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5 December 2023

7 minutes read

Dental Universities in Canada: Your Path to Dentistry Courses

Are you aspiring to pursue a career in dentistry? Canada is a fantastic destination with a plethora of renowned dental schools and universities that offer comprehensive dentistry courses.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive into the world of dental education in Canada, covering topics such as top universities, admission requirements, specializations, study abroad opportunities, and more.

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Top Dental Universities in Canada

University of Alberta

The University of Alberta is one of Canada’s top institutions for dentistry. It offers a Bachelor of Dental Hygiene program that prepares students for a career in dental hygiene. This program equips students with the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in the field of oral health.

Dalhousie University

Dalhousie University, located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is renowned for its dental programs. It offers a wide range of dental courses, including diplomas and postgraduate programs. Dalhousie’s Faculty of Dentistry is known for its commitment to excellence in dental education and research.

McGill University

McGill University, situated in Montreal, Quebec, is a prestigious institution known for its dental science programs. The university offers a variety of courses in oral health and dental research, making it an attractive choice for aspiring dentists.

University of British Columbia

The University of British Columbia is another leading institution offering dentistry programs. It excels in dental surgery and periodontics, providing students with a solid foundation in clinical practice and research.

University of Toronto

The University of Toronto is a well-respected institution known for its dental programs. It offers Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) and Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) programs. These programs prepare students for a wide range of dental careers, from general dentistry to specialized fields.

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Admission Requirements for Dental Programs

Admission into dental programs in Canada is competitive, and international students must meet specific requirements to be considered for admission. Here are some common admission requirements:

Prerequisite Courses

Most dental programs in Canada require applicants to complete specific prerequisite courses, typically in subjects such as biology, chemistry, and physics. These courses ensure that students have a strong foundation in the sciences before entering the dental program.

Dental Aptitude Test (DAT)

The Dental Aptitude Test (DAT) is a standardized test that assesses an applicant’s academic and perceptual abilities. Canadian dental schools often require DAT scores as part of the admission process. It’s crucial for international students to prepare thoroughly for this exam.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

Maintaining a competitive GPA is essential for dental program admission. Canadian universities typically have minimum GPA requirements that applicants must meet to be considered for admission. International students should aim for a strong academic record.

Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation from professors, dentists, or professionals in the field can enhance an applicant’s chances of admission. These letters should attest to the applicant’s academic abilities, character, and motivation to pursue dentistry.

Personal Statement

A well-crafted personal statement is an opportunity for applicants to showcase their passion for dentistry and their reasons for choosing the field. It should highlight their experiences, goals, and commitment to the profession.

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Studying Dentistry in Canada as an International Student

Canada is known for its welcoming attitude towards international students. Studying dentistry in Canada not only provides high-quality education but also offers a multicultural experience. Here are some key points for international students considering dentistry programs in Canada:

Comprehensive Support for International Students

Canadian universities are well-equipped to support international students throughout their academic journey. From orientation programs to immigration guidance, these institutions ensure that international students feel welcome and well-informed.

Multicultural Environment

Studying in Canada exposes international students to a diverse and inclusive environment. Interacting with students from different backgrounds enhances cultural awareness and provides a global perspective on dentistry.

Pathways to Permanent Residency

Canada offers pathways to permanent residency for international students who complete their studies. This makes Canada an attractive destination for those looking to establish a long-term career in the country.


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Specializations in Dentistry

Dentistry offers a wide range of specialized fields for professionals to focus their expertise and provide specialized care to patients. Here are some key specializations in dentistry:

  1. Orthodontics:
    • Orthodontists specialize in correcting misaligned teeth and jaws.
    • They use braces, aligners, and other orthodontic appliances to straighten teeth and improve bite alignment.
  2. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery:
    • Oral surgeons perform surgical procedures on the mouth, jaws, face, and neck.
    • They handle complex surgeries, including wisdom tooth extraction, dental implants, and facial reconstruction.
  3. Periodontics:
    • Periodontists focus on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of gum diseases.
    • They perform procedures like scaling and root planing, gum grafts, and dental implant placement.
  4. Pediatric Dentistry:
    • Pediatric dentists specialize in treating children and adolescents.
    • They provide specialized care to young patients, emphasizing preventive measures and early intervention.
  5. Prosthodontics:
    • Prosthodontists are experts in restoring and replacing teeth and oral structures.
    • They design and fit dental prostheses like dentures, crowns, bridges, and dental implants.
  6. Endodontics:
    • Endodontists focus on diagnosing and treating diseases of the dental pulp (inside the tooth).
    • They perform root canal procedures to save damaged teeth.
  7. Oral Pathology:
    • Oral pathologists diagnose and manage diseases and conditions that affect the oral and maxillofacial region.
    • They often work in collaboration with other specialists to provide accurate diagnoses.
  8. Oral Medicine:
    • Oral medicine specialists diagnose and manage non-surgical conditions of the mouth and oral mucosa.
    • They may treat conditions such as oral ulcers, mucosal disorders, and oral manifestations of systemic diseases.
  9. Dental Public Health:
    • Dental public health professionals focus on improving oral health at the population level.
    • They work in public health agencies and organizations to develop policies and programs aimed at preventing oral diseases.
  10. Forensic Dentistry:
    • Forensic dentists assist in identifying human remains through dental records and analysis.
    • They may also provide expert testimony in legal cases involving dental evidence.
  11. Geriatric Dentistry:
    • Geriatric dentists specialize in the oral health care of elderly patients.
    • They address age-related dental issues, including tooth loss, gum diseases, and oral health maintenance for seniors.
  12. Dental Anesthesiology:
    • Dental anesthesiologists provide anesthesia services to ensure pain management and patient comfort during dental procedures.
    • They are trained in administering various types of anesthesia, including general anesthesia.
  13. Dental Radiology:
    • Dental radiologists specialize in diagnostic imaging techniques specific to dentistry.
    • They interpret dental X-rays and other radiographic images to aid in diagnosing oral and dental conditions.
  14. Special Care Dentistry:
    • Special care dentists focus on providing oral health care to patients with special needs, such as those with disabilities or complex medical conditions.
    • They adapt dental care to meet the unique needs of these individuals.
  15. Aesthetic Dentistry:
    • Aesthetic dentists specialize in enhancing the appearance of a patient’s smile.
    • They offer cosmetic procedures like teeth whitening, veneers, and cosmetic bonding.

Choosing a specialization in dentistry allows professionals to tailor their careers to their interests and passions while providing specialized care to patients with specific dental needs.

Each specialty requires additional education and training beyond dental school to become a recognized specialist in that field.

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Faculty of Dentistry Offers Continuing Education

Many Canadian universities have faculties of dentistry that provide opportunities for graduate programs and continuing education. These programs allow dental professionals to stay updated with the latest advancements in the field, expand their skills, and advance their careers.

Graduate Programs

If you’re looking to take your dental career to the next level, Canada offers a range of graduate programs tailored to meet your aspirations:

  1. Master of Science (MSc) in Dentistry: This program is designed for dental professionals seeking advanced research skills. Students can focus on areas such as oral biology, dental materials, or oral epidemiology.
  2. Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Dentistry: For those with a passion for research and academia, a Ph.D. in Dentistry allows you to delve deep into dental sciences and contribute to the field’s body of knowledge.
  3. Master of Dental Public Health (MDPH): This program emphasizes public health dentistry, preparing students to address oral health issues at the population level. Graduates often work in government agencies or public health organizations.
  4. Master of Orthodontics (MOrth): Orthodontics is a highly specialized field. This program equips students with advanced skills in diagnosing and treating orthodontic cases, including complex malocclusions.
  5. Master of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMS): Aspiring oral surgeons can pursue this program to gain expertise in surgical procedures related to the mouth, jaws, and face.
  6. Master of Periodontology (MPerio): Periodontology focuses on the prevention and treatment of gum diseases. This program prepares students for careers in periodontal practice or academia.
  7. Master of Pediatric Dentistry (MPD): Pediatric dentists specialize in treating children and adolescents. This program provides the knowledge and skills necessary for this specialized field.
  8. Master of Prosthodontics (MPros): Prosthodontics deals with the restoration and replacement of teeth. Graduates are trained to create prosthetic devices, such as dentures and dental implants.
  9. Master of Endodontics (MEndo): Endodontists specialize in treating dental pulp and performing root canal procedures. This program focuses on advanced endodontic techniques.
  10. Combined Programs: Some universities offer combined programs, such as a DMD/Ph.D., allowing students to earn both a dental degree and a Ph.D. concurrently.
  11. Research Opportunities: Graduate programs often include research components, giving students the chance to contribute to the advancement of dental science through research projects and publications.
  12. Teaching and Clinical Experience: Many graduate programs offer teaching and clinical opportunities, allowing students to gain valuable experience in both education and patient care.
  13. Networking and Collaboration: Graduate programs provide a platform for networking with fellow professionals, faculty, and researchers, fostering collaboration and knowledge exchange.
  14. Career Advancement: Graduates of these programs are well-prepared for careers in academia, research, specialized clinical practice, and leadership roles in the dental field.
  15. Continuing Education: The pursuit of a graduate degree demonstrates a commitment to continuous learning and professional development, which can open doors to new opportunities in the dental industry.

When considering graduate programs in dentistry in Canada, it’s essential to research each program’s specific requirements, faculty expertise, and available resources to find the one that aligns best with your career goals and interests.

Continuing Education for Dental Professionals

Continuing education courses and workshops are readily available for practicing dentists and dental hygienists. These programs help dental professionals stay current with the latest techniques, technologies, and best practices in the field.


In conclusion, pursuing dentistry courses in Canada is an excellent choice for aspiring dental professionals. The country’s top universities, comprehensive programs, and support for international students make it a prime destination for dental education.

Whether you’re interested in general dentistry or a specialized field, Canada offers a wealth of opportunities to help you achieve your dental career goals. Consider Canada as your academic destination, and embark on your journey towards a rewarding career in dentistry.


What are the admission requirements for dental programs in Canada?

Admission requirements may vary, but they often include completing prerequisite courses, submitting DAT scores, and meeting GPA criteria.

Are there specialized dentistry programs in Canada?

Yes, Canadian universities offer specialized programs in areas such as pediatric dentistry, oral surgery, and orthodontics.

Can international students study dentistry in Canada?

Absolutely! Canadian universities welcome international students and offer comprehensive support for their education and career goals.

Are there opportunities for continuing education in dentistry in Canada?

Yes, many Canadian universities have faculties of dentistry that offer graduate programs and continuing education for dental professionals.

What is the Dental Aptitude Test (DAT), and how can I prepare for it?

The DAT is an important part of the application process. It assesses your academic and perceptual abilities. Preparation typically involves studying biology, chemistry, and manual dexterity skills.

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