For UC Davis Students
Students interested in dentistry must realize, first and foremost, that they are required to complete certain courses and take the Dental Admission Test (DAT). Although there is no specific "formula" or direct path that leads to dental school acceptance, the most competitive applicants are well prepared in several areas.
Specific course prerequisites may vary slightly for each of the U.S. dental schools, but the following college level courses are generally required: inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, biology, and English. Some dental schools have additional course requirements. View the Pre-Dental Preparation at UC Davis handout for specific UC Davis course prerequisites.
It is essential to have some type of dental experience, whether through an observational internship or actual work for a dentist. Many applicants have research experience as well. The Internship and Career Center is an important internship resource for pre-dental students. Research or clinical internships that are self-initiated are particularly rewarding and are viewed very positively by admissions committees. Community and campus service, participation in organized sports, leadership and well-developed personal interests are also important considerations in the admissions process.
For additional information, view the Pre-Dental Preparation at UC Davis handout.