Jul 20, 2009
1
0
Canada
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Pre-Dental
Hey, I'm new around here and I have a question for you guys. I graduated from high school earlier this year and am thinking about pursuing an undergrad degree in biochemistry. Traditionally I have been an underachiever throughout most of my schooling; only in recent months have I begun to re-evaluate my priorities and education should be at the top of that list. Unfortunately, due to certain circumstances in my life right now I will not be entering any post-secondary institution likely before Fall 2010. This really does not sit well with me as this schooling would be long enough (assuming I even get accepted to dental school) without taking additional time off. I've been browsing these forums a bit recently and noticed some discussion about how you don't necessarily need a bachelors degree to get into dental school, just the prerequisite science and english courses. My question now is, could I realistically expect to get into one of the better dental schools with limited university education in biochemistry with no degree, just the prereq. courses and a solid GPA/DAT scores? I know ahead of time that this is probably not the best course of action to take. Don't get me wrong, I am definitely interested in pursuing a career as a dental professional, but the sheer amount of time I would have to invest in this is rather daunting, probably moreso for me than other people (I have a few psychological complexes, if you will). Not needing to finish a full 4 year undegraduate program would be welcome.

I appreciate any feedback. :cool:
 

drm85

10+ Year Member
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Jul 31, 2008
155
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It is definitely possible but very few ppl are in without a degree these days
 

sfrice80

Blood, Sweat, and Beers
Jun 11, 2009
1,272
0
Minneapolis, MN
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Dental Student
Yes, like previously stated, it is possible but dental school is really competitive as it is already WITH a bachelors degree. If you look at most of the schools that do admit students without a bachelors degree, the percentage is really low compared to people with a bachelors degree so overall its possible but with every year that goes by, it becomes less and less likely and dental school becomes more and more competitive.
 

enfuego

10+ Year Member
Oct 5, 2008
289
1
Status
Pre-Dental
It's possible, though most schools require you to have a minimum number of credit hours before you'll be considered. Not to mention the vast majority of applicants will have their BA/BS before they matriculate into dental school. I don't have any facts to back this up, but I would imagine that the people who get in without a degree have great resumes/applications.

I understand why you would want to by pass the undergrad degree, but I think overall it's a good decision to get it. If you don't go to dental school (for whatever reason(s) that may be), then a bachelor's is a good thing to have.

Now, I don't know anything about your difficulties, but I know psychological issues can be very difficult. Just remember how difficult dental school can be. There are threads on here, and you can visit school websites and check their curriculums. The material is advanced, the courses move at a fast pace, the work load is pretty heavy. There aren't many long, extended breaks. Whatever you're going through, just make sure you can handle dental school before deciding to skip through undergrad. Otherwise, doing a full undergrad degree might not be a bad idea just to make sure you're as prepared as possible. But again, I have no idea if this applies to your situation - ignore if it doesn't.
 
May 15, 2009
1,922
3
CA
Status
Dental Student
Hey, I'm new around here and I have a question for you guys. I graduated from high school earlier this year and am thinking about pursuing an undergrad degree in biochemistry. Traditionally I have been an underachiever throughout most of my schooling; only in recent months have I begun to re-evaluate my priorities and education should be at the top of that list. Unfortunately, due to certain circumstances in my life right now I will not be entering any post-secondary institution likely before Fall 2010. This really does not sit well with me as this schooling would be long enough (assuming I even get accepted to dental school) without taking additional time off. I've been browsing these forums a bit recently and noticed some discussion about how you don't necessarily need a bachelors degree to get into dental school, just the prerequisite science and english courses. My question now is, could I realistically expect to get into one of the better dental schools with limited university education in biochemistry with no degree, just the prereq. courses and a solid GPA/DAT scores? I know ahead of time that this is probably not the best course of action to take. Don't get me wrong, I am definitely interested in pursuing a career as a dental professional, but the sheer amount of time I would have to invest in this is rather daunting, probably moreso for me than other people (I have a few psychological complexes, if you will). Not needing to finish a full 4 year undegraduate program would be welcome.

I appreciate any feedback. :cool:
The answer to your question is rather easy. You'll be competing with numerous applicants, many of which have either earned their degree or will earn it before entering dental schools. If you visit the website of various schools, many of them mention that having a Bachelor degree is not required, BUT highly preferred. Obviously, schools won't have any trouble finding students who have already earned their degrees, so they are more likely to choose them over someone who has simply completed a number of prerequisites. At the end, it's not really about having or not having a degree, it's about your academic background. Without a doubt a student who has completed numerous upper division units in order to earn a degree has a stronger academic background compared to someone who has just completed the prerequisites.
Regarding DAT/GPA scores, I'd say you need at least a 3.3+ GPA and a DAT score of 19+ to have a decent chance these days.
If you think getting into dental school is tough, wait till you get in.
If dentistry is something you're truly passionate about as a future career I suggest you don't look for shortcuts. This is a gradual process, and if you attempt to skip steps and become a dental student overnight you will most likely fail.
Good luck to you:thumbup:
 

Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
1
Status
Pre-Dental
a few state schools will let people in without bachelor's but i think more and more of them are moving towards requiring a bachelor's degree.

i personally think that not having a bachelor's degree before dental school isn't really that big of a deal. however, many schools (like temple, case western, tufts) that accept you send you an acceptance letter that says you must complete the degree you said you anticipated completing on your aadsas app. that's a little caveat they don't mention on some websites.

dude, if i were you, i would major in biology and NOT chemistry. it will be a smoother road for you and give you a better background for dental school. just take my word for it. you don't need any extra chemistry classes beyond the dental school prerequisites, but bio courses can serve you really well in dschool.
 

doc toothache

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Jan 17, 2006
8,135
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Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
1
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those are some nice stats, but they are from a few years back and just be aware that some schools have or are already changing their policies about bachelor's degree. at temple and case, for example, you have to complete the degree you said you'd complete on AADSAS.

some of the state schools are now moving towards saying you must have to have your bachelor's degree.
 

doc toothache

10+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2006
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those are some nice stats, but they are from a few years back and just be aware that some schools have or are already changing their policies about bachelor's degree. at temple and case, for example, you have to complete the degree you said you'd complete on AADSAS.

some of the state schools are now moving towards saying you must have to have your bachelor's degree.
The stats may be old but they are probably more reliable than any pulled out from a bonnet or a hat. But if you wish, you can peruse the more recent stats. At the present, only Howard, Boston and Tufts require completion of a degree. Whether or not there is a "trend" towards requiring a bachelor's degree is pretty much a moot point since ds have always had the option to take only those applicants with a degree. The only major effect making a degree a steadfast requirement would be to, perhaps, decrease the number of applicants, which may not be in the best interest of the schools, especially in trying economic times. Such a policy may make sense in times when the number of applicants is on the rise, but it may end up needing some revision should there be a decline in the number, a scenario which no doubt will come in the near or distant future.

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=602095
 
Jun 26, 2009
27
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I am going to apply to dental school early and if I don't get in, just finish my last year and apply at the normal time. Many dental schools that don't require a bachelors degree still require 90 course hours. A bachelors degree has around 120 hours- only 30 more. If it is time,in years, that you are worried about, maybe your future college will offer classes in the summer and winter breaks. At my school, if I took the maximum amount of hours allowed during those sessions, I could take 15 hours each summer break and 3 hours each winter break.
You could also try to clep out of basic classes like history, english, algebra, etc.
 

Emmie

10+ Year Member
Aug 17, 2008
602
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dude, if i were you, i would major in biology and NOT chemistry. it will be a smoother road for you and give you a better background for dental school. just take my word for it. you don't need any extra chemistry classes beyond the dental school prerequisites, but bio courses can serve you really well in dschool.
I'd major in pottery, period.
 

Emmie

10+ Year Member
Aug 17, 2008
602
0
Status
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to the OP,

I wouldn't apply until my senior year. According to SDN, USC's reputation has gone down the drain and even them won't take anyone without a BS. Give it a second thought!!
 

doc toothache

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Jan 17, 2006
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to the OP,

I wouldn't apply until my senior year. According to SDN, USC's reputation has gone down the drain and even them won't take anyone without a BS. Give it a second thought!!
And we all know how reliable the source is.
 

Danny289

Member
10+ Year Member
Dec 2, 2006
1,523
4
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The answer to your question is rather easy. You'll be competing with numerous applicants, many of which have either earned their degree or will earn it before entering dental schools. If you visit the website of various schools, many of them mention that having a Bachelor degree is not required, BUT highly preferred. Obviously, schools won't have any trouble finding students who have already earned their degrees, so they are more likely to choose them over someone who has simply completed a number of prerequisites. At the end, it's not really about having or not having a degree, it's about your academic background. Without a doubt a student who has completed numerous upper division units in order to earn a degree has a stronger academic background compared to someone who has just completed the prerequisites.
Regarding DAT/GPA scores, I'd say you need at least a 3.3+ GPA and a DAT score of 19+ to have a decent chance these days.
If you think getting into dental school is tough, wait till you get in.
If dentistry is something you're truly passionate about as a future career I suggest you don't look for shortcuts. This is a gradual process, and if you attempt to skip steps and become a dental student overnight you will most likely fail.
Good luck to you:thumbup:
^That is the point! but there will be some exception, for example my buddy "harrygt" got to UCLA without Bachelor degree with GPA 4.00, and DAT: 24!
 

peterngu

Who named buffalo knives?
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Nov 29, 2007
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Realistically getting into one of the better schools, most likely not. Like it's been said before, there's thousands of people not getting in each year, most of whom probably have a bachelors or will be getting one. Why would one of the better schools feel like taking a chance on a kid that just wants to do the minimum work to get in, when there's so many better qualified people knocking on their door? Also, I was an underachiever too, and I had to struggle for 6 years to get into a school, and that's WITH a Bachelor's.
 

Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
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At the present, only Howard, Boston and Tufts require completion of a degree.
BUT the thing is, if you get an acceptance from a place like Case Western or Temple (and probably other places), the acceptance letter says that you must finish the degree you said you would finish on your aadsas or you cannot start their dschool. I have the acceptance letters from case and temple as proof of this.
 

Stephie3

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Nov 1, 2008
387
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i also know of a public dschool that just recently put up on their website that they expect ppl to get their bachelor's degree.
 

Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
1
Status
Pre-Dental
i also talked to one guy at my school that applied to a couple of schools and didn't get in anywhere. i think it was Tennessee or Colorado that told him the only reason he wasn't getting in was because it was going to take him two more years to finish his bachelors.
 

Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
1
Status
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i kind of feel like i'm beating a dead horse, but i'm just saying...this should be taken into consideration..especially for people who are applying a couple of years down the road
 

doc toothache

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Jan 17, 2006
8,135
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Realistically getting into one of the better schools, most likely not. Like it's been said before, there's thousands of people not getting in each year, most of whom probably have a bachelors or will be getting one. Why would one of the better schools feel like taking a chance on a kid that just wants to do the minimum work to get in, when there's so many better qualified people knocking on their door? Also, I was an underachiever too, and I had to struggle for 6 years to get into a school, and that's WITH a Bachelor's.
It could be that "a kid just wants to do the minimum work to get in" or it could be that they know exactly what they want to do in their life, they are mature beyond their chronological years and they are anything but underachievers.
 

peterngu

Who named buffalo knives?
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Nov 29, 2007
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It could be that "a kid just wants to do the minimum work to get in" or it could be that they know exactly what they want to do in their life, they are mature beyond their chronological years and they are anything but underachievers.
...
 
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Stephie3

10+ Year Member
Nov 1, 2008
387
1
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if someone knows what they want to do and wants to shave a year or two off of their training, then there's nothing wrong with that. its the financially smart thing to do.
 

diplo123

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It's not possible. You must have a bachelor's degree due to the hundreds/thousands of applicants who do have one or more.
 

doc toothache

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Jan 17, 2006
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It's not possible. You must have a bachelor's degree due to the hundreds/thousands of applicants who do have one or more.
You must have it on good authority.
 
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Dent010

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Apr 19, 2009
274
5
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Dental Student
I know from personal experience that a bachelors degree is not absolutely necessary. A good friend of mine applied in the 2008 cycle with an 19AA (16 in RC), 3.5 GPA, and no intention of a bachelors degree. Although he was rejected from the majority of his choices, he was wait listed and then later accepted by NOVA. He is now attending NOVA and is a D2. I believe that yes, having a bachelors degree will make you a much stronger applicant, but it is not necessary unless your university of interest makes it a requirement.