Dentistry – Field of study catalogue MU
“I know one thing: that I know nothing”
Dentistry is a branch of medicine involved in prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases of the orofacial area. There are three independent disciplines within the field – Clinical Dentistry, Orthodontics, and Maxillofacial Surgery – as well as a number of specializations: restorative dentistry, endodontics, cosmetic dentistry, prosthodontics, oral and maxillofacial surgery, implant dentistry, periodontics, paediatric dentistry, and preventive dentistry.
The doctoral degree programme encompasses all the above-mentioned specializations in dentistry, following the diagnosis, treatment, and research challenges in the individual areas so as to be able to focus primarily on the most topical trends; currently, it is the research into options of restoring the physiological functions of the orofacial system using modern methods and the principles of primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention. As a branch of science, dentistry works together with other fields and is involved in stem cell research; research into the properties of materials and surface structures including nanostructures made possible by cutting-edge morphological, biochemical, biophysical, and microbiological methods as well as genetic analysis using the tools of molecular biology; study of possible uses of laser within dentistry; implementation of 3D reconstruction for diagnostic purposes; and analysis of useful data from medical records.
A list of doctoral dissertation topics in full-time and combined (part-time) study modes is available and differs each year based on the availability and research focus of the supervisors. The Dentistry doctoral degree programme focuses primarily on current challenges in the field and individual disciplines and the corresponding research activities. Students learn theoretical knowledge as well as the skills needed to work independently as researchers and publish their findings in first-rate Czech and international journals with impact factor. They also gain healthcare experience in their field and prepare for, or earn, their certification in Orthodontics, Maxillofacial surgery, or the new discipline of Clinical Dentistry.
After successfully completing his/her studies the graduate is able to:
- Use his/her knowledge of the given topic, collect relevant data, and prepare the data for statistical procession and interpretation.
- Assess current trends within the dentistry discipline related to the topic of his/her doctoral dissertation as well as in the field of Dentistry in general.
- Share his/her experience in the field through teaching, lecturing, and publications.
- Organize and consolidate the collected data, interpret the results achieved, present his/her findings and defend them before colleagues in the field.
- Work independently as a researcher and scientist.
- Perform routine diagnostic, preventive, and therapeutic procedures in his/her field/discipline and work independently as a dentist or specialized dentist based on his/her certification(s).
Graduates of the Dentistry doctoral study programme work primarily at the Department of Stomatology, Faculty of Medicine at Masaryk University or other stomatology clinics in the Czech Republic and abroad as researchers, lecturers, and clinicians. All stomatology clinics in the Czech Republic currently lack young PhD lecturers. Graduates who decide to work in private practice can use their expert knowledge and analytical skills obtained during their doctoral studies in real-life situations in everyday practice.
The study plans and schedules of individual PhD students are based on their particular discipline/specialization within Dentistry and the topic of their doctoral dissertation, but most importantly on the requirements of their supervisors. Students must complete all courses that are required for PhD students at the Faculty of Medicine and can also choose from a range of elective courses. Other than that, the study plan also includes the following requirements, which may differ based on the specialization:
1) Working in the lab, data collection, and using equipment and IT technology based on the doctoral dissertation topic; 2) teaching pre-clinical and clinical Dentistry courses (up to 0.3 FTE or based on the students' contract); 3) working as clinicians at specialised departments of the clinic (up to 0.3 FTE or based on the students' contract); 4) learning special work processes in stomatology; 5) publishing a first-author or co-author paper in a journal with IF published abroad; in the case of a co-author paper, students need to publish at least one more paper as first authors in a scholarly journal published in the Czech Republic or abroad.
During the course of their studies, students of the Dentistry doctoral degree programme work in clinical dentistry (up to 0.3 FTE) and as lecturers or teacher’s assistants based on their discipline/specialization (up to 0.3 FTE). The training takes place in every semester of the studies.
To pass their doctoral state examination, students need to fulfil the following basic requirements: 1) complete all the required courses as requested; 2) obtain sufficient results for their doctoral dissertation; and, last but not least, 3) obtain theoretical knowledge and practical skills in dentistry above the level required for Master’s studies.
The defence of a doctoral dissertation in Dentistry has to comply with the MU Study Regulations. It takes place before a board of examiners appointed by the dean of the MU Faculty of Medicine and its members are also members of the board for doctoral studies in Dentistry. The board of examiners has at least five members and at least two of them are external members who are not employees of the Faculty of Medicine or the St. Anne’s University Hospital/University Hospital Brno-Bohunice. The student’s supervisor is usually a member of the board for doctoral studies, but not the chair. The thesis reader is usually not a member of the board for doctoral studies, with the exception of the external members, who can be readers and members of the board of examiners at the same time. The procedure for the defence is described in the MU Study Regulations. After presenting his/her results, the student responds to the questions and comments of the readers and then answers questions of the board of examiners or other attendees (doctoral dissertation defences are public). The questions are noted in the minutes and become part of the defence records. Evaluation of the doctoral dissertation defence is described in the MU Study Regulations and is given as a grade from A to F.
As dentistry is a doctoral degree programme, this category is not applicable.