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Doctor of Philosophy (Dentistry)

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  • No.1 in Australia

    The University is ranked first in Australia and fourth in the world for graduate employability in the QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2020.

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  • Australia's first dental school

    The University has been providing education, training and research to oral health and dentistry students for over 100 years.

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Overview

The Doctor of Philosophy (Dentistry) course is aimed at those who intend to pursue academic careers in oral health or a related field and can be undertaken in a range of dental specialisations or disciplines.

At the University of Sydney School of Dentistry, our aim is to put the mouth back into health by progressing a deeper understanding of the links between oral and systemic health.

During this four-year, full-time PhD degree, students undertake research with a supervisor who is actively contributing to the development of new knowledge and understanding in the field of dentistry.

The PhD comprises of research and writing toward a thesis of 80,000 words. PhD students are based primarily at the Westmead Centre for Oral Health and Sydney Dental School and benefit from their peers, teachers and the wider health community that is accessible through the University.

Studying at Sydney Dental School provides a unique opportunity for collaborative research and interaction with other health disciplines. Our research is shaped by the big picture. We look at real-world problems from all angles, combining the expertise and talents of scholars from many disciplines.

Subject areas

There are no specialisations for this course

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your fee

How to apply

Research areas

PhD candidates at the Sydney Dental School may undertake supervised research in one of a range of dental specialisations or disciplines, including:

  • biomaterials science
  • community oral health and epidemiology
  • occlusion
  • oral biology
  • oral diagnosis and radiology
  • oral pathology
  • oral surgery, medicine and diagnostics
  • orthodontic and paediatric dentistry
  • restorative and reconstructive dentistry.

What you'll study

The PhD comprises research and culminates in a thesis, which is the examinable assessment requirement for the degree. Candidates are not normally required to attend classes or to undertake coursework units of study.

Units of Study

Applying for admission

Important information for 2020 applicants

ALL APPLICANTS SEEKING TO COMMENCE IN 2020 OR LATER SHOULD APPLY FOR PhD (Medicine and Health) here

New course name:

Applications for 2020 commencement are welcomed from students wishing to pursue a PhD in the Faculty of Medicine and Health.

Due to the realignment of the faculty to better represent our multidisciplinary research across our diverse range of discipline areas (e.g. Dentistry, Health Sciences, Medicine, Medical Science, Nursing, Pharmacy, Public Health) we are changing our administrative processes so that Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) candidates commencing from 2020 will be enrolled through a single PhD pathway.

From 2020 the doctoral programs in the Faculty of Medicine and Health will be delivered under one new central name and code, PhD (Medicine and Health). The faculty will continue to offer the same world-class research opportunities and encourages appropriately qualified applicants to apply. All other arrangements for PhD study in the Faculty Medicine and Health, such as supervision and progression, will remain the same.

Applications open

Please note that if you apply for an offer to pursue a PhD from 2020, it is an application for the new degree name and code, PhD (Medicine and Health).

There is no change for students who commenced their course in or prior to 2019 or for applicants still seeking to commence in 2019.

Tuition Fees

From 2020, fees for students enrolled in doctoral study in Medicine and Health may also increase. Tuition fees for domestic students undertaking a PhD at the University of Sydney are usually funded by the Australian Government through an RTP Tuition Fee Offset.

Full 2020 fee information will be available at sydney.edu.au/courses when finalised.

Admission criteria

To apply for a PhD, you need to demonstrate sufficient prior research experience and capability. In most cases, to be eligible to apply for a PhD you will have:

  • a bachelors degree with first or upper second class honours or
  • a masters degree performed at a high academic standard, and which includes substantial component of original research, or
  • an equivalent qualification that demonstrates research experience, excellence and capability.

These criteria constitute the minimum requirements for eligibility and do not guarantee admission. That remains at the discretion of the Associate Dean (HDR) for a given school. Applicants who do not meet these admission criteria may be issued an offer of a place to the Master of Philosophy (Dentistry).

Transfer from University of Sydney Master of Philosophy (Dentistry)

Outstanding candidates who successfully complete up to one year full-time or equivalent part-time of the University of Sydney Master of Philosophy (Dentistry) may apply for transfer into the Doctor of Philosophy (Dentistry) and be granted credit for work already completed (with approval from the supervisor and school) meeting all higher degree by research progression requirements.

See Master of Philosophy (Dentistry) progression and completion requirements.

Applying for admission

1. Find a supervisor within the school whose academic background aligns with your research. To start you can search current research opportunities through Research Supervisor Connect.

You will need to provide the following in contacting a supervisor:

  • your academic/educational background and research experience with examples such as an academic transcript
  • your CV/resume
  • the area of interest for your PhD
  • why you believe your research topics align with this supervisor

2. In conjunction with your supervisor, develop a preliminary research proposal (see ‘how to write a research proposal’).

3. If you intend to study part-time towards a PhD, you will also need to supply:

  • evidence that shows you will have sufficient time available to plan and carry out the research under the supervision of the University and complete the course within the maximum period allowed for a part-time PhD enrolment
  • a declaration from your employer (if relevant) confirming that you will be permitted to take the time required to effectively pursue your studies.

4. Your research proposal should be submitted along with your CV, academic transcripts and other supporting documents. Applications are made via the University's online application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the `Apply Now button on the right-hand side of this page.

Please note – you must submit a separate scholarship application to be considered for all scholarships, except for the RTP (formerly IPRS) and UsydIS scholarships for international students. 

Important information

Disclaimer

Sydney Dental School regularly reviews the admission criteria and application processes for its courses. It reserves the right to change these criteria and processes without notice. Information on this website provides advice about the currently applicable criteria and processes, and may not be correct for future application periods.

Other requirements

If you will be doing research within a NSW Ministry of Health facility and making contact with clinical areas, you will need to meet certain requirements to be verified by the NSW Ministry of Health to ensure your safety and that of other students, staff and patients. Find out more. 

Deferral

Applications for the deferral of enrolment following an offer of a place will only be considered under exceptional circumstances, and require the approval of the Associate Dean. Additional deferral requirements include:

  • Requests for deferral must be in writing and must be received by 30 November.
  • Applicants must accept a place before they can submit a request to defer.
  • Deferment can only be granted one year at a time and will not be expected to last longer than two years.
  • Requests will be considered by the Admissions Committee and the Assoc. Dean of the Sydney Dental School.
  • Supporting documentation must be provided in order for any request to be granted.

Transfer

Transfer of enrolment between dental schools or from a medical program is not possible due to our unique units of study, continuous long learning and assessment in dentistry at the University of Sydney.

All students must apply through the standard admission pathway - see above for information on transferring from the Master of Philosophy (Dentistry) at the University of Sydney.

Change in immigration status

International applicants and students who change from international to domestic status are advised to refer to clause 39 of the University’s Coursework Policy 2014.

Impermissible conduct

The Sydney Dental School reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to vary or cancel an offer of admission if your conduct prior to enrolment causes the school to form the view that you are unsuitable for admission to its programs.

Examples of conduct that might make you unsuitable for admission to Sydney Dental School programs include (but are not limited to):

  • failure to treat the University of Sydney employees, students, applicants or other members of the University community with respect and courtesy, including failure to use appropriate language and tone in your written or verbal communications;
  • failure to act honestly and ethically in your dealings with University of Sydney employees, students, applicants or other members of the University community;
  • conduct that results in you being suspended or excluded from the University of Sydney;
  • conduct that gives the Sydney Dental School reasonable cause to believe that enrolling you in clinical training may place you, your peers, or members of the public at risk of harm; and
  • conduct that results in you being charged with a criminal offence.
 

Career Pathways

This course is aimed at those who intend to pursue academic careers in oral health or a related field and can be undertaken in a range of dental specialisations.

Start your journey at the University of Sydney

Domestic students

Indicative Postgraduate Student Contribution Amount


The student contribution amount for a Commonwealth Supported Place is an indication only of the amount payable in Year 1 for a standard full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). The exact student contribution that you pay will depend on the calendar year in which you undertake your study, and the specific units of study in which you ultimately enrol. For further information about how to calculate your specific total student contribution, please refer to the University's Tuition Fees website.

Annual review and fee increases


Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and will increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Indicative Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee


The tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student is an indication only of the fees payable in Year 1 for a standard full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). Depending on the calendar year in which you undertake your study, and if your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL, your tuition fee will differ from the indicative amount.

Annual review and fee increase


Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and will increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Domestic Higher Degree by Research Student fee information


Commencing 1 January 2017, the Research Training Program (RTP) has been introduced by the Australian Government to support postgraduate research scholarships. The RTP enables the University to award eligible domestic and international Higher Degree by Research students (RTP Students) with a RTP Fees Offset, which is a type of RTP Scholarship. This RTP Scholarship is to assist with tuition fees that would otherwise be payable by students. The University's allocation of funding under the RTP is governed by the Higher Education Support Act 2003 and the Commonwealth Scholarship Guidelines (Research) 2017 (as may be amended or replaced from time to time) and relevant Conditions of Grant prescribed by the Government (Relevant Laws).
A student's continued eligibility is subject to Relevant Laws and University rules, policies and procedures (as may be amended or replaced from time to time). A RTP Fees Offset entitles a student (depending on their course) to a period of tuition fee support for either up to a maximum of four years full-time equivalent study for a Doctorate by Research, or up to a maximum of two years of full-time equivalent study for a Master's by Research from the course of study commencement date. Different periods of support apply for a part-time student as set out in University policy and procedures. Please note that, when a student has exhausted the maximum period of support under this RTP Scholarship, or they do not comply with a requirement of the RTP Scholarship as set out in University policy and procedures, the University must terminate the Scholarship. If the student wishes to continue their candidature in the same degree (and they are approved to do so), they will be transferred to a domestic fee paying place and may be liable for tuition fees at a rate determined by the University at the time.
Please note that a student's award of, and continued entitlement to, the RTP Scholarship is subject to change consistent with Relevant Laws and University rules, policies and procedures (as may be amended and replaced from time to time). The University determines the allocation of this Government support and the processes by which this support is managed.
Please consult the Australian Government's website at: https://www.education.gov.au/research-training-program for information on RTP Scholarships and eligibility requirements.

Additional incidental costs


For some courses there are incidental costs additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of these incidental costs are significant, for example, course-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. Further information about these costs is available from https://sydney.edu.au/students/materials-and-equipment.html.

Visa/MasterCard/American Express/JCB surcharge


Please note that a surcharge of 1.53% will apply for payments made by Visa, MasterCard, American Express or JCB. The surcharge is subject to review and may change. Information about payment methods and the surcharge is set out at: http://sydney.edu.au/study/finances-fees-costs/fees-and-loans/paying-your-fees.html.

Potential for inaccuracy


Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about fees.

International students

Indicative International Tuition Fees for Postgraduate Students


The tuition fee for international postgraduate students is an indication only of the fees payable in Year 1 for a standard full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). Depending on the calendar year in which you undertake your study, and if your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL, your tuition fee will differ from the indicative amount.

Annual review and fee increases


Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and will increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental costs and health insurance


For some courses there are incidental costs additional to the tuition fees. Some of these incidental costs are significant, for example, course-specific materials, tools, protective clothing, and equipment. Further information about these costs is available from https://sydney.edu.au/students/materials-and-equipment.html. In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through a government approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government. Further information is available from https://sydney.edu.au/study/finances-fees-costs/living-costs/health-insurance.html.

Visa/MasterCard/American Express/JCB surcharge


Please note that a surcharge of 1.53% will apply for payments made by Visa, MasterCard, American Express or JCB. The surcharge is subject to review and may change. Information about payment methods and the surcharge is set out at: http://sydney.edu.au/study/finances-fees-costs/fees-and-loans/paying-your-fees.html.

Potential for inaccuracy


Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about fees.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.