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DFT recruitment moves to SJT only

The Dental Foundation Training (DFT) National Recruitment Selection for those starting DFT in September 2023 will use only a Situational Judgement Test (SJT), COPDEND has announced.

Important notice – Change to the 2023 Dental Foundation Training (DFT) national selection process

Applicants will not be asked to undertake a communication station and the SJT will account for 100% of the overall assessment score. An SJT only process is not a viable long-term solution for DFT recruitment.

However, COPDEND has said this decision was taken “following careful consideration of evidence from an independently commissioned Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) report on 2019-2021 DFT National recruitments.” This report highlighted significant differential performance gaps for some ethnic minority applicants, which is particularly associated with both the face to face (2019) and virtual (2021) communication stations. They noted that this was less significant when the SJT alone was used for the 2020 recruitment round.

Our Students Committee met with COPDEND to discuss the evidence from the EIA report and, despite concerns about an SJT only process, accepted that this change was necessary for this year. However, we have been clear that we do not believe that an SJT only process is a viable long-term solution for DFT recruitment.

This approach will apply to the 2023 recruitment round. We will work with COPDEND to discuss future DFT assessment processes in England, Wales and Northern Ireland from 2024 onwards.