Guidance for assessed applications on the basis of academic or research work



Applicants to the specialist lists who do not hold a Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training (CCST) or recognised qualification from an EEA member state are potentially eligible to enter the specialist lists on the basis of academic and research work (otherwise known as "assessed application".)

The European Primary and Specialist Dental Qualifications Regulations 1998 and the GDC (Specialist List) Regulations 2008 provide for an individual to be entered on a specialist list if they can demonstrate that they:

  • have knowledge and experience derived from academic or research work in the specialty in question, and satisfy the Council that this knowledge and experience is equivalent to the knowledge and experience which the dental might reasonably be expected to have acquired if the dentist had undertaken the training required for the award of a CCST in that specialty (Regulation 6(1)(c) GDC (Specialist List) Regulations 2008.)

If you have knowledge and experience derived from academic or research work in a particular specialty and consider that you do meet the requirements of the Regulations, you are able to apply to the GDC for entry onto that specialist list. Your application and supporting evidence will be assessed by the GDC's assessment team, who will seek expert advice and recommendations as to your eligibility from a specialist assessment panel as appropriate.

For any inquiries, please contact us here.

How do I know if I should apply for entry on to a specialist list based on my academic or research experience?

The ability to make an application based on academic or research work is intended to provide access to the specialist lists for those who do not hold a CCST or cannot access the specialist lists in any other way.

It is not essential to have completed a specific specialist training programme or qualification. The test is whether or not an applicant has acquired knowledge and experience in the relevant specialty through academic or research work which is equivalent to what the applicant might reasonably be expected to have acquired had they undertaken the training required for an award of a CCST in that specialty. If an applicant is of the view that they can demonstrate this, then they may wish to consider applying under this route. It should be clear how the evidence maps to the relevant specialty training curriculum outcomes.

For example, this route may be suitable for applicants who have undertaken training subsequent to a university postgraduate (e.g. master's level) degree, with evidence of high quality research and teaching. Applicants should provide evidence of any relevant formal postgraduate qualification(s) that they may hold.

This route may also be suitable for those applying on the basis that they have experience and knowledge in the specialty additional to that derived from clinical work.

How can I demonstrate my academic or research experience in my application?

Your application should include documentary evidence of your academic or research work which relates to the specialty in question, and maps to the relevant specialty training learning outcomes. Where possible, this should include:

  • Evidence of any postgraduate qualifications derived from academic or research work including certificates, an abstract of any thesis and a copy of the syllabus
  • Evidence of any supervised clinical practice which could include validated clinical logbooks, a portfolio of other achievements, course prospectuses and syllabuses, evidence of successful completion of training programmes and any completed work-based assessments, names and qualifications of training supervisors, and evidence of any general professional training prior to commencing academic or research work in the specialty
  • Details of research projects you have been involved in, details of grants awarded, abstracts of publications, names and addresses of supervisors, validated logs of clinical treatment undertaken as part of the research project, and outline(s) of your particular clinical or other responsibilities and the ways in which these are deployed, e.g. in specialised clinics or specialised laboratory or diagnostics services, and details of the duration of your involvement in the specific field of academic or research work.

You can also support your application by including:

  • Evidence of a passing mark in relevant membership or fellowship exam(s)
  • At least two reference letters from senior colleagues who are registered and practising in the relevant specialty (for example, training or clinical supervisors,) testifying to your knowledge and experience in that specialty
  • If applicable, a validated logbook demonstrating your formal teaching experience, with evidence of teaching commitments
  • If applicable, evidence of any relevant academic study, including the dates of courses and qualifications, syllabuses and timetables demonstrating taught components of lectures, tutorials and assignments
  • Any other evidence demonstrating that you meet the requirements and competencies of a CCST.

These examples are not exhaustive and you may have further documentary evidence relating to the above matters that you wish to submit.

If any of these documents are not in English, they must be translated according to the GDC's standards.