snooper92

10+ Year Member
Aug 9, 2007
110
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Pre-Dental
I'm in a dilemma about whether to apply this cycle (for entrance in '09) or to delay applying until next spring. For anyone who could kindly give advice, I'd appreciate it.

I'm a nontraditional student. For the past 2 years, I've been doing the science prerequisite classes. My plan has been to apply to dental school sometime in May and take the DAT's in July.

I went to college and grad school, worked for 6 years, and decided to make a career change for various reasons.

Here is my dilemma: My overall GPA is a 3.18 (which got pulled down by low grad school grades in a non-science field), my science GPA is a 3.3 (I have a 4.0 average now with my science classes but I took science classes in college a very long time ago and did poorly in them. Unfortunately, those old grades are averaged with my current science grades). For the past 2 years, I have retaken the courses I took in college, which are the general science prerequisites + cell biology.

Would it be better to delay applying to dental school another year and take more science classes to boost the science GPA? Would taking more upper-level undergrad biology classes be sufficient? I've been told that schools are mostly concerned with grades received in prerequisites and that beyond that, the DAT is most important.

Do the schools look down on re-applicants?

I am wondering if 2 more semesters of high grades (which would bump the science average from a 3.3 to about a 3.45 or more) would be worth the wait, or if the difference is not significant enough to justify postponing. It's hard to tell...

Thanks for listening. Any advice or insight on this would be greatly appreciated.
 

ummjoey

10+ Year Member
Jun 11, 2007
513
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Pre-Dental
i think if you do really well on the dat then you should apply this year. i also think the 4.0 you got in the past 2 years will really help you out.

if you got all the other stuff straighten out, then i say apply.

this time last year i already gotten all my lors and my personal statement done.

however, the decision is really up to you. if you dont feel ready, then just push it back one year. you will only become a stronger applicant.
 

trent

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Mar 24, 2004
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I would apply. Even if it doesn't work out this time, you will benefit from the application process and interviewing. Also, if you end up applying twice, as a re-applicant, I think they give you a little more attention.
 
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Frederico Albin

Yes thats my bulldog :)
10+ Year Member
Dec 5, 2007
578
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Pre-Medical
I would apply without a doubt. What if you end up getting accepted... :p

Just do your best on the DAT and hope for the best :p
 
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snooper92

10+ Year Member
Aug 9, 2007
110
1
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Pre-Dental
Thank you guys for kindly replying so quickly! I've been SO torn about this issue for the past month and it's driving me crazy. I just want to do the right thing and not screw anything up.

I guess I was concerned that schools would have an unadvertised "cutoff" for GPA's and I didn't want to be knocked out of consideration right off the bat because my science 3.3 GPA was too low.

The thing I don't know is how much raising the science GPA to at least a 3.45 as opposed to applying with my current 3.3 science GPA would affect the number of potential acceptances, if you know what I mean. Any insight or wisdom on this?

Thank you guys for your opinions. I really, really appreciate them!
 

War Eagle

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5+ Year Member
Feb 13, 2007
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Pre-Dental
While I'm sure most schools do have some cutoff, I don't think that a 3.3 is below that cutoff. It sounds like you've done well lately, and if you can get the ADCOMs to focus on your upward trend and can explain what changed, you should be fine. Focus on doing well on the DAT.
 

doubledizzle13

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Aug 10, 2007
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3.3 to a 3.45 will increase your chances especially if you don't do so hot on the dat and you don't have a lot of shadowing/ex.curricular/service stuff/hand skills stuff.
But since you can't wait and see I would confidently spend the money! It's not only a worthwhile financial gamble because you actually have a decent chance of getting in as is, (as long as you applied early and did a good job on the application and LOR's), but it becomes an investment as the next year you look like a better applicant.
Why you ask?
#1 You didn't switch to Law School so you have tangible proof of desire(they really like that because honestly, most guys don't have it, they just act like it is their childhood dream to be a dentist),
#2
because if you are smart you improved everything else on your application by the next cycle and will really stand out from the crowd (which really is a pain in the butt by the way, especially after being dragged through a year of the torturous "hope I get in somewhere but didn't find out for sure till april" experience - so plan wisely if that occurs to you because may 15th will sneak up on you fast!)
#3 im sure there are other reasons but I am sick of being altruistic
 
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