Prerequisite Courses for Dental School

There is no set list of courses that are required by all dental schools, as each school has its own specific list of prerequisites.  However, there is a core of courses that are required by most programs as well as some commonly recommended coursework.  For a complete list of requirements for each dental program, refer to the American Dental Education Association’s Official Guide to Dental Schools which can be purchased at the ADEA website (www.adea.org).

Core Prerequisite Courses (required by most programs)

  • Two semesters of General Biology with labs: BIO 110 and BIO 111
  • Two semesters of General Chemistry with labs: CHEM 111 and CHEM 112
  • Two semesters of Organic Chemistry with labs: CHEM 331 and CHEM 332 (some programs only require one semester)
  • Two semesters of General Physics with labs: PHYS 220 and PHYS 221 or PHYS 240 and 241
  • Two semesters of English: ENG 122 and SCI 291 or similar writing courses

Strongly Recommended Courses (required by quite a few programs)

  • One semester of Genetics: BIO 220
  • One semester of Biochemistry: CHEM 381
  • One semester of Microbiology: BIO 351
  • One semester of Psychology: PSY 120
  • One semester of Calculus: MAT 131
  • One semester of Statistics: STAT 150
  • Some programs also recommend:
    Human Anatomy:  BIO 245 or BIO 341
    Human Physiology: BIO 246 or BIO 350

Colorado Programs

There is currently one school of dentistry in the state of Colorado, the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine and the prerequisites for this particular program are listed below. Please note that this program does NOT accept AP credit for its prerequisite courses.

  • Two semesters of General Biology with labs: BIO 110 and BIO 111
  • Two semesters of General Chemistry with labs: CHEM 111 and CHEM 112
  • Two semesters of Organic Chemistry with labs: CHEM 331 and CHEM 332
  • Two semesters of General Physics with labs: PHYS 220 and PHYS 221 or PHYS 240 and 241
  • One semester of English composition: ENG 122 or SCI 291
  • One semester of Biochemistry: CHEM 381
  • One semester of Microbiology: BIO 351
  • Suggested elective courses (these are not requirements but are classes that a student might find useful as they prepare for a career in dentistry)
    Human Anatomy: BIO 341
    Human Physiology: BIO 350
    Cell Biology: BIO 210
    Immunology: BIO 381
    Business management/finance: BA 100, BA 150, or similar
    General Psychology: PSY 120
    Communications: COMM 102
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