Dentistry (Pre-Dentistry)

Catalog Year


Total Credits




Career Cluster

Health Science

Dentistry is a pre-professional program. The purpose of pre-professional programs is to provide students with the intellectual and academic backgrounds they will need before continuing their education in degrees not offered at Minnesota State Mankato. Acceptance to professional educational institutions is contingent upon academic performance, so students enrolling in pre-professional programs should be highly motivated and realize they are expected to maintain standards of excellence. Advisors play an important role in guiding the students enrolled in such programs so students are urged to contact the advisor before enrolling.

Specific course requirements for admission to dental school vary somewhat among the different dental schools in the United States. To be eligible for admission at a particular dental school, the student must fulfill the requirements of that school. Students are encouraged to keep themselves apprised of requirements for specific schools by consulting appropriate websites.

Although a minimum of 87 semester credits are required for admission to the DDS program at the University of Minnesota, most students enrolled have completed four or more years of college. To receive a baccalaureate degree from Minnesota State Mankato, the student must complete the requirements for general education, a major and possibly a minor. Dental schools look most favorably upon the academically well-rounded student who has a strong scholastic record and unique life experiences that engender a commitment to a career in dentistry. Students should pursue majors and minors in subjects of their own choosing, as dental schools accept applicants from all academic majors, provided admission prerequisites are met. Majoring in one of the sciences-biology, biochemistry, chemistry, physics etc.—has the advantage of incorporating many or all of the courses listed above. Furthermore, the technical language of dental school is derived primarily from the disciplines of biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and psychology. Sciences must include both lecture and laboratory instruction. Courses in biology, chemistry, and physics may be considered outdated by dental schools if taken more than five years before the time of application. Elective courses should be selected to achieve as broad and liberal an education as possible. Students who plan to enter dental school must take the Dental Admission Test (DAT). Typically, students begin the application process to dental school during the summer following their junior year. For their application to be complete, they must report their DAT scores. Consult the website of the American Dental Education Association for more information on the DAT and the application process.

The courses are consistent with requirements for admission to the University of Minnesota Dental School.

  • ENG 101
  • An additional 4 credits of writing intensive coursework. (e.g., ENG 271W or PHIL 222W).
  • COMM 100
  • \BIOL 105
  • BIOL 106
  • Additional electives BIOL 211, BIOL 220, BIOL 270, BIOL 316, BIOL 320, BIOL 330, BIOL 435, BIOL 475.
  • PHYS 211, PHYS 212 or PHYS 221, PHYS 222
  • CHEM 201, CHEM 202, CHEM 322, CHEM 324, CHEM 325, CHEM 360
  • CHEM 305 as an elective
  • MATH 112 and MATH 113 or MATH 115
  • PSYC 101