Becoming a dentist isn’t something that happens overnight. It typically takes eight years to complete college and dental school. This means that a dentistry career requires hard work and patience. Find out if you have what it takes.
Choosing a Career as a Dentist
A career in dental care can be extremely rewarding on many levels, but the road to becoming a dentist can be long and arduous. Wondering if you’re up for the challenge? Potential dentists may exhibit certain traits or specific curiosities, such as:
- Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
- Ability to thrive in change
- A yearning for challenge
- Manual dexterity
- Strong desire to help people
- Fondness for science
- Scientific and artistic creativity
Volunteering at a local practice or interviewing an oral healthcare provider are also great ways to gauge your interest and motivation in the dental field.
Getting In To Dental School
You’ve decided that becoming a dentist is your goal, so how do you get into dental school?
- Complete science prerequisites
- Dental school typically takes four years in addition to the four years spent earning a bachelor’s degree. During your undergraduate studies, you should concentrate on completing courses in biology, chemistry, physics and other prerequisite areas. Each dental school has different course requirements, so be sure to research accordingly.
- Earn a high DAT score
- Scoring well on the Dental Admission Test (DAT) is one of the most important steps in preparing for dental school admission. The DAT covers several subject areas, including quantitative reasoning, emotional ability, reading comprehension and science. Students typically take the test during their junior year of college. Be sure to begin preparing early.
- Prepare a strong overall application
- Maintaining a high undergraduate GPA and volunteering in a dentist office can increase your chances of getting accepted into dental school. Dental schools search for well rounded, personable and academically successful individuals. In order to gauge a candidate’s additional strengths, letters of recommendation and personal interviews are also taken into account.
Become a Successful Dentist
Becoming a dentist isn’t easy, but it certainly comes with great rewards. Connect with a Hunter & Spence Dental Career Consultant to learn more about exciting dentist opportunities across the United States.