Pre-Dental Advantage Programs

Pacific offers three admission pathways within the Pre-Dental Advantage Program, which:

  • Allow you to earn an undergraduate degree, in some cases on an accelerated timeline
  • Upon successful completion, guarantee an interview for our Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree program
dental camp participants
High School Students Considering Dental Careers

Are you a current high school student who is considering a career in dentistry? Consider applying for one of the accelerated programs at University of the Pacific described here.

In order to receive an admission interview for the School of Dentistry in San Francisco after spending two years in the College of the Pacific (COP) in Stockton, you must meet the following requirements:

  • During your two years in COP, you must complete the University's General Education Program starting with placement tests in mathematics, chemistry, reading and writing required of all entering students. When you apply to the Dugoni School of Dentistry, several grade-point averages (GPAs) will be calculated. Each The following GPAs is considered, and each must be 3.25 or higher: Overall GPA (all coursework); Pacific GPA (all coursework at Pacific); BCP GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics); and Pacific BCP GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics courses taken at Pacific). Furthermore, you must complete at least 64 semester units of credit during these two years.
  • While in COP, you must complete the following School of Dentistry admission requirements: One year of general chemistry, one year of organic chemistry, three semesters of biological science, one year of general physics, as well as Pacific Seminars 1 and 2.
  • During your first year, you must complete Biology 51 and 61, Chemistry 25 and 27, Pacific Seminars 1 and 2, and at least one other general education course per term. 
  • You must take the American Dental Association (ADA) Dental Admission Test (DAT) by Sept. 1 of your sophomore year and earn a score of 18 or above on all scales. 
  • You must complete all School of Dentistry application requirements that include:
    • Completing an American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) application by Sept. 1 of your sophomore year
    • Submitting letters of evaluation from at least three references including two science faculty members and a practicing dentist whom you have shadowed
    • Successfully complete an interview with faculty at the School of Dentistry
    • Submit the $75 nonrefundable application fee

CURRICULUM

Typical curriculum for the two-year undergraduate portion of the 2+3 accelerated pre-dental program. Successful completion of this or an alternate program approved by your faculty advisor with at least a 3.25 GPA (no grade lower than a C-) along with earning scores of 18 or higher on all sections of the American Dental Association (ADA) Dental Admission Test (DAT) is required for an admission interview with University of the Pacific's School of Dentistry.

First-Year Fall

  1. BIOL 51 - Principles of Biology
  2. CHEM 25 - General Chemistry
  3. Pacific Seminar I
  4. General Education Course (one course per Category 1A, 1B, 1C, 2C or 3B)

First-Year Spring

  1. BIOL 61 - Principles of Biology
  2. CHEM 27 - General Chemistry
  3. Pacific Seminar II
  4. General Education Course (one course per Category 1A, 1B, 1C, 2C or 3B)

(Most students take Organic Chemistry in the summer while studying for the DAT)

Second-Year Fall

  1. CHEM 121 - Organic Chemistry
  2. PHYS 23 - General Physics
  3. Biology Elective
  4. General Education Course (one course per Category 1A, 1B, 1C, 2C or 3B)

Second-Year Spring

  1. CHEM 123 - Organic Chemistry
  2. PHYS 25 - General Physics
  3. General Education Course (one course per Category 1A, 1B, 1C, 2C or 3B)
  4. General Education Course (one course per Category 1A, 1B, 1C, 2C or 3B)

General Education Categories for the 2+3 program only:

  • 1A. Individual and Interpersonal Behavior
  • 1B. Society and Culture in the United States
  • 1C. Society and Culture Outside the United States
  • 2A. Literature, Letters and Language (fulfilled by Pacific Seminar I for Pre-Dental 2+3 students only since no bachelor's degree will be earned)
  • 2B. Fundamental Human Concerns (fulfilled by Pacific Seminar II for Pre-Dental 2+3 students only since no bachelor's degree will be earned)
  • 2C. Practice and Perspective in the Visual and Performing Arts
  • 3A. Life and Physical Laboratory Sciences (fulfilled by lab science)
  • 3B. Formal Systems of Thought
  • 3C. Science, Technology and Society (fulfilled by lab science)

In order to earn a baccalaureate degree from College of the Pacific (COP) and receive an interview for the School of Dentistry, you must meet the following general program requirements:

  • During your three years at COP, you must complete a major and all other COP graduation requirements, except for the total units required for graduation. These requirements include the College's General Education Program. When you apply to the Dugoni School of Dentistry, several grade-point averages (GPAs) will be calculated. Each of the following GPAs are considered, and each must be 3.15 or higher: Overall GPA (all coursework), Pacific GPA (all coursework at Pacific), BCP GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics), and Pacific BCP GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics courses taken at Pacific). Furthermore, you must complete a minimum of 112 semester units.
  • While in COP, you must complete the following School of Dentistry admission requirements: One year of general chemistry, one year of organic chemistry, four semesters of biological science, one year of physics, as well as Pacific Seminars 1, 2 and 3.
  • During your first year, you must complete Biology 51 and 61, Chemistry 25 and 27, Pacific Seminars 1 and 2, and at least one other general education course per term. 
  • You must take the American Dental Association (ADA) Dental Admission Test (DAT) by Sept. 1 of your junior year and earn a score of 18 or above on all scales. 
  • You must complete all School of Dentistry application requirements, which include:
    • Completing an American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) application by Sept. 1 of your junior year
    • Submitting letters of evaluation from at least three references including two science faculty members and a practicing dentist whom you have shadowed
    • Successfully complete an interview with faculty at the School of Dentistry
    • Submit the $75 nonrefundable application fee

In order to earn a baccalaureate degree from College of the Pacific (COP) and receive an admission interview for the School of Dentistry, you must meet the following requirements:

  • During your four years at COP, you must complete a major and all other COP graduation requirements (120 units). These requirements include the College's 42-unit General Education Program and the quantitative and basic reading and writing skills requirements. When you apply to the Dugoni School of Dentistry, several grade-point averages (GPAs) will be calculated. Each of the following GPAs are considered, and each must be 3.05 or higher: Overall GPA (all coursework), Pacific GPA (all coursework at Pacific), science GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics), and Pacific science GPA (all biology, chemistry and physics courses taken at Pacific). Furthermore, you must complete a minimum of 100 semester units.
  • While in COP, you must complete the following School of Dentistry admission requirements: One year of general chemistry, one year of organic chemistry, four semesters of biological science, one year of physics, as well as Pacific Seminars 1, 2 and 3.
  • During your first year, you must complete Biology 51 and 61, Chemistry 25 and 27, Pacific Seminars 1 and 2, and at least one other general education course per term. 
  • You must take the American Dental Association (ADA) Dental Admission Test (DAT) by Sept. 1 of your senior year and earn a score of 18 or above on all scales. 
  • You must complete all School of Dentistry application requirements, which include:
    • Completing an American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) application by Sept. 1 of your senior year
    • Submitting letters of evaluation from at least three references including two science faculty members and a practicing dentist whom you have shadowed
    • Successfully complete an interview with faculty at the School of Dentistry
    • Submit the $75 nonrefundable application fee

Program Requirements

To advance in our Doctor of Dental Surgery Program, our Pre-Dental Advantage Program students must take courses in sequence at Pacific, maintain minimum GPAs and pass a formal interview for the School of Dentistry (which includes a writing sample). 

Other Pathways to the DDS Program

The Pre-Dental Advantage program is only available to students entering college for the first time. Students transferring into Pacific, students in other majors who decide to pursue dentistry and freshman who are not admitted into the Pre-Dental Advantage Program can still prepare at Pacific and see admission at Dugoni School of Dentistry. The College of the Pacific (COP) has excellent undergraduate programs and students graduating from them are welcome to apply to our Doctor of Dental Surgery of program. This pathway does not include an interview guarantee but it allows students to take the same classes and participate in the same extra-curricular activities as the students in the Pre-Dental Advantage Program.

Preparation

  • College courses are best taken in college after the high school experience has been completed. High school students may be interested in anticipating some college education, however, in order to facilitate their adjustment to college or to save money by satisfying college course requirements.
  • Advanced courses taken while in high school can sometimes interfere negatively with the college curriculum. The items below categorize courses by the type of interaction that they have with the curriculum of the Pre-Dental Advantage Program.
  • Green light classes. AP, IB or college courses taken in high school (Early College) may be used to satisfy requirements of categories 1, 2 and 3B of the General Education (GE) portion of the Pre-Dental Advantage Program, as long as they can be transferred in as equivalent to courses at Pacific that satisfy such requirements. This equivalence (articulation) can be verified at the ROAR webpage. Courses in chemistry and biology may be a good preparation for college when they do not articulate with a Pacific course or when they articulate with Pacific courses that have code numbers lower than BIOL 51 for biology (ex: BIOL 41) or lower than CHEM 25 for chemistry (ex: CHEM23).
  • Yellow light classes. AP, IB or Early College classes are acceptable for physics courses that articulate with PHYS 23, 25, 53 or 55 but it is recommended that physics be taken instead at Pacific.
  • Red light classes. AP, IB or Early College classes cannot be used to reduce the number of chemistry and biology courses taken while in the Pre-Dental Advantage Program. If you have already taken or want to take a course that articulates with a Pacific course coded BIOL 51 or higher (or CHEM 25 or higher), you must, as soon as possible: 1) Inform your undergraduate admission counselor at Pacific; and 2) Request the transfer of your courses to Pacific. This is necessary to avoid conflicts that could interfere with your registration and financial help. While we appreciate your interest in pursuing college-level courses prior to coming to Pacific, we strongly recommend that you do not take these courses, unless you want to replace them with more advanced chemistry and biology courses at Pacific.
    IMPORTANT: If you complete a biology or chemistry course before enrolling at Pacific, you will be required to take a more advanced course in those subjects at Pacific.
  • Notice that other DDS programs may require physics, math or psychology to be taken at a four-year college.
  • If you have any questions, please contact your undergraduate admission counselor at Pacific.

Admission & Deadlines

  • To apply for the Pre-Dental Program at Pacific, and for information about application deadlines and decision dates, please visit the Undergraduate Students Admission page.
  • Visit our Undergraduate Deadlines page for information on application deadlines and decision dates.

More Information

All applicants are encouraged, and admitted students are required, to carefully read and agree to the Technical Standards of the Dugoni School. It is also highly recommended that all applicants review the Dental Board of California license requirements.