Dental Academy photoshoot, 14th November 2018

UCAS code


Mode of Study

Full-time, Part-time


2 years full-time, 4 years part-time

Start date

September 2023


Whether you’re due to graduate with a GDC accredited CertHE Dental Nursing or you’re a practising dental nurse and keen to develop your career, this Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice degree will boost your prospects. It enables you to top-up your existing qualifications to a BSc (Hons) degree in just 2 years full-time or 4 years part-time. 

You'll develop your clinical skills and learn to become more interactive with patient care and to improve skill mix within the dental team. You'll gain graduate skills to help you progress into senior dental nursing roles and practice at a higher level. Employers recognise the part that dental nurses with advanced skills contribute to improving dental care across the UK. As demand for dental care services continues to rise, you’ll be well placed to take advantage of opportunities to grow your role.

Course highlights

  • Broaden your clinical skills in areas ranging from impression taking to radiography
  • Get ready for opportunities as a lead dental nurse, clinical coordinator or practice manager by developing knowledge and skills in mentorship and clinical audit
  • Develop demonstrable skills in leadership and decision-making, communication and managing people
  • Build your credibility for senior roles by gaining knowledge and understanding of clinical governance 
  • Apply your learning in the community as part of a clinical student team, treating real patients via the University of Portsmouth Dental Academy and its outreach projects 
  • Enhance your professional contacts by networking with visiting industry figures and forging links with lecturers who are active in dental practice

Entry requirements​

BSc (Hons) Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice (Top-up)

Qualifications and experience
  • 120 HE Credits at Level 4 (certificate) in dental nursing related subjects. 
  • Applicants with Dental Nurse GDC Registration and sufficient level 5 credits from FDSc or DipHE or equivalent Dental Nursing education programmes, can apply for direct entry (with advanced standing) to level 6 subject to RPL.
Selection process
  • All shortlisted applicants will need to attend an interview. Applicants must pass Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance and Occupational Health clearance.

You may need to have studied specific subjects – see full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept

English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0 

We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Facilities and clinics

Dental Academy photoshoot, 14th November 2018

Dental Academy

Hone your practical dental skills in our Dental Academy, which includes 2 patient clinics with 44 dental treatment bays.

Find out more about the Dental Academy

Dental Academy photoshoot, 14th November 2018

Phantom Head lab

Build your skills and your confidence using our realistic industry-standard phantom heads, designed to simulate working with real patients.

Explore the Phantom Head lab

18/05/2021.B-Roll - day 4..All Rights Reserved - Helen Yates- T: +44 (0)7790805960.Local copyright law applies to all print & online usage. Fees charged will comply with standard space rates and usage for that country, region or state.

Dental radiography

Learn how to take dental X-rays and explore dental imaging techniques in our dental radiography booths.

Careers and opportunities

Now is the ideal time to boost your career potential with this BSc (Hons) Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice (Top-Up). Health Education England’s Advancing Dental Care Review 2021 recommends building up the capabilities of dental professionals. It calls for better use of the skills mix and multi-disciplinary teamworking within dental care services. 

If you’re already working professionally as a dental nurse, you will almost certainly have noticed that demand on dental services is rising. Increasingly, dental nurses will be expected to carry out more direct patient care and senior roles, as well as performing their statutory duties of supporting clinicians and patients.

This qualification will equip you to take advantage of those opportunities. It can also open up a range of other professional paths.

What areas can you work with in with a BSc (Hons) Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice?

  • general dental practice (NHS or private)
  • specialist services such as cosmetic dentistry and dental implants
  • pharmaceutical industry
  • oral care industry
  • dental education
  • supervision of trainee dental nurses

What jobs can you do with a BSc (Hons) Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice?

  • senior dental nurse
  • clinical coordinator
  • dental practice manager
  • graduate roles in the pharmaceutical industry
  • graduate roles in the oral care industry

You’ll also be a step closer to specialist dental roles such as hygienist or therapist, with further training.

Alternatively, you could choose to progress into further study, such as a Master’s in the dental field. Pursuing an academic path may lead you to further advanced career opportunities, or allow you to move into higher educational roles or research.

Female student at computer

Ongoing career support – up to 5 years after you graduate

Get experience while you study, with support to find part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities, and work experience.

Towards the end of your degree and for up to five years after graduation, you’ll receive one-to-one support from our Graduate Recruitment Consultancy to help you find your perfect role.

Futureproof your career

​What you'll study

Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits. In each full-time year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits, or 60 credits if studying part-time.


Core modules in this year include:

  • Applied Dental Nursing Professional Practice – 40 credits
  • Communication for the Dental Team – 20 credits
  • Dental Radiography and Dental Imaging – 20 credits
  • Engaging With Service Improvement – 20 credits
  • Evidence Based Decision Making – 20 credits

There are no optional modules in this year.

Core modules in this year include:

  • Behaviour Management – 20 credits
  • Enhancing Advanced Dental Nursing Professional Practice – 40 credits
  • Leading Safe and Effective Care (dental) – 20 credits
  • Project – 40 credits

There are no optional modules in this year.

Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, course content is revised and regularly reviewed.  This may result in changes being made in order to reflect developments in research, learning from practice and changes in policy at both national and local levels.


  • essays
  • group and individual presentations
  • portfolio development
  • online exams
  • vivas (oral defences of your work)
  • clinical observations

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • pre-clinical simulation
  • clinical team working
  • lectures
  • workshops
  • seminars

Teaching staff include experienced dental professionals who currently work with patients in the University of Portsmouth Dental Academy and other local services. They are thoroughly up-to-date with the latest developments in the industry and professional practice. This means they can share valuable experience and insights with you as part of their approach to developing your knowledge and skills.

How you'll spend your time

One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.

We're planning for most of your learning to be supported by timetabled face-to-face teaching with some elements of online provision. Please be aware, the balance between face-to-face teaching and online provision may change depending on Government restrictions. You'll also do lots of independent study with support from staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle. Find out more about how our teaching has transformed to best support your learning.

A typical week


We recommend you spend at least 30 hours a week studying for your degree. You’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as seminars and pre-clinical simulation for about 25 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as engaging with online learning resources, or working with peers to prepare a group presentation. Most timetabled teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday.


We recommend you spend at least 16 hours a week studying for your degree. You’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as seminars and pre-clinical simulation for about 8-10 hours. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as engaging with online learning resources, or working with peers to prepare a group presentation. We’ll expect you to attend teaching activities on campus at least 1 day a week Monday to Friday. You may also be required on campus to complete clinical aspects of the course in June and July.

Term dates

The University academic year runs from September to June with breaks at Christmas and Easter. To ensure GDC requirements in regards to clinical competence, Dental Academy term dates may differ from the standard University dates and may include attendance from early September to the end of July.

See University term dates

Supporting your learning

The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:

Types of support

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to postgraduate study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your Master's.

As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

You'll have help from a team of faculty learning support tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • understanding and using assignment feedback
  • managing your time and workload
  • revision and exam techniques

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University's Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone, or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees (2023 start)


  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £9,250 a year (including Transition Scholarship – may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £16,200 a year (subject to annual increase)


  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £4,625 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £4,625 a year (including Transition Scholarship – may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £8,100 a year (subject to annual increase)

Funding your studies

Find out how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section show your accommodation options and highlight how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.


If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

You’ll get 3 sets of scrubs (clinical clothing) and a name badge at the start of the course. You can order extra or replacement scrubs at £8 per set or £4 an item. You can also order replacement name badges for £7.

You’ll need to buy your own visor frame (available from the Dental Academy for £8) and a pair of black shoes which enclose the foot (not canvas or clogs).

Plastic skulls are available for a £30 deposit to assist your learning of oral anatomy during your first year.

You’ll need to bring your own 40mm padlock if you use our locker facilities.

You’ll attend outreach locations to support your studies, and you’ll need to cover travel costs. The NHS may meet some of these costs through its Learning Support Fund.

Optional conference trips will cost in the region of £100–£200. You may have the opportunity to engage in the Erasmus programme, which will incur additional costs.


How to apply

To start this course in 2023, apply through UCAS. You'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – B755
  • our institution code – P80

If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.

You can also sign up to an Open Day to:

  • Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
  • Speak with lecturers and chat with our students 
  • Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join

If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

How to apply from outside the UK

See the 'How to apply' section above for details of how to apply. You can also get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.