University of Sydney Handbooks - 2013 Archive

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Bachelor of Oral Health

Bachelor of Oral Health (BOH)
Course Code: EH004 or BUORAHEA1000

Course Credit points for award Duration full-time
BOH 144 3 years


The Bachelor of Oral Health (BOH) degree course is a five days a week, full-time three-year professional program designed to provide education at a university level so that graduates may register as oral health therapists, dental hygienists or dental therapists. It will equip students with the required skills, knowledge and experience to deliver oral health education and promotion, dental hygiene and dental therapy services to patients in NSW, as well as throughout Australia and New Zealand. The program combines a firm scientific basis with extensive skills and professional development to produce graduates who are equipped to deal with the full range of treatments that dental hygienists and dental therapists may offer in the environment within which they work.

The course is structured so that students start acquiring their science foundation in parallel with early contact with patients, and the level and amount of patient contact increases as their scientific skills and oral health competencies grow. The emphasis of the course is on prevention and health maintenance in the context of a primary health care approach. Clinical practice largely occurs in the teaching hospitals where a team approach to patient care is practised together with dentistry students. In their final year students have a two-week rural placement in Semester 1 in an area health service or community agency applying their health promotion skills. Throughout the final year students rotate through community clinics in the greater Sydney metropolitan region for some of their clinical practice.

Course outcomes

Graduates of the BOH program will be qualified in dental hygiene, dental therapy, and have skills in oral health education and promotion. BOH graduates will also have skills in motivational interviewing and patient education. This kind of graduate is setting the benchmark for oral health graduates, and more services in the public sector and dentists in private practice are wanting practitioners with dual qualifications.

Graduates will:

  • have an effective understanding of their role and the roles of others in the oral health team as they deliver dental hygiene and dental therapy services to the community, delivering dental care appropriate to their scopes of practice, and referring patients to other providers as necessary
  • know how to apply theory to practice in a range of different situations, and will have the spirit of enquiry that encourages the extension of their knowledge and skill and their own professional development
  • be able to assume responsibility for the treatment of their patients' oral health, including analysis, diagnosis, and the development and execution of a treatment plan
  • be able to liaise confidently with a range of health providers and deliver high-quality oral health education and promotion in the community
  • know their limits, personal and professional, and be able to work competently and confidently within them; and
  • have the training and attributes to exercise leadership in oral health promotion, dental hygiene and dental therapy.

Further information

For further information about the BOH course visit the Faculty of Dentistry website at:

Course Rules


Bachelor of Oral Health

These resolutions must be read in conjunction with applicable University By-laws, Rules and policies including (but not limited to) the University of Sydney (Coursework) Rule 2000 (the 'Coursework Rule'), the Resolutions of the Faculty, the University of Sydney (Student Appeals against Academic Decisions) Rule 2006 (as amended) and the Academic Board policies on Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism.

Course resolutions

1 Course codes


Course title


Bachelor of Oral Health

2 Attendance pattern

The attendance pattern for this course is full time only.

3 Admission to candidature

Admission to this course is on the basis of a secondary school leaving qualification such as the NSW Higher School Certificate (including national and international equivalents), tertiary study or an approved preparation program. English language requirements must be met where these are not demonstrated by sufficient qualifications taught in English. Special admission  provisions exist for mature aged applicants who do not possess a school leaving qualification, educationally disadvantaged applicants and for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, as may be granted by the Dean. Applicants are ranked by merit and offers for available places are issued according to the ranking. Details of admission policies are found in the Coursework Rule.

4 Requirements for award

The units of study that may be taken for the course are set out in Table of Undergraduate Units of Study for the Bachelor of Oral Health.
To qualify for the award of the degree, a candidate must successfully complete a fixed curriculum of 144 credit points in the order prescribed in the table of units.

5 Progression rules

Candidates must pass all units of study and satisfy the requirements of the PPD Licence designated for each year of enrolment before proceeding to units designated for the subsequent year of study. Failure in any single unit of study results in a failure of the semester and requires the candidate to retake the units designated for that semester, without credit or exemption for work previously completed.

6 Award of the degree

The Bachelor of Oral Health is awarded as Pass only.

7 Cross institutional study

Cross institutional study is not available in this course.

8 Credit for previous study

Candidates may be granted credit for previous studies, according to the provisions of the Coursework Rule, and in addition:
the study must be completed no more than five years before admission to candidature for this course;
the study completed is equivalent to any unit of study in the Bachelor of Oral Health table of units;
the study must have been completed to credit level or equivalent;
if the previous award has been conferred, the maximum credit that may be granted is 48 credit points;
in the case of holders of the Diploma in Dental Therapy of the Westmead College of Dental Therapy, the maximum credit that may be granted is 48 credit points.

9 Transitional provisions

These resolutions apply to persons who commenced their candidature after 1 January, 2011 and persons who commenced their candidature prior to 1 January, 2011 and who elect to proceed under these resolutions.
Candidates who commenced prior to 1 January, 2011 may complete the requirements in accordance with the resolutions in force at the time of their commencement, provided that requirements are completed by 1 January, 2016, or later date as the faculty may, in special circumstances, approve.