COVIDSafety and dental practitioner assessments

At the Australian Dental Council (ADC) we are committed to the health and safety of our candidates, examiners, and team. We continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely and follow all relevant advice from government agencies and global organisations.

This page provides advice for dental practitioner assessment candidates. We will update this page as needed.

Initial, skills assessments and renewals

On 5 August 2021 the Victorian Government introduced Level Four lockdown restrictions across Victoria. In response to these restrictions, the Australian Dental Council office and examination centre is closed.

We strongly recommend candidates post applications and documentation. While we will always do our best to ensure couriered documents are received, we cannot guarantee their acceptance due to ongoing uncertainty with COVID-19.

We would like to thank all candidates for their ongoing patience as we process applications received throughout 2021. Our team is working hard to provide you with application outcomes as soon as possible.

Written examination

Validity periods

The standard written examination validity period is three years. Due to the ongoing impact of COVID-19 the ADC has extended the validity period by a total of two years for candidates with written examinations originally expiring between October 2020 and November 2022. These new expiry periods are highlighted in the table below.

As practical examinations are held in Melbourne, Victoria, we recommend candidates consider their ability to travel during their validity period before applying for future written examination places as no further extensions will be granted.

New written examination format

In early-2021 we announced the implementation of the revised written examination for general dentistry. Coming into effect during the September 2021 written examination, this replaces the previous written examination format.

Changes to the ADC written examination

Practical examination

The ADC is permitted to run examinations during the Victorian lockdown. Confirmed practical examinations will run until the end of the year. We will contact you directly if anything changes.

The ADC will provide a permit to enable you to travel within Victoria to attend your practical examination, if required. You are responsible for arranging any permits or other documentation allowing you to travel into and out of Victoria from another part of Australia or New Zealand.

If you are in a red zone, or a state or territory which has restricted your ability to return if you enter Victoria, you must apply for a withdrawal from your examination as early as possible. You can do this by emailing the Notification of withdrawal from an ADC examination form to [email protected] with the subject line Refund or postpone. We will contact you regarding your options after we receive your email.

If you do not advise us of your need to withdraw before 3pm the day before your examination, you will forfeit your examination fees.

COVID testing and the practical examination

From Monday 11 October 2021, all candidates attending the practical examination must provide proof of a negative COVID test before they are admitted to the examination centre.

The test must be done within 72 hours before the start of Day 1 of the examination. Your results will be checked on arrival as part of your registration process. Candidates unable to show proof of a negative COVID test will be turned away. You are not entitled to a refund or postponement if you are turned away for failing to provide proof of a negative COVID test.

We would like to thank all our candidates for their ongoing patience and understanding during this time.

Keeping you COVIDSafe

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, our priority has been the safety of our candidates, examiners and team. To ensure your safety during the practical examination we have made some changes around our examination centre. We will continue to revise our COVIDSafe measures to ensure your safety when you visit our examination centre.

Support for candidates

COVID-19 assessments and examinations policy

We have updated the COVID-19 assessments and examinations policy: September 2021 to reflect the ongoing impact of the pandemic on our candidates. 

The updated policy outlines the provisions we introduced to support candidates throughout the pandemic.

Dental Practitioner Support Service

We appreciate that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been significant for many of our candidates. One avenue of support for candidates is the Dental Board of Australia’s Dental Practitioner Support Service.

Those contacting Dental Practitioner Support have access to an experienced team who can provide confidential advice and referral on a range of issues, including mental and physical health as well as general wellbeing. Anyone using the service has the option to remain anonymous, should they wish to do so.

More information about the service, and how to seek support, is available via the Dental Practitioner Support website.

 

More information

We are committed to keeping you informed of any updates as they occur. Please continue to check our website for the most up-to-date information.

If you have any questions about the dental practitioner assessment process and COVID-19 please contact us.

Timeline of response

Below is a summary of the Australian Dental Council's response to COVID-19 to date.

15 September 2021

The ADC releases its revised COVID-19 assessments and examinations policy: September 2021.

The policy includes updates on written examination validity periods and the practical examination withdrawal process in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

11 August 2021

The ADC examination centre remains closed due to the Victorian Government's Level Four lock-down restrictions. Practical examinations scheduled for the week beginning 16 August have been postponed. Candidates affected by this postponement have been contacted.

At this time practical examinations for the week beginning 30 August will go ahead as scheduled.

6 August 2021

The ADC examination centre remains closed due to the Victorian Government's Level Four lock-down restrictions. Practical examinations scheduled for the week beginning 9 August were postponed. We will contact candidates affected by this postponement.
 
At this time practical examinations for the week beginning 16 August will go ahead as scheduled.

5 August 2021

On 5 August, the Victorian Government announced a Level Four lock-down restrictions for Victoria. Under these restrictions, the ADC office remains closed until further notice.

An update for candidates with practical examination places impacted by this latest lock-down will be provided on 6 August 2021.

We strongly recommend candidates post applications and documentation. While we will always do our best to ensure couriered documents are received, we cannot guarantee their acceptance due to ongoing uncertainty with COVID-19.

22 July 2021

On 22 July 2021, the ADC postponed all practical examinations scheduled for the week commencing 2 August 2021. The ADC has contacted affected candidates directly.

20 July 2021

On 20 July 2021 the ADC postponed all practical examinations scheduled for the week commencing 26 July 2021. Affected candidates will be contacted by the ADC.

16 July 2021

On 16 July 2021 the ADC postponed practical examinations scheduled for 21 and 22 July 2021. Affected candidates will be contacted by the ADC.

The ADC also introduced its refund policy for practical examination candidates. Under the policy candidates unable to travel into Victoria to sit their practical examination due to Victorian Government restrictions classifying their place of residence as a red zone will be eligible for a refund. The policy applies retrospectively and prospectively to practical examinations held between 1 January and 31 December 2021.

15 July 2021

On 15 July, the Victorian Government announced a Level Four lock-down restrictions for Greater Melbourne until 11:59pm 20 July 2021. Under these restrictions, the ADC office remains closed until further notice.

Practical examinations scheduled for 19 and 20 July 2021 have been postponed. Affected candidates will be contacted by the ADC to discuss available options.

Affected candidates in sessions beyond 21 July 2021 will be contacted directly by the ADC should the situation change.

Due to the office closure the ADC is unable to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored securely until the office reopens.

The ADC is unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications, or supporting documents. We are also unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates when the office reopens to advise on the expected outcome of your application.

2 June 2021

On 2 June, the Victorian Government announced a seven-day extension of Level Four lock-down restrictions for Greater Melbourne until 11:59pm 10 June 2021. Under these restrictions, the ADC office remains closed until further notice.

Practical examinations scheduled between 31 May and 10 June have been postponed. Affected candidates will be contacted by the ADC to discuss available options.

At this time, examinations from 15 June 2021 onwards are scheduled to take place as planned.

The application period for the September 2021 written examination is unchanged.

Due to the office closure the ADC is unable to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored securely until the office reopens.

Due to the extension of lock-down restrictions, the ADC is unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications, written examination applications, or supporting documents. We are also unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates when the office reopens to advise on the expected outcome of your application.

27 May 2021

On 27 May 2021, the Victorian Government announced Level Four lock-down restrictions for Victoria for seven days from 11:59pm AEST 27 May to 11:59pm 3 June 2021. Under Level Four restrictions, the ADC office, including the administration and examination centre, will be closed until further notice. The ADC will contact candidates with a scheduled practical examination during this time.

Based on this practical examinations scheduled for the week commencing 31 May 2021 (31 May to 3 June 2021) have been postponed. The ADC will contact affected candidates to discuss available options.

At this time, examinations from the 7 June onwards are scheduled to take place as planned. The ADC will be continuing to monitor the situation and will contact candidates directly should it change.

The application period for the September 2021 written examination is unchanged at this time. Applications received via post will be accepted and stored securely until the office reopens. Due to the office closure, the ADC is not in a position to accept applications sent via courier. Candidates will be notified should the situation change.

As a result of this closure, we are unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications or supporting documents. We will also be unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates once the office reopens to advise on when to expect an outcome of your application.

Due to the office closure, the ADC is not in a position to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to the sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored safely until the office reopens.

12 February 2021

On 12 February 2021, the Victorian Government announced Level Four lock-down restrictions for Victoria for five days from 11:59pm AEDT 12 to 11:59pm AEDT 17 February 2021.

Under Level Four restrictions, the ADC office, including the administration and examination centre, will be closed until further notice.

Practical examinations scheduled for the week commencing 15 February 2021 have been postponed. The ADC will contact affected candidates to discuss available options.

At this time, examinations from the 22 February onwards are scheduled to take place as scheduled. The ADC will contact candidates directly should the situation change.

As a result of this closure, we are unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications or supporting documents. We will also be unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates once the office reopens to advise on when to expect an outcome of your application.

Due to the office closure, the ADC is not in a position to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to the sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored safely until the office reopens.

28 October 2020

The ADC has recommenced the processing of initial applications and has announced examination dates and application periods for written and practical examinations in 2021. This announcement is available here.

We are now accepting mail and deliveries via courier.

2 August 2020

On 2 August 2020, Victorian entered a State of Disaster as a result of COVID-19 transmission throughout the state. As a result of this announcement, and the introduction of Level Four lock down measures across the Greater Melbourne area, the ADC offices are closed until further notice.

As a result of this closure, we are unable to acknowledge receipt of initial assessment applications, initial assessment renewal applications or supporting documents. We will also be unable to take payments for applications. We will contact all impacted candidates once the office reopens to advise on when to expect an outcome of your application.

Due to the office closure, the ADC is not in a position to accept any documents sent via courier. Any documentation sent via courier will be returned to the sender. Documents sent by post will be accepted and stored safely until the office reopens.

24 June 2020

The ADC announced the postponement of practical examinations to 30 November 2020 and the delivery of a written examination for candidates with an existing booking on 21 and 22 September.

We are currently reviewing options for the delivery of postponed practical examinations as well as new written examination dates for all eligible candidates. New application periods, which will take into consideration new examination dates and eligibility criteria will be advertised on the ADC website at a later date.

To help describe the measures put in place regarding postponed examinations, the ADC has developed the COVID-19 policy for assessments and examinations (the Policy). This Policy outlines the provisions we have introduced to support all candidates through their candidature during this time. The Policy provides more information on validity periods, as well as an overview of what options are available to those candidates with existing written and practical examination bookings who may not want the ADC to hold a seat in the next available written or practical examination.

The Policy is available for download here.

15 April 2020

The ADC announced the postponement of practical examinations scheduled to 30 September 2020.

We are currently reviewing options for the delivery of postponed examinations later in the year. New application periods, which will take into consideration new examination dates and eligibility criteria will be advertised on the ADC website at a later date.

At this time, application periods for examinations in October and November 2020 are unchanged.

The ADC is working closely with Pearson Vue regarding the written examination scheduled for September 2020.

23 March 2020

In response to the evolving situation regarding COVID-19, the ADC will commence remote working arrangements from Tuesday 24 March until further notice.
The ADC remains operational during this time, with all staff continuing to work remotely, however, ADC examination centre in Melbourne, Victoria will not be holding examinations during this time.  

17 March 2020

Following further monitoring of the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19, the ADC postponed all practical examinations scheduled to 30 June 2020.

16 March 2020

In response to the rapidly evolving situation regarding COVID-19 and its impact on domestic and international travel, the ADC made the decision to postpone the following upcoming examinations:

  • Written examination for general dentists and dental hygienists:  23-24 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 11: Wednesday 18 - Thursday 19 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 12: Wednesday 25 - Thursday 26 March 2020
  • General dentistry practical examination session 13: Monday 30 - Tuesday 31 March 2020
  • A mid-year dental hygiene/dental therapy practical examination.

10 March 2020

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ministry of Education announced a four-week closure of all public and private schools and higher education institutions across the Emirates, effective from Sunday 8 March 2020. Forming part of the Emirates’ preventive and precautionary measures aimed at maintaining the safety of students, these closures are in line with the efforts made to contain the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

The announcement affected some testing venues in UAE. Pearson VUE notified those Australian Dental Council (ADC) candidates sitting the March 2020 written examination by email if their venue was affected by the closure.