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Dental core training: the trainee perspective

A Correction to this article was published on 13 November 2020

A Correction to this article was published on 14 August 2020

This article has been updated


Dental core training (DCT) is a postgraduate training period, eligible following successful completion of foundation/vocational training, which has multiple entry points and endpoints with a varied duration from one to three years. The introduction of national recruitment in 2017, away from a previous individual deanery-led process, has introduced new variables such as a ranking system for choosing training posts, with the outcome dependent on combined performance at interview and a situational judgement test for which competition is nationally against other applicants. This unique, trainee-led study provides an appreciation and understanding of the motivations and experiences of trainees who pursue DCT, such as the rationale behind location and speciality choice, the perception of national recruitment and the situational judgement test, and the influence of salary variation, alongside trainee perceptions and experiences of the training programme from inside the trainee perspective. Undertaking DCT is not a 'forever decision' and will stand the trainee in good stead in pursuit of speciality training or a return to general practice, with a wide variety of opportunities that can lead to fulfilment and a rewarding career pathway for enthusiastic dentists.

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Change history

  • 14 August 2020

    Author's correction note: Education article Br Dent J 2020; 228: 782-790.When initially published the wording on the y-axis of figures 4-15 was ordered incorrectly.The original article has been corrected.

  • 13 November 2020

    A Correction to this paper has been published:


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Correspondence to Christopher C. Donnell.

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Donnell, C., Foley, J. Dental core training: the trainee perspective. Br Dent J 228, 782–790 (2020).

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