University of Sydney Handbooks - 2016 Archive

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Oral Health

Bachelor of Oral Health


  Bachelor of Oral Health
Course code EH004 or BUORAHEA1000
CRICOS code 072495J
Degree Abbreviation BOH
Credit points required to complete 144
Time to complete full-time 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 and/or dental therapists. The program equips 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 acquire a solid 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 primary health care. Clinical practice largely occurs in the teaching hospitals where a team approach to patient care is practiced together with dentistry students. In their final year students have a two-week placement in Semester 1 in an area health service or community agency applying their health promotion skills. Second and third year students provide patient services in community clinics in the greater Sydney metropolitan regions.

Course outcomes

Graduates of Sydney's BOH program will be qualified in dental hygiene, dental therapy, and have skills in oral health education and promotion. Sydney's BOH graduates are setting the benchmark for oral health graduates, as more services in the public sector and dentists in private practice require 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: