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Prerequisites and Requirements for Admission

Please read the following pages carefully before you submit your application! It is the responsibility of the applicant to be informed and aware of our requirements and process.

Course Requirements

Most students who are admitted to the School of Dentistry have completed a baccalaureate degree by the time of matriculation. The minimum requirement for admission is 90 semester hours of academic work that has been pursued at an accredited four-year college or university. All prerequisites must be taken for a letter grade; we will not accept pass/fail or credit/no credit. In addition, a grade of C- or lower will not be accepted to fulfill any part of the required 50 semester hours of prerequisite courses. Applicants should have the majority of prerequisites completed when the application is submitted.

The beginning enrollment term for entering dental students has changed from Fall to Summer. This means that the first year of dental school begins in late June each year. Thus, for all accepted/matriculating students, all prerequisite courses MUST be successfully completed by May of the year you plan to enter dental school.

Prerequisite Course Semester Hrs Quarter Hrs
English Composition
(Literature is acceptable for 3 hrs;
ESL courses not accepted, must be taken in US or Canada)
6 9
Biology with Lab
(Introductory Biology Sequence Expected)
8 12
Inorganic Chemistry with Lab 8 12
Organic Chemistry with Lab 8 12
Physics with Lab 8 12
Microbiology 3 5
Biochemistry 3 5
Psychology 3 5
Sociology (Anthropology not accepted) 3 5

General Rule: prerequisite courses must be offered within the specific science department or must identify the subject in the course name.
Other recommended courses: anatomy, histology, physiology, public speaking and art.

Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation are required. All letters must be submitted to AADSAS; instructions are provided in the application.

  • Two letters of recommendation must be from science professors (instructors with whom you've taken a course, have given you a grade and can write about your academic qualities), and one letter of recommendation from a non-science professor OR a dentist OR an employer. It is strongly encouraged that your science letter be from a basic science instructor.
  • Alternatively, some institutions offer evaluation letters written from a preprofessional committee. This is acceptable in lieu of the three letters of recommendation.

Important points to consider

  1. All letters must be submitted to AADSAS. Do not send any letters to the School.
  2. Plan ahead when requesting letters of recommendation. Letters submitted late will delay processing of the application.
  3. Letters should be on letterhead and include the writer's signature and contact information; letters must indicate the capacity or setting in which your professor has known you (classroom, lab, co-curricular, work).
  4. For a letter of recommendation to be considered as a science letter, it must be written by an instructor who has taught you in a science course (preferably a basic science course) and given you a letter grade. This information must be included in the letter.
  5. A letter of recommendation from a research faculty mentor is not considered a science letter unless you registered fo a research course and he/she has given you a grade for such a course.
  6. If you are reapplying, you must re-submit all letters of recommendation. Letters from a previous application cycle will not be used to complete the new application.

Dental Admissions Test (DAT)

The Dental Admissions Test is administered by the American Dental Association. Completion of the DAT is a required part of the application. When you register for the DAT, please select the University of Michigan as a recipient of your scores.

Important points to consider

  1. The DAT should be taken prior to or at the time you are actually applying. As indicated by the ADA, official DAT scores expire after 5 years, however, the School of Dentistry will only consider scores that are less than 3 years old at the time of application. If your scores are older than 3 years, you must retake the DAT. It is important to note that applicants can only take the DAT a total of 3 times.
  2. Applications are considered incomplete until test scores are received and will not be reviewed or considered for an interview.
  3. If you are unhappy with your test results, you must wait 90 days before retaking the test.
  4. We are unable to hold or delay any application should you decide to retake the DAT.

Read more about additional requirements under our Selection Factors.