Frequently Asked Questions

What is the dental program like?

The Schulich Dentistry program at Western University is four years in length, culminating in the degree Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS). The program covers basic health science, dental diagnosis, preventative and clinical practice with simulation clinic experience from Year 1. For an overview of the curriculum framework, please visit the Dentistry Program webpage.

Can I tour the campus?

Tours of Western University campus may be booked by appointment. Applicants invited to interview in April will have the opportunity to tour the Schulich Dentistry facilities at that time.

Is there a pre-dental program or a preferred undergraduate degree program that will increase my chances of admission to Schulich Dentistry?

No. Applicants are chosen from undergraduate programs representing a wide range of disciplines. No preference is given to any specific degree program or university. However, a strong background in science is an asset. 

How do I apply?

Apply online for entry to:

How many applications are normally received?

Schulich Dentistry receives approximately 500 applications each year, of which 200 are invited for interviews and 56 are accepted into the DDS Program.

Who is eligible to apply?

Applicants to Schulich Dentistry must meet specific academic and non-academic requirements. Competitive applicants will be invited for an interview based on:

  • Undergraduate academic performance
  • Dental Aptitude Test (DAT) score
  • Non-scholastic achievements as evidenced by the Autobiographical Sketch & Personal Statement

Applicants must have graduated from, or be in the final year of, a post-secondary degree program. Application to Schulich Dentistry is very competitive. Meeting minimum admission requirements does not ensure acceptance into the program.

Does Schulich Dentistry have a separate applicant pool or quotas based on whether applicants are ‘in province’ or ‘out of province’?

No. All applicants must meet the same admission requirements and will be considered equally regardless of their province of residence.

Can applicants take an additional undergraduate year after they have graduated to improve their academic standing?

Yes. Applicants who have earned a four-year undergraduate degree from a recognized university may continue in full-time undergraduate studies (a Special Year) to improve their academic standing. Please visit the Admission Requirements webpage for complete details.

What is the minimum competitive academic average needed?

Applicants must have achieved at least 80% or higher in each of two undergraduate academic years, with 5.0 full courses taken between September and April, and at least 3.0 courses at the year of study level or higher. Only averages of completed years on file as of the application deadline will be considered. Schulich Dentistry does not average the two years to achieve 80%.

In recent application cycles, most successful applicants attained mid- to high-80’s in each of their two most competitive years. Please visit the Admission Requirements webpage for complete details.

What is a full course load?

A full course load is considered to be an academic year with 5.0 full-year or 10 half-year courses (30 credit hours) taken between September and April. It does not matter how courses are distributed between the two semesters.

Each of the 2 best years used for admission consideration must have a full course load and must also have at least 3.0 full-year or 6.0 half-year courses (18 credit hours) whose published level is at or above the year level of study.

What are the course level requirements?

In each of the two years used for the GPA requirement, applicants must meet the following course level requirements:

  • Year 1: three of five full course equivalents at or above the 100-level.
  • Year 2: three of five full course equivalents at or above the 200-level.
  • Year 3, 4 or 5: three of five full course equivalents at or above the 300-level.

Course level requirements apply only to the two years considered for GPA. In addition, only one full or equivalent pass/fail credit is permissible in each year considered for GPA.

Do I have to take my undergraduate courses at Western?

No. Applicants are welcome to take their undergraduate courses at any accredited institution.  Your undergraduate program will be assessed by Western University, Undergraduate Recruitment & Admissions, Professional Admissions – Dentistry to ensure that your program meets minimum requirements.

What prerequisite courses are required?

Applicants must successfully complete each of the following prerequisite subject areas: 

  • One half year course in Organic Chemistry with an in-class lab component, and
  • One half year approved course in Biochemistry, and
  • One full year approved course in Human or Mammalian Physiology.

Successful completion of prerequisite courses requires a minimum grade of B or 74.5%. Please visit the Admission Requirements webpage for more details, including links to lists of approved courses.

When can prerequisites be taken?

Prerequisite courses must be taken within 10 years of application. Prerequisite courses can be taken at any time but must be completed by April 30 of the year of entry. Prerequisite courses do not have to be part of the course load of an academic year whose average is used in the application process. Please visit the Admission Requirements webpage for more details.

Can I retake a prerequisite course to meet the minimum grade required?

Yes. Approved prerequisite courses can be retaken to achieve the minimum grade required and will not adversely affect the application.

What is the Dental Aptitude Test?

The Dental Aptitude Test (DAT) is conducted by the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) to help students assess their aptitude for a career in dentistry and to assist dental schools in selecting first-year students. The DAT is conducted in February and November each year.

For DAT scores to be eligible for admission consideration, applicants must have completed the DAT within two years of the application deadline. Only the most recent DAT score will be used. Schulich Dentistry keeps DAT results for the duration of their eligibility (two years) in its application process.  For more information, visit the CDA webpage or email

What does the interview process involve?

Interview notifications are normally emailed in March, with interviews held approximately one month later on a Saturday or Sunday in April. Interviews are 30 minutes in duration, standardized with structured questions, and conducted by a three-person panel consisting of a dentist, a senior dental student and a community member. Schulich Dentistry interviews approximately 200 applicants for 56 seats. Please visit the Interviews webpage for more details.

How are applicants ranked?

Applicants are ranked based on a compiled score representing academic achievement, DAT score, Autobiographical Sketch & Personal Statement, and an interview.

Can I combine my DDS degree with a Masters or PhD?

No. Schulich Dentistry does not offer a combined-concurrent degree program.  Applicants wishing to complete an advanced degree in relation to the DDS Program must apply to the Dental Clinician Scientist Program

Deferred admission to Schulich Dentistry may be offered to candidates who are accepted to a dentally-oriented graduate program at Western which leads to a PhD degree. Applicants will be assessed by the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and a subcommittee of the Dentistry Admissions Committee.

Can applicants transfer from another dental school?

Yes. However, transfer is possible only into the 2nd Year of the DDS Program and only if a vacancy is created by attrition.  For complete details please visit the Transfer Students webpage.

Can international students apply?

Yes. Up to four seats are available for international students who maintain international status throughout their dental education at Schulich Dentistry. For more information, please visit the International Applicants webpage.

For information government regulations for international students to study at a Canadian university, please visit the Government of Canada website.

What standing will my foreign dental degree have?

Internationally-trained dentists are NOT eligible to apply or enter the Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) Program.

Graduates of dental programs not recognized by the Canadian Dental Association may be eligible to apply to the Internationally Trained Dentists (ITD) Program. For information, please visit the ITD Program webpage. For information on credentialing foreign trained dentists, please visit the CICIC website.

What graduate programs does Schulich Dentistry offer?

Schulich Dentistry offers several opportunities for continued study following the completion of the DDS Program:

Additional graduate degree program offerings at Western University can be found on the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies website.

What are tuition costs?

Current and historic fee schedules can be found on the Office of the Registrar website.

What financial aid is available?

The Western Financial Aid Office is there to help students meet their educational goals. For detailed information, please visit the Office of Registrar website.

What if I don't receive an all clear status on my police check?

In the rare instance that an applicant does not receive all clear status, the Executive of the Dentistry Admissions Committee may request a meeting with the applicant. The Committee's decision is final. If an applicant has ever been convicted of a criminal offence for which they have not received a pardon, an applicant is strongly urged to consult with their provincial dental association, as graduates with criminal records may not be eligible to receive licensure to practice dentistry.

Whom do I contact with questions or for further information?

Admissions Office
Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University
Health Sciences Addition, Room H103
1151 Richmond Street
London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5C1
t. 519.661.3744 | f. 519.850.2360 | e.