Oral Health or Health Science At USYD? (1 Viewer)

zeze14

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Hey guys!
So I'm thinking of doing dentistry in the future but the ATAR is waaaaaaay tooo high for me to achieve, so I thought if I try from oral health which is an ATAR of 83 or Health Science- ATAR of 80 at USYD, I could get into dentistry after completing the degree.
BUt this process includes:
- MMI (multiple mini interviews)
- GAMSAT, and so on...

If anyone could perhaps tell me about oral health or health science as a degree or something about the interviews it'll be really helpful!
- Are these degrees really competitive and hard to get into?
- Is there other ways to achieve dentistry at the end?

Thank you!!!!
 

ultra908

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im not sure about specifics unis, but in general almost all entry pathways into dentistry (or med) require some combination of marks, GAMSAT and interviews.
In terms of a health science degree, personally i wouldnt do one. Health science/premed degrees tend to target a specific audience- people who want didnt get into undergrad and now want to get into postgrad. For this reason, even if its not that hard to get into one, theyre gonna have a pretty competitive environment in the actual course. Additionally, only some proportion of people who do these degrees get into the postgrad course (something like 50% or less). In the very potentially real situation that you dont get in, what do you do with a health science degree? It doesnt really give alot of options compared to other study options. Theres no reason why you cant get into a postgrad dentistry course after studying a more useful bachelor degree.
 

zeze14

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im not sure about specifics unis, but in general almost all entry pathways into dentistry (or med) require some combination of marks, GAMSAT and interviews.
In terms of a health science degree, personally i wouldnt do one. Health science/premed degrees tend to target a specific audience- people who want didnt get into undergrad and now want to get into postgrad. For this reason, even if its not that hard to get into one, theyre gonna have a pretty competitive environment in the actual course. Additionally, only some proportion of people who do these degrees get into the postgrad course (something like 50% or less). In the very potentially real situation that you dont get in, what do you do with a health science degree? It doesnt really give alot of options compared to other study options. Theres no reason why you cant get into a postgrad dentistry course after studying a more useful bachelor degree.
OHHHH I understand! I'll look into more courses that would be better and useful! Would you say Advanced Science/ Nursing would be a better degree than Health Science?
Thank you though :))
 

quickoats

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Oral health may be a good career “backup” in case dentistry doesn’t work out - you are doubly qualified as a dental hygienist and an oral health therapist, which means you can do a few dental procedures on minors (up to 17yo) and a more limited scope of practice for adults.

However, since the BOH degree is highly clinical, it will probably be quite difficult to maintain a competitive GPA for entry into grad DDS/DMD/MD/MBBS programs. In fact, USyd does not recommend it as a stepping stone into the DMD.

If you’re set on becoming a dentist only, and absolutely refuse to do BOH as a career (maybe the surgical part entices you idk), then maybe consider doing an undergraduate degree where a high GPA is accessible, but vocational enough to get a job upon graduation in the case you don’t make it into dental school. BPharm, BNurs, and BPhysio tend to be popular programs for med/dent hopefuls (although these may be above the oral health cut off anyway). If you get all HDs (7GPA) in your first year of uni, Griffith will generally accept you into their undergrad dental program.

Are you rural/regional? If so, maybe give Charles Sturt or James Cook an application.

Good luck!
 

c8

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As the two above have said, yes the pre-med/science courses are very competitive, especially those which advertise the course as a stepping stone to medicine (such as UNSW who have a quota for med sci students to transfer to med, making the environment pretty competitive, or so I've heard). But yeah, as said, if you don't think you'll get into dentistry undergrad, you will need a high GPA for your post grad application to be competitive, so choosing a degree which you will enjoy will make it easier for you to get a higher GPA, whilst also possibly providing a pathway into a career you may also enjoy.
 

zeze14

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Oral health may be a good career “backup” in case dentistry doesn’t work out - you are doubly qualified as a dental hygienist and an oral health therapist, which means you can do a few dental procedures on minors (up to 17yo) and a more limited scope of practice for adults.

However, since the BOH degree is highly clinical, it will probably be quite difficult to maintain a competitive GPA for entry into grad DDS/DMD/MD/MBBS programs. In fact, USyd does not recommend it as a stepping stone into the DMD.

If you’re set on becoming a dentist only, and absolutely refuse to do BOH as a career (maybe the surgical part entices you idk), then maybe consider doing an undergraduate degree where a high GPA is accessible, but vocational enough to get a job upon graduation in the case you don’t make it into dental school. BPharm, BNurs, and BPhysio tend to be popular programs for med/dent hopefuls (although these may be above the oral health cut off anyway). If you get all HDs (7GPA) in your first year of uni, Griffith will generally accept you into their undergrad dental program.

Are you rural/regional? If so, maybe give Charles Sturt or James Cook an application.

Good luck!
Thank you so much. I'm not too sure what GPA means though but i'll have a look into it. I did check charles sturt uni but it's way too far away, it takes nearly 5 hours to get there. I was also looking at Melb Uni for the boh, but i'm not sure.
 

zeze14

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As the two above have said, yes the pre-med/science courses are very competitive, especially those which advertise the course as a stepping stone to medicine (such as UNSW who have a quota for med sci students to transfer to med, making the environment pretty competitive, or so I've heard). But yeah, as said, if you don't think you'll get into dentistry undergrad, you will need a high GPA for your post grad application to be competitive, so choosing a degree which you will enjoy will make it easier for you to get a higher GPA, whilst also possibly providing a pathway into a career you may also enjoy.
Thank you!! I'm not too familiar with GPA but i'll look into it!
 
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sleekgeek

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I did computer science, had a high enough GPA but didnt pursue dentistry right away. I worked a few years in IT then decided later to apply for Dentistry via GAMSAT and got in. The people who did BOH/Sciences had an advantage during the first half of the degree interms of knowledge, so it means you have to double down during your studies to catch up and keep up. However having BOH/Sciences was not an advantage to get into the degree.
 

Jolteon

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Hi!

I actually have a few friends in both USYD Health Sciences and a few friends enrolled in dentistry courses around the country so I hope my response helps with your final decision :)

1. USYD Oral health & USYD Health science degrees are very very vague degrees that I believe are targeted for students who aim to transfer into more specific degree so it is very difficult to find employment upon graduation as it doesn't actually offer you the qualifications needed for a specific position (i.e. you cannot practice dentistry with an Oral Health degree and may have to go into research/marketing/dental assisting or areas related to the field but not in the field). This is the same problem with degrees in Health science, Vision science and medical science - you are provided with knowledge and education in health but realistically and legally, you cannot practice health - so your career options are slightly limited, especially if you originally planned for a career with patient interaction and 'hands-on' activity.
My friends who are currently in the middle of their course are planning to either transfer out or complete their Masters in a degree that guarantees employment. Note that transferring out of these courses are difficult since majority of the students chose the course in hopes to transfer out into the degree of their original choice.
H o w e v e r, if you are unsure of what career path you want to head down into, then these degrees are perfectly fine since you have time to experience/experiment and try out different areas in health before settling down into one :))

2. USYD Dentistry is a highly competitive course and is extremely difficult to get into - hence why a lot of my friends are actually studying dentistry interstate in either Adelaide, Queensland or Newcastle since it takes a significantly shorter time to complete but provide students with the same qualifications. However, the con lies that they have to move interstate but it is very, very common for dentists currently working in Sydney to have graduated from an interstate university since USYD is the only university in Sydney to offer the course. (Might be wrong actually?)

3. In regards to your plans for post graduate dentistry, I just want to say that it is still difficult to get into and in the off-chance that you are unable to obtain the required GAMSAT or pass the interviews, there are also other med/health-related degrees that I recommend that at least guarantees you job after graduating since you are provided with a license. I recommend USYD/WSU's Physiotherapy, UTS midwifery (similar to nursing but you have more agency and legal authority for certain procedures), any of USYD Applied sciences (radiography, speech pathology, occupational therapy) etc etc. Almost all of these courses will come with clinical placements throughout your studies and you will be ready to practice in clinics and hospitals upon graduation.

If you want more information regarding alternate paths to dentistry or any more information regarding any of the courses above, feel free to PM me and I can give you a more detailed answers. Best of luck! :)
 
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quickoats

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Hi!

I actually have a few friends in both USYD Health Sciences and a few friends enrolled in dentistry courses around the country so I hope my response helps with your final decision :)

1. USYD Oral health & USYD Health science degrees are very very vague degrees that I believe are targeted for students who aim to transfer into more specific degree so it is very difficult to find employment upon graduation as it doesn't actually offer you the qualifications needed for a specific position (i.e. you cannot practice dentistry with an Oral Health degree and may have to go into research/marketing/dental assisting or areas related to the field but not in the field). This is the same problem with degrees in Health science, Vision science and medical science - you are provided with knowledge and education in health but realistically and legally, you cannot practice health - so your career options are slightly limited, especially if you originally planned for a career with patient interaction and 'hands-on' activity.
My friends who are currently in the middle of their course are planning to either transfer out or complete their Masters in a degree that guarantees employment. Note that transferring out of these courses are difficult since majority of the students chose the course in hopes to transfer out into the degree of their original choice.
H o w e v e r, if you are unsure of what career path you want to head down into, then these degrees are perfectly fine since you have time to experience/experiment and try out different areas in health before settling down into one :))

2. USYD Dentistry is a highly competitive course and is extremely difficult to get into - hence why a lot of my friends are actually studying dentistry interstate in either Adelaide, Queensland or Newcastle since it takes a significantly shorter time to complete but provide students with the same qualifications. However, the con lies that they have to move interstate but it is very, very common for dentists currently working in Sydney to have graduated from an interstate university since USYD is the only university in Sydney to offer the course. (Might be wrong actually?)

3. In regards to your plans for post graduate dentistry, I just want to say that it is still difficult to get into and in the off-chance that you are unable to obtain the required GAMSAT or pass the interviews, there are also other med/health-related degrees that I recommend that at least guarantees you job after graduating since you are provided with a license. I recommend USYD/WSU's Physiotherapy, UTS midwifery (similar to nursing but you have more agency and legal authority for certain procedures), any of USYD Applied sciences (radiography, speech pathology, occupational therapy) etc etc. Almost all of these courses will come with clinical placements throughout your studies and you will be ready to practice in clinics and hospitals upon graduation.

If you want more information regarding alternate paths to dentistry or any more information regarding any of the courses above, feel free to PM me and I can give you a more detailed answers. Best of luck! :)
1. Just note that Oral Health is a professional degree, contrary to the belief that it’s the dental version of medical science. You become dually qualified (legally) as an oral health therapist and a dental hygienist. This is above a dental assisting role (which is TAFE). You can look up the full scope of practice, but an oral health therapist generally does stuff like simple dental procedures (like cleans) for under 18s, or orthodontic practice (changing your bands, taking off braces, gluing on your retainer). @Jolteon is correct in saying that you can’t practise dentistry with a BOH, but your specific (and legally protected) position is an oral health therapist AND dental hygienist. This is an AHPRA qualified health practitioner role.

However, medsci, healthsci, and vissci are vague degrees. You cannot be a health practitioner with these degrees.

2. Charles Sturt in Orange NSW is the closest undergrad dental school we have. It’s quite small, so that’s probably why we see lots of people move interstate!

3. As I’ve said above, Oral Health is a professional degree which gives you a license to practice. Other good allied health options (which are often overlooked) are podiatry and orthoptics, which both have an interesting scope of practice.
 

zeze14

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Hi!

I actually have a few friends in both USYD Health Sciences and a few friends enrolled in dentistry courses around the country so I hope my response helps with your final decision :)

1. USYD Oral health & USYD Health science degrees are very very vague degrees that I believe are targeted for students who aim to transfer into more specific degree so it is very difficult to find employment upon graduation as it doesn't actually offer you the qualifications needed for a specific position (i.e. you cannot practice dentistry with an Oral Health degree and may have to go into research/marketing/dental assisting or areas related to the field but not in the field). This is the same problem with degrees in Health science, Vision science and medical science - you are provided with knowledge and education in health but realistically and legally, you cannot practice health - so your career options are slightly limited, especially if you originally planned for a career with patient interaction and 'hands-on' activity.
My friends who are currently in the middle of their course are planning to either transfer out or complete their Masters in a degree that guarantees employment. Note that transferring out of these courses are difficult since majority of the students chose the course in hopes to transfer out into the degree of their original choice.
H o w e v e r, if you are unsure of what career path you want to head down into, then these degrees are perfectly fine since you have time to experience/experiment and try out different areas in health before settling down into one :))

2. USYD Dentistry is a highly competitive course and is extremely difficult to get into - hence why a lot of my friends are actually studying dentistry interstate in either Adelaide, Queensland or Newcastle since it takes a significantly shorter time to complete but provide students with the same qualifications. However, the con lies that they have to move interstate but it is very, very common for dentists currently working in Sydney to have graduated from an interstate university since USYD is the only university in Sydney to offer the course. (Might be wrong actually?)

3. In regards to your plans for post graduate dentistry, I just want to say that it is still difficult to get into and in the off-chance that you are unable to obtain the required GAMSAT or pass the interviews, there are also other med/health-related degrees that I recommend that at least guarantees you job after graduating since you are provided with a license. I recommend USYD/WSU's Physiotherapy, UTS midwifery (similar to nursing but you have more agency and legal authority for certain procedures), any of USYD Applied sciences (radiography, speech pathology, occupational therapy) etc etc. Almost all of these courses will come with clinical placements throughout your studies and you will be ready to practice in clinics and hospitals upon graduation.

If you want more information regarding alternate paths to dentistry or any more information regarding any of the courses above, feel free to PM me and I can give you a more detailed answers. Best of luck! :)
Ahhh okkk!!! I understand thank you :) So what other coarse degrees would you recommend then? something where I can get jobs after completing the degree. and something with a lower atar, maybe around 80's or just higher.
 
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zeze14

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1. Just note that Oral Health is a professional degree, contrary to the belief that it’s the dental version of medical science. You become dually qualified (legally) as an oral health therapist and a dental hygienist. This is above a dental assisting role (which is TAFE). You can look up the full scope of practice, but an oral health therapist generally does stuff like simple dental procedures (like cleans) for under 18s, or orthodontic practice (changing your bands, taking off braces, gluing on your retainer). @Jolteon is correct in saying that you can’t practise dentistry with a BOH, but your specific (and legally protected) position is an oral health therapist AND dental hygienist. This is an AHPRA qualified health practitioner role.

However, medsci, healthsci, and vissci are vague degrees. You cannot be a health practitioner with these degrees.

2. Charles Sturt in Orange NSW is the closest undergrad dental school we have. It’s quite small, so that’s probably why we see lots of people move interstate!

3. As I’ve said above, Oral Health is a professional degree which gives you a license to practice. Other good allied health options (which are often overlooked) are podiatry and orthoptics, which both have an interesting scope of practice.
Oh ok so if I do complete oral health ill be able to find jobs that include stuff like simple dental procedures on people. but thats not so much the case with health science?
 

quickoats

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Oh ok so if I do complete oral health ill be able to find jobs that include stuff like simple dental procedures on people. but thats not so much the case with health science?
If you complete an oral health degree, you will be able to get a job as an oral health therapist or dental hygienist. You will have to work for a dentist (no independent practice) and you'll be doing things like checkups and cleans. However, if you do health science, you don't graduate and become a "health scientist". Instead, you'll probably go into fields like research or health promotion. It is common for people doing health/medical science to then complete another health degree (usually graduate entry medicine). This path takes about 1-2 years longer than going in directly after year 12.

MedicineMBBS (or equivalent undergrad) (5-6 years)BHlthSc MD or MChD (7 years min)
DentistryBDS (or equiv.) (5 yrs)BHlthSc DDS or DMD (7 yrs min)
PhysiotherapyBPhysio (or equiv.) (4 yrs)BHlthSc MPhysio or DPT (5-6 yrs min)
OptometryBVisSc MOptom (5 yrs)BHlthSc DOpt or OD (6-7 yrs min)
RadiographyBAppSc (or equiv) (4 yrs)BHlthSc MDR (5 yrs min)

You can still complete the above in the same time frame if you do oral health, as it is a 3 year degree.

The degree you do is completely up to you, but I'd recommend oral health as it leads directly into a job, and still gives you the option of doing a further degree after it (if you choose to change professions). However, people choose health/medical sciences as their undergraduate degree as they are arguably easier to do well in - there is no practical component, just rote learning to do exams.
 

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