Taught course


University of Otago · Division of Health Sciences

Entry requirements

  • Admission to the programme shall be subject to the approval of the Dean of Faculty of Dentistry, on the advice of the Admissions Sub-Committee of the Postgraduate Studies Committee of the Faculty of Dentistry, which must be satisfied that the applicant has the ability and experience to complete the programme.
  • Every applicant shall hold the degree of Bachelor of Dental Surgery of the University of Otago or another equivalent dental qualification approved by the Admissions Sub-Committee and be a registered dental practitioner in his or her country of practice or residence.
  • Applicants must have achieved a minimum grade point average of B+ over the 400- and 500-level papers of the qualifying degree and will normally be expected to have had relevant clinical experience of at least three years’ duration and/or have completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Dentistry before admission to the programme.
  • Admission to each endorsement is limited to a maximum of six candidates annually.

If your first language is not English you need to meet our English language requirements by obtaining IELTS score of 7.5 with no band below 7.0 or Internet-based TOEFL of 102 or better with a minimum of 24 in each section; or Paper-based TOEFL of 600 or better with a TWE (Test of Written English) of 5.0 or better. Due to COVID-19, we currently accept Duolingo English Test (DET), IELTS Indicator Test, and TOEFL iBT Special home Edition.

Don’t meet the English language requirements? The University of Otago Language Centre "English for Otago" programme offers a pathway for Undergraduate and Postgraduate students to meet the English language requirements for undergraduate and postgraduate study.

Months of entry


Course content

The Master of Dentistry (MDent) is a one year full-time taught Master's programme which enhances dental practitioners' clinical skills and research base, but does not lead to specialist registration. It is offered in two fields: as an endorsement in Aesthetic Dentistry or an endorsement in Rural Oral Health Care.

Dentistry is an important part of the health service. It offers a rewarding and worthwhile career to anyone who has an interest in and a concern for the needs of people, an even temperament and a sense of precision. As a profession Dentistry gives an unusual opportunity to contribute to appearance, well-being and general health. One of its great attractions is its emphasis on caring for people and encouraging them to find the means to care for themselves.

Most graduates in Dentistry enter general practice on their own or in association with others. Some undertake postgraduate study and research training in preparation for an academic career. Others obtain further experience and complete postgraduate clinical qualifications before entering specialist practice.

Structure of the Programme

The programme shall consist of papers and a research dissertation to a total value of 180 points as specified for the following endorsements:

  • Aesthetic Dentistry: AEST 801, AEST 802, AEST 880.
  • Rural Oral Health Care: ROHC 801, ROHC 802, ROHC 880

All requirements for an endorsement must be passed for the degree to be awarded.

Subject to the approval of the Dean of the Faculty of Dentistry, papers which have been completed at the University of Otago, another university, or an approved examining body may be credited to the programme and/or used as the basis for exemption from the requirements of the clinical papers mentioned in (b) above, provided that this previous study is directly relevant to the candidate's proposed and approved programme of study, to a maximum of 60 points. There will be no exemption from the research paper.

Information for international students

Otago offers students an unrivalled campus experience and a vibrant, social student culture. The majority of Otago’s 21,000 students live, work and play in Dunedin - New Zealand’s only true university city. Otago is home to over 3,000 students, from over 100 countries.

Fees and funding

International students
NZ $105,277

New Zealand is a relatively affordable country to live in. Dunedin, being a student-focused city, has living and entertainment options for all budgets.

Students are eligible for the Otago International Excellence Scholarship.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MDentSci
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details