Dental Core Training in London & KSS

Dental Core Training (DCT) is designed principally for the recent dental graduate, following on from the first year of Dental Foundation Training.

Across London and KSS London, there are posts designated as being DCT year 1, DCT year 2, DCT year 3, Academic and pilot 2 year Longitudinal dental foundation programme.

The vast majority of the posts are sited in hospital trusts, although a few are aligned to the salaried dental services or dental public health. In the hospital trusts, a large number of the year 1 posts are in one of London’s three dental teaching institutions, whilst the remainder are in District General Hospitals with Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery or Dental departments.

An example of the trust sites covered by DCT can cover can be found below (and are subject to change each year).

The trust sites covered by DCT can cover can be found below.

Click this link to access the London & KSS DCT post descriptions


The Dental Core Training year maps to the curriculum which defines what should be completed as part of the training.  


In addition trainers are expected to report on the performance of the trainees during their training by recording various aspects of performance as well as providing support and guidance to the trainee, as outlined in the Dental Gold Guide (See File 1 below). 


Dental Core Training Year 1 (DCT1)

Undertaking a DCT 1 post, which is entirely voluntary, offers the recent graduate the opportunity to work and train for a year in a setting very different from general dental practice. The trainee learns to work in a large, often multidisciplinary team, alongside specialists and consultants, many of whom have national or international reputations in their field of work. The trainee learns to manage patients referred from the primary care setting as well as, in many of the posts, the emergency treatment of victims of trauma and serious illness. Knowledge gained in dental school is applied and new skills learnt. The posts offer an excellent opportunity to study for the Membership examinations (MFDS) and to being to shape a “CV” for the benefit of future career progression. Many dental graduates choose to undertake a DCT1 year in order to help them decide upon a career pathway.

DCT1 continues the educational practices available in DFT. There are regular didactic study sessions and the trainee can apply for “study leave” to attend activities such as professional conferences and courses. The year can be spent on making a start with publications and with presentations to local and regional groups. Designing and undertaking audits is an essential part of the job role. In addition, many trainees begin to get experience of teaching either dental undergraduates or allied professionals.

In London and KSS, as with most of the rest of the country, the posts commence at the beginning of September, with the recruitment held in the preceding spring. Entry is competitive and London & KSS, with its wide range of job and site options, is a very popular choice.

Nearly everyone who undertakes a DCT1 post finds it a rewarding and valuable experience. For many it is career defining, setting them on a path, rarely easy, that leads to the achievement of an ambition.


Dental Core Training Year 2 (DCT2)

Following a DCT1 training year, many dentists seek Associate positions in the GDS. Some enjoy mixed, part time, work in practice and in hospitals, as Trust Dentists. A significant proportion, however, wish to realise their ambition to become a dental specialist and for most, the next step is to acquire a DCT2 post.

DCT2 posts differ from DCT1 posts by being more closely aligned to a particular dental speciality. Across London and KSS, these include OMFS, Paediatric Dentistry, Restorative Dentistry, Community Dentistry, Oral Surgery and Oral Medicine. There is an additional, very specialised, post in Oral Pathology. Although the job opportunities are relatively few, it does give the DCT2 trainees the opportunity to expand their knowledge, skills and experience to be serious contenders for entry into dental speciality training.


Other Posts

There are also DCT3, Academic and Longitudinal dental foundation programme posts available which offer other specific opportunities.

DCT1/2/3 Programme Team for London and Kent, Surrey and Sussex

The DCT programme is led by the Postgraduate Dental Dean with support from the Associate Deans, Training Programme Directors and Educational and Clinical Supervisors within the Local Education Providers.

The following flow sheet provides an overview of the current structure


Contact Details of TPD’s:

North London: Zoe Killick.       Email:

South London: Dapo Akintola: Email: 

KSS:                Sonita Koshal   Email:

All Trainees should contact the HEE team via PGMDE Support Portal (PSP)


Meeting with your Educational supervisor



Study dates

The DCT year planned mandatory and optional study days can be found in file 2 listed at the bottom of this page. Please see Here


This will be updated regularly throughout the year so please check back. 

Study Leave Information 

Please see the following presentation with information for the DCT & ES on the process.

Please See Study leave presentation (to be uploaded shortly)

Further details can also be found from the following link: Study leave Guidance 

Interim RCP Dental Core Training guidance 2021

Click here 

FRCP Dental Core Training guidance 2022

Click Here

Interim iRCP Dental Core Training guidance 2022

Click Here

Axia Portfolio 

videos coming soon please check back 

DCT Patient satisfaction questionnaire information

Please see file 6 below - Information sheet 6 PSQ or 

Via paper - please see document file 7 below Instruction on completion of PSQs on paper and upload to Axia portfolio


Educational Supervisor Patient satisfaction questionnaire publishing information

How to publish Patient Satisfaction Questionnaires for Trainees is available below - file 8 For DCT ES how to publish PSQ

Educational Supervisors information 

Educational supervisor meetings – please see the above timeline also note the RCP requirements expected to be seen on the portfolio by interim and final RCP.

Axia portfolio – training links to be uploaded shortly 

ES Axia Time line

  • September/ October  - ES and trainee linked on Axia
  • September/ October - Induction agreement, checklist and meeting
  • January - Review of competence progression: ES report
  • MSF completed and released by the TPD
  • June – ES to release patient satisfaction questionnaires report
  • June – Review of competence progression: ES report

Any further queries please contact your regional TPD.

Study leave

The Educational Supervisor has the responsibility of approving study leave requested by a trainee. 

Please see the presentation in the DCT study leave section above for more details on the process.

Each trainee is entitled to up to 30 days of study leave per training year. 

HEE mandatory study days and local regular teaching sessions come out of this 30 day study leave allowance.

For example, if the DCT carried out a weekly afternoon teaching session, this is taken out of their study leave allowance, along with the mandatory study days. This equates to 6 days remaining study leave for the trainee.  This will be unit/year specific and needs to be calculated by each Trust team.

The remaining study days should be used for what the ES deems as relevant courses for the trainee in line with Personal Development Plan (PDP).

It is important that trainees are made aware that study leave is not a ‘given right’ and has to be approved.  If the ES feels that the requested study leave is not appropriate, then they can refuse the request.  In such cases the trainee can appeal to the ES who can then escalate this to the TPD.

The HEE-managed centralised study leave process makes accessing study leave and study budgets a transparent, equitable and streamlined process for all trainees.

There is now no limit to the study leave budget for trainees, but the ES will use their discretion in approving optional courses.

The study budget should be used to support individual professional development.

This includes:

  • Covering costs of educational courses/activities that support curriculum attainment
  • Agreement that NHS Trusts will cover costs of all mandatory training required to fulfil the trainee’s clinical role e.g. life support courses, safeguarding training
  • The study budget will not cover certain claims such as College examination fees
  • Provision of discretionary funding for individualised training opportunities.

Points for the ES to note:

  • Optional and aspirational courses a trainee requests must be evidenced in their PDP
  • If a trainee would like to take up a leadership or management course, please direct them to the Edward Jenner Programme or the Spiral leadership tool kit in the first instance.
  • Please promote Londec based courses as a resource
  • The DCT optional Soft tissue course code does not include periodontal surgery courses
  • PG Cert in education will not be approved for DCT1 & DCT 2 trainees
  • Commercial aesthetic courses are aspirational, and will generally not be supported by the TPD.
  • If in doubt with any of the above please get in contact with your regional TPD.


For any other queries not answered above please follow the link below


Please visit the links and websites below for further information, regular training updates and support in light of our ever-changing landscape:

London HEE website               

KSS HEE Website                    

The National HEE website       

PGMDE Support Panel