The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects faster than average growth in dentistry, particularly as more links are identified between oral health and overall health. Students can expect to spend four years in dental school after the completion of four years of college.
If you are considering dental school, UWM will provide you with a solid foundation to help you reach your goal. There are 64 dental schools in the United States, only one of which is in Wisconsin at Marquette University. The application process is competitive so it is important that pre-dental students begin careful planning of their academic career during the freshman year. Requirements vary among dental schools, making early planning in consultation with a pre-dental advisor vital.
Dental schools require a minimum of 90 completed college credits. It is possible, though highly rare, to enter dental school without earning a bachelor's degree. The vast majority of students complete their bachelor's degree before proceeding to dental school.
It is recommended that students obtain some hand-on exposure to the dental profession prior to dental school, either through volunteer or internship opportunities, or paid work at a dental practice or community dental clinic.
Please review the Pre-Dental Fact Sheet at the right for information about suggested undergraduate courses to prepare for dental school, options for your major, and the career outlook for dentists. Pre-Dental is not a major, and students must still choose a major. Since most of the pre-requisites necessary for application to dental school are in the sciences, many students choose a science major, though it is not required. Our specialized pre-dental advisor works with students to ensure they understand all of the milestones that must be met in college in order to be a competitive applicant to dental school. A significant number of volunteer or work hours is often a requirement for application to dental school so it is important to work with this advisor beginning in freshman year in order to plan all needed activities into your college career.
A suggested timeline is also available to help you plan preparatory activities throughout your four years in college.