University of Portsmouth
Dental Nursing CertHE
University of Portsmouth

Key Course Facts

Course Description

Overview Dental nurses support dentists in all aspects of patient treatment and care. On this 1-year CertHE Dental Nursing course, you’ll get the knowledge and practical skills required to achieve safe beginner status, become a vital member of the dental team and register with the General Dental Council (GDC).

By completing this course, you’ll be set to take on careers across the dental industry. You could work at a general dental practice, a hospital, with the community dental service or in the armed forces or continue your studies at diploma or degree level.

Professional accreditations This course is accredited by the General Dental Council (GDC).

What you'll experience On this course, you'll:

  • Qualify with a CertHE in Dental Nursing, which allows you to register with the GDC as a dental nurse.

  • Build your team-working skills by studying alongside dental hygiene, dental therapy and undergraduate King’s College London Dental Institute students

  • Use some of the best facilities for dental students in the country, with treatment bays and simulation technology that includes our Phantom Head skill lab, a full radiography suite and an electronic patient records system

  • Develop knowledge in a range of dental restorative and preventative procedures as well as the professional skills and behaviours that you need as a dental nurse

  • Complete a programme of statutory and mandatory training as part of our commitment to the NHS, including the anatomy and physiology of the head and neck, body systems, and understanding health, safety and infection control

Careers and opportunities What can you do with a Dental Nursing CertHE? As a registered dental nurse, you’ll be qualified to take on roles in any sector of the dental industry, including:

  • general dental practice (NHS or private)

  • corporate dental practice

  • hospital dental services

  • armed forces

  • specialists dental practice

  • health promotion

What jobs can you do with a Dental Nursing CertHE? Roles our graduates have taken on include:

  • dental nurse

  • practice manager

  • practice owner

After the course, you could also apply to study on our Diploma in Advance Dental Nursing, BSc (Hons) Advanced Dental Nursing, BSc (Hons) Dental Hygiene and Dental Therapy degree or another post-registration course.

Our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job at the end of the course. You can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.

What You Will Learn

Programme content: As a student of Dental Nursing, CertHE you will study the following course modules.

Year 1

You’ll be assessed through examinations and coursework, and your clinical development and competency is assessed via an electronic software platform (LIFTUP). 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.

Entry Requirements / Admissions

Minimum Required UCAS Tariff

80 points, with 32 points in a pure Science subject, or equivalent. For A levels which include a separate science practical component, a pass is desirable and may strengthen an application.

Qualification requirements

80 Tariff points to include 2 A levels, with a pure Science subject at grade C. For A levels which include a separate science practical component, a pass is desirable and may strengthen an application.

80 Tariff points from the Access to HE Diploma (Science- must have pure Science element).

80 Tariff points to include 2 Advanced Highers, with a pure Science subject at grade D.

Must be in a Science subject

Must be in a Science subject.

26 points from the IB Diploma, with 5 points from a Higher Level in a pure Science subject.

Must be in a Science subject.

80 tariff points from Higher Level subjects, to include a in a pure Science subject at H3.

Acceptable when combined with other qualifications.

Cambridge Pre-U score of 38, to include a Principal Subject in Science at M3.

English language requirements

test Grade Additional Details
IELTS (Academic) 7 English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 7.0 with no component score below 6.5.
PTE Academic 68 An overall score of 68 with a minimum of 61 in each skill.
TOEFL (iBT) 100 100 with a minimum of 24 in Reading, 23 in Listening, 25 in Speaking and 24 in Writing
Cambridge English Advanced Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) taken after January 2015. An overall score of 185 with no component score less than 176.
Cambridge English Proficiency Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE) taken after January 2015. An overall score of 185 with no component score less than 176.
Trinity ISE Trinity College Integrated Skills in English (ISE) Level III with a Pass in all 4 components
Do you not fulfill the minimum requirements in terms of UCAS score, A levels, or English language requirements?
Get advice on which foundation courses are best for you to still be able to join Dental Nursing, CertHE.


Tuition Fees Dental Nursing CertHE

EU £9250 year 1
England UK £9250 year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 year 1
Scotland £9250 year 1
Wales £9250 year 1
Channel Islands £9250 year 1
Ireland £9250 year 1
International £16200 year 1

Additional fee information

Students who are resident in EU countries: please note that the net fee is inclusive of the Transition Scholarship

Placement Year and Year abroad:
UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £925 |
EU – £925 including Transition Scholarship|
International Non-EU – £1,800.

Fees are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change at any time without notice.
Fees may also go up in later years, in line with inflation.

For more information about fees, go to

Average student cost of living in the UK

Rent £518
Water, gas electricity, internet (at home) £50
Supermarket shopping £81
Clothing £35
Eating out £33
Alcohol £27
Takeaways / food deliveries £30
Going out / entertainment (excl.alcohol, food) £24
Holidays and weekend trips £78
Transport within city £17
Self-care / sports £20
Stationary / books £13
Mobile phone / internet £13
Cable TV / streaming £7
Insurance £51
Other £95
Average student cost of living £1092

London costs approx 34% more than average, mainly due to rent being 67% higher than average of other cities. For students staying in student halls, costs of water, gas, electricity, wifi are generally included in the rental. Students in smaller cities where accommodation is in walking/biking distance transport costs tend to be significantly smaller.

How to apply

Application deadline:

January 1, 2024

This is the deadline for applications to be completed and sent for this course. If the university or college still has places available you can apply after this date, but your application is not guaranteed to be considered.

Possible Entry Points:

  • year 1 (Default entry point)

University Rankings

Positions of University of Portsmouth in top UK and global rankings.

See all university rankings of University of Portsmouth

What students say about studying Dental Nursing in the UK?

  • Studying Dental Nursing at Leeds Dental Institute
  • School of Dental Nursing | Student Testimonials
  • A Day in the Life of a Dental Nurse - Shelby North

About University of Portsmouth

The University of Portsmouth is located on the United Kingdom’s only island city, Portsmouth. This public university, which was previously known as Portsmouth Polytechnic, forms part of the University Alliance, an organisation whose aim is to promote growth and innovation in the UK by putting an emphasis on links with business and industry.

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Where is this programme taught

Main Site - University House
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