If you have "average" stats and already received an interview, why?

Jun 26, 2015
13
8
Status
Pre-Dental
Hope no one is offended by this but I have been reading the Interviewed/Accepted thread and noticed some people getting interviews with somewhat "average" stats while those with seemingly better stats haven't received any interviews (yet). It may be school related (some schools are just now sending out invitees, they batch differently, etc), but I am wondering....

If you have AA on DAT of 20 or below OR have a section under 17
OR
Your science GPA is under 3.6
AND
You have already received one or more interviews, can you answer the following:

When was your app submit date (100% complete)?
How many interviews do you have already?
Are you URM?
Why do you think you stood out and already have interviews?
 
  • Like
Reactions: jse122

WolfsBane

2+ Year Member
Jun 16, 2016
422
529
Status
Pre-Dental
3.87 gpa 3.81 sgpa. 20AA/22TS. June 6, 3 interviews. Not a URM. Tbh I honestly have no idea what adcoms look for. The app is not all about stats even though they matter. A 19 with a good gpa or vice versa can easily get one an interview. If someone has amazing ec's that helps. Great stats with no ec's is a question mark imo.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 
Last edited:

Kingfish23

2+ Year Member
Apr 9, 2017
513
650
Dude, these schools will straight up reject people with GREAT stats for one reason:

Stats do not automatically make you a great candidate.

You need to have a solid all around application. Shadowing, volunteering, research and work experience are all factored in. Stats are a great way to screen candidates out, but it's your entire application that is gonna get you that interview. It is a holistic review.
 

hajin

2+ Year Member
Sep 19, 2014
80
148
Status
Dental Student
sGPA 3.8. DAT 22/22/20. Don't worry. I applied to nearly 20 schools since I was paranoid and my state has no dental school. It took some time, but I ended up getting interviews from places like UCSF and UoP while my "safety" schools never even contacted me. I didn't understand it either, but it makes a lot of sense when you realize one fact - schools want to pad their admission stats. Offering a bunch of acceptances to students who ultimately chose other schools makes them look bad. So, applying widely might be a good idea, but I would recommend applying to schools that are a reasonably good fit for your numbers.
 

Kurk

2+ Year Member
Feb 18, 2016
663
215
Status
Pre-Dental
Nothing supersedes the transcript IMO. I really hope the dental schools aren't allowing compromises in the quality of their graduates. I'd much rather have a top-of-their-class doc who may not be the most personable working on me over the mediocre student who was "very nice and compassionate".
 
  • Like
Reactions: DensMedicusOptimus

amariesa

5+ Year Member
Oct 1, 2013
254
249
I didn't know after taking so much money from us, they can ignore us, hajin. I thought ethics were drilled into students?
 
6

670206

Dude, these schools will straight up reject people with GREAT stats for one reason:

Stats do not automatically make you a great candidate.

You need to have a solid all around application. Shadowing, volunteering, research and work experience are all factored in. Stats are a great way to screen candidates out, but it's your entire application that is gonna get you that interview. It is a holistic review.
Yep. UCSF comes to mind.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Kingfish23

Life of Pablo

Hola
Gold Donor
2+ Year Member
Feb 18, 2016
1,092
2,089
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I have a section below 17 (16 RC) and have received 6 interviews :)
I felt like everything in my application was really strong except that one subsection on the DAT. In my case, it's hit or miss. Some schools will overlook my RC scores and others won't. Luckily quite a few have so far, but we'll see when December 1st rolls around...

Also, I'm about to make a highly controversial statement that may piss off some people, but I believe it's true:
I feel like the "top" dental schools (Columbia, UCLA, UPenn etc) care more about gpa/dat score than how wel rounded a candidate it. Since they want such high DAT scores for admission, they're a little less picky about your extracurriculars because there are so few people with 22AA+. On the contrary, schools that have more "average" admissions stats care more about how well rounded a candidate is because the school is choosing between thousands of people with 19-20 AA so what separates those individuals are their extracurricular activities. For instance, UCSF, a school known for accepting based on diversity/well roundedness, rejects so many people with 23AA+ and then a lot of those same people get accepted by UCLA lol.. Idk if that makes sense or not.
 
Last edited:

WolfsBane

2+ Year Member
Jun 16, 2016
422
529
Status
Pre-Dental
I have a section below 17 (16 RC) and have received 6 interviews :)
I felt like everything in my application was really strong except that one subsection on the DAT. In my case, it's hit or miss. Some schools will overlook my RC scores and others won't. Luckily quite a few have so far, but we'll see when December 1st rolls around...

Also, I'm about to make a highly controversial statement that may piss off some people, but I believe it's true:
I feel like the "top" dental schools (Columbia, UCLA, UPenn etc) care more about gpa/dat score than how wel rounded a candidate it. Since they want such high DAT scores for admission, they're a little less picky about your extracurriculars because there are so few people with 22AA+. On the contrary, schools that have more "average" admissions stats care more about how well rounded a candidate is because the school is choosing between thousands of people with 19-20 AA so what separates those individuals are their extracurricular activities. For instance, UCSF rejects so many people with 23AA+ and then a lot of those people get accepted by UCLA lol.. Idk if that makes sense or not.
Not controversial. I agree with you one hundred percent. They get the stats regardless so they want a well rounded applicant. Btw are you URM?


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 

Life of Pablo

Hola
Gold Donor
2+ Year Member
Feb 18, 2016
1,092
2,089
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Not controversial. I agree with you one hundred percent. They get the stats regardless so they want a well rounded applicant. Btw are you URM?


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
No, I'm half asian half white lol. I feel like a minority because there are so few of my kind xD

Edit: I bet a lot of people on here think i'm a URM because I have the user name "Pablo" LMAO. My username is the name of Kanye west's album :)
 
Last edited:

tle95

2+ Year Member
Sep 29, 2016
74
89
Status
Pre-Dental
My sgpa is 3.56 while my DAT is 19AA. My stats are average, but I am very fortunate to have two interviews so far! I honestly think it depends on what schools you apply to and also what extracurriculars you are involved in! Along with that I am the first person to attend college in my entire family and I am Vietnamese. However, I feel like being well-rounded is the most important for most dental schools.
 

WolfsBane

2+ Year Member
Jun 16, 2016
422
529
Status
Pre-Dental
No, I'm half asian half white lol. I feel like a minority because there are so few of me xD
Lol I'm jewish so I feel the same way. Its good to see a "regular" person get so many interviews!


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 
  • Like
Reactions: ENGAW

isso1418

2+ Year Member
Dec 17, 2016
142
55
Status
Pre-Dental
My sgpa is 3.56 while my DAT is 19AA. My stats are average, but I am very fortunate to have two interviews so far! I honestly think it depends on what schools you apply to and also what extracurriculars you are involved in! Along with that I am the first person to attend college in my entire family and I am Vietnamese. However, I feel like being well-rounded is the most important for most dental schools.
What schools are interviewing you, if you dont mind me asking?
 

Lalibila

2+ Year Member
Dec 28, 2016
117
107
Status
Pre-Dental
I have a section below 17 (16 RC) and have received 6 interviews :)
I felt like everything in my application was really strong except that one subsection on the DAT. In my case, it's hit or miss. Some schools will overlook my RC scores and others won't. Luckily quite a few have so far, but we'll see when December 1st rolls around...

Also, I'm about to make a highly controversial statement that may piss off some people, but I believe it's true:
I feel like the "top" dental schools (Columbia, UCLA, UPenn etc) care more about gpa/dat score than how wel rounded a candidate it. Since they want such high DAT scores for admission, they're a little less picky about your extracurriculars because there are so few people with 22AA+. On the contrary, schools that have more "average" admissions stats care more about how well rounded a candidate is because the school is choosing between thousands of people with 19-20 AA so what separates those individuals are their extracurricular activities. For instance, UCSF, a school known for accepting based on diversity/well roundedness, rejects so many people with 23AA+ and then a lot of those same people get accepted by UCLA lol.. Idk if that makes sense or not.
How many schools did you apply to?


Lalibila
 

Lalibila

2+ Year Member
Dec 28, 2016
117
107
Status
Pre-Dental
Quite a few because people on these forums were telling me 16 RC was too low and i would be screened out of most schools....here i am in August already rejecting interviews.
SDN has a way of making everyone feel insecure. Who are your top choices?


Lalibila
 

isso1418

2+ Year Member
Dec 17, 2016
142
55
Status
Pre-Dental
Quite a few because people on these forums were telling me 16 RC was too low and i would be screened out of most schools....here i am in August already rejecting interviews.
Send the rejected ones over to me! Hook a sista up!
 
OP
L
Jun 26, 2015
13
8
Status
Pre-Dental
3.87 gpa 3.81 sgpa. 20AA/22TS. June 6, 3 interviews. Not a URM. Tbh I honestly have no idea what adcoms look for. The app is not all about stats even though they matter. A 19 with a good gpa or vice versa can easily get one an interview. If someone has amazing ec's that helps. Great stats with no ec's is a question mark imo.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
Does work count as EC's? If someone worked while attending college full-time it leaves a lot less time to join clubs, etc. Do you think Adcoms look at that? Similarly, I wonder how they look at older students who may have fulltime jobs, families, etc. If you're 27, working fulltime and made the time to shadow, study for the DAT, etc does it really matter if you weren't the president of the dental club in college when you were 20?

If they're placing a huge emphasis on EC's how does that play with the notion I have seen on SDN that a lot of people lie about their EC's and shadowing? GPA and DAT don't lie.
 

WolfsBane

2+ Year Member
Jun 16, 2016
422
529
Status
Pre-Dental
Does work count as EC's? If someone worked while attending college full-time it leaves a lot less time to join clubs, etc. Do you think Adcoms look at that? Similarly, I wonder how they look at older students who may have fulltime jobs, families, etc. If you're 27, working fulltime and made the time to shadow, study for the DAT, etc does it really matter if you weren't the president of the dental club in college when you were 20?

If they're placing a huge emphasis on EC's how does that play with the notion I have seen on SDN that a lot of people lie about their EC's and shadowing? GPA and DAT don't lie.
I think it makes a difference since they look at the whole picture. If anything it makes you a very interesting candidate. I am 24 and worked full time in part of my time in college. I own a business and have made time to shadow 200+ hours. If that is anything like what you have you should be okay. What are your stats btw?


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 
  • Like
Reactions: ENGAW
OP
L
Jun 26, 2015
13
8
Status
Pre-Dental
I think it makes a difference since they look at the whole picture. If anything it makes you a very interesting candidate. I am 24 and worked full time in part of my time in college. I own a business and have made time to shadow 200+ hours. If that is anything like what you have you should be okay. What are your stats btw?


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
I hope so but this whole thing is making me nervous. My app was complete early July, applied to 9 schools and so far only 1 invite (my state school). My DAT AA is 21 and all my scores are between 19 and 23. My overall GPA is 3.87 and science is 3.95. I had hardly any EC's when I was in undergrad because I was working and frankly at the time not much of the club/social type. I've since had a strong career and worked fulltime while I did some postBC science classes and shadowed.
Not getting more interviews is making me nervous. I know everyone says it's early but it's getting very depressing seeing people with stats below mine getting invites to the same schools I applied to. I am happy for them but I am beginning to wonder if any of the LORs that I was told would be steller were not or if I royally messed up my PS or something.
 

Life of Pablo

Hola
Gold Donor
2+ Year Member
Feb 18, 2016
1,092
2,089
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I hope so but this whole thing is making me nervous. My app was complete early July, applied to 9 schools and so far only 1 invite (my state school). My DAT AA is 21 and all my scores are between 19 and 23. My overall GPA is 3.87 and science is 3.95. I had hardly any EC's when I was in undergrad because I was working and frankly at the time not much of the club/social type. I've since had a strong career and worked fulltime while I did some postBC science classes and shadowed.
Not getting more interviews is making me nervous. I know everyone says it's early but it's getting very depressing seeing people with stats below mine getting invites to the same schools I applied to. I am happy for them but I am beginning to wonder if any of the LORs that I was told would be steller were not or if I royally messed up my PS or something.
You got an interview from your state school which means its your cheapest option and should be like your #1 choice. You should be pumped
 
  • Like
Reactions: Nathangw

WolfsBane

2+ Year Member
Jun 16, 2016
422
529
Status
Pre-Dental
I hope so but this whole thing is making me nervous. My app was complete early July, applied to 9 schools and so far only 1 invite (my state school). My DAT AA is 21 and all my scores are between 19 and 23. My overall GPA is 3.87 and science is 3.95. I had hardly any EC's when I was in undergrad because I was working and frankly at the time not much of the club/social type. I've since had a strong career and worked fulltime while I did some postBC science classes and shadowed.
Not getting more interviews is making me nervous. I know everyone says it's early but it's getting very depressing seeing people with stats below mine getting invites to the same schools I applied to. I am happy for them but I am beginning to wonder if any of the LORs that I was told would be steller were not or if I royally messed up my PS or something.
I agree with @lifeofpablo here. Your number one should be your state school. You should be thrilled!!


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 
  • Like
Reactions: ENGAW
OP
L
Jun 26, 2015
13
8
Status
Pre-Dental
You got an interview from your state school which means its your cheapest option and should be like your #1 choice. You should be pumped
I am very happy about it. But if I don't get any more interviews I feel my chances go down. I am also genuinely interested in some other schools and thinking I might do military so tuition wouldn't matter. My state is also still on the expensive side. I could go to Uconn or MD and get in-state after the first year and it would end up be less over the 4 years than my state school.
 
  • Like
Reactions: GoHawks18

redhotchiligochu

D3
2+ Year Member
Jul 11, 2016
649
698
USA
Status
Dental Student
I applied last cycle with a below average GPA, average DAT, and non URM. I submitted early June and received 5 interview invites spanning between August to October.

What worked for me was 1) submitting apps early and secondaries within a few days after receiving them 2) clearly communicating my passion toward dentistry 3) having lots of EC's and 4) applying to a ton of schools.
 

amariesa

5+ Year Member
Oct 1, 2013
254
249
I applied early with 3.85 overall, 21AA, research, worked in health care for 6 years, taught ESL at my university..etc. I only have 2 interviews and I applied to 18 schools. About 7 schools hadnt given me interviews yet and gave them to people with lower stats. I know it's early but at some point it's hard to wonder what you're missing in comparison.
 
Last edited:

krvstak

2+ Year Member
Jan 12, 2017
164
97
Status
Pre-Dental
- 19AA 20TS 22BIO 21OC 18GC 19PAT 18RC 15QR
- 3.6 overall
- 3.8 science
- Very unique(?) EC's apart from the stock dental shadowing (~130 hrs)
- I took a huge risk and wrote an extremely untraditional p.statement
- committee letter
- 4 interviews thus far

A bit offended by this post, but trust me/the rest of us... the cycle is no where near over.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 

helloboys

2+ Year Member
May 18, 2016
278
187
Interview≠acceptance

Like some people said above, there's usually two types of schools, the ones that don't care so much about GPA and DAT scores and the ones that do. if you see Columbia dental school, their average DAT score is a 23. They will not accept someone with a 19, because that will make their average go down. There are a lot of mediocre schools that probably reject people with high GPAs and DAT scores because they know those people won't even go to their schools if they get accepted.
 
6

670206

UCSF/UCLA because those are my state schools. At this point, Iowa is a close second because my girlfriend and I both have interviews there so if we could go to the same school, THAT WOULD BE AWESOME.
Iowa's a good school! Hope it works out for you & your gf.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • Like
Reactions: Life of Pablo
Jul 16, 2017
48
18
- 19AA 20TS 22BIO 21OC 18GC 19PAT 18RC 15QR
- 3.6 overall
- 3.8 science
- Very unique(?) EC's apart from the stock dental shadowing (~130 hrs)
- I took a huge risk and wrote an extremely untraditional p.statement
- committee letter
- 4 interviews thus far

A bit offended by this post, but trust me/the rest of us... the cycle is no where near over.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
Dont let anyone or anything offend you. You already have 4 interviews!!! Such a good accomplishment :) others are just jealous haha


Congratulations!!!
 

krvstak

2+ Year Member
Jan 12, 2017
164
97
Status
Pre-Dental
Dont let anyone or anything offend you. You already have 4 interviews!!! Such a good accomplishment :) others are just jealous haha


Congratulations!!!
Thank-you @hizi. I've been working real hard for this and I'm sure everyone else is in that boat with me. My DAT scores definitely do not define me but I think it'll get me to where I want to be. Fingers crossed!