Jul 20, 2009
1
0
Status
Hi,

Canadian student here - clearly there are small differences between our dental health care systems. I see that all US schools have job shadowing either recommended or actually required - sometimes up to 100 hours. From this, I gather that job shadowing dentists must be common in the States.

I'm not sure if it's my badluck, but several dentists I've talked to here in Canada are not willing to take on people to job shadow. Even a close friend of the family has only let me job shadow her for maybe 10 hours total, and I'm pushing my luck. The reason they give me is that the doc-patient relationship should strictly be one-on-one; while some patients don't mind.. a lot do.. etc other crap excuses.

So my question: are job shadowing hours a significant factor by US schools in determining an applicant? I have a high GPA/high academic average/average PAT based on the Canadian system... but very little job shadowing experience.

Also, if anyone knows, are american schools biased for the US dat, even though they officially say they'll accept the Canadian DAT? Do they take the Canadian scoring system under careful consideration? Eg. i got a 21 AA which is average in the states, but 92-98th % for Canada. Got 17 on PAT, which is below average in States, but slightly above average in Canada.

Also, are there any leniancies for letters of recommendation? I'm having a hard time finding one other science professor for a reference.. can these be substituted?

Thanks in advance.
 

hsia2

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Dec 17, 2008
204
0
Status
Pre-Dental
I think shadowing is relatively important in states
Some universities even have minimum shadowing hour requirement (ie Loma Linda, Tufts)
Having no experience whatsoever in dentistry may hinder your chance a bit
However, with your high GPA, schools may overlook that a little bit
I am a Canadian too, and i know how difficult it is to find dentists to shadow
You should try your school dentists and see if they will let you shadow
I ended up with 300 hours of shadow/volunteer in dentistry, so it is definitely doable

For DAT, Yes, States universities do take in CDAT. However, several schools that I talked to prefer US DAT over CDAT (ie UOP)
I understand CDAT is way harder than DAT (I took both)
However, I don't think admission will care much about percentage
They only look at the numbers
You should really try US DAT
I am sure you will get a mark or two higher on it for sure
I got 20 AA/ 20TS on CDAT and 22AA/22TS on US DAT
But again, with your good GPA, you probably don't need to take US DAT
21AA should be sufficient :laugh:
 

doc toothache

10+ Year Member
Jan 17, 2006
8,135
2,274
Status
Dentist
Canadian student here - clearly there are small differences between our dental health care systems. I see that all US schools have job shadowing either recommended or actually required - sometimes up to 100 hours. From this, I gather that job shadowing dentists must be common in the States.
I'm not sure if it's my badluck, but several dentists I've talked to here in Canada are not willing to take on people to job shadow. Even a close friend of the family has only let me job shadow her for maybe 10 hours total, and I'm pushing my luck. The reason they give me is that the doc-patient relationship should strictly be one-on-one; while some patients don't mind.. a lot do.. etc other crap excuses.
So my question: are job shadowing hours a significant factor by US schools in determining an applicant? I have a high GPA/high academic average/average PAT based on the Canadian system... but very little job shadowing experience.
Also, if anyone knows, are american schools biased for the US dat, even though they officially say they'll accept the Canadian DAT? Do they take the Canadian scoring system under careful consideration? Eg. i got a 21 AA which is average in the states, but 92-98th % for Canada. Got 17 on PAT, which is below average in States, but slightly above average in Canada.
Also, are there any leniancies for letters of recommendation? I'm having a hard time finding one other science professor for a reference.. can these be substituted?
Shadowing should be an integral part of applicants aspiring to pursue a career in dentistry lest we find ourselves pursuing a career that we know nothing about. Some ds do not accept the CDAT. A 21 AA has been average in the U.S.
You leniency list so far includes:
1. international student
2. no US DAT
3. no shadowing
4. lor requirement

Any others you wish to add to the list?

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=527651
http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=527523
http://www.ada.org/prof/ed/testing/dat/dat_score_frequency.pdf
 
Last edited:

dchung42

10+ Year Member
Apr 10, 2008
129
0
Toronto, ON
Status
Dental Student
Hi,

Canadian student here - clearly there are small differences between our dental health care systems. I see that all US schools have job shadowing either recommended or actually required - sometimes up to 100 hours. From this, I gather that job shadowing dentists must be common in the States.

I'm not sure if it's my badluck, but several dentists I've talked to here in Canada are not willing to take on people to job shadow. Even a close friend of the family has only let me job shadow her for maybe 10 hours total, and I'm pushing my luck. The reason they give me is that the doc-patient relationship should strictly be one-on-one; while some patients don't mind.. a lot do.. etc other crap excuses.

So my question: are job shadowing hours a significant factor by US schools in determining an applicant? I have a high GPA/high academic average/average PAT based on the Canadian system... but very little job shadowing experience.

Also, if anyone knows, are american schools biased for the US dat, even though they officially say they'll accept the Canadian DAT? Do they take the Canadian scoring system under careful consideration? Eg. i got a 21 AA which is average in the states, but 92-98th % for Canada. Got 17 on PAT, which is below average in States, but slightly above average in Canada.

Also, are there any leniancies for letters of recommendation? I'm having a hard time finding one other science professor for a reference.. can these be substituted?

Thanks in advance.
Try more Dentists offices
I got it at first try but my friend literally tried 20 offices (he visited, talked to the doctors, etc) and finally has started couple weeks ago.

Although shadowing may not be required, it is a great chance to experience dentistry. I think there is a lot more to say during your interview/PS, if you shadow a dentist.

US DAT is always prefereeed in my opinion.
Take it if you've got time and you're ready.
 
Aug 15, 2009
19
0
Canada
Status
Pre-Dental
Hi,

Canadian student here - clearly there are small differences between our dental health care systems. I see that all US schools have job shadowing either recommended or actually required - sometimes up to 100 hours. From this, I gather that job shadowing dentists must be common in the States.

I'm not sure if it's my badluck, but several dentists I've talked to here in Canada are not willing to take on people to job shadow. Even a close friend of the family has only let me job shadow her for maybe 10 hours total, and I'm pushing my luck. The reason they give me is that the doc-patient relationship should strictly be one-on-one; while some patients don't mind.. a lot do.. etc other crap excuses.
.
Canadian, eh?
Seriously though... I'm from Canada and have had no trouble finding a multitude of willing dentists (it's more finding the time to shadow them:laugh:). Like Hsia2 said, shadowing shows you what you'll be doing for the rest of your career and the schools want to make sure that it's something you actually want to do. The dentists I have shadowed just told the patient that I was pre-dental and asked if it was cool that I watched. Confirm with the Doc what you are and aren't allowed to do, where you're supposed to sit/stand etc.. (obviously you don't want to start screaming if there is blood there or telling the patient that they need to brush more).

As for shadowing hours, do the schools care if the shadowing is done over blocks of time (ie. winter break, then reading week...). Basically is it the number of hours or how long you've spent there.

Maybe this is answering my own question but should the dentist just write the hours in your letter?
 

saycheeese

5+ Year Member
Aug 7, 2009
140
0
Status
Dentist
Hi,

Canadian student here - clearly there are small differences between our dental health care systems. I see that all US schools have job shadowing either recommended or actually required - sometimes up to 100 hours. From this, I gather that job shadowing dentists must be common in the States.

I'm not sure if it's my badluck, but several dentists I've talked to here in Canada are not willing to take on people to job shadow. Even a close friend of the family has only let me job shadow her for maybe 10 hours total, and I'm pushing my luck. The reason they give me is that the doc-patient relationship should strictly be one-on-one; while some patients don't mind.. a lot do.. etc other crap excuses.
I have had the same problem as you, and a close family friend's friend was willing to let me shadow him for 10h. He also wrote me an LOR, but I don't know how good it'll actually be.... I was able to get more hours but that was from shadowing my cousin.