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University of Colorado Denver

University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine

Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree

DDS Program Admission Requirements & Procedures

Admission Requirements

The majority of students accepted to the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine have completed at least four years of undergraduate work and have received an undergraduate degree. This degree does not have to be in science or pre-dentistry. The entering overall GPA for the DDS program is around 3.6 with an Academic Average DAT score of 19.8. The University of Colorado does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation, or political philosophy in admission and access to, and treatment and employment in, its educational programs and activities. Individuals of all ethnic minority groups are encouraged to apply for admission. International students can apply. On a yearly basis we do have applicants who are non-U.S. citizens, but who have attended college in the U.S. or Canada.


 Admission Information


 Prerequisite Requirements

The following areas of study are required for the minimum pre-dental program. Laboratory work should be included in each of these disciplines as noted. The basic requirement for admission to the School of Dental Medicine is completion of at least 90 semester hours or the equivalent, with at least 30 hours of upper division for a letter grade. Credit hours from a community/junior college are limited to no more than 60 semester hours. High School Advanced Placement (AP) courses will be counted for prerequisite course work. Prerequisite courses require a grade of C or better. All coursework must be completed at the conclusion of the spring term of the year accepted.

Prerequisite Requirements:

·Two semesters General Biology or Zoology/Lab (8 semester hours/12 quarter hours)

·Two semester General Chemistry/Lab (8 semester hours/12 quarter hours)

·Two semesters Organic Chemistry/Lab (8 semester hours/12 quarter hours)

·Two semesters General Physics/Lab, Algebra-based (8 semester hours/12 quarter hours)

·One semester Microbiology, Lab not required (3 semester hours/5 quarter hours)

·One semester General Biochemistry, Lab not required (3 semester hours/5 quarter hours)

·One semester English Composition (3 semester hours/5 quarter hours)

(Please Note: Courses with 3 semester credit hours are deemed equivalent for courses with 5 quarter hours, not 6 as previously noted.)

General Biology/Zoology with lab: One academic year. Since dentistry is dependent upon knowledge of normal and abnormal biology/zoology including laboratory work, this field is of major importance. The applicant should be concerned with complete preparation for dental education. Appropriate course selection in the biological sciences should lead to a thorough understanding of the principles of modern biology.

General Chemistry with lab: One academic year. A program in general chemistry should include the following: principles of chemistry, the descriptive chemistry of atomic and molecular structure, chemical bonding, stoichiometry, chemical kinetics, chemical equilibrium, and electro-chemistry. This program should include laboratory work that serves as an introduction to the principles of qualitative analysis, including ionic equilibria, ionic separation, and the detection of selected simple and complex ions.

Organic Chemistry with lab: One academic year. Course work in organic chemistry, including laboratory work, should cover the nomenclature, reactions, and electronic or structural features of compounds which frequently are involved in biological reactions.

General Physics with lab: One academic year. The concept of mechanics as the action of forces through levers and the performance of work in the exchange of forms of energy should be understood. The range of electromagnetic radiation from infrared through visible light to X-rays and waves of other lengths should also demonstrate the basic principles of generation, conduction, and measurement of electrical forces.

Microbiology Lecture: One semester (lab not required). This course should include various topics such as the identification, structure and characteristics of bacteria, viruses and eukaryotic microorganisms. An appreciation for mechanisms of microbial pathogenesis, microbial-host interactions and strategies to control or prevent infectious diseases should also be obtained.

General Biochemistry Lecture: One semester (3) (lab not required). This course shall include various topics such as the structure and properties of proteins and enzymes, control and integration of metabolic pathways for the synthesis and degradation of macromolecules accompanied with the utilization or release of free energy, structure and function of nucleic acids, flow of genetic information and the regulation of gene expression.

English Composition: One semester.

Suggested Electives: Courses in, anatomy, cell biology, histology, immunology, physiology, business management/finance, psychology, and communications are electives to consider. Students should select subjects that stimulate them intellectually, challenge them to a maximum performance, and contribute to their overall development and maturation. The courses may aim toward a thorough study of a single area with a general background in many areas, or may group together several related areas in the sciences or humanities. 

Each applicant's scholastic record will be evaluated on its own merit, however, the School of Dental Medicine reserves the right to review transcripts and make the final determination as to course and requirement suitability.

**For MD’s who attended medical school in the US and are interested in pursuing a DDS, please contact: for more information.  ​


 Colorado Residency Information

The University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine actively accepts both residents and non-residents for its Dental Program.

·         For WICHE Applicant: The School of Dental Medicine is a member of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE)program. This exchange program helps students in the Western states to enroll in selected out-of-state professional programs. Students who are residents of Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota and Wyoming are considered for acceptance under this program. For additional information, and to apply for certification (deadline is October 15th of the year preceding admission), please visit the WICHE web page. If you should not receive WICHE funding, the non-sponsor applicant below will pertain to you.

·         For Non-Resident Applicants: the Colorado State Legislature recently implemented a law concerning tuition for professional schools.  All non-residents students, except those sponsored by WICHE, will be required to sign an Accountable Student Contract and pay an Accountable Student Fee along with their tuition.  Non-resident students will be responsible for the Accountable Student Fee for each of the four years of enrollment at the School of Dental Medicine.  

·         For International Applicants: International students may apply. On a yearly basis we do have applicants who are non-US citizens, but who have attended college in the U.S. or Canada. International students should be prepared to escrow the full amount of tuition, fees and living expenses prior to matriculation for all four years of their dental education (approximately $350,000 in 2013). International students will be required to sign an Accountable Student Contract and pay an Accountable Student Fee along with their tuition. International students will be responsible for the Accountable Student Fee for each of the four years of enrollment at the School of Dental Medicine.  The escrow account must be fully executed by July 1 of the matriculation year.

All students at the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine must adhere to and sign the Technical Standards for Admission, Promotion and Graduation.  ​


 DDS Program Application Procedure


The School of Dental Medicine participates in the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) application service. You may complete the application via the ADEA website.

Applications may be filed beginning June 1 of the year preceding admission and all requested material must be received by ADEA on or before December 31. Applications received after that date will not be considered for the succeeding year. Early application is strongly encouraged as acceptances are offered as early as December 1.

After submitting your ADEA application online, you will also need to submit the following directly to ADEA:

1.Official transcripts from each college/university you have attended

2.University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine requires letters of recommendation.  We require either a pre-dental committee OR two letters of recommendation from science instructors and one letter from a non-science instructor OR an employer (or a dentist you have shadowed).

Dental Admission Test:​

Each applicant must complete the Dental Admission Test (DAT).  The computerized test can be taken at any time during the year. You are encouraged to complete the DAT preferably by October 1.

ADEA will obtain your official DAT scores directly from the American Dental Association's Testing Services Center and will import them directly into your application.  If you take the DAT after your ADEA AADSAS application has been sent to your designated dental schools, an updated application, reflecting your DAT scores will be forwarded to schools just as soon as the scores are received.

     NOTE:  Your DAT scores will be obtained by ADEA and included on your application.

The Office of Admissions will not review an incomplete application (with the exception of a missing DAT score)

Once a completed application and materials have been received and reviewed by the Office of Admissions, the applicant may be invited by the Dental Admissions Committee to campus for a formal interview and tour of the school.  Invited applicants will also be requested to submit supplemental materials directly to the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine.

Supplemental materials should be sent ONLY UPON REQUEST:

1. A $50.00 non-refundable application fee 

(you will be sent further information regarding payment at the appropriate time) 

2. University Colorado Board of Regents Questionnaire form

3. Verification of Colorado Residency form (even if your are a non-resident) 

4. University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine Letter of Recommendation Waiver form 

Selection Process:

The School of Dental Medicine seeks well-rounded applicants and uses a holistic review process.

Each applicant, upon acceptance into the entering class, will receive a confirmation form which must be returned with a tuition deposit of $1,000 in order to reserve a position in the class. This $1,000 deposit will be applied toward tuition, fees, or any other student obligation during the first term of attendance at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. The deposit is due upon receipt of the student's admissions offer and is refundable up to 60 days prior to the registration date, only upon written request.

All accepted students are required to complete a background investigation prior to matriculation. In order to process the investigation, we must receive a non-refundable payment in the amount of $65 along with your tuition deposit.

Send inquiries regarding dental admission to​

*Please do not attach DAT scores or transcripts unless requested.​