31 y/o Dental Applicant

pigdds

New Member
Dec 1, 2013
2
0
  1. Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
    I am new to posting on SDN.

    Awhile ago, I gave up on a dream to pursue a career in healthcare. Now I am studying for the DAT and preparing to apply in 2014. I have a few questions and need some insights. Any guidance is greatly appreciated.

    1. Do I need to take a Biochemistry class?

    I noticed that many of the dental schools now require 3 credits of Biochemistry. Is this a requirement that I can fulfill after acceptance? Will a community college class satisfy this need?

    2. Do I need to take science pre-reqs over again?

    A number of schools prefer class no more than 10 years old. I recently completed my MBA in 2011 from a full-time program. Does that help provide evidence of "academic ability"?

    I completed my undergraduate biology degree in 2004 and my GPAs are as follows:
    a. Overall - 3.44
    b. Science - 3.46
    c. BCP - 3.41

    Thanks in advance.
     

    hypemachine

    Full Member
    5+ Year Member
    Sep 7, 2012
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    1. Pre-Dental
      1) As you said, some schools require Biochem and some don't. In your personal case, since you haven't taken a science course in a while, it might be beneficial to take the biochem anyway. Nevertheless, for those schools that DO require it, it is a requirement that you can fulfill AFTER acceptance but BEFORE matriculation. You would still have to have completed it by the start of dental school. Also I might be wrong but I don't think community colleges offer upper level sciences (i.e. above 200 level). You might have to take it at a local state school, but check just to make sure.

      2) I'm not sure about the answer to this question. It might be in your best interest to contact some schools and anonymously ask the admissions what their thoughts are on science courses from 10+ years ago. They would be the best source for that answer. Your GPA is competitive for some schools, though, and with a very competitive DAT score I'm sure you'd be considered for them. But it would be better to call the admissions first.
       

      averagejoe805

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      7+ Year Member
      Oct 2, 2012
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      Greater Los Angeles, CA
      1. Dental Student
        Most dental schools that require it specify biochem must be taken at a 4 year. But they don't seem to care about any of the other sciences. (Except the schools that have limits on cc credits in general)

        I graduated undergrad in 2002, did all science prereqs at a cc except biochem which I did at a 4 year state school. The non-science prereqs from 11+ years ago haven't been mentioned as being a problem from the schools I interviewed or was accepted at.

        Best advice anyone can give you is check the policies of the individual schools you want to go to.
         
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        Qtn2x

        Junior Member
        10+ Year Member
        May 17, 2005
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          I am a non traditional applicant myself, 32 years old and just got accepted. I didnt have biochem prior to applying either. ll tell u what i did later today when i am more free. I am cramming for this final exam right now.
           

          doc toothache

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          15+ Year Member
          Jan 17, 2006
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            The good news is that you have shown recent "academic ability", the bad news is that it wasn't in the sciences. A serious course in biochemistry compounded with an excellent DAT might be step in the right direction to show that the bolts are not as rusted as one might have anticipated.
             

            Qtn2x

            Junior Member
            10+ Year Member
            May 17, 2005
            81
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              To anser your questions
              1) you dont have to have biochem prior to applying, even to the schools that require it. I applied this past summer when i hadnt taken it. However, I indicated on the planned courses section of AADSAS that I will be taking biochem in the Fall semester. My letters of acceptance just remind me that i need to take it before matriculation and need to have a C or above. However, if u can, i suggest that u take it asap, like next semester jsut to get it over with.
              2) your prereqs are not expired. I graduated in 2004, all of my prereqs were 10 yrs ago. I remembered i was very worried because Maryland and NYU said on their websites that they want pre reqs within 5 years. I applied anyway, but I did show recent course works by taking a full course load of upper division bio courses. i has a semester of recent course work when I applied. I think what helped me get in was my DAT which was a 23, all As in my recent course works and a 3.87 gpa frm 10 years ago that apparently still carries some weight.
              So i highly suggest you to go back to school taking heavy science courses (immunology, anatomy, physiology, histology..) amd get As, ace the DAT, and u will have no problem getting accepted.
               

              ecap707

              Dental Student
              Jun 27, 2011
              37
              1
                Each school is different. You need to figure put which ones require certain extra classes before you apply. You don't need to retake classes you already pAssed however because it was a while ago, your dats will probably be more important to schools because it will show how much you currently know
                 

                tandem7

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                May 27, 2008
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                1. Pre-Dental
                  Yep, you should really contact the schools about your requirements. I will say that biochem is required at most schools though, and you will need a good grasp of it or at least organic chemistry in dental school.

                  I am also a 32 y/o applicant and graduated in 2002. I re-took some of the science classes over the past two years to refresh my memory and to do well on the DAT. Most of the dental schools to which I applied did not have the 10 year cutoff but did recommend taking some science classes to show you are interested in it still.
                   

                  lilwebb09

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                  May 12, 2007
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                  1. Pre-Dental
                    I'm a nontrad as well and didn't have biochem when applying and will be taking it this spring. Also I had no recent coursework completed (graduated in 2008) and was accepted to schools, however I have been working in a science related field. Your best bet is to call some schools and just ask.
                     

                    Nickthegreek

                    Full Member
                    Nov 14, 2013
                    28
                    25
                    1. Pre-Dental
                    2. Pharmacist
                      Hey everyone. I have kind of a similar situation. I have been out of school for 8 years. I graduated in 2005 with a PharmD degree so I took the courses like biochem, anatomy/physiology, and microbio that schools suggest. BUT my problem is its been a while and Im having trouble finding a professor to write a LOR fron undergrad because its been 13 years!!! So im thinking about taking microbio and biochem over at a community college because I did the poorest on those classes and I figured it would be a good way to get some LOR's. Would it be looked down upon you think if I take it at a CC? My local CC has a convenient schedule so i can still at least work part time
                       

                      Pelotari

                      Pelotari
                      10+ Year Member
                      Jun 2, 2005
                      146
                      2
                      Texas
                      1. Dentist
                        I had been out of school for 15 years before I decided to get into dental school. I was a dad of two young kids at the time, and worked full time as a project manager for a telecom company in the Dallas area. I am (or was at one point) a EE major with two master's degrees. I thought I was pretty good at science but decided to take all pre-requisites and not leave anything to chance. Thus, I still had to take physics, biology, and ALL the other dental pre-requisites (including English composition WITH lab), most at a community college. All other advanced classes I took at a traditional 4-year school as these were not offered at my CC. All these basic pre-req's served as an excellent refresher and helped me boost up my overall GPA. Classes were not easy, mind you. It was a LOT of work, with only a few hours of sleep per night for about two years. It was exhausting! But, I was finally accepted by my dental school with the condition that I pass biochem and two other advanced biology classes prior to matriculation. Little did I know that it would be even more exhausting to be in dental school....:)
                        Needless to say, it is possible for non-traditional old fogeys like me to learn new tricks. I am now practicing as a general dentist in the Houston area. If you have any questions about being a dentist, or if you have any questions as to what I did to get in (and out), let me know and I'll be glad to help.
                         
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                        steiner2

                        Full Member
                        Jul 24, 2011
                        136
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                          I had been out of school for 15 years before I decided to get into dental school. I was a dad of two young kids at the time, and worked full time as a project manager for a telecom company in the Dallas area. I am (or was at one point) a EE major with two master's degrees. I thought I was pretty good at science but decided to take all pre-requisites and not leave anything to chance. Thus, I still had to take physics, biology, and ALL the other dental pre-requisites (including English composition WITH lab), most at a community college. All other advanced classes I took at a traditional 4-year school as these were not offered at my CC. All these basic pre-req's served as an excellent refresher and helped me boost up my overall GPA. Classes were not easy, mind you. It was a LOT of work, with only a few hours of sleep per night for about two years. It was exhausting! But, I was finally accepted by my dental school with the condition that I pass biochem and two other advanced biology classes prior to matriculation. Little did I know that it would be even more exhausting to be in dental school....:)
                          Needless to say, it is possible for non-traditional old fogeys like me to learn new tricks. I am now practicing as a general dentist in the Houston area. If you have any questions about being a dentist, or if you have any questions as to what I did to get in (and out), let me know and I'll be glad to help.
                          I hate when ppl think age is a factor. I think you are a prime example of it.
                           
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