New graduates from Otago and AUT universities

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.

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 Te Whatu Ora - New Zealand voluntary bonding scheme is a practical initiative to encourage newly qualified health professionals, including dentists and oral health therapists, 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.

You may be eligible to register for the 2023 intake of the scheme if you are a dentist or an oral health therapist:

  • whose final year of undergraduate study was 2020, 2021 or 2022, and
  • you intend to work for eligible hard-to-staff providers/practices for at least three and up to five years. 

The registration period for the 2023 intake is anticipated to open in mid-February 2023. Registration will be via an online web-form on the Te Whatu Ora website.

Further information is available here:

Voluntary bonding scheme 2023 intake information - dentists

Voluntary bonding scheme 2023 intake information - oral health therapists

About the voluntary bonding scheme