Freshman Year

  • Get to know your Health Professions Advisor(s)
  • Go to science professors’ office hours (you will need at least 2 science professors to write your recommendations!)
  • Start taking basic science courses (BSC 114/115, BSC 116/117, CH 101, CH 102, etc.)
  • Think about possible majors 
  • Begin getting involved in your interests (campus and community)
  • Start shadowing to make sure dentistry is what you want to pursue
  • Join student organizations
  • Begin putting together a resume
  • Go to any “Pre-Dental Days” a school of interest may offer
    • LSU, UAB dental school tour, Colorado, etc. and applies for each year you are in undergrad to learn about different schools and build a relationship

Sophomore Year

  • Get more involved in organizations/begin looking for potential leadership positions in these organizations
  • Find a dentist to shadow in the area
  • Start/continue building relationships with your professors
    • Office hours, stay after class to ask questions, email chains
  • Schedule an advising appointment with a Pre-Health advisor to make sure you are on track
    • You can go to the one you are assigned from your alphabet split or Ms. Lanna Johnson is our societal advisor so you can go see her as well!
  • Sign up for mock interviews when they are available in the spring
  • Plan when you want to take the DAT
    • Many study plans and materials available to purchase (Kaplan, DAT Bootcamp, DAT Destroyer, etc.)
  • Apply for research opportunities if you’re interested!
    • You can find research labs available on each subject’s home page (biology, chemistry, nutrition, chemical engineering, psychology, etc.)
    • Not required for dental school applications but can’t hurt you if you are truly interested!

Junior Year

  • Continue to be involved
  • Apply for leadership positions, since at this point you have been involved and are an upperclassman
  • Shadow dentists (local/back home)
  • Meet with your advisor or Lanna Johnson
  • If you haven’t already, take the DAT or study/plan to take it
  • Reach out to professors and dentists for letters of recommendation
    • 2 science and 1 dentist at least; due to advisors usually in March so ask early!
  • Look into dental schools
  • Continue forming relationships with old and new professors
  • Pre-Application with Pre-Health advisors
    • Be sure to attend the appointment in the Fall as this is required for a committee interview
  • Committee interviews in the Spring
  • Start your personal statement
  • Take AS 299 if you can, preferably in the Fall
    • Taught by a pre-health advisor, 1 credit hour, pass/fail
  • Work on interview skills

Summer Before Applying

  • Submit dental school application!
    • AADSAS and/or TMDSAS
  • Continue shadowing/working
  • Take summer courses
  • Start applying for military scholarship (if you’re interested)
  • Work on secondaries if already received
  • Try to relax and enjoy summer! (but don’t start slacking)

Senior Year/Application Year

  • Work on secondary applications and pay fees
  • Wait to be contacted for an interview from dental programs and start practicing with friends or make an appointment for a mock interview at the Career Center
  • Update your application
    • Supplement your application by filling in any gaps like shadowing, volunteering, extracurricular activities and then update your schools
  • Send in your grades/transcripts at the end of each semester
  • Finish degree requirements
  • Notified by schools starting in December
  • Talk with your pre-health advisor or Ms. Johnson about Plan B if necessary
  • Graduate!

Gap Year

  • NOT a year-long vacation
  • Explore options that will make your application more competitive
    • Research what your desired dental school looks for in applicants and build up that area
  • Work in a dental office/lab
  • Pursue further education
    • MBA, Ph.D., Specialized MS programs
  • Get involved in full-time research
  • Don’t be discouraged! Dental schools typically accept less than 5% of the total applicants for their program so many people will have to be re-applicants

Information provided by UA’s Pre-Dental Society. If you have further questions feel free to reach out to their email: