What are the various types of Dental Diploma courses after BDS? How to choose a Diploma course? How much the dental diploma costs? All the answers in this article.

In this article, we are going to discuss the diploma courses available for dentists after dental graduation (BDS/MDS). 

We will try to provide the information which will help in your search of Diploma Courses in dentistry. This article mostly aimed at Indian dentists as the scenario of dentistry over here is very different from other developed countries.

 The question that is common to all the dental students or should I say the question that unites all the dental students all over India (irrespective of which state they belong to) is “What After BDS?” … 

But in the current scenario of dentistry, that question has now been promoted to “What After MDS”

The changing scenario of dentistry in India

Diploma Courses in Dentistry

When you, me and rest of our friends joined dentistry … we kind of hoped things will get better from that point onwards. But five years down the line we did get the degree but along with that a lot of confusion.

Five years down the line we did get the degree but along with that a lot of confusion.

One reason for that confusion is dentistry as an educational degree doesn’t get you placement in some MNC.

The whole idea of years in dental school is to gain a set of clinical skills that you will use in future in your private dental practice.

Agree or not BDS college is not sufficient for gaining adequate clinical exposure that can make you confident in immediately standing on your own as a professional clinical dentist. It is the feeling shared by many who have passed BDS and are now finding it difficult to move ahead in their career.

In all the years in dental college, we are more into finishing the quotas and assignments.

In the internship, we might work overtime and see some clinical steps from seasoned staffs, but unless you do it yourself it is of no use.

And then suddenly one-day internship ends and we are expected to start our private practice. From the enclosed ecosystem of the dental college, you are now exposed to the highly competitive world of professional dental practice without any practical knowledge on how to set up your dental practice.

At such a time you will also see some of your friends (whose parents are already dentists or financially well to do) moving ahead fast in setting up their posh dental practice or planning to go abroad for higher education. Unless you are also from that group of students, it will be the first time in your dental career when you will feel completely clueless on how to move forward.

It’s decision time for you. You have two options.

Either you can prepare for the higher dental exams (to qualify for higher dental education) or start with your practice.

Mind it that the exams to be eligible for higher dental education (NEET & other abroad dental exams) are tough, and many times it can require 2 to 3 years of attempts to complete the exams with a useful rank. To counter this many BDS pass outs start their practice and keep preparing for the exams at the same time.

Dental Diploma Courses

So, we are forced into opening our clinic (with investment and courage), and we start working and learning on the spot.

For students who do MDS, they seemingly get that confidence that they are specialists in a particular aspect of dentistry and they also have a shot at working in a college as a staff. So, they don’t depend as much on their clinic as they should.

(But getting a job as a faculty is becoming a rarity due to over increase in the number of MDS/Post Graduates)


But for a dental student who is not able to crack the entrance code or not able to afford the price for a non-government MDS/abroad seat … clinical practice is everything, and he/she needs to sharpen his skills to compete and survive in the ever increasing crowd of dental graduates.

In such a scenario, the demand for the diploma courses that enhance the clinical skills of a dental student has risen many folds.

What are Diploma courses?

Post BDS, the young dentist has two options – Go for MDS/ abroad attempt or try for short term courses or the a right courses.

MDS courses are three years duration courses. Unless you get a Govt. MDS seat, the MDS course can get very costly to complete. In comparison, diploma courses are of 2 years or less duration depending on from where you are doing the course. The overall price of a diploma course is lower than MDS course expenditure. But again, pricing is always relative in nature. For some, a particular pricing will be affordable, and for others, it will be out of reach.

The Article Continues Next Slide:

See Next – Private & DCI Approved Diploma Courses.

Which one to Join?

In India Dental Diploma courses are of 2 types Private & Government


Diploma after BDS

  • Currently, if you do an online search, you will find too many diploma courses being offered related to all the streams of dentistry. In fact for many seasoned dentists or MDS graduates running private decision courses are now a full-time profession with good profit margin. It has turned into a full-time career for many senior and experienced dental surgeons. For a fresh graduate, this might be confusing.
  • You just google private diploma courses and a long list of courses will appear on your device screen. The fees for these courses varies from one set up to another. Some diploma courses are being provided by very famous and well-experienced dentists. So they manage to have the tie-ups with all big dental companies. The fee for such courses is pretty high. There are also some medium budget setups where the pricing is not that high.
  • Some setups provide diploma course in a particular branch like endodontics, orthodontics, lasers etc. Some big setups provide a  training in all the aspects of dentistry covering multiple branches.
  • What do I feel in my own capacity? Personally, I don’t have the right to pass judgment as I haven’t joined any such course as a participant. I have though been part of some courses as an organizer to help out my seniors. I feel that these courses do help dental graduates in giving specialized skills that can be handy to them. Just the price factor is a concern as I found in my inquiries. The courses are not cheap.
  • Some of these courses are one day CDE programs. They are relatively cheaper. But one day might not be enough to grasp the topic. Multiple days of diploma course are better in terms of providing the dentist better insight into a particular topic. Such longer courses usually cost a lot more. Also, hands-on courses (where you actually perform the procedure on a patient under the supervision of a seniors faculty) are a must have. Though costlier that than lecture courses, but hands-on courses have the maximum benefit for the young dentists.
  • Many times the price factors keep these courses out of the reach of many dental students/dentists. But in the end, it is up to you. Remember money spent to learn a dental skill is never a waste. As you will use this new skill and earn more. But you have to selective in choosing the right course for you. Do all the necessary inquiries, before paying up. Make inquiries as to what skills you are going to learn, are you going to hands-on training, will you be getting the chance to work on patients? Only when you are sure then join the course.

What are the drawbacks of private diploma courses:

I did mention that the diploma courses by experienced dental practitioners are beneficial for the students and that is a fact. But at the same time seeing this requirement of young dentists there has been a sudden growth of these diploma type courses. Not all the courses being provided are up to the mark or quality compared to

Not all the courses being provided, are up to the mark or quality compared to the price being paid by the candidates. So, the key is to spend money on the course of good quality.


Once again note these points and ask about them whenever you are planning to join a particular diploma course:

Diploma After BDS

1) See the Topic of the Diploma course: Make sure that it is of clinical benefit to you. Remember you are NOT doing the course for an academical benefit. You are doing the course so that you can apply those skills in your dental practice. Unless you can practically apply what you learn, in your own practice and locality, then do not join the course.

2) Check if the Dental Skill you will learn in the Diploma/CDE is feasible to use in your geographical location: Consider this example- There is a CDE/Diploma course on Zygomatic Implants. In the dental implant sector, Zygomatic Implants are one of the top evolving things. Many famous oral surgeons are performing this procedure. You are really very curious to know more about it. But the CDE/Diploma is pricey considering the equipment and materials. Also, If your clinic is located in a small interior town in India. 

Should you join the course? The answer is NO! Reason – In your area, you will hardly ever place a zygomatic implant. It will be too costly for the patients. Secondly, it is very technique sensitive and can go wrong.

Thus decide to join a course very practically considering if the dental skills that you will learn in the CDE/Diploma course can be practiced in your geographical location.

3) Check who is mentoring the course: As a dentist who is planning to spend his/her limited funds on the CDE/Diploma course it is essential to know who is mentoring the course. It is better for you to join the courses that are being mentored by famous and experienced dentists. I am not saying, new speakers or doctors, are not good. But when you are paying the money, it better for you to go with the mentors with a proven track record and experience in conducting successful CDE/Diploma courses in their respective specialty.

4) Check the duration of the course: The courses vary in duration. They can be a 1 to 2 days program. It is more apt to call them CDE. Then there are extended programs (spread over few months or continuous 30 to 45 days). It basically comes down to your requirement and budget. The long term courses are usually more costly than a 1 or 2 days CDE.

5) Check for the refund policies: You might have booked for a particular course, but in the last moment there are some changes to your plans due to which you are not able to join the course. Most of these courses usually ask for more than 50% of the price as an advance. Inquire strictly about the refund policies in case you are not able to attend the course.

6) What are the topics you should try to target in the CDE or Dental Diploma courses: There are few skills in dentistry that you must master or get good at if you plan to have a successful dental practice. In my experience, it is always more profitable to join the diploma courses that improve the aesthetic outcomes of your dental practice. Keep a watch on the CDE/Diploma courses based on:

  • Root Canal Advancements
  • Replacement of missing tooth (implants in the aesthetic zone, Complete dentures impression taking and planning)
  • Composite restorations
  • Applications of laser
  • Periodontal management (flap surgeries and treatment planning)
  • Esthetic Simple Periodontal Procedures like Gum Surgeries for managing gummy smile etc.
  • Botox applications in smile improving
  • Smile designing (complete approach)
  • Case Diagnosis

These are just some of the basic topics that you can watch out for.  So, always join a private CDE or a Diploma course only after making sure that the 6 questions mentioned above have been answered up to your satisfaction. If you are not satisfied, then maybe the course is not the correct one for you.

If you are thinking why we have not mentioned any particular private diploma course, that’s is because we have not actively assessed anyone. If we get a chance to assess any particular course and feel sure about its quality, then we will add it to this list.

But until that we hope that you will consider the 6 points mentioned before deciding to pay and join any particular CDE/Dental diploma course.

See The Next Slide Where we will discuss the

Govt. approved Diploma courses.

Press Next to go the next slide


DCI has approved many state dental councils to run approved dental diploma courses. There are courses in lasers, endodontics, and orthodontics.  Such courses are mainly ongoing in Tamilnadu and Karnataka.

IGNOU also used to provide post-graduate dental diploma courses in Endodontics and Implantology.(Both BDS & MDS were eligible) But IGNOU has discontinued the dental diploma for the year 2013. The last known admission to the course was on 2012. Post that there is no further notification regarding the courses.

In the latest 2016-17 official curriculum, there are no Dental Diploma courses.

The official health science courses link of IGNOU also does not list the dental diploma courses.

If you do want to have a look at the official postgraduate dental diploma courses that was released in the year 2012, you can have a look here. (Please note that this brochure was for the year 2012 and is not applicable at present. This is just for your information purpose.

In the year 2012, we had published a detailed article covering the IGNOU dental diploma courses.

But as stated in the lines before, the course stands discontinued at present (since 2012)

In any case, if you do want to check out how was the course curriculum of the Dental Diploma courses in Endodontics & Implantology, then you can have a look at the article below.


Latest posts by Deb (see all) PG Certificate in oral implantology has been developed by the School of Health Sciences in collaboration with Dental Council of India for BDS Doctors. 1) To enhance the knowledge and skills in the field of oral implantology. 2) To be able to assess, diagnose and manage the cases requiring dental implants.


Basic differences are as follows:

  • Govt. diploma courses are more affordable price wise.
  • Govt. diploma courses are DCI approved. Colleges in Tamilnadu and Karnataka give employment to diploma degree holders as staff in colleges.(depending on the vacancies available)
  • Private diploma degrees are just to enhance your clinical skills. They are not approved by DCI as such to work in some college. While working only your BDS or MDS degree will be taken into consideration.
  • N.B. Please Note: Though some colleges do give employment to govt. Diploma degree holders, but they are not entitled to get regular promotions as a MDS staff. There is also management diploma courses in Karnataka (approved by DCI & Karnataka Dental Board). They are cheaper than MDS but still can be costly for many.




1) MDS is still the preferred option: Yes, till today the most common option that emerges out after BDS is MDS. But as we all know, it is not so easy getting MDS or even after MDS.

2) But NOT every dentist can do MDS: Getting a  Govt. college is tough as it needs a lot of hard work and seats are few. So there is no guarantee that you will definitely get a seat. The option of private colleges in not feasible for everyone as its a costly affair. Moreover, whether private or govt, to get an MDS seat you will need to qualify NEET exams.(which is one of the toughest exams)

3) Opening a dental practice is the only option: So in that case, the next most obvious option remains is to open a clinic/private dental practice. But a new dentist again faced with problems. Today it is the world of specialty treatment. Patients are becoming more and more aware of the various dental treatment modalities – Courtesy Google. They are expecting specialist doctors. This many times dents the confidence of a young dentist. 

4) Extremely high competition among dentists: There is also the issue of extreme competition in professional dentist sector. This competition is pushing dentists to acquire more skills to be different from the other dentist. There is a demand to know about newer treatment modalities like dental implants, lasers etc. So to move ahead in the market of dentistry, any dentist, must have the knowledge of these recent advances. But what if he/she is not able to MDS for some reason. Then how can he/she learn more about these modern treatments!

5) The Utility of Diploma Courses: So in such a case DIPLOMA courses are very useful. Diploma courses are short term courses of usually one or two-year duration that teaches a BDS pass-out the skills that will definitely enhance the clinical prospects of the student. At the same time, he/she also learns the newer techniques of Implants, Lasers, Endodontics, Orthodontics that is of immense help in clinical practice.

Till now we had a serious discussion about the types and utility of dental diploma cases. I sincerely hope that you now a better insight into the courses. More importantly, I hope you will now be able to choose the course much better than before.

We will end this article, with a list of some of the diploma courses and the institutions providing it. You are requested not to consider, this list is the ultimate one. Also, the colleges and courses keep changing. So, do your own serious research before deciding to join any particular course.


Points to note:

  • The diploma courses that are provided in the dental colleges(approved by DCI) are approved by DCI. Without DCI approval no official Dental College can run any PG or Dental Diploma courses.
  • You will need to see the official DCI site or inquire to know which colleges are providing DCI approved PG Diploma courses. Before joining any diploma course it is your duty to make it sure.
  • Also, remember that depending on DCI inspection the PG diploma courses can be disapproved (in the case of the institution is not able to fulfill the DCI criteria). So, as a dentist, it is your look out to make sure that the college is still approved to run the dental diploma courses. So, no one list can be definitive as the status keeps updating.

With this, we reach the end of the article. The aim of this article is to provide the young BDS graduates a basic idea on the Dental Diploma courses. So, depending on your choice, you can go for Private Diploma courses or DCI approved dental courses in a college.We sincerely hope that after reading this article you will be able to make a correct choice for yourself.

We earnestly hope that after reading this article you will be able to make a correct choice for yourself.

Disclaimer: The courses status might have changed in the period this article was written. So, in the case of more information – refer the official websites for the latest status.