Is the Non-Thesis Program Right for You?

Selection Criteria and Target Audience

Non-thesis candidates should be interested in working in applied public health on issues focusing on, or congruent with, dental health. They may plan to enter the job market upon graduation or seek additional academic training.

Admission is competitive and based on the following:

  • Academic record – the program is demanding and competitive; students selected typically have a cGPA of approximately 3.5.
  • Personal interest statement demonstrating compatibility with the program – students must indicate an interest in an area of Population Oral Health.
  • Language proficiency – strong English skills are required, the ability to work in French is an asset.

Program Learning Objectives

Over the course of the MSc, our students will engage in public health scholarship through challenging coursework and dental public health-related fieldwork. The program will enable students to refine their ability to recognize and articulate a scientific perspective to investigating, advocating for, and maintaining community health. Students will further define their ethical stance, role, and responsibilities. They will apply what they have learned during the practicum.

The program aims to assist students in acquiring a core theoretical and methodological understanding of dental public health. The final semester practicum will enable students to apply what they have learned to a pertinent work setting, whether community or clinical.

Training in public health theory, methods, and practice will help students develop essential knowledge and skills needed to improve the oral and general health of the population. The following elements are taught in the program’s rigorous curriculum of required courses:

  • Theory: Students will study contemporary theories of public health and how to integrate these into research and practice. They will become well-versed in the social determinants of health. Pertinent required courses: DENT 685 Theory of Dental Public Health; DENT 671 Advanced Research Seminars; DENT 690 Literature Review.
  • Philosophy and ethics: Through coursework and forum discussions, students will identify their philosophical and ethical stance. Students will apply ethical principles to their conduct during the practicum. Pertinent required courses: DENT 663 Principles of Health Research; DENT 625 Applied Qualitative Health Research.
  • Methodology and methods: Students will become skilled in the methodology and methods necessary to carry out varied forms of research. They will learn to conduct quantitative and qualitative health research. They will have the option of studying mixed methods health research. Students will also become experts at evaluating and critiquing public health interventions through a combination of coursework and hands-on experience. Pertinent required courses: DENT/FMED 505 Epidemiology and Data Analysis in Primary Care; DENT 625 Applied Qualitative Health Research.
  • Reflexivity: To develop a coherent sense of self in the process of knowledge acquisition and its application, students must situate their perspective. They will explore phenomena or cultures and people in ways that respect the values of those they seek to understand, notably through engagement and collaboration. Pertinent required course: DENT 625 Applied Qualitative Health Research.
  • Scholarship: Students will complete required and complementary graduate level coursework. They must also produce a written document linked to their practicum, demonstrating the ability to incorporate scientific rigor into their fieldwork. Pertinent required courses: DENT 670 Dentistry Community Health Practicum; DENT 668 Practicum Readings in Dentistry and Health Research; DENT 690 Literature Review.
  • Applied knowledge: Students will work in an organization full-time for one semester. The practicum will expose them to work in a field pertinent to their studies and subsequent career. The practicum is a mutually beneficial relationship: students will discover what work in their field entails while the organization will benefit from the students’ volunteer work on an agreed-upon project. Pertinent required course: DENT 670 Dentistry Community Health Practicum.
  • Leadership and management: Leadership and management skills will be integrated into courses and into the final practicum. Professional development is, moreover, an integral component of the practicum. Opportunities for teamwork during the practicum will contribute to students’ collaborative management skills. Pertinent required course: DENT 670 Dentistry Community Health Practicum.
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