Orthodontics (MScD)

The course equips students with the skills needed to perform as a competent specialist in Orthodontics, with focus on the clinical, theoretical and research areas required for provision of appropriate patient care. All students will be encouraged to undertake the Royal College of Surgeons Membership in Orthodontics Examination.

Established for more than 35 years, and one of the longest-running clinical training programmes in the UK, the Orthodontics MScD course is designed to provide clinical and academic training for future specialists in clinical orthodontics in a highly professional and rewarding environment.

This three-year full-time course aims to equip you with the skills needed to perform as a competent specialist in orthodontics, with focus on the clinical, theoretical and research areas required for provision of adequate patient care.

Open to home, EU and overseas students, successful completion of the course will result in the award of a Master’s degree in Orthodontics. The course is also recognised for training purposes by the Royal Colleges for the Membership in Orthodontics of both Edinburgh and the Bicollegiate examination.

Didactic, self-directed and problem-based modular teaching extends throughout the three-year programme. The course provides clinical training within the teaching hospital and in district units in Swansea, Newport, and North Glamorgan. The first two years of the course consist of structured research.

Distinctive features

Distinctive features of the course include:

  • High-quality clinical training
  • Excellent clinical and academic facilities

Key facts

Next intakeSeptember 2017
Duration3 years
Admission Tutor contact(s)

Admissions criteria

Applicants should normally have passed the FDS or MDS qualifications of the Royal College of Surgeons and have a broad clinical experience. Previous audit and research experience is beneficial.

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to obtain an overall IELTS score of 7 (with a minimum score of 6 in each of the four bands) – this test should have been taken within 2 years of commencement of study. Applicants are required to have achieved the IELTS prior to an application being submitted.

Home students for the MScD Orthodontic programme can only be considered alongside a StR application which must be made consecutively to the MScD application. For further details about the StR post please visit the Wales Deanery website.

Application deadline: 31 December each year

Next intake: September 2017 

This is a full-time, three-year course, with the final examination in the spring of year three. The course consists of three main elements:

1. A taught course covering evidence-based topics that are consistent with the recommendations of the World Federation of Orthodontists, European and National guidelines

2. A clinical practical element of supervised management of selected problems of dento-facial abnormality

3. A research project and preparation of a dissertation.

Throughout the programme, you will spend five clinical (half day) sessions per week providing direct patient care and one session per week attending new patient and joint clinics. One (half day) session per week is dedicated to academic teaching in the autumn and spring terms, and three (half day) sessions are timetabled for research and personal study in the autumn and spring terms. An additional session is available for research during the summer term resulting in there being approximately 560 hours available.

Year one

Year two

Year three

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

How will I be taught?

You will be taught via clinical teaching and instruction; a seminar programme; case review and interactive clinical presentations; guided critical reading and journal clubs; research forum presentations and critical appraisal of research methodologies; individual research guidance; attendance at regional and national meetings of relevance; and self-directed learning and presentation in small group forums to encourage a problem-based learning method.

How will I be supported?

All modules make extensive use of Cardiff University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), Learning Central, on which you will find course materials and links to related materials.  You will be supervised when undertaking your dissertation, and your supervisor will schedule regular meetings to discuss progress, provide advice and guidance, and give written feedback on a draft.

Opportunities to reflect on abilities and performance are made available through the Learning Central ‘Personal Development Planning’ module and through scheduled meetings with personal tutors.

Students will receive written feedback on all assessments, in addition to oral feedback on assessed oral presentations.

How will I be assessed?

There are summative and formative assessments throughout the three-year programme with research being assessed through a final dissertation in year three.

What skills will I practise and develop?

 By fully engaging in this course, you should be able to:

  • Diagnose anomalies of the dentition, facial structures and functional conditions.
  • Detect deviations of the development of the dentition, of facial growth and occurrence of functional abnormalities.
  • Formulate a treatment plan and predict its course.
  • Carry out interceptive orthodontic measures.
  • Execute simple and complex treatment procedures.
  • Work together in multi-disciplinary teams for the treatment of compromised (adult) patients, orthodontic surgical cases and cleft palate patients.
  • Evaluate the need for orthodontic treatment.
  • Understand psychological aspects relevant to orthodontics.
  • Further develop a scientific attitude and an enquiring mind.
  • Undergo training in scientific methodology.
  • Further develop your ability to interpret scientific literature.
  • Carry out a research project.
  • Prepare oral and written presentations of clinical and research findings.

Graduates from this programme should be equipped to pursue careers in orthodontic specialisms.

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2017/18)

Get the latest information on postgraduate fees.

Students from outside the EU (2017/18)

Get the latest information on postgraduate fees.