Postgraduate programme in Orthodontics


Duration: 3 academic years


Fee 2024: 280.000 Danish kroner (DKK) per academic year (approximately EUR 37.600 per academic year)
The fee is subject to change.

Application deadline: 15 December

Location: Aarhus

We offer 2 self-paid positions for international students. The course educates qualified dentists to become specialists in orthodontics. The educational curriculum is designed to prepare the dentist for the modern clinical practice of orthodontics, while developing insights into basic science and proficiency in clinical orthodontics. The programme leads to a Specialty in Orthodontics recognized within the European Community provided that you have a dental degree recognized within the European Community.  

Course description

The postgraduate programme extends over a period of 3 academic years of full-time mandatory attendance. The  programme starts 1 September every year and ends 31 August. The programme combines courses in the basic sciences with clinical and behavioral training relevant to the delivery of orthodontic care.

Emphasis is placed on the functional aspect of the stomathognatic system, as it interrelates with occlusion and facial morphology. A strong background in contemporary biomechanical concepts as related to orthodontic mechanotherapy is also provided.

Instruction in the didactic and clinical curriculum consists of:

  1. lectures, seminars and practical courses
  2. clinical education
  3. research

Course structure

The lectures and seminars are given in English. These comprise medicine and dentistry related to orthodontics. They run 8 hours a week for a total of six academic semesters of the postgraduate program. Twenty to twenty five hours of weekly clinical education includes all types of corrective orthodontic treatment modalities (pre-adolescent and post-adolescent children, adults, orthognatic surgery and craniofacial anomalies) as well as adjunctive treatment for adults (interdisciplinary treatment with periodontal, prosthetic and restorative dentistry). The clinical therapy  is based on rational biomechanics including Segmented Arch Technique, the Standard Edgewise Technique, Straight Wire Technique, Damon frictionless mechanics, overlay arches, two cantilever mechanics, modified Begg Technique, and various types of Functional Appliances. During the first 6 months of the programme a comprehensive course in biomechanics as it relates to orthodontics is provided, subsequently the clinical training is initiated.

Each student is required to complete a research project. The project is carried out under the mentorship of a faculty member of the Department of Orthodontics and in co-operation with other institutes, when necessary.


Extramural Courses
In addition to the above mentioned courses participation in extramural courses organized by the Danish Health Authorities is required. However, these courses can under certain circumstances be substituted by an oral examination. 


Theoretical Education

a. General biological and medical subjects

Growth and development, cybernetic model of growth, functional matrix theory, philosophies of growth and development, development and function of soft tissues, bone biology, maturity indicators, normal and abnormal craniofacial development, bone response to the various stimuli, biology of periodontium, tissue reaction in relation to mechanical stimuli, perioral function and respiration, gnathology, the philosophy of sciences, scientific methodology, electromyography, metallurgy.

b. Dental subjects
Dental development, occlusion, radiological techniques, diagnosis and treatment of dentitional anomalies.

c. General orthodontics
Needs, indications for orthodontic treatment. Organization of treatment of dento-facial anomalies, sagittal, vertical and transversal discrepancies, space problems, treatment of major skeletal discrepancies, retention and relapse, treatment of syndromes, practice administration.

d. Orthodontic treatment procedure
Biomechanics including detailed training in the segmented arch approach and various types of continuous arch techniques such as straight wire and modified Begg technique. Special sessions on problems related to banding and bonding, extraoral appliances, anchorage problems. Treatment planning in normal and compromised cases. Training in interdisciplinary treatments; surgical orthodontics, pre-prosthetic orthodontics, orthodontic treatment of periodontically compromised patients. The use of removable appliances, functional appliances and Herbst appliance.

e. Documentation
Training in the work up of a database including the anamnesis; case history, in addition to necessary data obtained from clinical examination, analyses of dental models, occlusograms, hand-wrist x-rays, clinical dental photography, lateral and frontal cephalometry, computerized cephalometry, cephalometric growth analysis, advanced cephalometry, inter-occlusal registrations, 3-D radiographs, articulators mounting and jaw tracking.


Practical Training 

a. Pre-clinical exercise During the first 6 months of the program an intensive course that introduces the students to orthodontic biomechanics, diagnosis and treatment planning takes place.

The course includes exercises on force calculations, wire bending, banding and bonding, construction of removable appliances and practical training on typodonts.

b. Clinical activities
Clinical instruction uses the attending faculty-resident model. Each patient is assigned to a specific clinical faculty member who is responsible for the patient, and to a resident who provides the clinical treatment under the guidance of his instructor. The 20-25 hours clinical training per week includes all types of corrective orthodontic treatment modalities (preadolescent and post-adolescent children, adults, orthognatic surgery, craniofacial anomalies) as well as adjunctive treatment of adults (combinations with periodontal, prosthetic and restorative clinical dentistry). Each resident performs during the 3 year training, active treatment on a minimum of  50 newly started patients in addition to transfer patients.  Retention patients are controlled for a minimum of two years. The clinical therapy  is based on rational biomechanics including Segmented Arch Technique, the Standard Edgewise Technique, Straight Wire Technique,  Damon frictionless mechanichs , overlay arches , two cantilever mechanics,  modified Begg Technique, and various types of Functional Appliances.


Each student is required to attend research courses and to complete a research project for partial fulfillment of the requirements for the specialization in Orthodontics. The project is carried out under the mentorship of a staff member of the Orthodontic Department in co-operation with other institutes when necessary.

Go to Research


Other Activities
A number of lectures and courses are given every year from speakers all over the world. The guest speakers program is organized in joint collaboration between the Department, the Danish Orthodontic Society and other scientific organizations and may vary from year to year. The postgraduate students are also encouraged to participate in extramural congresses, symposiums or courses.

Topics of Modules Comprised in the Course

The following subjects are taught intramurally interactively with the students:  

Abnormal Craniofacial Development

  • Differential diagnosis with regard to anomaly type, and with respect to biochemical, tissue or organ defect, etiology and genetic environment
  • Dento-facial characteristics of craniofacial anomalies with special attention to cleft lip and palate, craniosynostoses, hemifacial-microsomia and first branchial arch syndromes

Advanced Cephalometry

  • Application of cephalometry in diagnosis and treatment planning - reproducibility - validity
  • Technical considerations
  • Radiological anatomy of the craniofacial skeleton
  • Tracing technique and identification of landmarks
  • Research application
  • Training in the most used analysis

Anchorage Problems

  • Differentiation of anchorage with regard to the goals or phases of treatment

Begg Technique

  • The philosophy of light-wire technique
  • Non-extraction orthodontic mechanics
  • Growth patterns and the effectiveness of the method

Biology of the Periodontal Ligament

  • Basic biology of the cell and its regulatory productive and destructive mechanisms using the fibroblast as a model
  • Components of the extra- cellular matrix (collagen, proteoglycan) and their regulation by collagenase, protease, and cytokines
  • Basic biology of bone and tooth with emphasis on the cell biology of pre-osteoblast, the osteoblasts, osteoclasts and cementocyte
  • Periodontal ligament as a tissue consisting of fibroblast, pleuripotential cells, vasculature and nerve tissue; and each components role in the biology of tooth movement.


  • Exposition to physical laws of mechanics
  • Bioengineering and biomaterial
  • Preparation of free body diagram of force systems

Bone Dynamics

  • Histomorphometric analysis of the various types of bone
  • Characteristics of pathological bone conditions

Bone Response to Bioelectric Effect

  • A description of the nature and the probable mechanism for hard tissue response to bioelectric perturbation

Cephalometric Growth Analysis

  • Overall and regional superimposition

Class III Malocclusion

  • Differential diagnosis
  • Differential orthodontic, orthopaedic and surgical treatment

Clinical Photography

  • Use of cameras and accessories to obtain quality intraoral transparencies

Cybernetic Model of Dentofacial Growth

  • Summary of the research carried out by Petrovic and his group


  • Principles of the technique
  • Applications in assessing muscular activities and dysfunction


  • Introduction to the basic principles of epidemiological studies
  • Methods for epidemiological registration of malocclusion, functional habits and stomathognatic function
  • Prevalence of malocclusion in various samples of the population
  • Statistical problems in epidemiology

Extra-Oral Appliances

  • Orthodontic and orthopaedic effect of the various extra-oral mechanisms
  • Description, indications, and adjustment of the appliances

Functional Matrix Theory

  • Experimental support of the theory, orthodontic clinical applications, pro and contra of the concept


  • Normal function of the stomathognatic system with regard to the temporomandibular joints, masticatory muscles and occlusion
  • Definition of mandibular position before the initiation of orthodontic treatment
  • Orthodontic therapy and occlusal alterations
  • TMJ dysfunction and orthodontic mechanotherapy
  • Treatment planning in genetic and acquired condylar growth disturbances

Growth and Development

  • Embryological overview
  • Development of the craniofacial region
  • Genetic and neuromuscular influence
  • Cartilaginous and intramembranous growth
  • Remodeling and displacement of bones

Histological Growth Research

  • Technical aspects applied to the studies of craniofacial growth
  • Research findings with regard to the cranial base, maxilla and mandible

Interocclusal Registrations

  • Centric occlusion and centric relation, structured position of the mandible, techniques for qualitative and quantitative assessment of the interocclusal relationships

Maxillary Development

  • Nasal septum influence on midface development
  • Sutural growth of the maxillary complex


  • Mechanical properties of various wires
  • Rational use of different alloys

Molecular Biology

  • Survey of the most recent advances within genetic research and the human genome


  • Morphology and function of the "ideal" occlusion
  • "Ideal", normal and physiologic occlusion
  • Occlusal aspects of the orthodontic treatment

Periodontology and Orthodontics

  • Review of classic and modern therapy philosophies and techniques of periodontal treatment
  • Presentation of the relationships of micro anatomy, cell biology, microbiology and immunology regarding to the pathogenesis and progression of various periodontal diseases
  • Periodontal considerations during examination of the orthodontic patient
  • Clinical improvement of periodontal status by means of orthodontic therapy

Perioral Function and Respiration

  • The concept of morphological and functional equilibrium
  • Growth and function
  • Dentofacial growth and mode of respiration
  • Head posture alterations

Philosophies of Growth and Development

  • Presentation of the growth theories formulated by Sicher, Scott, Moss and Van Limbourgh

Practice Administration

  • Organization of the contemporary orthodontic practice
  • Management of personnel and patients

Prosthetics and Orthodontics - Interdisciplinary Collaboration

  • Molar up-righting and remodeling of the alveolar process
  • Distal movement of premolars into edentulous dentoalveolar areas
  • Extrusion of teeth for pre-prosthetic access to clinical crowns

Radiological Techniques

  • Presentation of the basic and specialized radiological techniques used in the orthodontic practice

Removable Appliances

  • Indications, selection, fabrication and use

Retention and Relapse

  • Fixed and removable retainers
  • Indications for retainer design and selection
  • Morphological and functional factors of relapse

Scientific Methodology

  • How to evaluate a scientific paper
  • How to plan a research project and write a protocol
  • How to write a scientific paper

Segmented Arch Technique

  • Analytical description of the concept and presentation of the advantages
  • Biomechanical considerations regarding force systems
  • The active and the non-active parts of the orthodontic appliance
  • Consistent and inconsistent mechanics

Skeletal Age

  • Dentofacial growth and body skeletal development
  • Carpal radiological assessment
  • Tanner & Whitehouse method - Greulich & Pyle method

Soft Tissue Analysis and Functional Discrepancies

  • Diagnostic tools in assessing perioral muscular activity
  • Soft tissues influence on the development of malocclusion

Space Problems

  • Development of dental arches and stages of tooth eruption
  • Dental casts analyses in the mixed and permanent dentition
  • Tooth size discrepancies and the Bolton analysis

Surgical Orthodontics

  • Etiology, classification and incidence of dentofacial deformities
  • Procedures for differential diagnosis
  • Three-dimensional treatment planning
  • Objectives of pre- and post-surgical orthodontic therapy
  • Surgical clinical procedures
  • Patients perceptions and psychosocial considerations

Temporomandibular Joint Disorders, Diagnosis and Treatment

  • Classification of disorders, clinical, instrumental and laboratorial diagnostic procedures, diagnostic and therapeutically splints, combined splint and orthodontic therapy
  • Treatment of rheumatoid arthritis

The Philosophy of Science: Introduction to the Basic Schools of Science

  • The history of the great philosophies
  • Kuhn's paradigm theory and the implications for the scientific work; Popper and his search for the truth
  • Dental science in relation to the theories behind

Three-Dimensional Radiography

  • Radiological stereometry with aid of metallic implants

Tooth Movement and Regulation of Forces

  • Periodontal reactions to an orthodontic force
  • Tooth movement and point of force application
  • Tipping, rotation and bodily tooth displacement
  • The importance of moments in controlling tooth movement

Transverse Discrepancies

  • The development of transverse problems
  • Differential diagnosis
  • Rapid and slow maxillary expansion

Treatment Need, Indications and Organization:

  • Ttreatment priority indices, the data base, patients perception

Treatment of Major Skeletal Sagittal Discrepancies

  • Principles of growth modification
  • Appliances for non-extraction growth treatment
  • Non-extraction orthodontic therapy
  • Dentoalveolar alterations in the extraction treatment approach

Treatment of Syndromes

  • Occlusal manifestations in patients with syndromes
  • Special considerations of the orthodontic treatment
  • The multidisciplinary approach

Treatment Planning in Compromised Cases

  • Exploration of the patients chief complaint
  • Evaluation of stomathognathic tissues
  • Rational biomechanics in treating adults with reduced periodontal bone support

Vertical Discrepancies

  • Development of the vertical excess and deep face deformities
  • Neuromuscular function and influence
  • Orthopaedic methods for vertical dentofacial control
  • Biomechanical consideration in eliminating side effects
  • Surgical management of the skeletal deep- and open-bites   


The course content undergoes continuous revision and is presented on a 3-year rotational basis only interrupted by journal clubs, case presentations and guest lecturers. The hours dedicated to the topics may vary, but do fulfil the requirement recommended by the Erasmus project. (Am J Orthod Dentofac Orthop 1996;110:101-107).


Evaluation for each course is conducted at the end of each semester. The final examination for the fulfillment of the requirements of the Specialty in Orthodontics requires the presentation of ten cases in addition to a two-hour oral exam.


Conditions of Admission
Admission to the programme requires a dental degree from a recognized institution, authorisation for independent work as a dentist and two years of clinical experience (2880 hours) with a minimum of one year full-time (1440 hours) in pediatric dentistry. Admission to the programme is limited to two or three dentists per year, who are selected upon evaluation of their qualifications.

Please enclose the following documents in your application: 

  1. A transcript of records from the university attended, listing subjects and duration and examinations taken. Such documentation (in the original language) must be accompanied by a translation into Danish or English made by the university in question or the authority issuing the certificate or by a certified translator.
  2. Documentation of two years of clinical experience (2880 hours) with a minimum of one year full-time (1440 hours) in the field of pediatric dentistry. Please use the 2880 hours form below
  3. Authorization as a dentist
  4. Documentation of Postgraduate and Continuing Education
  5. Letters of Recommendation
  6. Documentation of your proficiency in English (TOEFL Score)

Please be aware that if you don't submit the 2880 hours form(s) together with the application form (upper right corner) for the Postgraduate programme in Orthodontics, your application will not be considered.

2880 hours form

Application Deadline

Applications should be submitted by December 15 every year. Interviews are usually scheduled in January or February and are required before final acceptance.


The students pay a tuition fee (2024) of 280,000 Danish kroner (DKK) per academic year (approximately EUR 37.620 per academic year); this fee is subject to change.

Fees and living expenses are to be paid by the students. Unfortunately, we cannot provide any scholarships or financial help.


Duration: 3 academic years


Fee 2024: 280.000 Danish kroner (DKK) per academic year (approximately EUR 37.600 per academic year)
The fee is subject to change.

Application deadline: 15 December

Location: Aarhus


Department of Dentistry and Oral Health
Aarhus University
Vennelyst Boulevard 9
DK-8000 Aarhus C

Camilla Bonnevie

Course director


Department of Dentistry and Oral Health
Aarhus University
Vennelyst Boulevard 9
DK-8000 Aarhus C

Camilla Bonnevie

Course director