Retake the DAT?

Discussion in 'Dental' started by vixen, Sep 24, 2001.

  1. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    I'm reapplying to dental schools. I spoke with adcomm's of different schools, and some say to retake it and some say that my score is ok. I REALLY don't want to retake it, particularly because I won't have as much time as I did the first time to study. Plus, I risk the chance of retaking it and doing worse. My score by the way was 18 academic and 17 perceptual. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks.
     
  2. smilebright

    smilebright Member
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    thats a tough call if your scores were a couple of points higher i would say don't retake but they seem to be average at best. if your gpa is good you will have a good chance at getting in. obviously is your scores were higher you would have a better chance of getting in but retaking and getting a lower score could ruin your chances. i don't think that you should retake unless you certian that you will do better.
     
  3. DesiDentist

    DesiDentist G. S. Khurana, DMD, MBA
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    If some schools say retake it and other's say your scores are just "okay" I would retake the DAT. Your scores are "okay" or average and I know your gpa is close to 3.0. Every year the DAT average and GPA ave. is going up. Three years ago it was 15 or 16 and it has been climbing recently due to the demand. So to put yourself in a better position I would spend some time and focus more on changing anything that may look the same from last years applications. Your UG GPA will be the same, and they don't not factor in the baccalaureate gpa. So you must change something, and the best thing you can do is your DAT score. With your GPA I would suggest you hit at least 20 on both sections. I know it's a risk, but you should ask yourself how determined you are in getting in.

    As I was taught in wrestling:

    "It's not the will to win, but the will to prepare to win."

    -Everyone wants to win (e.g. get into dental/medical school, but only those who have the determination and persistence will get there.
     
  4. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    Thanks desi...Some good insight. I am still not sure of taking it though. When I took it the first time, I had all of last summer to prepare. Now I'll be bogged down with work...this semester AND next semester (Biochem, microbio, and organic). I don't know. I was hoping that if I get A's and only maybe a few B's this year I would prove to them I could handle the courseload...plus I will be either volunteering in a dental clinic or doing research. Do you think it's so bad if I don't take it? I REALLY don't want to. Some schools said "well we had a 19 avg" and other schools said, "oh well we had a 17 avg so 18 is good" and another school said "your application on file seems ok...its really just your gpa"...argh...I hate this! Thanks.
     
  5. DesiDentist

    DesiDentist G. S. Khurana, DMD, MBA
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    Seema--

    Do you just want to be "just average." That's up to you. However, you must realize that if you don't get in this year your chances in getting in drop by a long shot. Anyways, you shouldn't try to find excuses why you shouldn't re-take the DAT, but realize that you aren't relearning everything, all you need to do is look at your weaknesses and focus on that. I'm pretty sure if you concentrate even a couple of hours a week on the PAT you could hit at least 20. Think positive, and be organized. You say that you don't have time to study, but you can critique and analyze the entire "Miss America" Pageant. Besides, Ms. Oregon didn't look too much like Gweneth Paltrow...Ms. Oregon was much prettier. :). Hope this helps.
     
  6. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    thanks for the reply (even though it was a little brutal :) ) My question is this...If I apply to dental school in the beginning of June, and send my DAT scores from last year, can I say in the application that I plan on retaking the DAT at the end of June? Does that mean they wait for my second score? That way I can study for one month for the DAT without having to study for any classes at the same time (and these grades from this year are even MORE important). Anyway, hope you understand what I'm asking. Thanks for the advice...

    PS (just because I watch a little TV doesn't mean I'm a slacker :D )
     
  7. DesiDentist

    DesiDentist G. S. Khurana, DMD, MBA
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    Seema--
    Just a question. I know you are doing post-bacc. right now, but you mentioned you are retaking classes. Are all of your post-bacc classes retakes? If they are I think you should add some advanced science courses in your cirriculum, because anyone can retake classes and do better because they have been exposed to the same material and that doesn't help the application much, especially when you need to show the ADcom what you did different. How are you doing in those classes right now?
     
  8. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    desi,
    I am taking only one retake (organic) and knew I should take upper level classes so I'm also taking biochem and microbio. I had my microbio test yesterday and did well :) I am also volunteering in a dental clinic. I'll keep ya posted...thanks for the replies :)
     
  9. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    desi, how can you say they don't factor is postbacc work? I know that even if I get all A's this year, it won't SUBSTANTIALLY improve my overall gpa, but if they see I can take a heavy courseload, do well and also because it's more recent, I think that will make a difference. I know for a fact though schools DO look at the postbacc gpa...isn't that the whole point? :)
     
  10. DesiDentist

    DesiDentist G. S. Khurana, DMD, MBA
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    Seema--

    From my understanding after you graduate, even if you do post-bacc those grades will not factor in your dental application GPA. Some one correct me if I am wrong. After you have graduated from a university, those grades that you earned are only factored in your application GPA. That is what I meant. If you get all A's in your post-bacc, that will look impressive, but the numbers will not be there. Some schools use the number crunch system, that is, they put your Undergrad GPA along with your DAT scores and that will give you a certain number and they look at that to invite you for interviews. If your numbers are not at the cut-off line then that's it. Schools now-a-days are being even more bomarded with applications since Dental school is one of the hottest fields and like medical school they coming up with more and more technological advance ways to let the "computer" do the work and it prints something out with the highest GPA's/DAT scores. Yes, that may sound impersonable, but that is reality now. I hope you do pull all A's, because that will really show that you know your stuff, or an easy way is to retake the DAT and show them you know the stuff, but obviously you are nervous. Either way it's upto you.
     
  11. vixen

    vixen I like members
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    Desi,
    I'm pretty sure that they look (if not factor) your new grades in. I am going to double check after my exams because you are making me worried :( . Anyway, I know if you take grad classes, you'd have a separate grad GPA. Since I am taking undergrad classes (which was recommended), they either factor it into your gpa, or just have it separate as a postbacc gpa. I understand what you're saying, I have to do well no matter what to get in. You're making it seem like if I'm taking classes, getting better grades, they wouldn't care about it. From speaking to the schools, I told them my situation, and asked "if I'm on the right path". All schools said taking postbacc classes, and being involved (volunteering, etc) would help me and I'm on the right track. About half said to retake the DAT, and the other half said it would be fine. I am still contemplating to retake the DAT-if I did it would be next summer. In the meanwhile, I am working my butt off to get some good grades :) There's gotta be hope in that, right?
     
  12. DesiDentist

    DesiDentist G. S. Khurana, DMD, MBA
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    Seema--

    No need to get worried. I'm not perfect, but that is what I have been told, I might be wrong and if you could search if post-bacc will count toward your overall gpa that would be great. Different schools may factor that in different ways so you might need to that into consideration. Let me know what you hear.
     

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