When Do You Need a Dental Portfolio?

If you’re a dental professional, you should create your career portfolio as soon as possible. A good dental portfolio demonstrates your continuing professional development and can make it easier for you to get competitive positions in your chosen field. 

You should aim to begin compiling your dental portfolio as soon as you begin working as a dentist so you can collect any relevant experiences straight away and prove your prowess as an outstanding dental professional. 

Learn more below about why you need a dental career portfolio, what it should show, and when to update it. Download our free eBook for a step-by-step comprehensive guide to your dental portfolio. 

Why You Need a Dental Portfolio

A dental portfolio functions as a more comprehensive resume, allowing the reader to get a better feel for your skills, personality, and experience. Being able to demonstrate your achievements in a concise format gives a potential employer, peers, and colleagues a much-needed insight into what makes you exceptional. 

Anyone who reads your portfolio should be able to clearly see all your accomplishments, including qualifications, achievements, roles of leadership, any teaching experience, education, and more. Most importantly, your portfolio is proof of continuing professional development, as it will demonstrate your commitment to improving your skills and treating your patients.

When To Update Your Portfolio 

Your portfolio should remain as up-to-date as possible throughout your dental career, including updating it before any job interviews or opportunities so you can demonstrate your skills. Any courses you attend, new qualifications, or educational achievements should be updated regularly to reflect your continuing education and professional development. 

The London Dental Institute eBook can serve as your guide to creating and updating the best possible portfolio. Download for free today.

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5 Things Your Portfolio Should Show

A good dental portfolio should include the following 5 important sections, among others:

  1. A Simple Resume

Your portfolio should include your CV or resume on the front page. As well as all the relevant information pertaining to you as an individual, such as your name, address, and contact details, you must also include your professional registration number (GDC number), current job role and future career plans and how you are working towards these. Your CV should summarise your undergraduate and postgraduate education, qualifications, and career progression to demonstrate a good professional basis on which to continue your portfolio. You should also include achievements such as awards won or other notable feats. 

  1. Commitment to Improvement

Demonstrating your commitment to improvements in patient care is essential  in your portfolio. Audits inform current levels of practice and help the entire dental team work towards the gold standard. Audits also follow a specific process that involves identifying current levels of care followed by a gold standard to aim for, then implementing the improvements noticed. An audit is a cycle and in order to demonstrate you understand the audit process, you should perform a re-audit to complete the cycle. 

  1. How You Lead The Way

Showing you have teaching experience is important, including formal teaching qualifications and courses attended. This demonstrates communication skills and knowledge of the subject material. 

Any positions of responsibility also demonstrate how you lead the way as a dental professional, and any positions you’ve held should be listed. Organising day-to-day work, communicating with colleagues, and implementing change through audits demonstrate skills outside of clinical practice. For example, management skills shown include managing your cases alongside your colleagues, communication skills can be shown through how you work closely with your dental nurse, and organisational and time management skills are displayed by keeping your diary up to date and organising and leading practice meetings.

  1. Adept Analytical Skills

Analytical skills are crucial to illustrate in your portfolio. Any presentation you’ve given on any subject matter within the field of dentistry, whether at meetings or conferences, should be included to show knowledge and understanding of clinical skills at an expert level. If you have published peer-reviewed papers or articles, they should be in your dental portfolio, too. Publishing your work demonstrates you are committed to your career development and further learning. Research should also be included in a complete portfolio and prove that you have an analytical side and are knowledgeable in critical appraisal and objective assessment of case material.

  1. Optional Extras for Excellence

Separate yourself from your peers with an outstanding dental portfolio by adding extra features to your portfolio, including details of any professional memberships you have that display commitment to a speciality. You can also include a summary sheet of your CPD, such as courses or conferences you have attended. Clinical log books should also be considered when preparing your portfolio, as adding a clinical record or photography book is important if you have a special interest in one aspect of dentistry and want to display a record of these experiences. Any feedback you’ve collected from patients, employers, or colleagues can also be included to demonstrate commitment to improvement and your excellent bedside manner with your patients. 

The Complete Guide to Your Dental Portfolio is available as a free eBook to guide you through the process of creating your dental portfolio in detail. Download today and find out how to set out your portfolio, what to include in each section, and quick tips.

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The Complete Guide to Your Dental Portfolio is available as a free eBook to help you create an excellent dental career portfolio. There are also extra digital downloads to help you make your portfolio the best it can be, such as feedback sheets so you can collect them with ease to include in your collection.

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