Dual degree with biology/science education? Bad for adcom?

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Parklife

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Mar 25, 2012
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I have been toying around with the idea of this duel degree combination for a while now. I like teaching, but I like dentistry more. I'm fairly certain dentistry is what I want to do, but I wouldn't mind keeping doors open. A perio I shadowed has lectures at a dental school. I don't think a BS.ED will really help with that, but it would be a nice degree to have. My reasons:

A. I'm interested in teaching and learning about learning. It would be like a blown up minor for me. If not professionally, it will help personally in every day life. Plus, I'm going to be a TA
B. I think it'll help me in dentistry when interacting with patients and teaching them, especially if I manage to specialize in orthodontics(which I would love to do)
C. It will boost my GPA
D. I will be able to finish it in 4 years due to my class standing credit wise
E. It may impress adcoms or give me a little ? factor.
F. My school is highly ranked for education. We have a very good program and my school actually offers this duel degree track. It's not just something I would do.

My question is E actually. Will doing this duel degree hurt or help me? What if adcom thinks "well if he has this degree. He might be undecided about dentistry and kept the degree as a second option. We shouldn't give him admission/interview if he isn't going to produce."

As far as what I would actually do? Well 20-30 years or so down the road when the blush is off dentistry and I'm all established and well-off, I may want to teach college chemistry or biology or even dentistry. I may even teach high school AP courses. I'm just not sure if it's worth the risk for adcoms.

What's the verdict?
 
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TheToothsayer

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I think you bring up an interesting point. Why give admissions to someone who may work less than another applicant? Dental schools want to produce for their state. However, that's too complicated to quantify.

If your school has a good education program, I would take advantage of it. It will boost your GPA, you don't waste any time, and you get two degrees. I really believe diversifying your education is important. Out in practice, you want to be well rounded. Clinical abilities are number one, but communications, financial management, accounting skills, education, psychology and hospitality also help in building a flourishing practice. In order to keep and get new patients you need people skills. I often find that health professionals lack in this area. Like pharmacy schools, I think dental and medical schools should require a single semester or quarter of public speaking.

However, I would not put education classes in front of your upper level biology classes. Take genetics, microbiology, histology, human anatomy, etc. they will help you on the DAT and in dental school.

As far as teaching goes, for dental school you don't really need a degree in education a DDS is what most faculty have. I do know dentists and even physicians who teach part time at a community college. They love it, and the students are impressed and more motivated to see a dentist or doctor teaching them.

Do what makes you happiest.
 

doc toothache

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I have been toying around with the idea of this duel degree combination for a while now. I like teaching, but I like dentistry more. I'm fairly certain dentistry is what I want to do, but I wouldn't mind keeping doors open. A perio I shadowed has lectures at a dental school. I don't think a BS.ED will really help with that, but it would be a nice degree to have. E. It may impress adcoms or give me a little ? factor.
F. My school is highly ranked for education. We have a very good program and my school actually offers this duel degree track. It's not just something I would do.
As far as what I would actually do? Well 20-30 years or so down the road when the blush is off dentistry and I'm all established and well-off, I may want to teach college chemistry or biology or even dentistry. I may even teach high school AP courses. I'm just not sure if it's worth the risk for adcoms.

Sounds like a duel with your dual degree. Teaching college chemistry or biology without a degree in the respective fields, not to mention a graduate degree, might be a tough sell.
 

GobBluth

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Apr 8, 2012
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AFAIK without a Ph.D. it's very unlikely you'll be able to teach (lecture) in dental school. You might be able to do some clinical instruction, particularly if you are a specialist, but don't expect to gain a full-time faculty position without fully devoting yourself to the academic field.

Just do what you're interested in (right now) and do well in it (right now). Stop overthinking it.
 

Simiam

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Get a 4 yr degree in whatever you want (maintain a good GPA 3.5+). Take your prereqs and do well (3.5 GPA +). Write the DAT and do well (20+). Interview well.

That's all you need to worry about.
 
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