Navigating the ADC Assessment Process for Overseas Dentists in Australia

Monday 4 December 2023
Explore our in-depth guide on the ADC assessment process for overseas dentists seeking to practice in Australia. Learn about English proficiency tests, initial assessments, written and practical exams, and skill assessments. Essential information for international dentists.
Navigating the ADC Assessment Process for Overseas Dentists in Australia

Are you an overseas dentist looking to practice in Australia? Navigating the Australian Dental Council (ADC) assessment process can be complex.This comprehensive guide will walk you through the key steps to obtaining a positive assessment for practicing dentistry in Australia.

Step 1: Prove Your English Language Proficiency

Before diving into the world of Australian dentistry, you must demonstrate your proficiency in English. Two exams are widely recognized:

  1. IELTS (International English Language Testing System): This globally recognized test evaluates your listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills. Aim for a minimum overall score of 7.0.
  2. OET (Occupational English Test): Specifically designed for healthcare professionals, OET tests your English language skills in a healthcare context. Strive for an “A” grade in each of the four sub-tests.

Step 2: Initial Assessment Process

This crucial step involves the ADC evaluating your professional credentials. Here's what they look for:

  • Educational Qualification: A four-year, full-time dental degree or diploma from a recognized university.
  • Registration History: Full and unrestricted registration or licensure in your home country or where you received your dental training.
  • Other Documents: Your work experiences, dental registration details in various countries, and a statement of good standing from your registering authority.

This process usually takes 8 weeks and costs $628 AUD, with the results valid for 7 years.

Step 3: Written ADC Exam

Next up is the written exam, a pivotal step in your journey:

  • Format: A two-day, computer-delivered, multiple-choice question examination.
  • Content: Four 2-hour sections with 70 scenario-based questions each, totaling 280 questions.
  • Frequency: Held twice a year in March and September.
  • Fee: $2,060 AUD, and results are valid for 3 years.

Step 4: Practical Examination

This is where you demonstrate your clinical prowess:

  • Location: Exclusively at the ADC Examination Centre in Melbourne.
  • Format: A 2-day exam covering technical and clinical skills.
  • Fee: $4,635 AUD, with lifetime validity for the results.
  • Components: Technical skills on typodonts and a range of clinical skills assessed in a station-based format.

Step 5: Skill Assessment

The final hurdle! This step verifies that you possess the professional skills necessary to practice safely in Australia.


Remember, this journey requires patience, perseverance, and dedication. While the process might seem complex, it ensures that only qualified professionals enter the Australian dental industry, maintaining high standards of care and patient safety.

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