BDS Curriculum Overview
The undergraduate degree curriculum at the HKU Faculty of Dentistry is future-oriented and builds on its international reputation as an integrated, student-centred, inquiry-based educational experience.
Professional competencies and learning outcomes are designed to prepare students to become dental professionals serving the needs of modern Hong Kong, global thinkers, and future leaders. In meeting these aims, the new curriculum model will encompass both compulsory “University Requirements” and the “Professional Core”.
The Common Core Curriculum is designed to broaden horizons beyond dentistry and give students the opportunity to explore issues of profound significance to humankind in the 21st century. Language courses support academic English in the Common Core Curriculum and focus on academic dentistry, including medical and dental terminology for the early years, in the Professional Core.
The undergraduate degree curriculum is led by an inquiry-based philosophy with many learning experiences occurring in small-group, facilitated discussions drawing on problem-based, case-based and journal-based formats. In problem-based learning tutorials, students discuss a series of structured, integrated, and interesting dental “problems” to introduce them to the main elements of biomedical, behavioural, social, and clinical sciences that underpin dental surgery. Case-based learning examines clinical cases in depth. Journal-based learning supports research and evidence-based approaches to understanding complex clinical problems.
Inquiry-based approaches encourage deeper understanding and make it easier to acquire and retain knowledge, instil life-long learning habits, and foster teamwork skills, all attributes of a good dentist. Whole-group classes and hands-on learning in practical sessions support the inquiry-based approach.
Early introduction to clinics and patient care in tandem with the inquiry-based approach exposes students to real-world applications and motivates learning.
Students will develop requisite knowledge, skills and attitudes through the integration of key aspects of modern dentistry:
Biomedical, behavioural, social, and clinical sciences underlying oral diseases and oral disorders
Prevention, clinical features, and management of oral diseases
Diagnostic, operative (manual), interpersonal, and communication skills to allow students to develop into competent dental practitioners
The final year “Portfolio” represents a culmination of student learning activities across the Professional Core. Sample tasks required in the portfolio include case presentations, written reports and reflections.