DDS Admissions Criteria

UMKC School of Dentistry considers a student’s academic record, personal statement, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, interview assessment and any other information provided by the candidate.

To apply a candidate must:

  • Have completed 90 college credit hours toward completion of a bachelor’s degree
  • DAT Academic Average (AA): 16 minimum; 17 and above preferred; 20 average for accepted students
  • Preferred subscores are a 16 and above
  • Science & Math GPA (SGPA): 3.0 minimum, 3.4 and above preferred, 3.7 average for accepted students
  • Be a citizen of the United States or a foreign national with a visa permitting permanent residence (only exception is for candidates who are part of the “UMKC-Kuwait Dental Agreement”)
  • Submit an application for admission with the American Association of Dental Schools Application Service. The centralized application includes candidate’s personal information, experiences, personal statement, coursework and recommendation letters. A minimum of three letters of recommendation or one pre-health advisory committee letter is required. If there is not a pre-health advisory committee at least one letter from a faculty member and one from a dentist is required.

Please visit the COVID-19 Updates to reference any changes or exceptions to the admissions criteria in response to COVID-19.

The following reflect positively on a candidate’s application:

  • A minimum of 100 hours in 5 different settings exploring the profession of dentistry
  • A minimum of 100 hours of community service in 5 different settings exhibiting evidence of service and compassion
  • Demonstration of the ability to critically think and problem solve
  • Evidence of strong personal character
  • Effective interpersonal and communication skills
  • Ability to balance a demanding academic schedule with extracurricular activities and/or employment


The CASPer exam is an online assessment used to assist us in assessing non-cognitive skills and interpersonal characteristics that are important for successful students and dentists. It is a tool the UMKC School of Dentistry has adopted to further enhance fairness and objectivity in our holistic application review. It is strongly encouraged for applicants to take the exam and will be required for interview candidates. Do not take an exam prior to when you begin your ADEA AADSAS application as CASPer scores are only valid for the current cycle in which you are applying. Please visit for information regarding registration/fees, sample videos, and simulated practice tests. The cost of the exam is $40 and plus an additional $12 per school sent results. Results can take up to three weeks to reach the Office of Admissions.

Academic Prerequisites

One semester of the following, with lab, if lab is offered

  • General Biology
  • Anatomy (or Anatomy & Physiology I)
  • Physiology (or Anatomy & Physiology II)
  • Cell Biology
  • Biochemistry

First and second semesters of the following with lab, if lab is offered

  • Chemistry I &II
  • Organic Chemistry I & II
  • Physics I & II
  • English Composition I & II (or other writing intensive courses)

Additional recommended courses include histology, immunology, genetics, ethics, statistics, public health, social sciences, psychology, nutrition, business, communications, art, ceramics, 3-D design, and Spanish

Technical Standards

Candidates must attest to having the abilities and skills in the following areas to satisfactorily complete the curriculum: (1) Observation (2) Communication (3) Motor (4) Intellectual-Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities (5) Emotional and Behavioral Attributes. Full details available at Technical Standards.