Being a dentist provides an opportunity for you to help others become educated about, maintain, and keep good oral hygiene. Patients receive smiles through knowledge, leadership, and communication.

Key Points
  • Being "Pre-Dent" is an interest in addition to your major.
  • Dental schools accept a variety of majors. Major in any area of personal interest, as long the professional school requirements are completed.


Doctor of Medical Dentistry, D.M.D & Doctor of Dental Surgery, D.D.S.

The DMD/DDS are equivalent 4 year degrees after an undergraduate career. Requirements are the same, and both professionals must pass the National Board Dental Eaminations (NBDE).

Schools in Alabama

Recommended Course & GPA Requirements

To be a competitive applicant, a 3.5+ cumulative and science GPA is recommended.

Pre-requisites of the below courses are enforced.

Schools look for these classes:
Hrs NeededCourse NeededWhat to Take at UAH
8 hrs (w/lab) General Biology BYS 119 & BYS 120
4 hrs Biology subjects Choices Below
8 hrs (w/lab) General Chemistry CH 121/125 & CH 123/126
8 hrs (w/lab) Organic Chemistry CH 331/335 & CH 332/336
8 hrs (w/lab) General Physics

PH 101&102 or PH 111/114 & PH 112/115


6 hrs (w/lab) Math

MA 171 & MA 281/ST 281

Courses positively adding to your application:
CourseWhat to Take at UAH
Biochemistry BYS 361
Physics w/Calculus PH 111/114 & PH 112/115
Cell & Dev. Biology BYS 300
Microbiology BYS 321/321L
Genetics BYS 219

Biochemistry is strongly recommended in your list of courses.

The above courses support required and suggested coursework for Alabama schools. The combination of courses are guidelines, and specific requirements may differ among schools.

Entrance Exam


The Dental Admissions Test (DAT) is the entrance exam required for admission to dentistry school. This test measures general academic ability and comprehension of:

  • Natural Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Organic Chemistry)
  • Perceptual Ability
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Quantitative Reasoning

One way to prepare for the DAT is to review the content of the exam (DAT Guide ) and understand concepts and compare them with coursework. Preparation should include repeated practice DAT exams and assessment of personal strengths and weaknesses. Students should particularly familiarize themselves with the perceptual ability problems included on the DAT.

Timing & Testing

The DAT is administered year round at various test centers. Take the exam when ready.

Plan ahead and apply early. Students must wait at least 90 days between testing dates.

Making an appointment with the Pre-Professional Advisor is crucial before taking the DAT.

Outside Class Experiences
It's More Than Just Grades

Health Care Experiences

What better way to make sure you want to be in healthcare than by shadowing? Shadowing will go a long way in not only making you a mature applicant, but making sure others see you as prepared.

Community Service and Volunteering

Working in healthcare means having a heart of service. This means wanting to give back to the community. Find something enjoyable and go forth!

Keeping a Journal

Use a journal to record thoughts on your experiences. Activities come to life with reflection. Topics to consider writing about may include: Why one chose their profession, shadowing, or volunteering. This journal may be helpful when writing your personal statement.


Research experience can provide you with the opportunity to work with faculty, learn skills beyond the classroom, use research methods, and engage in critical analysis. Research allows a better understanding between theory and practice using innovative and creative thinking.

Getting into professional school is about desiring to be a better person and better future professional. It's a complex process and we're here to help!