The ADC appoints the University of Melbourne to complete research project

The ADC appoints the University of Melbourne to complete research project

18 September 2019
University lecture

The Australian Dental Council (ADC) has appointed the University of Melbourne to complete research on how prepared newly qualified dental practitioners are to practise in Australia. 

The accreditation of education and training programs leading to registration as a dental professional is a core role of the ADC. Program accreditation contributes to the achievement of a number of objectives under the Health Practitioner National Law, including protection of the public. In addition, accreditation facilitates the provision of high-quality education and training whilst enabling innovation in the education of health practitioners. 

Programs accredited by the ADC are required to meet the ADC/Dental Council (New Zealand) (DC(NZ)) accreditation standards for dental practitioner programs (the Standards). Focusing on outcomes, rather than a prescribed set of requirements, the Standards work to ensure programs have the necessary measures in place to ensure students meet the required professional competencies upon graduation. 

By adopting this approach the ADC enables innovation in dental practitioner programs in recognition of the expertise within the higher education sector in Australia. This provides education providers with the ability to deliver programs that align with the needs of the communities within which they operate. 

Titled How prepared are newly qualified dental practitioners for practice in Australia? this research aims to strengthen our understanding of the outcomes of the accreditation process. Specifically, the level to in which individuals completing dental practitioner programs accredited by the ADC, which lead to general registration, are prepared to practise as a dental practitioner. 

At this time, the research focuses specifically on programs producing graduates eligible to apply for registration as a dentist, dental hygienist, dental therapist, oral health therapist, or dental prosthetist. 

This work will address the outcomes and objectives the ADC and the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme seek to achieve through the undertaking of accreditation activities. It will also help build understanding as to whether newly qualified dental practitioners are meeting the expectations of the publics which they serve. 

Findings from this research may go on to inform other areas of the ADC’s work, including reviews of accreditation standards, policies and professional competencies. 

More information about the ADC’s research work is available here .