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How Long Does It Take To Become an Orthodontist?

How Long Does It Take To Become an Orthodontist?

Vandana KatyalDr Katyal’s Publications, General

If you’ve landed on this page, it’s likely you want to know How Long Does It Take To Become an Orthodontist in Australia.

In Australia, millions of individuals face oral health challenges, making the role of orthodontists crucial. This profession is not only about improving smiles; it’s a unique blend of artistic vision and analytical precision, offering a rewarding career with a competitive salary and a balanced lifestyle.

The journey to becoming an orthodontist is both challenging and fulfilling. It usually spans about 9 to 10 years, encompassing university education, dental school, and a specialized orthodontics residency. This path requires not just dedication but a deep passion for learning and helping others.

So, exactly how long does it take to become an orthodontist?

Let’s explore each stage in detail:

Undergraduate Study (3 Years)
The first step involves completing prerequisite courses in biology and chemistry. Most students pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in these fields, laying a solid foundation for advanced study. It’s important to check specific admission requirements on university websites.

Dental School (4 Years)
Following undergraduate studies, the next phase is a comprehensive dental school program. Lasting typically four years, it focuses on building a strong base in dental medicine and hands-on clinical practices. Graduates earn a Bachelor’s degree in dental surgery. They then choose between a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or a Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) degree.

Orthodontics Residency (3 Years)
The final educational phase is a rigorous residency program in orthodontics. This program sharpens clinical examination skills, diagnostic accuracy, and the management of dentofacial orthopaedics. It’s an intensive period, essential for gaining deep knowledge and practical expertise in orthodontics.

Additionally, orthodontists must develop key soft skills such as patience, exceptional communication abilities (particularly with children and teenagers, who form a large part of their clientele), and the skill to simplify complex dental concepts for patients. Furthermore, obtaining a separate orthodontics license is a crucial step, usually requiring the passing of a specialized exam.

After completing their education and obtaining licensure, orthodontists have a wide range of opportunities. They can join established practices, start their own clinics, or even venture into academic and research roles in the field of orthodontics.

For those who are intrigued by this rewarding career path and wish to embark on this transformative journey, our comprehensive orthodontics courses offer the perfect starting point.

For more information you can also visit the Australian Dental Association’s website. It provides additional information about the profession, educational pathways, and licensing requirements in Australia.


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What People Are Saying

  • I completed the BOSS UK Diploma in 2021 and when it became available, signed up for the AU course as well. I completed the AU course at the end of last year and can honestly say BOSS (now Digital Orthodontic College) has completely changed my approach to clear aligner treatments and increased my confidence with treatment planning immensely. The fact that the course is 100% online was a huge drawcard for me initially since I have two young children, work clinically part-time and run my own business. It allowed me the flexibility to study when I had the chance and didn’t result in any loss of clinical time. Dr V is extremely passionate about orthodontics and more importantly sharing her wisdom and that comes through in her approach to teaching. The course is extremely comprehensive (NB: the AU course has quite a few complex assessments) and covers everything starting from the basics of tooth movement, which sets a good foundation and is therefore suitable even for beginners. The monthly/bimonthly webinars allow students to share cases and is a safe space, non-judgmental and therefore an incredible learning platform. I had been doing clear aligner treatments prior to starting this course, but BOSS helped me see patients with new eyes and has overhauled my treatment planning approach. I would not hesitate to recommend this course to anyone interested in learning, or to extend their knowledge about, clear aligner treatments.

    Thank you so much Dr V!

    Dr Lora Banicevic, Dentist NSW
  • The Australian accredited 10905NAT Graduate Diploma of Digital Orthodontic Treatment offers comprehensive training in the field, gives the candidate the opportunity to do things in a self-paced manner, while getting a personalised 1-on-1 learning experience with Dr Vandana Katyal. It was an excellent choice for me and gave me the flexibility to get the well-designed training done in my own time frame. I would strongly recommend the course to any practitioners who is looking to upskill themselves with a no-compromise high quality course, while also having to juggle between busy practices and family schedules.

    Dr Charles Sun, Dentist WA
  • I started this course unsure of how much I would benefit. The in-person lectures were fantastic (although the course is now 100% online) where I made good friends and learned a lot. The online resources are extensive and second to none, accessible at your convenience. The webinars were great – usually with the right mix of teaching, cases demonstrated and the attendees’ cases being discussed. I was also invited to deliver a webinar on intra-oral scanners, 3D printers and in house aligner manufacturing (from a dentist’s point of view) – which I enjoyed.
    Most of all the course gave significantly more confidence what can be done with aligners, how plan the setup efficiently with the end in mind and how to make the processes to get there smoother. As a result, a MUCH larger chunk of my work is now aligner based. My conversion rate for aligner treatments has definitely increased along with my confidence. The course has easily paid for itself. Full disclosure: I was invited to deliver a webinar on intra-oral scanners, 3D printers and in house aligner manufacture to my BOSS batch mates, which I also thoroughly enjoyed doing. I declined any remuneration for this, although it was offered.
    Dr Shammi Moopen, Dentist VIC
  • Since I have joined the postgraduate diploma in orthodontics I have noticed all the applied practical learning/knowledge on my patients and I am only half way through the year. Dr Vandana is a genuine educator. She goes way beyond to simplify every lecture and I really like her evidence based information and that is available for us 24/7. Her webinars helped a lot for busy dentists and loved the feedback we get in the one on one sessions with our cases. It make us think every step of the way. But the best thing I like is to see she is giving back to the community and her association with Smile Train in helping children with cleft palate is just beyond words. Thank you so much for being nice and approachable.

    Dr Claudia Braybon, Dentist NSW
  • Received my Diploma in Digital Orthodontics from BOSS and couldn’t be more stoked! Huge shout out to Dr Vandana Katyal and the BOSS team for a wonderful year. I would recommend BOSS to every dentist no matter their level of experience with Orthodontics and clear aligners. Starting off with barely any orthodontic experience, I have commenced about 9 cases in the matter of months and BOSS gave me the confidence to predictably deliver results for my patients through clear aligners which are the future of modern orthodontics.
    Dr Sarang Sathe, Dentist NSW
  • I chose Boss’s clear aligner diploma because I wanted to know the latest evidence based practice to enhance my treatment planning and case execution. I now have a much better understanding of how to diagnose, what movements can be done and what will get me into trouble. The flexible nature of the course delivery also fit perfectly into full time work and my otherwise packed schedule. The monthly case presentation webinars are also great to not only get feedback from Dr Katyal, but also to validate your own thoughts self-assess and see how you are tracking with your learning.

    Dr Gregory Nguyễn, Dentist NSW

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