University of Southern Indiana


Dental careers range from general practice through specialties such as oral surgery, orthodontics, and periodontics. About 90% of active dentists are in private practice; other career options include education, research, public health, and the military.

A Doctor of Dental Surgery degree requires at least three years of undergraduate work and four years at a dental school. The majority of students accepted into dental schools have completed a bachelor's degree. Applications to dental schools have been increasing since 2001, and admission is very competitive. Acceptance to dental school is based on:

The average overall undergraduate GPA of successful applicants is 3.5 or higher, with a science GPA of 3.3 or higher. Dental schools vary somewhat in prerequisites, and the IU School of Dentistry has more specific prerequisites than most. Therefore, if you meet IU's requirements, you can apply to most of the 57 dental schools in the US.  Pre-req courses for all dentistry schools are Biology, General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry and English. You are advised to investigate the pre-requisite courses for the particular programs in which you are interested.

Many dental schools, including IU require 30-40 hours of shadowing with general practice dentists. This should be done early in your pre-dental career. The Dental Admission Test (DAT) covers the natural sciences, perceptual ability, reading comprehension, and quantitative reasoning. This exam is computer-based and offered all year; it should be taken no later than early summer before the senior year. the DAT can be taken a maximum of three times.

Applications to dental schools are made through the American Association of Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS); information can be obtained at The application cycle begins in may and should be completed early in the summer preceding the senior year.

For more information about Pre-Dental preparation in the Biology major at USI, please contact:

Alex Champagne
Dr. Alex Champagne
Assistant Professor of Biology
Contact: 812-461-5424
Science Center 1275


For more information about Pre-Dental preparation in the Biochemistry or Chemistry major at USI, please contact:

Kenneth Walsh
Dr. Kenneth Walsh
Associate Professor of Chemistry
Chair of Chemistry Department
Contact: 812-461-5253
Science Center 2273


Contact Dr. Becky Sparks-Thissen


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