Published on 18th August 2017 by lauram

Results day can be an emotional rollercoaster, and it can be incredibly disheartening to miss the grades you needed for your offer. However, this doesn’t mean your chance of being a dentist is over – there are many different paths to dentistry. This blog will guide you through your options if you have missed your offer.

1. Contact universities for Clearing places

Although dentistry is a competitive degree, it is possible that some universities may have Clearing places. One option may be to call around and speak to universities that offer dentistry to see if they have any places available. Let them know your grades and experience.

2. Take a gap year

If you were unsuccessful in your application this year, then you could consider taking a gap year. If you already had the right grades for your place, then you could enjoy a year off, travel and reapply for the next academic year. Make sure that you complete some more dentistry work experience so your knowledge is kept up to date and that you are available for interviews during interview season.  

3. Start an alternative course

An increasing number of students are now applying for dentistry as a graduate applicant. If you complete a health-related degree such as medical science or anatomy, it is possible to apply for a four year dentistry degree. Having a degree first does mean spending longer at university but it gives you added experience and it is a good entry route for people who might be slightly unsure about dentistry.

4. Work for a year

Working full time for a year means you can save up for university and gain experience of employment. You could consider a role in the healthcare industry, such as dental nursing. This will strengthen your application and give you a greater understanding of dentistry as a career. Developing your skills like communication and teamwork will also be a good point of discussion at dentistry interviews.  

5. Resit exams to increase your grades

If you missed your offer, it is worth speaking to universities to see whether they will consider you as an applicant if you have taken resits. Each university has their own policy on this, so it is worth contacting them individually prior to starting work on resitting your exams. Another thing to consider is that you may have missed out on an offer because of a low UKCAT score. If this is the case, set aside time to revise for your UKCAT.

However you decide to spend your year, make sure it’s a productive one! The time will pass very quickly, so make sure you spend it strengthening your grades or application for the next academic year – good luck!

Words: Joelle Booth     


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