Competencies List

The Faculty of Dental Medicine of the Hebrew University & Hadassah

Professional Competencies for the New General Dental Practitioner



Dentists are expected to promote and enhance the total health of theirs patients through oral health management. Managing oral health care applies to all patients, patients with special needs, and patients with oral manifestations of systemic disease and involves providing ongoing oral health care management. In the course of managing patient care, competent practitioners should recognize the limitations of their expertise, and refer patients appropriately for treatment and coordinate the patient care plan.


The Faculty of Dental Medicine of the Hebrew University identified 6 core Professional Competencies' domains for the graduated general dentist: 

A. Interpersonal Communication and Social skills Domain

B. Knowledge base, Information and Information Literacy Domain

C. Clinical Information gathering, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning Domain

D. Prevention and Health Promotion Domain

E. Oral Health Managing, Establishing, and Maintaining Oral health Domain

F. Professionalism Patient Care and Clinical Practice Domain

The domains reflect the Faculty's Vision and Goals ensuring that all graduates are competent to provide comprehensive, patient-centered, evidence-based oral health care, and receive diverse experiences through engagement with community and professional organizations. 

The following resources were used in the development of the Professional Competencies:

  1. ADEA Competencies for the New Dentist Journal of Dental Education. 2004;68 (7):742-744.
  2. J. Cowpe, A. Plasschaert, W. Harzer, H. Vinkka-Puhakka and A. D. Walmsley. Profile and competences for the graduating European dentist – update 2009 European Journal of Dental Education Volume 14, Issue 4, November 2010, Pages: 193–202.
  3. ADEA Competencies for the New General Dentist: (As approved by the 2008 ADEA House of Delegates). Journal of Dental Education 2013 77:899-902.
  4. ADEA Foundation Knowledge and Skills for the New General Dentist. Journal of Dental Education 2011;75(7):936-940

Guiding Principles

Ideally, professional development begins the first day the student enters dental school and does not end until the day the dentist retires from the profession. While this should be a continuous process of improvement, the process can be divided conveniently into five stages: novice, beginner, competent, proficient, and expert (1).


Definitions and Policy Statements

Other than the decision to begin this professional journey, the most significant milepost is the attainment of the first professional degree, which corresponds to the accomplishment of professional competencies (1).

Competency – the ability to begin independent, unsupervised dental practice.  Competencies are abilities essential to beginning the practice of dentistry. The competencies set forth in this document are supported by knowledge of basic biomedical, behavioral, and clinical sciences; by cognitive, psychomotor, self-assessment and critical thinking skills; and by professional and ethical values. The integration and application of the basic biomedical sciences are considered a critical element in the development of competencies for the future (1).

The Faculty of Dental Medicine Professional Competencies for the New General Dental Practitioner are intended to guide the pre-graduate curriculum, as dynamic standards to regulate, review and revision as part as a process ongoing quality improvement of the education. These competencies are support integration and merging of all disciplines, which benefit dentists in training and also patients who are receiving treatment. Competency statements provide undergraduate dental teaching institutions with a benchmark with which to (2):

  1. Review, redefine and restructure the undergraduate curriculum
  2. Review and improve student evaluation processes
  3. Establish and apply outcome measures to assess the effectiveness of the undergraduate program.

These competencies relate to the child, adolescent, adult, geriatric, and medically compromised patients.

In the following list of competences, the term "manage" is used frequently. The term "manage" includes: communication with all parties (patient, colleagues, specialists, team members etc.), method and guidelines, refer and collaborate with other dental or other specialist(s), choose and use the appropriate measurements, prevention, care, patient's self-management, use performance tests (defined by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)

The overall learning outcomes and competencies of the D.M.D degree of the Hebrew University and Hadassah Faculty of Dental Medicine are:

Graduates must be competent to:  


Competencies 2019 - HUHSDM
Domain 1: Knowledge base, Health promotion and Treatment planning 1.1 Apply the principles of health promotion and educational strategies in comprehensive     patient care. (2-24d)
1.2 Apply the knowledge of behavioral sciences, biomedical sciences and dental biomaterials in comprehensive patient care. (2-15) (2-16)
1.3 Assess the unique needs relating to the oral health care of special needs patients and socially deprived groups. (2-25)
1.4 Select and obtain diagnostic tools.  (2-24a) 
1.5 Analyze diagnostic and risk assessment data and formulate a comprehensive treatment plan and / or referral options to address patient's needs. (2-24a)
Domain 2: Oral Health Care Delivery 2.1 Obtain correct and full informed consent for all forms of treatment. (2-24a) 
2.2 Select and prescribe pharmacological agents in the treatment of patients.(2-24e)
2.3 Prevent, diagnose, and manage dental pain, oro-facial pain, sensory changes and anxiety. (2-24e)
2.4 Prevent, diagnose, and manage periodontal diseases. (2-24i)
2.5 Prevent, diagnose and manage caries. (2-24f)
2.6 Diagnose and manage pulpal and peri-radicular diseases. (2-24j)
2.7 Provide restorative care to preserve tooth structure, replace defective tooth structure, while maintaining function and esthetics.  (2-24f)
2.8 Manage the replacement of missing teeth for the partially or completely edentulous patient.  (2-24h)
2.9 Prevent, diagnose and manage developmental or acquired malocclusion and space management needs. (2-24n)
2.10 Prevent, diagnose and manage oral and cranio-facial soft tissue, and osseous disorders, including cancer. (2-24k) (2-24b)
2.11 Diagnose and manage surgical treatment needs of soft and hard tissue. (2-24l)
2.12 Recognize and manage dental emergencies. (2-24m)
2.13 Recognize and manage medical emergencies.
2.14 Communicate and manage dental laboratory procedures in support of patient care. (2-24g)
2.15 Evaluate outcomes of comprehensive dental care, develop recall strategies and determine prognoses. (2-24o)
Domain 3: Professionalism and Interpersonal skills 3.1 Apply the principals of patient-centered care through data-collection, treatment planning and treatment.
3.2 Establish appropriate patient-dentist interpersonal and communicational skills with diverse patient population. (2-17)
3.3 Communicate and collaborate with both the patient and other members of the health care team in a multicultural work environment. (2-17)
3.4 Utilize critical thinking and problem-solving skills in the comprehensive care of patients, scientific inquiry and research methodology. (2-10)
3.5 Evaluate scientific and lay literature and integrate best research outcomes for the delivery of evidence-based, patient-centered care. (2-22)
3.6 Apply the principles of ethical decision making, integrity, professional responsibility, and protecting patient confidentiality. (2-21)
3.7 Apply the basic principles and philosophies of practice management, and models of oral health care delivery. (2-19)
3.8 Apply principles of ethic, legal and regulatory concepts related to the provision and/or support of oral health care services. (2-18)
3.9 Utilize universal infection control guidelines and maintain safe working environment for all clinical procedures.
3.10 Communicate, collaborate and utilize appropriate professional behavior as the leader of the oral health care team. (2-19)
3.11 Utilize self-assessment as a part of ongoing self-directed and lifelong learning. (2-11)
3.12 Recognize their own limitations, and refer to a specialist as needed. (2-24c)