You will be notified on the status of your Dental Foundation Training (DFT) application via Oriel.

Offer process

You will be notified on the status of your application (successful or unsuccessful) via your Oriel account by the end of January 2024. If you are deemed successful this does not guarantee that you will receive a DFT post.

If you are successful, you will receive notification of the status of your application on (to be confirmed). This will be in the form of an email via Oriel and will either be:

  • an offer to a DFT scheme
  • a notification that all current vacancies have been filled and you are on the reserve list

Offers of training placements will be made to those who gain Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) or equivalent by (to be confirmed) 2024.

Should you be unsuccessful in obtaining your BDS by (to be confirmed) 2024 you will be withdrawn from the recruitment process. 

Your allocation to a DFT scheme will depend on the ranking you achieve as a result of your Situational Judgement Test (SJT) performance and the preferences that you submit on Oriel. The first ranked applicant will be offered their first preferenced scheme and so on.

You will be given 48 hours (excluding weekends) in which to accept, accept with upgrades, or reject an offer by logging in to the recruitment system and responding. If you fail to respond during this 48 hour period, you will be deemed to have rejected the offer made and the system will automatically expire the offer.

Upgrades will be available until (to be confirmed) 2024.

If you reject an offer will not be offered any further placements in the recruitment round.

If you have trained in a dental school in the United Kingdom and expect to take you Finals examination after (to be confirmed) 2024 but before (to be confirmed) 2024, you will be able to hold your place provisionally until (to be confirmed) 2024 and the award of BDS (or equivalent) are confirmed.

This process will happen automatically, and you do not need to take any action if this applies to you. All results are due to be confirmed by (to be confirmed) 2024 at the latest.

Any offer that is declined or that expires will be reoffered in 48-hour iterations to the next eligible appointable applicants, in rank order and according to saved preferences. If you are therefore initially placed on the reserve list – it is advisable to check your email and Oriel account every 24 hours as offers will be ongoing throughout (to be confirmed) 2024.

Once an offer is accepted it cannot be changed to a training placement to another Health Education Local Office/Deanery or scheme unless you opt in to upgrades in the first offer phase.

If you choose to opt in for upgrades, and one of your higher preferences becomes available, you will automatically be upgraded into this offer if you are the next eligible applicant in line for this preference – with no option to revert to your original offer.

Upgrading will only be available after the first offers (as noted on the timetable).

At this stage of the process the offer is to a Health Education Local Office/Deanery and scheme (not a specific training practice). 

Case study

Case Study: How Dental Foundation offers will work

Colin’s top 5 preference schemes were: HEE North East – North Scheme, HEE North East – South Scheme, HEE North East-Central Scheme, HEE North West - Blackburn Scheme and HEE North West-Lancaster Scheme.

He was ranked 1025 – meaning that 1024 applicants were ranked higher than him. When it was Colin’s turn to be allocated, all the vacancies within HEE North East North Scheme, HEE North East South Scheme, HEE North East Central Scheme and HEE North West Blackburn Scheme had been filled with higher ranking applicants. There was still a vacancy within the HEE North West – Lancaster therefore Colin was sent an offer for this scheme.


The above case study demonstrates the importance of the preferences that you make. It is advised to preference as many schemes as you are prepared to train in – if you limit the number of schemes, you preference, this could limit your possibility of being offered a training placement.

If you limit your preferences and you do not rank highly enough to be offered any of them, you will not be offered a training post – even if you are eligible to receive an offer based on your score and rank.

In this case you are considered to have pre-emptively declined an offer of a post as the only vacancies left are in schemes that you are not prepared to train in. This is indicated by placing the scheme in the ‘Not wanted’ column on Oriel.

Reserve list

If you are considered to be appointable, but do not rank highly enough to receive an offer in the initial phase of offers in (to be confimed) 2024 you will remain on the reserve list. This means that you may not receive your offer when these are initially released but will be contacted as soon as a place becomes available for which you are eligible.

Local allocation process

All preferences will be to scheme level.   

Allocation to a training practice within a DFT scheme will be managed locally by the Local Office/Deanery/Nation hosting the scheme and does not constitute part of the England, Wales and Northern Ireland national recruitment process.

Once all offers have been accepted the list of successful applicants, with their ranking within each scheme, will be sent to the Health Education England Local Office/Deanery hosting that scheme. This ranking may then be used to inform the local allocation process of a training post at an individual dental practice.

The allocation of practices may be made on the basis of your ranking and your preferences.

For September 2024 start dates, allocation to a practice will take place after upgrade deadline which is on (to be confirmed) 2024.


Any further enquiries should be made via the Applicant Support Portal.

Page last reviewed: 9 August 2023
Next review due: 9 August 2024