Study topics which are frequently the subject of expert testimony in court, and have most relevance internationally.


Forensic dentists are required in all countries to provide dental expertise to courts and legal systems. Dentists wishing to work in this field often find it difficult to gain the necessary skills.

This 1-year course addresses those aspects of forensic dentistry which are most frequently the subject of expert testimony in courts and have the most relevance to forensic dentistry internationally.

You will have the opportunity to work in a mortuary, assisting with dental identifications. You will also attend real autopsies with pathologists, which will make you aware of the complexity involved in the examination of a person's body after death.

Internationally, there are few opportunities for dentists to gain expertise in forensic dentistry in a structured manner from a University with a dental school and an active forensic medicine department.

As a student in Forensic Dentistry, you will work closely with other postgraduate students in Forensic Medicine, Forensic Science, and Forensic Toxicology. You will develop a deep understanding of the role of other forensic disciplines and identify when, where and how forensic dentistry links with the wider forensic community. This provides a unique multi-disciplinary nature to the course.

Acquiring this qualification will be a key step in the development of professional expertise in forensic dentistry. The programme will enable you to acquire knowledge, understanding, and skills in forensic dentistry and research. Uniquely, you will learn interdisciplinary skills that are essential for dealing with forensic issues in real life.

Dr. Andrew Forgie speaks to us about studying Forensic Dentistry at the University of Dundee.

Who should study this course?

This course is designed for dentists wishing to work in Forensic Dentistry.

Aims of the course?

The aim of the course is to provide dentists with a professional qualification that delivers core knowledge, experience, and intellectual skills in forensic dentistry, forensic medicine, science, and research.

Teaching & Assessment

How you will be taught

A blended approach to teaching is adapted to enable you to learn in a variety of ways. Methods of teaching include seminars, case scenarios, lectures, guided self-directed learning, demonstrations, and observation in a working forensic mortuary.

You will be taught by a range of internationally recognized experts including:

  • Dr. Scheila Manica, Lecturer in Forensic Odontology
  • Dr. Richard Leigh Evans, Clinical Lecturer, Forensic Odontologist
  • Prof Stewart Fleming, Professor of Forensic Medicine
  • Dr. David Sadler, Senior Lecturer, Consultant Forensic Pathologist
  • Dr. Helen Brownlow, Senior Lecturer, Consultant Forensic Pathologist

How you will be assessed

There is a wide range of assessment methods within each module including written assignments, oral presentations, and computer-aided assessment exercises.

What you will study

Topics covered include:

  • Dental identification
  • Disaster victim identification
  • Age estimation from dental sources
  • Dental report writing and giving evidence
  • Detailed anatomy and development of teeth and oral structures
  • Bite mark identification
  • Critical appraisal of the literature
  • Practical experience in mortuary
  • Research dissertation

What you will learn

By the end of the programme you will have:

  • An understanding of the history of forensic dentistry
  • The ability to assess the role of dental evidence in the administration of justice and place it in the context of the wider justice system
  • Skills that will enable you to evaluate and question a wide range of current issues in forensic dentistry
  • The ability to value the scope of forensic dentistry, including the misuse of dental evidence
  • The ability to assess the principles and practice of physical evidence collection and preservation
  • Gained a critical understanding of the principles underpinning the various classes and individualizing tests performed by the laboratory, for each type of physical evidence
  • A detailed understanding of the science and art of forensic medicine
  • A critical awareness of the current issues in forensic medicine
  • An attitude that values honesty, frankness, and integrity in scientific research


Acquiring this qualification will be a key step in the development of professional expertise in forensic dentistry.

You will gain:

  • Skills, knowledge, and experience in aspects of forensic dentistry which are most frequently the subject of expert testimony in court.
  • A deep understanding of the role of other forensic disciplines, resulting in in-depth knowledge of where and how forensic dentistry links with the wider forensic community.
  • The necessary skills to plan, execute and write-up a research project.
  • The interdisciplinary aspect of this course and the focus on the important aspects of forensic dentistry will ensure that you are in a position to contribute to forensic service provision in your region/country.

Entry Requirements

Prospective applicants must hold a recognized dental degree (BDS or equivalent). At least 2 years post-qualification dental experience is desirable Ð this is not a strict requirement but those with experience will be considered ahead of newly-qualified.

English Language Requirement

  • IELTS Overall 6.5
    • Listening 6.0
    • Reading 6.0
    • Writing 6.0
    • Speaking 6.0

English Language Programmes

We offer Pre-Sessional and Foundation Programme(s) throughout the year. These are designed to prepare you for university study in the UK when you have not yet met the language requirements for direct entry onto a degree programme.

Fees & Funding

The fees you pay will depend on your fee status. Your fee status is determined by us using the information you provide on your application.

Fees for students starting 2018-19

  • Scottish and EU students: £19,950 per year of study
  • Rest of UK students: £19,950 per year of study
  • Overseas students (non-EU): £19,950 per year of study

Your Application

You apply for this course via the UCAS Postgraduate website which is free of charge. You can check the progress of your application online and you can also make multiple applications.

You'll need to upload relevant documents as part of your application.

Program taught in:
  • English
School of Dentistry - University of Dundee
Last updated November 16, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
12 months
19,950 GBP
per year of study
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