New graduates from Otago and AUT universities
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If you have recently graduated as an oral health practitioner, you need to apply for registration with the Dental Council before you can begin practising in New Zealand.

If you intend to practise in New Zealand, you will also need to apply for an annual practising certificate (APC).

If you won’t be practising immediately, you can maintain your registration by applying to have your name retained on the register. 

How to apply for registration


Recent New Zealand qualified graduates

If you are a recent graduate of the University of Otago or Auckland University of Technology (AUT) you can apply for registration and your first annual practising certificate (APC) or retention online.

This application process is for newly qualified oral health practitioners who have graduated from University of Otago or AUT within the last 12 months.

PLEASE NOTE: Our office will be closed from 12pm, Wednesday 23 December 2020 and will re-open on Monday 11 January 2021. 

Due to processing times, applications received after 17 December 2020 may not be processed until the New Year.

Click on the “Apply" tab that appears on the black banner on this page.

Other graduates

If you graduated as an oral health practitioner from the University of Otago or AUT more than 12 months ago, or from another local or overseas education provider, you should start your application process by using our online tool to assess which registration pathways are available for you. 

If you are unsure of the application process that applies to you, please contact us.

Voluntary bonding scheme


The Ministry of Health voluntary bonding scheme is a practical initiative to encourage newly qualified health professionals, including dentists, to:

  • work in the communities and practices that need them most
  • retain essential health professionals in New Zealand
  • increase representation of Māori and Pasifika within the health workforce.

If you are a dentist whose final year of undergraduate study was 2020 (or early 2021) and you intend to work for eligible hard-to-staff providers/practices for between three to five years, you may be eligible to register for the 2021 intake of the scheme.

If successful, you may receive bond payments totalling $50,000 (after tax) paid over five years.

Further information is available here:

Voluntary bonding scheme flyer
Voluntary bonding scheme 2021 intake information
Dentists voluntary bonding scheme terms and conditions