APPLYING TO DENTAL SCHOOL
Most dental schools use the American Association of Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) as the principal application service. This application includes transcripts, personal information, volunteering and shadowing experiences, research experience, extracurricular activities, leadership roles, coursework, and personal statement. The AADSAS application usually opens June 1st, and all applications must be submitted by February 1st. However, DO NOT wait! Apply as early as you can! You will first need to complete the AADSAS application and submit all additionally required documents and test scores by the deadline. A secondary application may be necessary at specific schools. An application fee is also associated with each school that you apply to. An on-site interview will be offered to students that the board of admissions deem as qualified. After the interview, you will hear back about your acceptance.
For more information about the AADSAS, or if you're ready to apply, click the button to learn more
The Big Five
Time spent giving back to your community without any compensation. It doesn't necessarily have to be related to dentistry, but it can be. This is also where you can include your shadowing experiences, extracurriculars, leadership roles, and research experience. You will also want to include manual dexterity qualifications, or activities that enhance your manual dexterity, such as playing the piano or knitting.
2. Course Work:
A GPA that reflects hard work and mastery of the subjects you studied. Both your overall GPA and your science GPA will be looked at. You also have to fill out your transcript manually in the application service, so get yourself a copy of those transcripts right before you apply.
3. Letters of Recommendation:
This is something you cannot ask last minute. Check with the schools you're applying to get specifics. However, letters of recommendation are usually from professors, dentists, or employers. Develop these relationships early. You don't want to find yourself asking for letters at the last minute.
Make sure to take the DAT with enough time for the results to come in before the application needs to be submitted. It's acceptable to wait until the summer you're applying to take the DAT, but just be aware of deadlines. It is possible to submit your application before you take the DAT, but you will need to report the date that you will be taking it. Also, they cannot review your application until your score is in.
5. Personal Statement:
Show the admissions committees why you chose dentistry and who you are. This can be written at anytime. You don't want to feel rushed for this part of your application. We advise writing it before summer begins and AADSAS opens, so you can send it to editors or proofreaders. Have it reviewed by multiple people, from people in the Office of Pre-Professional Advising to your friends and family.