MJDF and the modern dental career
The Diploma of Membership of the Joint Dental Faculties at The Royal College of Surgeons of England (MJDF RCS Eng) is an assessment, developed jointly by the Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) and the Faculty of Dental Surgery of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. This examination has effectively replaced:
- Diploma of Membership of the Faculty of General Dental Practice (UK) (MFGDP[UK])
- Diploma of Membership of the Faculty of Dental Surgery (MFDS RCS Eng).
Modernising Medical Careers (MMC) has changed the way postgraduate medical training is delivered. This change was driven by the need for more flexible training pathways to meet service and personal development requirements. One of the key elements in MMC is the foundation programme, which consists of an integrated two-year course of general professional training following initial medical qualification.
Within dentistry, the General Dental Council and the Department of Health have sought to develop 'modernising dental careers' along the lines of the medical model. A curriculum for foundation programmes in dentistry, the result being the 2006 publication of A Curriculum for UK Dental Foundation Programme Training defines the competencies, curriculum, educational content, training requirements, and expected outcomes for all dental graduates who complete dental foundation training.
The aim of the MJDF is to assess knowledge, application of knowledge and candidates' understanding of the structures and processes required to provide quality-assured dental healthcare after completion of a two year foundation programme for all dental graduates - whether they are pursuing a career in general or specialist practice in either primary or secondary care.
Relying less on traditional tests of knowledge and more on workplace-based demonstration of competencies, the MJDF provides a modern, innovative assessment for today's dentist.
Structure of the MJDF
The MJDF examination consists of:
- Part 1 examination in the form of one written paper containing multiple choice questions (MCQs), and
- Part 2 examination in the form of an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) and structured clinical reasoning (SCR) exercises.
Read more about the MJDF structure.
Examination dates, revision days & application forms
A transition process ensures that those who have already begun either the MFGDP(UK) or MFDS are protected, and are able to use components that have been completed from these two examinations towards the new award.
Examination diets are held in the spring and autumn each year and the Faculties run a series of revision days leading up to each diet.
Frequently asked questions
What is the value of the MJDF measured against the old qualifications?
One of the defining characteristics of the MFDS was that it served as an entry requirement for specialist training. The GDC has now decided that there will be no formal examination entry requirement, and selection is likely to be on the basis of a range of criteria demonstrating suitability. Possession of a postgraduate qualification (MFDS, MFGDP(UK), MJDF, or a non-College qualification) will play a part in demonstrating a candidate's suitability. However, it is not an absolute requirement.
The MJDF’s purpose and value is to confirm the acquisition of competencies at the end of the foundation training curriculum, for a dental career which may develop within either primary or secondary care.
I want to enter specialist training. Do I also need an MJDF in addition to my existing MFDS/MFGDP(UK)?
Since the MJDF assesses competencies in the foundation training curriculum, is it relevant to a practitioner with several years' experience post qualification?
Yes – the MJDF will be the starting point for dentists who wish to develop their careers in a number of ways. With more flexible entry into specialist training, and the advent of concepts such as the Dentists with Special Interests, all practitioners should consider the MJDF as a valuable demonstration of having achieved the postgraduate competencies set out in the foundation training curriculum.
I have completed MFDS/MFGDP(UK). Can I use this to obtain exemptions from parts of the MJDF?
If you have completed MFDS or MFGDP(UK), you need only take Part 2 MJDF to gain that award, as long the components for which you are claiming credit and Part 2 of the MJDF are completed within the five-year period allowed by the regulations.
Is the MJDF registrable as an additional qualification with the GDC?
The GDC is reviewing its policy on the registration of additional qualifications and is not currently accepting new qualifications. This applies both to the MJDF and the new MFDS of the Dental Faculties of the Royal Colleges in Scotland. The faculties will apply for registrable status once the GDC has completed the review of its procedures.
What sort of visa do I need to sit the exam?
The functions of the MJDF examinations department are separate from those in charge of administering visas. Therefore, the MJDF examinations department is unable to advise on visas. Candidates are responsible for ensuring that they are permitted to be in the UK to take the exam that they are booked on to. For information on visas and entry to the UK, please contact the UK Border and Immigration Agency.
If you make payment for an exam and then are unable to obtain a visa, you will not be refunded your fees. It is your responsibility to ensure that you can obtain a visa before you make payment for an exam.
I am overseas registered dentist. Should I submit original or certified documents?
In order to avoid the possibility of original documents being mislaid by postal services it is recommended that all candidates supply only certified copies of their supporting documentation.
A correctly certified photocopy requires a consultant’s signature and the appropriate hospital stamp.
Please note that all hospital stamps should be in English or have an official translation provided.
If you choose to send original documents with your application form we strongly recommend that you use Recorded or Special Delivery (UK only) or International Signed For (If Overseas). All original documents will be returned to you using these methods to ensure the safe return of your property.
When do I receive my MJDF Certificate?
Candidates may receive their certificates and use the MJDF post-nominal letters once they have paid for Membership to the Joint Dental Faculties. The annual membership fee entitles candidates use of the post nominal letters after their name. The certificate is evidence of this membership.
To attend the Diplomates Day Ceremony and subsequently receive the certificate, candidates need to have paid their membership fee first. To receive their certificate in the post, candidates also need to have paid their membership fee first. This rule applies across the board since use of letters and the wording of the certificate is actively tied to the membership.
The MJDF is a membership qualification and the expectation is that candidates are taking the exam in order to become a member. The certificate alone implies that its owner is a member of the Joint Dental Faculties.
More information and contacts
There is more detailed information on the MJDF on the Information for Candidates page, the full Information for Candidates document, and the MJDF Regulations page. If you have a query that is not answered on these pages, you can contact the MJDF Examinations Department by emailing email@example.com or calling 020 7869 6762.