental School Entry Requirements
GCSEs to include 7 or above in Mathematics, 7 or above in English Language OR Literature, 8 or above in Biology and 8 or above in Chemistry (or two grade 8 or above in double science or equivalent).
AAA at A level in Biology, Chemistry, and one other nonrelated standalone subject (excluding General Studies or Critical Thinking). A levels must be taken concurrently over a maximum of 2 years.
32 points with 6,6,6 in higher subjects, including Chemistry and Biology
AAAAA at Highers or AB Advanced Highers plus AA Highers, including Chemistry and Biology.
Birmingham Dental School Admissions Tests
UCAT at the University of Birmingham Dental School (BDS)
In 2023, the UCAT Cut-Off for Birmingham Dental School BDS was 2740.
The bottom 25% of candidates are rejected. The rest are considered holistically with the rest of the dental application.
Birmingham Dental School look at your application holistically, where they consider: UCAT + Academics + PS + Reference
SJT not used in selection.
🏆 Birmingham BDS Interview Selection Process:
Minimum entry requirements (achieved or not, no extra credit for exceeding)
Personal statement – motivation to do the course, specific mentions of Dentistry and reasoning behind the application
UCAT score: The UCAT cut-off for interviews varies annually depending upon the number of applications and UCAT scores of those applicants.
👉🏼 LOWEST UCAT INVITED TO INTERVIEW at Birmingham Dental School (BDS) ie Birmingham BDS UCAT Cut Off:
2023 Entry: 2740
2022 Entry: 2660
2021 Entry: 2690
2020 Entry: 2570
2019 Entry: 2400
👉🏼 AVERAGE UCAT score INVITED TO INTERVIEW at Birmingham Dental School (BDS):
2022 Entry: 2810
2021 Entry: 2822
2020 Entry: 2748
2019 Entry: 2677
2018 Entry: 2545
👉🏼 LOWEST UCAT GIVEN AN OFFER at Birmingham Dental School (BDS):
2023 Entry: 2740
2022 Entry: 2670
👉🏼 AVERAGE UCAT score GIVEN AN OFFER at Birmingham Dental School (BDS):
2022 Entry: 2787
2021 Entry: 2614
2020 Entry: 2568
2019 Entry: 2709
2018 Entry: 2547
✅ Birmingham Dentistry Application Statistics
2023 Entry: 1050 Applications, 317 Interviewed, 136 Offers
2022 Entry: 1085 Applications, 311 Interviewed, 133 Offers
2021 Entry: 850 Applications, 285 Interviewed, 130 Offers
2020 Entry: 650 Applications, 130 Interviewed, 175 Offers
University of Birmingham Dentistry Work Experience
Applications will be screened for evidence of work experience and voluntary work
University of Birmingham Dentistry Personal Statement
The personal statement will be assessed for motivation and commitment to study Dentistry.
Does This Medical School Have A Gateway or Foundation Year?
Birmingham Dental Interview Questions 2023
Birmingham Dental School (BDS) uses an MMI - Multiple Mini Interview format
It will be 2.5 hours in total - 30 mins registration, 1-hour interview, 1 hour speaking to current dental students.
There will be 5-10 stations in the BDS interview
Each station will be 10 minutes long - 2 minutes of reading time, and then 8 minutes is the station length (though this may be shortened)
You do not need any prior knowledge of dentistry for this interview
In-person - confirmed for 2023 entry
Five minutes before your registration time, please report to the foyer of the Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry.
Each station will have 1 or 2 assessors
Birmingham interviews dental students in February each year
🎓 Birmingham Dentistry Interview Questions & Topics for 2024
Several topics are more likely to come up at the University of Birmingham Dental School MMI Interview, which can be derived from past Birmingham MMI stations, including:
Motivation for a career in Dental Surgery
💯 Birmingham MMI Interview Questions Scoring in 2023
Interviews will take place throughout February half term week.
Applicants will continue to be invited to interview until all places have been filled.
Unsuccessful applicants will hear from them too by mid-January.
No alternative interview dates are available and Skype or telephone interviews are not offered.
❓ Birmingham Interview Questions - Past, Recent & Likely Questions 2023
Motivation to study Dentistry
What did you learn from your dental work experience?
What qualities of a dentist did you see from your dental work experience?
What do you know about the Birmingham Dentistry course? How is it taught?
Why do you think you will be well suited to this course?
Why Dentistry and not medicine or nursing?
Tell us about your volunteering.
What are your hobbies?
What are the negatives of a career in Dentistry?
Are there any societies you would like to join at Birmingham?
Why should patients trust you?
What are your best qualities?
How do you manage stress?
There are many applicants with good grades, why should we take you?
What are the challenges currently faced by dentists?
Why is delegation important as a leader?
Can you provide an example of a time when you demonstrated resilience?
Give us an example of a time when you demonstrated teamwork.
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
How would your friends describe you?
How would you handle complaints and criticism?
Give us an example of a time when you were resilient. Why is this important in dentistry?
What's your favourite medium as an artist?
Tell us about an article that you have recently read.
I'm at A&E where a patient comes in with health complications that originate from dental disease. Can you explain how that can happen?
What is it called when a dental infection spreads to the jaw and neck?
If a patient collapses in the waiting room, how would you assess them?
NHS & Local Area
What is the CQC?
What are AGPs?
What is NICE?
What is the GDC?
What do you know about how the NHS charges for appointments?
What are the NHS values, and why are they important?
What is it like to be a dentist?
How do you deal with overpopulation?
What do you know about the local area here in Birmingham?
What are the main challenges facing the future of dentistry in the UK?
How has COVID changed the way that dental practices operate?
How does oral health differ here compared to other areas in the UK?
Understanding of the four ethical principles
Should all dentists have good teeth?
If you notice that a colleague has turned up to work drunk, what would you do?
Who can you escalate concerns to within a practice?
Other Stations including Manual Dexterity
Is it necessary to know the chemistry behind the materials you'll use as a dentist?
Talk us through this article - what do you know about the authors? What are they arguing here?
Photo: the image of decayed teeth - describe what you see here
Role play: explain to someone how to tie shoelaces
Role play: teach this person how to build this origami plane
Role play: the nurse leaves the room to attend to an emergency, and speak to the patient (general talk)
👉🏼 Read more: 230+ Dentistry Interview Questions for 2023
🗣️ Birmingham Dentistry Interview Tips for 2023 entry
How to answer the “Why Birmingham” question. Make sure that you can differentiate Birmingham from other dental schools in the UK. Model answer - I'm excited to attend Birmingham Dental School for its reputation for providing a well-rounded education that focuses on evidence-based dentistry and interprofessional collaboration. The school's Centre for Evidence-Based Dentistry conducts research and provides training in the application of evidence-based principles to clinical practice. Additionally, the school offers opportunities for students to collaborate with other healthcare professionals, such as medical students, pharmacists, and nurses. I look forward to learning from experienced and knowledgeable faculty members, such as Professor Paul Cooper, Head of the School of Dentistry, and Professor Iain Chapple, Head of Periodontics. Overall, Birmingham Dental School's commitment to evidence-based practice and interprofessional education makes it an ideal choice for me to pursue my dental education.”
Dress well - What to wear for your Birmingham Dental Interview - Birmingham asks you to dress smartly as if you were going to a job interview. Make sure you dress appropriately so you then feel as comfortable as possible at the interview. Also, check your email from Birmingham as there are various documents they ask you to bring on the day.
Know your personal statement - reread any books or papers mentioned in your dental personal statement and try to follow up on any research that has been done on the topic since. This makes it easier to discuss should this be raised in the interview. These frequently come up at interviews - so make sure you can talk about everything written on your Dentistry personal statement and your UCAS reference.
Have examples ready to use: many of the questions asked at Birmingham are example-based, ie, they require you to draw on examples from your personal life, dental work experience and dental volunteering to help make key points that the selectors are looking at. As such, it is paramount that you spend time learning about these examples and thinking about different scenarios that you can use at the interview. It is helpful if these scenarios are malleable and apply to questions e.g. being a football captain, deputy head girl or playing in the school orchestra.
Personal Attributes - Birmingham has mentioned that they will ask you about personal attributes during the MMI interview. As such it is paramount that you go through and learn these. Birmingham has asked questions concentrating on your strengths and weaknesses, so ensure you have suitable examples. Check out our 200+ interview question and answer guide for dealing with similar interview questions.
Know the dentist training pathway: this is useful to mention in answers to show awareness about the career in Dentistry - and demonstrates that you have a considered approach. Fortunately, we have created a guide for you to learn about the dentistry training pathway here.
Read the MMI instructions carefully - you get enough time to read the instructions provided before the MMI station. Make sure that you don’t miss anything from this. Plan how you will structure your answer in the reading time provided. You must practice MMI questions and ensure you think about your structure for as many questions as possible before your interview.
MMI Stations - remember that each MMI station at Birmingham is independent of the other. Therefore it is paramount that you try to treat them as such, if you have a bad station, try to forget about it and reset for the next station, this gives you the best chance of scoring well overall. Read our ultimate guide to preparing for Dentistry MMIs here.
Know the Birmingham Course - we would always recommend doing this for every university that you plan to apply to. It is paramount that you know about the different topics covered each year. How does this differ from other universities? What is their policy on intercalation? Have you any idea about what you would plan to intercalate in at Birmingham if you could or need to? If relevant, what do you know about graduate entry dentistry there? Remember there is very early clinical exposure at Birmingham - this can be an advantage!
Know the local area - Birmingham is a diverse region in the UK, with a number of local factors and diseases that differentiate the Birmingham region from the rest of the UK. Ensure that you research factors that can influence the oral health of residents of the area. How might this impact dentistry provision in the area?
Reflect Well - the Birmingham Dentistry selectors love reflection, make sure that you are good at not just stating what you have learnt, but also how this helped and what you benefitted from, and what you will carry forward about this at dental school and in clinical Dentistry. This is especially true when reflecting on your dental work experience during the dentistry interview, or if you are applying with low grades to study dentistry or have taken a gap year before applying to study dentistry or via dentistry clearing.
Practice Role Plays: Role plays are unique to Dentistry MMI interviews as they do not tend to occur in panel interviews. The only way to ace these stations is to practice! There are so many different Dentistry role-play scenarios that can come up, it is paramount that you read about tips for answering role-play scenarios. You might want to also consider practising this with a Dentistry interview tutor, or booking a 1-1 online mock interview.
Don’t over-rehearse - this is a common theme amongst interview students and is very obvious to a trained examiner. As such, we would recommend focusing on the structure of your answer, and then naturally letting it flow when speaking to the answers, concentrating on the delivery of your interview answers. Read about our top tips for Dentistry interviews here. If you are struggling with this, consider booking sessions with an expert Dentistry interview tutor or via one of our Dentistry Application Packages.
Learning about the non-academic societies at Birmingham is important and might augment your Why Dentistry question as well as help you formulate an answer to how you will contribute to life at Birmingham University. Spend time on their website, or looking at their Instagram for ideas about societies that you could think about joining.
Learn dental ethics & NHS Hot Topics - you will likely be asked about dental ethics at a Dentistry interview at Birmingham, so there is no excuse not to brush up on your knowledge on these topics. Learn how to provide a balanced argument. Check out some of our free articles on NHS Hot Topics and our ultimate guide to applying to dentistry here. It is good if you have an opinion on them, as long as you present a balanced and well-reasoned argument, which side you choose does not matter but is helpful to have. Check out our bank of 200+ Dentistry interview questions.
Learn the NHS Core Values - This can be drawn into different answers about personal qualities or qualities of a dentist, which has formed a feature of stations in the past, and a good understanding of these core values will help you stand out against others. It is important to know about the NHS in general for your dental interviews - read our article here on this.
Good dental Practice - Birmingham also emphasises knowing the values and qualities of a good dentist, which can be found in this document and are likely to come up at the interview in the MMI stations. This is universal to many universities, and something that we always recommend students cover during their Dentistry interview preparation.
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