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Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing - Year 1

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Course Description

This qualification focuses on direct chairside work and support during a range of dental treatments and is suitable for anyone who wants to work as a dental nurse. It covers all the General Dental Council (GDC) learning outcomes for the Health National Occupational Standards and upon completion will enable learners to register with the GDC (pending approval). Note: Students on this course will need to pay for a course of three Hepatitis B injections and a blood test prior to going on placement. Eligible students can use their bursary to cover the fee.


Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing

Entry Requirements

To begin this course, students need to have achieved 4 GCSEs grade C/4 or above to include English or maths. A BTEC Level 2 qualification, NVQ Level 2 or VRQ Level 2 are also accepted.


In 2014 the college launched its brand new dental nursing suite which is fully equipped with all dental equipment that is found in a typical dental practice including X-ray machines, dental chairs and mixing units. By the end of the course learners will have a portfolio of work. The course is taught over 2-3 days per week dependant on timetable. Students will not only undertake all practical aspects of assisting the dentist in different treatments in the practice, they will also gain valuable interpersonal and team working skills.

Topics on this course include:

  • Health and safety in the dental environment
  • Regulatory requirements in relation to the role of a dental nurse
  • Reflect on and develop own practice as a dental nurse
  • Oral health for individuals
  • Prepare and maintain environments, instruments and equipment for clinical dental procedures
  • Production of dental images
  • Provide support during the provision of fixed and removable prosthesis
  • First aid essentials
  • Reducing risks to health and safety in the dental setting
  • Principles of infection control in the dental environment
  • Assess patients’ oral health
  • Prevent and control periodontal disease and caries and the restoration of cavities
  • Support nonsurgical endodontic treatment
  • Support the extraction of teeth and minor oral surgery
  • Dental radiography
  • Management of oral health diseases and dental procedures

Work Experience

Students on this course are given the opportunity to complete a work placement to enhance their skills in the working environment. Learners are supported by the college in securing their own work placements which will be within the local North west area. Students will work to the hours of their designated practice whilst on placement.


Following the completion of this course, students have a number of options including Higher education or employment. There are numerous career pathways including Dental nursing, dental hygiene and therapy, dental technician, practice management, teaching and assessing or lecturing.

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