Dental Public Health is the branch and specialty of dentistry concerned with the diagnosis, prevention, and control of dental diseases and the promotion of oral health through organized community efforts. Dental Public Health serves the community and the public through research, health promotion, education, and oral healthcare programs.


The NDSE will test a candidate's knowledge of dental public health principles and public health issues.


Canadian dental public health specialists are required to have broad knowledge and skills in the seven domains of the dental public health blueprint. The following blueprint shows the content areas and approximate percentage of questions (cases/topics/computer-based data analysis/policy analysis) in each domain.

Dental Public Health Blueprint

Approximate % of questions

Assess community oral health status, needs and resources


Diagnose community oral health problems and identify the cause or strength of contributing factors


Assess policies, strategies, programs, services and devices that affect oral health and the provision of oral health services


Plan activities or programs that would be worthwhile in improving oral health within the given ethical, legal, political, social, demographic, economic and environmental context


Manage oral health programs


Assemble, synthesize and communicate relevant, accurate and clear information that will enable individuals, families, communities, public and private health organizations and government decision-makers to improve oral health


Conduct education on and research into community oral health problems and services in order to assure a diverse and competent public oral health workforce and advancement of the specialty.





The examination will consist of three two hour parts.

References and Resources

Reference Texts

Burt, B. A., & Eklund, S. A. (2005). Dentistry, Dental Practice, and the Community. Maarssen, Netherlands: Elsevier Gezondheidszorg.

Department of Human Services, Centers for Disease Control Department of Health and Human Services and Prevention, Prevention, C. D. C. D. H. H. S., & Services, D. H. (2014). Developing an Effective Evaluation Plan. Scotts Valley, California: Createspace Independent Pub.

Donabedian, A. (2005). Evaluating the Quality of Medical Care. Milbank Quarterly, 83(4), 691–729.

Edlin, R., McCabe, C., Hulme, C., Hall, P., & Wright, J. (2015). Economic Evaluation, Cost Effectiveness Analysis and Health Care Resource Allocation. Cost Effectiveness Modelling for Health Technology Assessment, 1–13.

F., & Fletcher, G. S. (2019). Clinical Epidemiology. Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Goodman, H. S., & Weyant, R. J. (1990). Dental Health Personnel Planning: a Review of the Literature. Journal of Public Health Dentistry, 50(1), 48–63.

Grytten, J. (2016). Payment systems and incentives in dentistry. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 45(1), 1–11.

Higgins, J. P. T., Thomas, J., Chandler, J., Cumpston, M., Li, T., Page, M. J., & Welch, V. A. (2019). Chapter 10: Analysing data and undertaking meta-analyses. In Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. Hoboken, NJ, United States: Wiley.

McLaughlin, C. G., & Wyszewianski, L. (2002). Access to Care: Remembering Old Lessons. Health Services Research, 37(6), 1441–1443.

Morestin, F. (2012). A Framework for Analyzing Public Policies. Barcelona, Spain: Institut d’Estudis Catalans.

Pine, C. M., & Harris, R. (2007). Community Oral Health. Batavia, Illinois: Quintessence Pub.

Smeeton, N. C. (2016). Dental Statistics Made Easy. Abingdon, United Kingdom: Taylor & Francis.

Steps for successful policy analysis. (2011 28). Retrieved from

Tessier, C. (2019). The policy brief: A tool for knowledge transfer. Montreal, Quebec: National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy.

World Health Organization, & World Health Organization. (2013). Oral Health Surveys. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.