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Calculus requirements??

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Sep 15, 2002
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I am a freshman right now in college. My major is Biology, and also doing Pre-Med/Pre-Dentistry.

My advisor told me I needed only 1 semester of calc. It's called Calc 211 here. Anyway, I'm taking that right now. However, after taking this class, I will not be able to take any more calculus because if I wanted to take more, I would have had to first take Calc 229. And to the Math departments rules, a person cannot take Calc 211 and 229, and get a credit from each. The calc class after 229 is Calc 230. I won't be able to take Calc 230, because I haven't taken Calc 229, and much of the principles come from Calc 229 rather than 211. Those principles will be needed to succeed in Calc 230.

I have been told by the Math Department that if i want to take Calc 229, then I will need to withdraw my credit for 211, and then take 229. In this manner, I will lose a semester, and all that time late at night that i spent doing all that homework and sacrificed my sleep!

So I think I got screwed. Anyway, what do you guys think? Do you think a semester of Calc, and a semester of Statistics would be enough to meet Pre-Med/Pre-Dentistry requirements?


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Well, that depends on which type of school you are applying to. Calculus is not required, per se, to be an applicant to medical OR dental schools. Having said that, you should know that some schools DO require it. The number of medical schools that require it far outnumbers the dental schools which require it. Having said that, I believe there are less than 15 medical schools that require calculus, and only 2 or 3 dental schools which require it.

The ones that do require it, how many semesters do they want?

Because I'm taking calc now.
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Harvard dental requires 2 semesters of calculus -- beyond that I'm not sure what the other 3 or 4 schools require.

Here's the trick with the calc. requirement: you are already taking one semester, so if any schools do require 2, you'll only need to complete another one. With dental schools, you should know your where you are accepted and most likely will have paid a deposit to hold yourself a seat at a particular school, before your final semester of college starts. With that in mind, if you do get accepted by a school that requires another semester, you'll can still fit it in before you graduate. To be perfectly honest, if a school accepts you and you haven't completed the calc. requirement, you could probably get it waived quite easily.

Like I said, I doubt any more than 4 schools require any calc. at all, much less 2 semesters. I don't know of any dental schools that require stats. Good luck with your future plans.