James’ Experience of Studying Dentistry at Newcastle University

Tell us about you!

Name: James
Degree Programme: Dentistry
Year of Study: 3
Home town: Newcastle
A Levels: Maths, Biology, Chemistry

Why did you choose to study Dentistry at Newcastle University?

When I Newcastle Dental School on the open day, I was blown away, by how friendly all of the staff, the students and generally just the people within the city were. On the open day, we were told about the course structure, the styles of teaching and got to look at the excellent facilities that were available at the dental school. It is important to note that Newcastle was the only dental school I attended who offered free cake at the open day! For the style of teaching, Newcastle uses a more traditional style of teaching, as opposed to the problem-based learning style of teaching used in other dental schools. This means that in the first 2 years, you learn many of the foundations through lectures, seminars and practical sessions; however you do not treat patients until third year. There were a few reasons why this was the right choice for me:

• Adapting to learning without past papers, and teachers telling you what information to learn was already going to be difficult, so having the added pressure of treating patients alongside learning how to revise, I felt would be too challenging for me
• Before I started treating patients, I wanted to feel confident in my knowledge rather than be thrown in at the deep end. I felt that Newcastle University Dental School really allowed me to do this!

Due to being a local student, I was fortunate enough to gain work experience at Newcastle Dental Hospital prior to applying. This was one of the best experiences, I got to work closely with the students, and the clinicians who were supervising them, and gain a first-hand perspective of what life as a Dental Student would be like. Newcastle Dental Hospital has access to state-of-the-art equipment, and access to clinicians who are experts at the top of their dental specialities.

What do you like most about studying Dentistry at Newcastle University?

I am now a stage 3 student, so a wide range of clinicians and lecturers has taught me. Every single member of staff I have had contact with has been super friendly. If I have had any concerns at all, they are more than happy to take time out of their day to help you. Some of the modules that are taught are complex, so having that support from staff members is amazing.

Following on from the above point, the support network for the wellbeing of students is also excellent. In the first year, you are paired with a Peer Mentor who is a student in the year above. They can help you with settling into university, give you revision tips and just generally check that you are managing fine. Another support network which is available is your personal tutors, who is a member of staff within the Dental School who is allocated to you to check up on you at different times of the year, and is there for if you have any concerns. Dentistry is a challenging degree, so having these support networks really does help.

As I am a stage 3 student, I have completed my clinical skills module, and I have started treating my own patients. I currently have 10 patients who I see on all different clinics, doing procedures ranging from Fillings, Dentures and even Extractions. You are treated on clinic as a dental practitioner, and have the support of supervising clinicians throughout. I enjoy every day on clinic, even though some days may be more challenging than others!

What is it like living in Newcastle?

I am a local student, so my house is only 20 minutes outside of Newcastle City Centre. This is a luxury that not many students have, as I already knew what an excellent city Newcastle was. It is close to the city, and really close to the countryside, and only a short ride to the nearest beach, so it really does have it all!

Newcastle is a really student friendly city, and one thing I love is how affordable everything is! If you enjoy going shopping, the city centre really close with a mix of independent shops and famous high street brands, and only a bus ride away is the Metro centre with more shops than you could imagine. The campus itself is vibrant, always full of people, loads of activities, cultural events. Within the city, there is also loads of cultural stuff to do; there are things like art galleries, comedy theatres (with my personal recommendation being the Stand Comedy Club), cinemas and museums, just to name a few! The music scene is also fantastic, and one of my favourite places to go it the Cluny, which is an independent venue, which has hosted bands, like the arctic monkeys in their early days!

Although Newcastle University is a big city with loads of things to do, the friendly locals, and overall community feel, make it one of the best places to live, study and socialise!

Leave a Reply

Please rate

Your email address will not be published.