Baccalaureate and Graduate Degree Options
The majority of dental hygiene students in Canada are enrolled in two-year diploma programs at a community college. What happens, though, if you are interested in continuing with your education? Are there benefits to further education for dental hygienists? What further education route is the best? It really depends on the individual and his or her goals, aptitudes, and interests. Education beyond the diploma level would be a natural next step for dental hygiene students and dental hygienists who want to:
CDHA has created a position paper on the issue of dental hygiene education.
Guide to Degree Names
- BSc—Bachelor of Science
- BDSc—Bachelor of Dental Science
- MSc—Master of Science
Degree Programs in Dental Hygiene
The University of British Columbia (UBC) offers five gateways into the dental hygiene degree program—three for dental hygienists who want to complete their bachelor's degree by building on their diploma background, and two for students who want to become dental hygienists by graduating with a bachelor's degree. The majority of the UBC students are degree-completion students from all over BC and Canada who are working to complete their baccalaureate studies primarily because they can complete their requirements for
graduation entirely online.
Graduate and Doctoral Programs
Currently, there are no master's or doctorate programs for dental hygiene in Canada, but graduate programs are available to dental hygienists in related fields. After graduating with a BSc or a BDSc, dental hygienists can enter at the master's level in the dentistry and dental hygiene-related fields in Canada. To get an idea of the master's and doctorate degrees that dental hygienists have obtained in Canada, see the list of theses and dissertations under Student Publications.
At the University of British Columbia (UBC), for example, in addition to the dental hygiene degree program, the Faculty of Graduate Studies offers graduate programs—the MSc in dental science and the PhD in oral biology—that are open to qualified dental hygienists, thereby allowing dental hygienists with bachelor's degrees to study at the graduate-level in oral health sciences through the Faculty of Dentistry. At the University of Alberta, the Department of Dentistry offers an MSc and a PhD in medical sciences (dentistry) and a PhD in medical
sciences (orthodontics) for those proceeding from a BSc or equivalent degree. The department also offers an MSc degree in orthodontics, which leads to specialist certification in orthodontics.
There are master's degree programs in dental hygiene in the United States: for example, an MSc in dental hygiene and an MSc in oral hygiene. A listing of U.S. dental hygiene graduate programs can be found at GradSchools.com. There are no doctorate dental hygiene programs in the United States, but students can obtain a PhD in a related field.
Canadian Universities with Dental Faculties
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