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Working in the UK dental world

The ORE (Overseas Registration Examination) initially, was the only way non-EU overseas graduates could register and work in the UK. It was called the IQE and now since about two years has been called the ORE. It now has been a two-part exam with the first part consisting of the Theory component encompassing all five years of an undergraduate dental syllabus. The second part consists of 4 components viz. Objective Structured Clinical Exam, Dental Manikin exercise, Dental Treatment Planning and Medical Emergencies.

The LDS (Licence in Dental Surgery) is the oldest continuously existing dental qualification in the United Kingdom. It started in 1860, under a charter by HM Queen Victoria in The 1858 Medical Act.It is conducted by the Royal College of Surgeons to test the fitness of persons to practise as dentists and to grant certificates of such fitness.

The ORE and the LDS, both allow an overseas qualified Dentist to register and work as a dentist in the country. The biggest question is if both the examinations grant you registration as a dentist in the UK, which one does one go for??The ORE essentially just gives one a kind of conversion of their native degree to a British qualification. It is a fairly tough exam. The LDS on the other hand is a recognised qualification. That too from one of the most prestigious colleges in the UK, The Royal College of Surgeons of England. The LDS, however is supposed to be a grade lower than a standard BDS degree, but as long as one can register with the qualification who cares?
As a non-EU graduate who has done the ORE and now plans to ho ahead and do the LDS (mainly for academic reasons), my advice to aspirants trying to do the exams to get into the UK is just apply for both the exams. The only hindrance to do both should be monetary. Both the exams are tricky and no one can predict for sure when one can get through. It is the unpredictable nature of these exams that compels me to request colleagues to attempt both the exams. Whichever gets done first is your way towards registration as a dentist.
After one passes these exams you need to complete Vocational Training (1 year VT) or VT Equivalence (3-12 months). These jobs are a bit tough to get.
I do train for ORE part one and part two. You can connect to me for any information on these exams and for any help in preparation.

For more information on the ORE check out the GDC website www.gdc-uk.org?and for the LDS log on to http://www.rcseng.ac.uk/exams/lds
Follow me on http://twitter.com/drpretam
Blog http://karmaventures.co.uk/pretam

Best of Luck
Dr. Pretam Gharat


  1. aftab

    hi i have recently passed ORE need advice how to look for vt posts??

  2. Email me via the contact form and I will try to help you.

  3. Hello. I am a Urogynaecologist and an EEA national. my wife passed her BDS from Davangere, Kuvempu University. When I contacted the GDC they said she could register as the spouse of an EEA national BUT we submitted all the documents still they have asked for the syllabus from the University. I am unsure if they are making it difficult and want her to sit the ORE???

  4. Dear Doc
    They would assess the syllabus and would only register her if they are satisfied with it. She will have to do the ORE if they feel it is not in line with the GDC standards. Unfortunately I cannot comment on this.
    Feel free to connect to me for any help.

  5. Call me on 07505454818.

  6. Hello Dr. Gharat,
    I have recently cleared my ORE and would like some advise on finding the VT or the VT equivalence.
    Looking forward to your reply,
    Thanking you

  7. Hi, do you know where to find a VT Equivalence post?

  8. Hi,i need some guidance on ORE how can i contact u

  9. Use the contact me link on my blog.

  10. Hello,
    If I graduate in an EEA member state and I have 1 year postgraduate experince, it is mandatory to have a vt equivalence?
    Have a nice day,all the best

  11. No. You are exempt from VT. Check out my post on this one.

  12. Hello,
    I’ve completed my ore exams but I am finding very difficult to VT equivalence position. I would be grateful if you have any advise or guidance.
    thank you

  13. Hello, im a british born citizen but graduated with BDS in india; do i still have to do the exam

  14. Yes you do.

  15. Call me and I will see if I can be of any help.
    Hope this helps

  16. hello,i have completed my BDS from RGUHS,bangalore.can you please sugest me how can i register to GDC temporarily in uk..and I need some guidance on LDS and ORE exams..
    thank you

  17. hi dr pretam,i m a bds graduate from pakistan,now wants to go for ORE,suggest me some books from where should i prepare for this exam,thnks

  18. hi! I cleared my ORE on April 2012. I have trying to get the VT equivalence post but everywhere I apply for job they ask for performer no. I have been strugling with ORE since long.. Initially GDC no. and now performer no. Do we even get to work in this country.. Have lost 5 years already.. I would e grateful if you could helo..

  19. Dhibee verba

    Hi! Im a qualified dentist in philippines and im planning to take the exam. Can u please help me with the preparations and requirements that i need to do? Thank you

  20. Can you call me on 00447505454818 any weekend after 5pm UK time.

  21. Dear Pratishtha
    It is extremely difficult in the current climate for VTE. Do send me your CV and I will try to help you.
    Can you call me on 00447505454818 any weekend after 5pm UK time.

  22. Dear Pratistha
    It is extremely difficult in the current climate for VTE. Do send me your CV and I will try to help you.
    Can you call me on 00447505454818 any weekend after 5pm UK time.

  23. Can anyone recomend good books,materials,prepartions to study for ORE part 1 ?

  24. VT equivalence position after finishing ORE. I finished my ORE waited a long time to get through the process , well at last that hurdle was over . I can’t get a VT equivalence position they all ask for performer number … Well I need to do VT eq to get a performer number .. Please advice me how I can find a VT eq position … It’s almost a year nw

  25. Ahmed Amr

    Hi Dr.
    I’m an Egyptian dentist graduated 2009 , I recently completed MFDS diplome , I need to make ORE or LDS but I’m confused which is better ….also I’m worried i can’t get VT after completing the exam as it seems very hard.
    Also please I want to ask If i can work in UK in the period I’m doing ORE or LDS with temporary registration or not?
    Sorry for asking too many questions ….give me an advice please
    Thanks in Advance

  26. Ahmed Amr

    I passed MFDS exam in Septemmber 2012

  27. Pratistha Shrestha

    Dear Dr. Pretam,
    Have tried to reach you couple of times but haven’t been able to get to you. I am really looking to VT equivalence. I have looking for the job since almost a year but haven’t really found anything. I would be really grateful if you could give me some tips regarding it. Please any help from you will be highly appreciated.

  28. Amy

    Hi Dr.Pretam,
    I passed ORE a while ago and have been looking for VTE positions for several months now. Nothing so far!. No job roles without Performer numbers advertised. Please could you give me some advice regarding this? I would be very much appreciated. Thank you.

  29. Jedi

    I’m worried i can’t get VT , HELP !!!! where are the VT places ????

  30. shima

    hello Dr
    thanks for your website and your information I’m 3rd year student of BDS from india I would like to live in uk and I’m searching about it I’ve got few questions will be so thankful if you guide me
    1,Are the duration of the course and marks important for giving the exam or registering??
    2, how much the whole process will cost? (approximatly)
    3,how long do you think I have to study to make it (after i finish BDS)?? how tough is the exam?? is it really impossible??? how much did you try to pass the exam?
    4,does every one has to do vt?? even tho we have done PG for a year
    5,Isn’t it better to come to uk with any visa and get familiar to the exam and uk examination system and then apply for the exam?

  31. R Kamble

    Hello Dr Gharat
    Seen your blog regarding dentistry. I am enquiring about my son who is planning to do dentistry in india. We are now uk citizens but he did not get enough grades to go into dentistry in uk. Hence we are planning to send him to india to study BDS. My question is if he is a british citizen does it make it any easier to register as a dentist in uk or does he have to give the ore exam. Would it be advisable for him to study dentistry in india and then find a job here. Please advice

  32. Hello Doctor

    I m a dentist presently working in India… I am planning to give ORE.. I need some guidance and help regarding all d documents and tests … please help me

  33. I have the following course options:
    1) ORE part one preparatory materials including presentation of preparatory courses, links to e-books, Statistics and Law and Ethics presentations. Cost – GBP 100.
    2) One-to-one course including all the materials. This course comprises of a 3 hour session (available on most weekdays) via Skype or any similar chat program. This course is the first course we expect you to do before you start your exam preparation and it covers a comprehensive and systematic outline of the exam/ORE. We would focus on each subject, each topic and each chapter. Also, we go through statistics and law and ethics which forms almost 30% of the paper. There will be a short presentation on Statistics and Law and ethics. Additional email/sms support is provided until you appear for the exam.
    Cost – GBP 250.00
    3) One-to-one Revision course for part one ORE exam.This course comprises of a 3 hour session (available on most weekdays) via Skype or any similar chat program. This is the course you need to do just few weeks before the exam. The course covers a comprehensive range of questions previously asked in the ORE part one examination. We also go through old question banks, other set of questions. Also we go thru statistics and law and ethics which forms almost 30% of the paper. There will be a short presentation on Statistics and Law and ethics. Cost – GBP 250.00
    Best to take 2 sessions for this course – GBP 350.00

    Please reply with whatever options you wish to consider. You can also call me on the below number or check http://www.drpretam.com to obtain further information on the courses.

  34. Maryam

    Hi. Im doing dentistry from pakistan. Just wanted to ask…is it mandatory to do a year of house job to fit the criteria for the ore exam?

  35. Dear Dr Pretam,

    I have something to discuss regarding dentist registration and more. When is a good time to call you.I am accessible on 07888755554


  36. email me or contact me through the blog. thanks.

  37. Dear dr pretam,
    I have done ore2 in dec 2013, looking for vte position. Any help regarding how to find one and any tips would be appreciated.
    Many thanks


  39. dr wahab

    Dear Dr Pretam Gharat

    I am an irish citizen but have done bds from pakistan. Am I exempted from ORE or do I have to take it?

  40. Neha

    Dear Dr Pretam, I have my BDS from India, and I am married to EEA national who is working in UK. I wanted to register with GDC and I have sent my request. I wanted to know what are the next steps normally in cases like mine? Thanks

  41. No you are not exempt. Please speak to the GDC for further clarification.

  42. If you have done the IELTS/TOEFL in the past, then speak to the GDC else you have to do the either of the exams.

  43. Please speak to the GDC,UK.

  44. Kirkuk

    I am UK citizen and and my wife has BDS from Iraq with over 5 years experience. She has UK visa to work, is she exempted?

    I have spoken to GDC but I could not get a clear answer

    Thanks in advance

    Kind regards,

  45. Krishani

    Dear Dr Pretam Gharat,

    I am not sure if you are still reachable via this site but I would be grateful for any assistance/advice you can offer in my search for a VT or VTE placement. I recently passed my ORE and am keen to resume my Dental career in the UK.

    Kind regards


  46. Meht

    I m a dentist from pakistan in 2005.
    I m married to EEA citizen .he is working as a doctor in norway.
    M i exempted frm taking ore?
    Kindly reply

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Working in the UK dental world