COVID-19: Information regarding dental practitioner assessments

Overview

The Australian Dental Council (ADC) continues to monitor the situation surrounding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and is guided by publicly available information from the Victorian Government  Department of Health and Human Services, the Australian Government  Department of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

On 2 August 2020, Victoria entered a State of Disaster. Under this, the Victorian Government has introduced Level Four lock down restrictions across the Greater Melbourne area. Designed to limit movement around the state, these restrictions will have an effect on the ADC and some of its services related to the dental practitioner assessment process.

Under Level Four restrictions, the ADC office, including the administration and examination centre, will be closed until further notice. Due to this closure, we are not in a position to accept any deliveries via courier. Any documentation received by courier will be returned to sender. Documents sent by post will be stored securely until we are advised that we can return to office working by the Victorian government. 

The safety of our staff, examiners, assessors and candidates continues to be our main priority. We remain operational during this time, with all staff continuing to work remotely. We ask for your patience while we work through the current round of restrictions introduced by the Victorian Government.

All available information is included on this page. Any updates will be posted to this page as soon as it is available. Please continue to check this page regularly to ensure you have the most up-to-date information on our response.

We understand our current response to COVID-19 will raise some concerns and further questions for our candidates. Whilst we are unable to provide more detailed information at present, the ADC is committed to working with candidates to help minimise disruption to their candidature once the situation has stabilised.

If you have any questions regarding our current response to COVID-19 in relation to dental practitioner assessments, please contact us via the form on the Contact Us page. Alternatively, if your enquiry is urgent, please email us via the following:

Initial assessments and skills assessments: [email protected]

Written examinations:  [email protected]

Practical examinations:  [email protected]

Applications and documentation

There will be a delay in the processing of initial assessments (including skills assessments) and any supporting documentation while Level Four lock down restrictions are in force by the Victorian Government.

Please do not send any documents to the ADC via courier at this time. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to the sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored safely until the office reopens.

Please note there will be some delays in responding to you during this time. Should you have an urgent enquiry, please email us via the addresses outlined above.

Current position

Introduction of a State of Disaster in Victoria

On 2 August 2020, Victoria entered a State of Disaster. Under this, the Victorian Government has introduced Level Four lock down restrictions across the Greater Melbourne area. As a result of these announcements the ADC office is closed until further notice.

As our offices are closed to all staff, we are unable to take deliveries via courier. Any mail received during the closure period will be securely stored until the office reopens.

Should you have any questions, please contact the ADC via the contact us form, here.

Initial assessment applications (including skills assessments)

Initial assessment applications, including skills assessments, will be impacted by the Victorian Government’s decision to introduce Level Four lock down restrictions in the Greater Melbourne area.

Due to our office closure, we are unable to acknowledge receipt of your application, supporting documents or take payment for your application. We will contact you once the office reopens and provide you with advice on when to expect an outcome of your application.

Please note that Renewal of initial assessment applications must be received within the time frames specified on the ADC website.

Supporting documents for existing initial assessment applications must be received within the time frames specified in your outcome letter. If you are having difficulty submitting additional documentation or your letter of good standing due to the impact of COVID-19, please contact the ADC via email with your concerns and supporting evidence where possible. These concerns are assessed on a case-by-case basis.

If you have submitted, or intend to submit, an initial assessment application as part of a skills assessment we recommend you also review the updated information provided by the Department of Home Affairs. This information is available here.

Written examinations

At this time, the September written examination is planned to take place as scheduled for all professions on 21 and 22 September 2020. Due to the rapidly evolving nature of COVID-19, we cannot pre-empt the status of examination venues in the lead up to the written examination. We continue to work closely with Pearson VUE and are monitoring the evolving situation regarding COVID-19 both in Australia and around the world.

All candidates eligible for the September 2020 written examination are strongly encouraged to continue to follow the process for booking their written examination venue. In the event a examination venue closes due to the government’s response to COVID-19, we will liaise directly with those candidates who are directly impacted.

The ADC is continuing to work closely with Pearson VUE regarding the delivery of future written examinations. More information regarding the written examination will be provided at a later date.

Practical examinations and application periods

The ADC has postponed all practical examination sessions scheduled to 30 November 2020.

Anticipated dates for delivering postponed examinations are under review. At this time, we are mindful of announcing new examination dates and application periods prematurely. Any announcement regarding new application periods and examination dates will be made once we are confident that examinations can be delivered safely for everyone involved.

For those candidates booked into a postponed examination, we are committed to delivering you a rescheduled examination at a later date. For candidates who were unable to book an examination due to a postponed application period, we understand this situation has affected you too.

Practical examination results verifications and reviews/appeals

The following information is for candidates intending to submit an

  • application for verification of your practical examination results and/or
  • application for review relating to your practical examination results

following receipt of their February or March 2020 practical examination results.

Please note that we must receive your application within the time frames specified in the policy document for the relevant process.

During this time, we are unable to acknowledge receipt, review or take payment of your application. We will contact you once the office reopens, and provide you with advice on when to expect an outcome of your application

COVID-19 policy for assessments and examinations

The ADC understands the situation surrounding COVID-19 is disruptive to candidates across all stages of the dental practitioner assessment process. For those candidates booked into a postponed examination, we are committed to delivering you a rescheduled examination. For candidates who were unable to book an examination due to a postponed application period, we understand this situation has affected you too.

To help describe the measures put in place regarding postponed examinations, the ADC has developed the COVID-19 policy for assessments and examinations (the Policy). This Policy outlines the provisions we have introduced to support all candidates through their candidature during this time. The Policy provides more information on validity periods, as well as an overview of what options are available to those candidates with existing written and practical examination bookings who may not want the ADC to hold a seat in the next available written or practical examination.

The Policy is available for download here.

Thank you to all of our candidates for your patience to date. We continue to ask for your patience as we work through the challenges the current situation present to candidates, examiners and staff. Updates on upcoming examinations will be made via the ADC website, as well as this page, as soon as the information becomes available.

We understand this continues to be an uncertain time for you and you may have enquiries regarding the impact of this situation on your assessment. To respond to your enquiries as quickly as possible, we ask you to contact us via the contact form on the Contact Us page as this page is monitored regularly.

Timeline of response

Below is a summary of the ADC’s response to COVID-19 to date.

2 August 2020

On 2 August 2020, Victorian entered a State of Disaster as a result of COVID-19 transmission throughout the state. As a result of this announcement, and the introduction of Level Four lock down measures across the Greater Melbourne area, the ADC offices are closed until further notice.

As a result of this closure, we are unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications or supporting documents. We will also be unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates once the office reopens to advise on when to expect an outcome of your application.

Due to the office closure, the ADC is not in a position to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to the sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored safely until the office reopens.

24 June 2020

The ADC announced the postponement of practical examinations to 30 November 2020 and the delivery of a written examination for candidates with an existing booking on 21 and 22 September.

We are currently reviewing options for the delivery of postponed practical examinations as well as new written examination dates for all eligible candidates. New application periods, which will take into consideration new examination dates and eligibility criteria will be advertised on the ADC website at a later date.

To help describe the measures put in place regarding postponed examinations, the ADC has developed the COVID-19 policy for assessments and examinations (the Policy). This Policy outlines the provisions we have introduced to support all candidates through their candidature during this time. The Policy provides more information on validity periods, as well as an overview of what options are available to those candidates with existing written and practical examination bookings who may not want the ADC to hold a seat in the next available written or practical examination.

The Policy is available for download here.

15 April 2020

The ADC announced the postponement of practical examinations scheduled to 30 September 2020.

We are currently reviewing options for the delivery of postponed examinations later in the year. New application periods, which will take into consideration new examination dates and eligibility criteria will be advertised on the ADC website at a later date.

At this time, application periods for examinations in October and November 2020 are unchanged.

The ADC is working closely with Pearson Vue regarding the written examination scheduled for September 2020.

23 March 2020

In response to the evolving situation regarding COVID-19, the ADC will commence remote working arrangements from Tuesday 24 March until further notice.
The ADC remains operational during this time, with all staff continuing to work remotely, however, ADC examination centre in Melbourne, Victoria will not be holding examinations during this time.  

17 March 2020

Following further monitoring of the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19, the ADC postponed all practical examinations scheduled to 30 June 2020.

16 March 2020

In response to the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19 and its impact on domestic and international travel, the ADC made the decision to postpone the following upcoming examinations:

  • Written examination for general dentists and dental hygienists:  23-24 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 11: Wednesday 18 - Thursday 19 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 12: Wednesday 25 - Thursday 26 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 13: Monday 30 - Tuesday 31 March 2020
  • A mid-year dental hygiene/dental therapy practical examination.

10 March 2020

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ministry of Education announced a four-week closure of all public and private schools and higher education institutions across the Emirates, effective from Sunday 8 March 2020. Forming part of the Emirates’ preventive and precautionary measures aimed at maintaining the safety of students, these closures are in line with the efforts made to contain the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

The announcement affected some testing venues in UAE. Pearson VUE notified those Australian Dental Council (ADC) candidates sitting the March 2020 written examination by email if their venue was affected by the closure.