system7

7+ Year Member
Jul 27, 2009
80
0
Status
I just graduated with a BS in Biology with a 3.43 overall gpa. It was just recently that decided I wanted to go to dental school. Prior to this, I just wanted to take a year off and hoped to a get into a PHD program and eventually teach. Obviously it is too late for me to apply this year because I haven't taken the DAT yet nor do I have any dentist shadowing experience. So if I apply next summer, I will at least have TWO full years until I start dental school from now. So I ask you, what are my chances and how would you go about doing things if you were in my position? When would you take the DAT etc and what else can I do to improve my chances in all that time? I would appreciate your input.
 

tsitneD

10+ Year Member
Feb 27, 2009
244
0
TX
Status
Pre-Dental
You GPA is average. I think you should find a dentist to shadow and then go visit a nearby dental school. Over there, you should talk to dental students and faculty to seek more dental opportunities. Gather all the information and material about DAT and then start studying for it. Start looking at the application and even though you are not applying just create an account to take a look at it and prepare for the next year. Before you know, two years will be gone and you will be in Dental school.

Congrats for making the right choice...lol
 

sketo43

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Aug 21, 2008
219
1
Status
Dental Student
I think your GPA is good enough. It might be hard to get into Harvard but if you do well on the DAT, then I am confident that you will get in to a good school. It's not necessary, but dental schools like it when applicants have done science related research, and it sounds like you've done this.

I am a career-changer, and yeah, the dental school application process is long, but I think it's worth it.

Have you taken 2 semesters each of: gen chem, ochem, and physics? If you've already taken the chemistry classes then you can start studying for the DAT now and take it in a few months or whenever you're ready.

During your 2 years I recommend that you do all of the following:
1) shadow a general dentist for at least 30 hours. Aa few schools require more than 30, but this covers most. It also makes sure you know what you're getting into!
2) get a job either doing medical/scientific research or else in a dentist's office. My opinion is that schools prefer to see research jobs but working in a dentist's office is more useful toward actually becoming a dentist.
3) do community service on a regular basis
4) pick up a hobby that requires manual dexterity (building model airplanes, making jewelery, etc)
5) try to submit your application on June 1, 2010 (or as early in the summer as you can)

Good luck!
 
OP
S

system7

7+ Year Member
Jul 27, 2009
80
0
Status
You GPA is average. I think you should find a dentist to shadow and then go visit a nearby dental school. Over there, you should talk to dental students and faculty to seek more dental opportunities. Gather all the information and material about DAT and then start studying for it. Start looking at the application and even though you are not applying just create an account to take a look at it and prepare for the next year. Before you know, two years will be gone and you will be in Dental school.

Congrats for making the right choice...lol
I think your GPA is good enough. It might be hard to get into Harvard but if you do well on the DAT, then I am confident that you will get in to a good school. It's not necessary, but dental schools like it when applicants have done science related research, and it sounds like you've done this.

I am a career-changer, and yeah, the dental school application process is long, but I think it's worth it.

Have you taken 2 semesters each of: gen chem, ochem, and physics? If you've already taken the chemistry classes then you can start studying for the DAT now and take it in a few months or whenever you're ready.

During your 2 years I recommend that you do all of the following:
1) shadow a general dentist for at least 30 hours. Aa few schools require more than 30, but this covers most. It also makes sure you know what you're getting into!
2) get a job either doing medical/scientific research or else in a dentist's office. My opinion is that schools prefer to see research jobs but working in a dentist's office is more useful toward actually becoming a dentist.
3) do community service on a regular basis
4) pick up a hobby that requires manual dexterity (building model airplanes, making jewelery, etc)
5) try to submit your application on June 1, 2010 (or as early in the summer as you can)



Good luck!
Thanks for your advice guys. Yes, I have taken all of those prerequisites as part of my undergrad coursework. I don't have a ton of research experience but i will look for some right now along with along with some dentist shadowing experience. And as tsitneD said, I made an account just to see what the application looks like, that was really helpful, gives me a good idea of what they are looking for. Hopefully I'll have some good stuff to put on there by next summer. Thanks again. :)