Important general information

Students interested in the pre-dental advising track must complete a minimum of 90 credit hours including the listed prerequisite courses and be on track to receive a baccalaureate degree to be considered for admission to dental school. Students interested in dental school should consult with a pre-professional health adviser to learn about requirements that are specific to the schools of dentistry to which they hope to apply.

Declaration of the pre-dental advising track through the Office of Pre-Professional Health Advising does not constitute admission to the VCU School of Dentistry. Students must apply separately to the dental school of their choice at the appropriate time.

Students with an interest in preparing for dental school must declare an academic major and should declare and maintain their pre-dental advising track. Students do not earn a pre-dental degree. Students unsure of their academic majors initially should clarify their academic interests through regular conversations with their advisers. Pre-dental students are encouraged to major in fields of greatest interest to them. To declare a pre-dentistry advising track, please see the pre-professional health advising blog.

Prerequisites for the VCU School of Dentistry

Students need to complete the prerequisite science courses before being eligible to start the dental program at the VCU School of Dentistry. Students are also required to complete the Dental Admission Test. The DAT is taken during the dental school admissions process. Students preparing for the DAT are strongly advised to take courses to build competency in these areas prior to taking the exam. Completing all prerequisite course work and taking the DAT prior to applying is highly recommended but not required. Students must provide official DAT scores before their application will be considered for an interview. All prerequisite courses must be completed prior to entering VCU’s dental program if accepted.

Science and non-science courses required for the VCU School of Dentistry

General biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry and physics are required science prerequisites for admission to dental school.

English composition and a mathematics/statistics course are non-science prerequisites required for dental school.

Other upper-level science courses in general microbiology, bacteriology, animal or vertebrate physiology, anatomy, genetics and cell biology are strongly recommended. If time permits and the courses are available, courses in immunology, embryology, or developmental biology and histology are highly recommended. Additionally, non-science courses in the behavioral sciences and those involving psychomotor skills are recommended.

Prerequisites for the VCU School of Dentistry

Course Title Hours
VCU courses
BIOL 151
BIOZ 151
Introduction to Biological Sciences I
and Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory I
4
BIOL 152
BIOZ 152
Introduction to Biological Sciences II
and Introduction to Biological Science Laboratory II
4
CHEM 101
CHEZ 101
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry Laboratory I
4
CHEM 102
CHEZ 102
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry Laboratory II
4
CHEM 301
CHEZ 301
Organic Chemistry
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
5
CHEM 302
CHEZ 302
Organic Chemistry
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory II
5
CHEM 403Biochemistry I3
MATH 151Precalculus Mathematics 13-4
or MATH 131 Introduction to Contemporary Mathematics
or MATH 141 Algebra with Applications
or MATH 200 Calculus with Analytic Geometry I
or STAT 210 Basic Practice of Statistics
or STAT 212 Concepts of Statistics
or STAT 314 Applications of Statistics
PHYS 201General Physics I 24-5
or PHYS 207 University Physics I
PHYS 202General Physics II 34-5
or PHYS 208 University Physics II
UNIV 111 Play VideoPlay course video for Focused Inquiry IFocused Inquiry I3
UNIV 112 Play VideoPlay course video for Focused Inquiry IIFocused Inquiry II3
Total Hours46-49
1

MATH 151 is highly recommended and is a prerequisite for other dental school course requirements.

2

MATH 200 is a prerequisite for PHYS 207.

3

MATH 201 is a prerequisite for PHYS 208.

Additional recommended prerequisites for dental schools nationwide

Dental schools across the U.S. have different prerequisites for admission into their program. The list below shows courses required by various schools beyond the courses listed above for the VCU School of Dentistry. Students should discuss career plans with their pre-professional health adviser for additional guidance.

Course Title Hours
BIOL 205Basic Human Anatomy4
or BIOL 402 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy
BIOL 303Microbiology3
PHIS 206Human Physiology3
or BIOL 411 Physiology

Students should also consult with their pre-professional health advisers to discuss an individual plan of study in parallel with their academic majors.