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Dental Public Health

The aim of this postgraduate course is to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to lead and support the development of dental public health nationally and internationally.

Dental public health is the science of preventing oral diseases, promoting oral health and improving the quality of life through organised efforts. It concerns not only actions directed at populations as a whole, but also at the groups and individuals that make up populations.

Highly-trained public health specialists are required in Ireland and abroad to tackle issues such as health inequalities; their causes and solutions; communicable diseases; oral health; obesity; smoking and international health development.

The MSc Dental Public Health is an innovative course designed to offer multi-disciplinary academic and experiential development.

The course emphasises:
student-directed learning
multi-disciplinary teaching and learning
problem solving
skills training

Unique aspects of the course
Dental public health is recognised as an important component of the modern dentist’s skill set. As populations live longer, the focus must be on adding ‘life to years rather than years to life’. Oral healthcare must be planned and delivered to optimise scarce resources. This successful outcome is fostered throughout the MDPH, exposing the student to research methods, fostering evidence-based practice, healthcare evaluation and encouraging leadership, through structured modules.

Entry requirements

BDS (Hons) Degree of the NUI or equivalent degree. Health care professionals, for example medical doctors, nurses or auxiliary dental workers holding relevant degrees will also be considered. Satisfy an interview board.

Prospective students must satisfy the following:
◾students accepted on the course should hold a BDS (Hons) Degree of the NUI or equivalent degree. Health care professionals, for example medical doctors, nurses or auxiliary dental workers holding relevant degrees will also be considered
◾include with application form a sample of their own written work
◾satisfy an interview board

All applicants should indicate on their application form their reasons for wishing to enter this programme and will be required to discuss these at interview.

Note: In exceptional circumstances applicants with a primary degree in another discipline may be recommended for entry to the programme following a review of their individual qualifications and experience by the course committee. Admission of such applicants may be subject to the approval of the College of Medicine and Health Executive Committee.

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests.


1 year full-time.
Lectures are scheduled for Thursday evenings and all day Friday. Extensive reading is required. Reading lists are provided with each module.

Careers or further progression

At the end of this course you will be able to:

- analyse critically and debate the theories and issues related to dental public health and effectively communicate your perspective to peer groups.

- construct arguments around the social, political and economic factors determining the health of populations.

- demonstrate competence in the key disciplines and theories underpinning public health including health informatics; epidemiology, including needs and demands assessment; communicable diseases, including healthcare associated infections; biostatistics; social and behavioural sciences and social policy.

- design and discuss the provision, economic evaluation, management and leadership of health services.

- analyse and synthesise evidence-based research and its application to the practice of dental public health.

- develop and evaluate appropriate oral health protection and promotion initiatives at the population level.

- develop and apply research methodology by conducting a specified programme of research under appropriate supervision.

Further enquiries

Dr. Máiréad Harding
Oral Health Services Research Centre
Cork University Dental School and Hospital
Tel:+353 (0)21 490 1210

Subjects taught

The following modules are taken as part of the course:
Principles and Practice of Public Health
Applied Research for Public Health
Public Health Informatics
Leadership in Public Health
Decision Analysis and Evaluation Methods in Health Care and Health Care Financing
Critical Social Science Perspectives on Public Health
Dental Public Health
Preventive Dentistry
Minor Thesis

This course will appeal to dental professionals:
-who wish to develop the knowledge, skills and commitment to develop services which are equitable and fair

-who wish to develop a greater understanding of the competing demands, resource implications and expectations in providing a public dental service in the twenty-first century.


Who Teaches This Course
The course draws on the experience across the university with teaching being provided from the College of Medicine and Health, Centre for Policy Studies and Applied Social Studies. International speakers are also invited to provide seminars on the course, enhancing the experience of the student and exposing you to different approaches.

Assessment method

The course is a taught master’s, modular in format with assessment through written examination, project work, essay and completion of a minor dissertation.

Application date

Applications for 2017-18 intake are now open.

While UCC operates a rounds system for Postgraduate Taught courses (detailed below) we would advise you to apply as soon as possible.

Deadline for receipt of Applications: Offers will be made:

For all completed applications received by January 16th 2017 Offers will be made by January 30th 2017

For all completed applications received by March 1st 2017 Offers will be made by March 15th 2017

For all completed applications received by May 1st 2017 Offers will be made by May 15th 2017

For all completed applications received by July 3rd 2017 Offers will be made by July 17th 2017

Late applications may be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for any courses that have remaining capacity for places.

Non-EU Applicants:

Please visit the following page for further information for Non EU applicants

Course fee

2017/2018 Irish/EU €5,850; Fee part-time per component is €1,950

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake: September 2017

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