Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

DClinDent in Prosthodontics

Become a registered prosthodontist in New Zealand and Australia

Start your application on the DClinDent regulations page

What is Prosthodontics?

Prosthodontics is the dental specialty primarily concerned with the restoration and replacement of lost or damaged teeth. A prosthodontist uses dental materials to restore or replace teeth and missing tissues. Prosthodontists have an understanding of all the elements of a person's smile not just the teeth, but also the gums, lips, and facial features. When it comes to planning and carrying out complex dental treatments, a team of dental specialists in different fields is often required. In many cases, that team is led by the prosthodontist.

^ Top of page

DClinDent in Prosthodontics

Duration 3 years full-time
Campus Dunedin
  • Prepare students for specialist practice in New Zealand
  • Provide education and training in scientific investigation
  • Develop a sense of inquiry and intellectual independence so that postgraduates will be able both to advance their personal professional skills and the discipline of prosthodontics
  • Have a detailed knowledge of the biological foundations of prosthodontics and have learned how to apply this knowledge clinically
  • Be able to diagnose and treat a wide variety of prosthodontic problems to a high standard
  • Be able to critically evaluate current research literature and determine any potential application to the principles or procedures of prosthodontics
  • Have satisfactorily completed a research thesis containing the results of an investigation normally relating to prosthodontics
  • Have acquired attitudes and skills essential for independent and life-long learning
  • Should have the academic qualifications necessary for registration as a prosthodontist by the Dental Council of New Zealand

^ Top of page

Skills you will develop / learn

  • Planning of complex dental treatment needs from start to finish that can involve multiple dental specialists
  • Learn the steps and stages involved in restoring the worn and broken down dentition as well as where there are limited or no teeth, using crowns, bridges, dentures and partial dentures
  • Working with dental specialists on replacing missing teeth with implant restorations
  • Gain an in depth knowledge of dental materials as well as diagnosing and managing temporomandibular disorders, maxillofacial defects, management of the effects of head and neck oncology

^ Top of page

After course competion

On completion of the course, you can register as a prosthodontist and therefore carry out the scope of work which could include restoring the worn down dentition, with an evidence-based understanding on how to carry out this treatment.

^ Top of page

Student experiences

Abdullah Barazanchi

Abdullah Barazanchi (2020)“It was tough to begin with, adjusting to studying after all these years of working. But the sense of accomplishing something was gratifying and felt like I have reached a milestone in my career. Personally, I had great support from staff members who became mentors to me."

“After completing my degree, I felt my level of expertise has far surpassed the level that I began with and I see that everyday in my ability to deal with cases that were far beyond me before completing the course.”

Read more about Dr Barazanchi’s DClinDent experience

^ Top of page

Staff expertise

Professor Karl Lyons

Karl LyonsProfessor Lyons has carried out research in dental implants and materials and in microbial adhesion to dental obturator prostheses, particularly adhesion of C. albicans and S. epidermidis. The latter was the topic of his PhD, which was awarded in 2012.

Professor Lyons has also been collaborating with DClinDent students with a research emphasis on clinical and in vitro research in the areas of implant prosthodontics and dental materials, particularly ceramics.

Associate Professor Vincent Bennani

Vincent BennaniAssociate Professor Bennani has two research themes linking his clinical interests and his biomaterials expertise. His research interests are focused on innovative techniques in dentistry, particularly soft tissue management in implantology. Little has been published about the challenges presented by the unique anatomy surrounding implants and how to preserve it during prosthodontics procedures. His research recognises the need for new strategies in prosthodontics procedures.

Ms Suzanne Hanlin

Suzanne HanlinMs Hanlin has three main fields of research that support and inform dental clinical practice and teaching in New Zealand: Clincial Practice Based Research Network (PBRN), dental education, and health informatics in dentistry.

Ms Hanlin chairs the board of the (Applied Research through Clinicians’ Hands) dental PBRN. She is a consultant registered specialist prosthodontist with clinical expertise in fixed and removable prosthodontics and implantology.

Associate Professor Sunyoung Ma

Suyoung MaAfter completing her Doctor of Clinical Dentistry thesis titled Marginal bone loss around two implants supporting mandibular overdentures, Associate Professor Ma continues to work with the Oral Implantology Research Group collecting the long-term prospective data. Her main focus of research lies on alveolar ridge resorption associated with implant prostheses, long-term implant success, and prosthdontic maintenance issues.

Dr Sergio Salis

Dr Salis is a Professional Practice Fellow in the Department of Oral Rehabilitation, Faculty of Dentistry.

Dr Don Schwass

Don SchwassDr Schwass’ research interests focus on the assessment and application of diagnostic tools for cariology, the management of dental caries, and the use of micro-CT (micro-computer tomography) and CBCT (cone beam computer tomography) for evaluation of mineralised tissues.

In collaboration with Dr Carla Meledandri (Chemistry, University of Otago), he has developed several methods for size-controlled synthesis of micelle-stabilised silver nanoparticles, engineered for optimal antimicrobial and optical properties, specifically designed for application on teeth to prevent, control progression, or eliminate, dental caries.

Dr Schwass is enrolled in a PhD (part-time) relating to his work with silver nanoparticles, and is an advisor for several other PhD students providing technical support on micro-CT and CBCT.

Dr Abdullah Barazanchi

Abdullah Barazanchi (2020)Dr Barazanchi is a DClinDent graduate. His research specialises in applications of 3D printing and digital workflow in dentistry. 3D printing is becoming increasingly common in dentistry due to its low energy and low material wastage. It bypasses physical limitations of manual or other automated techniques, some international dental laboratory already use the technology in their manufacture of dental prostheses.

Dr Barazanchi is also interested in digital workflow where automated design and manufacturing procedures occur digitally with very minimal manual handling, theoretically reducing the human error involved with handling materials.

^ Top of page

Course content: Year 1

CLDN 910 Research Evaluation and Design

  • Molecular biology – implications in dental research and care
  • Anatomy of the head and neck
  • Human development with emphasis on orofacial tissues
  • Genetic understanding of orofacial development and disease
  • Orofacial diseases
  • Orofacial disease management
  • Dental care and research – responsibilities under the Treaty of Waitangi
  • Research development
  • Health research
  • Oral microbiology research
  • Dental materials research
  • Clinical dental research
  • Critical evaluation of scientific literature
  • Biostatistics and statistics
  • Scientific writing

CLDN 920 Clinical Practice – Research Evidence

  • Scientific understanding of the health and disease of orofacial tissues
  • Research evidence of management of particular orofacial problems
  • Clinical management
  • Patient management
  • Laboratory experience will be related to acquisition of clinical skills

^ Top of page

Course content: Years 2 and 3

CLDN 9F Thesis Research, Clinical Research, Clinical Practice

  • Supervised research investigation and preparation of a thesis
  • Clinical research and practice involving prescribed patients referred for specialist care

^ Top of page


You are required to pass both papers in the first year of the programme with at least a B+ grade in each paper to be able to continue to the second and third years of thesis research, clinical research, and clinical practice.

By the end of the first year, the Head of Department and the DClinDent Co-ordinator will assess your capacity to complete the course. Where advisable, you may be recommended to be awarded a Diploma.

Internal assessment

A grade for the year’s internal assessment will be derived from reports made by clinical teachers and other internally-assessed course components during the year.


Examinations will be held at the end of each year. A paper is a graded component of the total examination process and may be comprised of some or all of the following: internal assessment, written examination, oral examination, clinical oral examination, assessment of the logbook, presentation and oral examination of the research report.

^ Top of page

Course instruments

You may be required to provide a camera, semi-adjustable articulator, and facebow of the design approved by the Department of Oral Rehabilitation.

You are encouraged to provide a laptop computer and a digital SLR camera, lens, and flash of a design approved by the Department. Other dental equipment and materials used in clinical and laboratory work are provided.

The Department will ensure that funds are available for the research project, and may provide some assistance with photocopying. You must arrange and pay for word processing, photocopying, and binding of the required number of copies of your thesis.

^ Top of page

How to apply

Start your application on the DClinDent regulations page

^ Top of page