Completing the ADEA Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS) is an important step to applying to dental school. The ADEA AADSAS application website is now open for the 2015 application cycle. The processing fee will be $245 for the first dental school, and $93 for each additional school. Complete information on costs will be located in the application.
Use the Texas Medical & Dental Schools Application Service (TMDSAS) if you are applying to a Texas dental school. The application and timeline are similar to AADSAS, so these tips are still valuable.
Keep the following advice in mind before you submit your application. Reach out to predental societies, advisors or friends who have previously applied for their tips too.
- Apply early. Most schools are on a rolling admissions cycle. The earlier your application falls into the admissions committee hands, the better your chances of being selected for an interview. If a school has seen many good applications before yours, they’ve probably filled up most of their interview slots. Let schools see you as soon as possible. There are a few items you can prepare before starting your application to streamline the process:
Be honest on your application. If you are applying to dental school, chances are that you've built a commendable resume. Most admissions committees have seen enough applications to differentiate an honest candidate from one who is stretching the truth. Lying or exaggerating can get your application dismissed. If you’ve had any academic violations or probations, explain them from the beginning. Start by stating what the experience taught you or how you grew from it. At the end of the day, the admissions committee is a normal group of people who have made mistakes in their career, too.
Follow directions. An application that is rushed or incorrect only showcases sloppiness and a lack of ability to follow directions. These are all qualities you do not want to show to dental schools. ADEA AADSAS has a lot nuances such as character limits, date entry specifics, etc. Understand what is expected in each section. Making these small mistakes can cost you time and are easily avoidable. Full instructions are available at ADEAAADSAS.org.
The application takes a while to process. ADEA AADSAS states that it could take up to six weeks to process your application and send it to schools. Remember that they require all your transcripts and your DAT score before they can process it. Therefore, if you are thinking of taking your DAT after you submit, take it as soon as possible. Letters of recommendation do not delay the ADEA AADSAS application but their delivery delay may slow you down at individual schools. Each school has its own policy when it comes to reviewing applications and some may put your application on hold until they receive the letters of recommendation. Call each school to find out their policy.
Update your CV/Resume in advance. This will make filling out the application much easier because it can be used as an outline for your accomplishments. Don’t know what to put in your CV? Check out our CV/Resume tips.
Collect all of your transcripts in advance. You will need to enter information from each institution that you attended, including community colleges. Have recent copies of your transcripts ready prior to applying to expedite the process. Use these transcripts when filling out the academic history portion of your application. Oftentimes grades, units and other important information may be recorded differently on the transcript. It is vital to keep consistency with the transcript when you enter data. Look over these documents well before the cycle opens.
Don’t tailor your application to one school. If you only speak to one school on your entire application then why spend the time and money to apply to multiple schools? Applying to more schools will increase your odds of getting accepted. Don’t sabotage your chances by citing specifics. If a particular school interests you, take the time to contact the admissions committee, volunteer with them or get involved in any other way. The application is not the time to comment on everything that specifically makes you a good fit for their program.
Review the supplemental information. Check the supplemental information for each school you are interested in applying. This will ensure you follow the correct steps and have the appropriate materials in your application. Some schools require an additional application fee paid at the same time your ADEA AADSAS application is submitted. Other schools require an additional application fee paid once their admissions office contacts you.
- Work experience
- Extracurricular activies
- Research experience
- Volunteer/shadowing experiences
- Awards and honors
Calculating Your GPA
Your grade point average (GPA) is a critical component of your application. Each school places emphasis on different GPAs. As a general consensus overall GPA, science GPA and biology, chemistry and physics GPA (BCP) are highly regarded. Review this table to get a breakdown of which subjects fall into which sections. If a particular class is not on this list, contact ADEA AADSAS to understand which category it falls into. ADEA AADSAS's customer service can be reached at 617-612-2045. Please remember:
- All point values must be converted to semester units. (To do this with quarter units, multiply the units by a 0.667 factor.)
- All course grades will be included (even repeated or failed coursework).
- Withdrawn classes and their respective grades are reported in the GPA.
- All GPAs are rounded to the hundredth place.
Now that you know the different aspects, try calculating your GPA. Knowing what goes into each category and how to calculate it is extremely valuable and will help you when you are filling out your dental school application.
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Review ADEA's FAQ for more information and a GPA calculations PDF.
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