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Dentistry Schools and Programs in Italy

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Dentistry Studies in Italy

The study of dentistry can be a rewarding pursuit, but it can also be extremely fun and exciting when you opt to study abroad for a semester or two in the beautiful and historic country of Italy.

Italy, known in official circles as the Italian Republic, is a sovereign country in Southern Europe, organized as a unitary parliamentary republic.  The nation shares borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia to the north, and is approximately encircled by the Alpine watershed, enclosing the Po Valley and the Venetian Plain. To the south, Italy consists of the entirety of the Italian Peninsula and the two biggest Mediterranean islands of Sicily and Sardinia.

Italy's capital and largest city, Rome, has for centuries been the leading political and religious center of Western civilization, serving as the capital of both the Roman Empire and Christianity.

The territory of Italy also includes the islands of Pantelleria, 37 miles (60km) east of the Tunisian coast and 62 miles (100 km) southwest of Sicily, and Lampedusa, at about 70 miles (113 km) from Tunisia and at 109 miles (176 km) from Sicily, in addition to many other smaller islands. The sovereign states of San Marino and the Vatican City are enclaves within Italy, while Campione d'Italia is an Italian exclave in Switzerland. Italy covers an area of 116,347 square miles (301,338 sq. km) and has a largely temperate climate. With 61 million inhabitants, it is the 5th most populous country in Europe. Among the world's most developed countries, Italy has the 4th-largest economy in the European Union, 3rd in the Eurozone and 9th in the world by Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The economic success Italy has enjoyed throughout its modern history can be partially attributed to the country’s outstanding system of education, including its higher education system and specialty programs in fields such as medicine and dentistry.

Dental Education in Italy

As in most highly developed countries, dental education in Italy is provided by specialized institutions, most of which are affiliated with one of the country’s major universities. Here students will gain the necessary theoretical knowledge and clinical experience on which they will rely as professional dentists.

A common goal shared by all of the dental school programs in Italy is to produce graduates who are:
  • Competently educated in the basic and biological sciences
  • Capable of providing quality dental care to all segments of the population
  • Committed to high moral and professional standards in their service to the public
Most of the dental school programs in Italy span four years in duration.  Some of the courses students are likely to encounter in their educational journey include those in the:
  • Biological sciences:  human anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, and pharmacology; plus oral anatomy, oral pathology, and oral histology.
  • Clinical sciences: prevention, diagnosis, treatment planning, and all aspects of clinical dentistry.
  • Courses related to the practice of dentistry:   working effectively with patients from many cultural backgrounds, ethics and professionalism, behavioral science, practice management, working with allied dental professionals and the total health care team.
During the initial two years of the program, students will study the biological sciences to learn about the structure and function of the human body and its diseases.  They will also take courses in oral diagnosis, as well as dental treatment procedures through practice on models and simulated patients.  In many of the Italian dental schools, first and second year students will also interact briefly with patients and provide basic oral health care.

During years three and four of the Italian dental school program, students will spend most of their study hours on clinical study and patient care.  Here they will learn to interact with patients regarding the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of oral disease and disorders.  Students also will study the application of various principles of oral diagnosis, treatment planning, restorative dentistry, periodontics, oral surgery, orthodontics, pediatric dentistry, prosthodontics, endodontics and some of the other aspects of patient dental care.

Why Study Abroad in Italy

It would be nearly impossible to find a destination with a richer history than Italy, as evidenced by the large number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites that call this beautiful country home.  Students who opt to study here can travel back to the heart of this antiquity while visiting a wide array of beautifully preserved Italian tourist attractions, some dating back thousands of years.  A few of these wonderful sites and attractions include:

Palazzo Pitti

Home to one of the most notorious families of Italy—the Medici clan— Palazzo Pitti takes the idea of wealth, status and luxury to a whole new level. An ornate, renaissance palatial home, today visitors not only have the opportunity to explore the palace itself, they can also view the superb collection of artistic treasures housed within, now displayed in one of the several state museums contained within the building. And if the wonders inside the building aren’t enough to keep you enthralled, the Palazzo Pitti has one more ace up its sleeve: the majestic Boboli Gardens. Providing the inspiration for many of Europe’s other great estates, the Boboli Gardens are a stunning, vast and tranquil site, with an unmatched array of brilliant colors.


Ranking among the most picturesque sights in Italy is the Ancient Greek town of Paestum, which was originally founded as a Greek colony in the sixth century BC. With three beautifully preserved Greek temples and a wealth of other ancient ruins, a visit to Paestum is a great way to spend a sunny afternoon. Today, this out-of-the-way little town combines a tranquil countryside setting with stunning Hellenic architecture and an interesting local museum with a wealth of interesting exhibits.

Castel del Monte

Perched high in the Apulian hills, the wonderfully symmetrical Castel del Monte dominates the skyline and offers great views of the surrounding countryside below. Described by UNESCO as a “unique piece of medieval military architecture,” the Castel del Monte is a fascinating fortification with a history dating back to the thirteenth century. Architecturally unusual due to its octagonal design, it is the very distinctiveness of Castel del Monte which makes it such a great place to visit.