Doctor of Dental Surgery

Application Deadline: November 1, 2023


The School of Dentistry is a participant in the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS). The AADSAS application can be accessed on the ADEA website at the above link. Precise instructions are given on the website to guide applicants through the application process.

If you have specific questions regarding West Virginia University's application procedures and requirements, please call the Office of Dental Admissions at (304) 293-6646 or e-mail your questions to

1 Qualifications

Applicants must complete a minimum of three years of college coursework in a U.S. or Canadian college or university. To be considered, applicants must provide documentation certifying completion of a minimum of 90 semester credit hours at the time of application.

A letter grade must be documented for all required courses completed through in-person, online or hybrid learning platforms. Science courses with grades of Pass/Fail or Satisfactory will not be accepted. Non-science prerequisite courses impacted by Pass/Fail grading system will not be evaluated negatively.

Up to 64 semester credit hours completed at community colleges are accepted toward the minimum course hour requirement. AP credit will be accepted for the English course requirement. All science prerequisites must have a letter grade. Admitted students must complete all required courses by June 1st prior to matriculation.

Required Coursework

  • English Composition & Rhetoric                   6 hours
  • Biology or Zoology (with Lab)                     8 hours
  • General or Inorganic Chemistry (with Lab)   8 hours
  • Organic Chemistry (with Lab)                     8 hours
  • Physics (with Lab)                                     8 hours
  • Anatomy (Comparative or Human)              3 hours
  • Biochemistry                                             3 hours

These are firm requirements regardless of undergraduate or graduate preparation.

Additional recommended coursework:

  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Physiology
  • Microbiology
  • Embryology/Developmental Biology
  • Genetics
  • Psychology

Dental Admissions Test (DAT)

Potential applicants are required to take the Dental Admission Test (DAT) and submit official scores by November 1st of the year prior to expected enrollment (example: DAT in September 2023, Enrollment August 2024). Scores are only valid for three years from the test date. The DAT can be taken up to three times and all score reports are released to the school. To schedule the DAT and register for the DentPIN contact:

American Dental Association DAT Program
Department of Testing Services

Letters of Recommendation

  1. If a pre-health professions committee or comprehensive recommendation is available at your college or university, please request the committee or your advisor submit a letter directly to the Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS).
  2. If no comprehensive committee letter or packet is available two letters written by science professors who have taught and graded the applicant at the undergraduate or graduate level (anatomy, biochemistry, biology, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, or physics) and two letters of the applicant’s choice from science or non-science professors, advisors, mentors, dentists, or other individuals who can recommend the applicant. 


Applicants must complete shadowing experiences in clinical dental settings, including private offices, community health clinics, and service missions. While there is no specific minimum shadowing hour requirement, successful candidates usually observe at least 100 hours in various dental environments.

  • Observation or employment in a series of diverse dental settings 
    (In-person shadowing is preferred. Virtual shadowing experiences will be considered on a case-by-case basis.) 
  • Participation in pre-dental organizations
  • Community Service
  • Manual dexterity
  • Life experiences
  • Research
  • Other (leadership, military service, etc.)

Additional information is available on the Dental Admissions Frequently Asked Questions section.

2 Apply to the Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS)

Applications must be submitted electronically via the ADEA AADSAS application service. Precise instructions are given on the American Dental Education Association website to guide applicants through the application process. Select Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) on the opening home page.

The AADSAS application becomes available in mid-May each year. The deadline for submission of the completed AADSAS application is November 1st. It is advantageous to submit your application as early as possible. The committee will begin notifying applicants of admission to the class December 15th

Remember to check the requirements for each dental school to which you are applying as they vary from school to school.

Selected applicants will be sent an email requesting a supplemental application and fee. Please add to your address book to prohibit delayed communication caused by messages being sent to your spam folder.

3 Interview

Applicants who are residents of West Virginia are usually granted an interview, although the Admissions Committee may elect not to interview an unrealistic applicant. Select non-resident applicants will also be invited for an interview, depending on their academic qualifications. Interviews generally begin in September of each year. Interviews dates for the 2023-2024 application cycle will be offered as both virtual and in-person. 

Members of the Admissions Committee, aided by the Dental Admissions office staff, participate in this effort. Applicants invited to interview participate in a group introduction, take a guided tour of the school, meet with dental students, complete a brief writing exercise, participate in an interactive question/answer session, and have a personal interview with two or more admissions committee members.

4 Acceptance

Applicants are notified of admissions decisions beginning December 15th.
Admitted students complete specific pre-matriculation requirements such as

  • criminal background check
  • immunizations
  • submit official transcripts of all coursework as specified in the provisional offer letter
  • All other admission requirements as listed in the applicant’s provisional offer letter

Technical Standards Policy

Information on Bloodborne Pathogens and Infectious Disease

5 Orientation

The new student orientation program is generally three days and occurs in the week immediately prior to the first day of classes.

Need Help Applying?

If you have specific questions regarding our application procedures and requirements, please call the Office of Dental Admissions at (304) 293-6646 or e-mail your questions to