Dental Nursing Level 3 Apprenticeship

We are delighted to offer the Level 3 Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing.

To work as a dental nurse it is essential to complete a qualification that is recognised by the General Dental Council (GDC). Successful completion of this qualification will allow you to register with the GDC and work as a dental nurse.

Who is this course for?

The course is aimed at learners aged 16-21 who wish to complete a Dental Nursing Apprenticeship. You will be required to attend college every week on a day release basis during college term time. Apprentices aged 16-18 years will be paid a minimum of £3.70 per hour whilst undertaking the apprenticeship. For those aged 19 or over you will be paid this wage for the first year of the apprenticeship, this will increase to the National Minimum Wage for your age in your second year of training. You will be paid for your day release to college.

What will I learn?

The apprenticeship is made up of theory (knowledge) that you will learn in college and practical skills that you will learn in the workplace.

You’ll complete both practical on-the-job-training to get real experience, and learning that develops your knowledge and understanding of your job

In the workplace skills (On-the-job-training) you will learn:

  • Greeting and supporting patients
  • Setting up for clinical treatments (instruments, materials etc.)
  • Completing patient dental charts and updating patient records
  • Cleaning and sterilising of dental instruments
  • Working closely with other team members

In college (Off-the-job-training) you will learn:

  • Theories that underpin the practical skills you learn in the workplace in relation to Cross Infection Control
  • Importance of working safely, for the protection of self, patients and others
  • Dental and regional anatomy
  • Practical First Aid Skills
  • Radiography
How will I be assessed?

The Level 3 Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing consists of three components:

  1. Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing (City & Guilds) consists of:
  • 4 on-line examinations undertaken during the 2 year course. These examinations are 40 minutes long and consist of multiple choice questioning. These will take place at the Colchester Campus.
  • An online portfolio of evidence which will include observations from your assessor, witness statements and assignments.
  1. If you do not already have certificates for GCSE’s in English and maths you will be required to complete Level 2 Functional Skills in English and maths (City & Guilds).

Apprentices will receive regular individual feedback from their tutors and assessors to support and enable their development. All apprentices are visited in the workplace regularly for support and to ensure progression.

  1. Apprentices will then pass through the Apprenticeship Gateway. This is a final independent assessment that will comprise of a written project and a professional discussion.

On successful completion of all of the above components you will achieve an Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing that will allow you to register with the GDC.

What award will I receive?

Level 3 Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing which consists of the following components: Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing, Level 2 Functional Skills in English and maths and Level 3 Award in Employment and Personal Learning Skills in Health.

Entry Requirements

5 GSCE’s A-C (9-4) to include English and maths are required, and a science is preferred.

Apprentices will need to evidence a good level of English and maths by participating in a screening procedure at interview. Any additional support that is required will be individually assessed.

Apprentices will be helped to gain employment in a dental practice undertaking clinical chair side duties with a contract of employment for between 30-40 hours per week which includes your day release time at college. Employer agreement and support will be given as assessment in the workplace is an essential component of the programme.

Workplace Requirements

You will need to secure employment in a dental practice following a successful interview.

All workplaces will have been assessed and deemed a suitable environment for an apprentice to undertake training. A full health & safety assessment is reviewed on a regular basis.

Prior to undertaking clinical duties you will be required to commence a course of vaccinations against Hepatitis B. Your employer will also complete a DBS check.

Once you feel prepared and ready for workplace observation your assessor will visit you on agreed dates.

Dental Nursing Level 3 Apprenticeship
LevelLevel 3
Duration36 weeks per year, for approximately two years.
CampusColchester Institute
Start DateStarting employment as an apprentice can occur throughout the year however the start-date for attending college for training, where required, will be communicated post-employment and sign-up
Apprenticeship Funding Band (Levy paying employers)£9,000
Employer Contribution Fee (Non-levy paying employers)£900
What will this cost my Business?

Non-levy paying employers will need to contribute 10% of the maximum funding band as published by the Skills Funding Agency for the delivery of training and assessment for their apprenticeship. Levy paying employers will pay the full cost of the agreed funding band using their Digital Apprenticeship account.

Apprenticeship Funding Bands

Apprenticeship Funding Bands
Employers with less than 50 employees who are recruiting an apprentice aged 16-18 years old will not be required to pay the contribution fee.
Any associated cost to the individual will be made clear at the interview.


All Fees and prices shown on the website are for courses starting in the 2018-19 academic year unless stated otherwise, and are correct at the time of entering/printing information, however these may be subject to change. The College cannot accept legal or financial liability as a result of any such changes.

The course information describes programmes offered by Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.