Pre-Dental Medicine


Students interested in a career in dental medicine may pursue any major along with completing specific prerequisites. Students must gain a thorough understanding of the profession through a range of shadowing experiences, demonstrate a commitment to service, and earn a competitive score on the Dental Admission Test (DAT). Students should work with the Pre-Health advisor beginning in the first college year to select appropriate coursework based on their schools of interest and to plan for appropriate co-curricular experiences to build a high quality application. It is recommended that students begin a hobby or activity that will demonstrate strong manual dexterity and fine motor skills.

Students applying to dental schools complete an in-house application process to receive a letter of evaluation from the Health Science Advisory and Recommendation Committee in support of their application to dental school. In addition to the information in this section, please check the general information at the pre-medical and pre-health section of the catalog.

Joint and Early Assurance Programs

Canisius maintains a relationship with the LECOM School of Dental Medicine (Bradenton, FL) which allows highly qualified students to gain early acceptance into dental school. Students may apply into this 4+4 program at the same time they apply to Canisius while in high school. Students may also apply to this program during the first year or sophomore year of college.

Recommended Pre-Dental Courses

Academic admission requirements vary by dental school as some schools require additional biology courses such as microbiology, anatomy and physiology. Students should build a strong foundation in the early sciences and plan to take any additional required courses during the second half of college. Requirements usually include the following courses:


One year of English composition or the Honors Program equivalent:

Select one of the following:
Option 1:
ENG 111Academic Writing3
ENG 112Writing about Literature3
Option 2:
HON 101Honors English3
and an Honors Literature course3


Please note that many schools require additional courses in biology with laboratories such as microbiology (BIO 307) and anatomy & physiology (BIO 114/BIO 115 or BIO 324/BIO 340). Students work with the Pre-Health advisor to plan for any additional courses.

At least one year of general biology with laboratory:

BIO 111
Introductory Biology I
and Introductory Biology Laboratory I
BIO 112
Introductory Biology II
and Introductory Biology Laboratory II


One year of general chemistry and one year of organic chemistry with laboratories:

CHM 111
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory
CHM 112
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
CHM 227
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry I Laboratory
CHM 228
Organic Chemistry II
and Organic Chemistry II Laboratory


At least one semester of biochemistry. A student's major may dictate the option they should select:

Select one of the following:
Option 1:
BIO 211Biochemistry and Cell Biology I3
BIO 212Biochemistry and Cell Biology II3
Students should take both BIO 211 / BIO 212
Option 2:
BCH 301Introduction to Biochemistry3
BCH 302Cellular Biochemistry3
Students may take one or both courses of BCH 301/ BCH 302


One year of introductory physics with laboratory. A student's major may dictate the option they should select:

Select one of the following:
Option 1:
PHY 201
College Physics I
and College Physics I Laboratory
PHY 202
College Physics II
and College Physics II Laboratory
Option 2:
PHY 223
General Physics for Physical Science Majors I
and General Physics for Physical Science Majors I Laboratory
PHY 224
General Physics for Physical Science Majors II
and General Physics for Physical Science Majors I Laboratory

Additional Pre-Dental Recommended Courses

Additional Pre-Dental courses such as Microbiology and Anatomy & Physiology may be needed depending on which schools students intend to apply to. Students should work with the Pre-Health advisor for assistance in identifying additional courses.

Mathematics: Math requirements vary at the different dental schools. We recommend students take a minimum of either statistics (MAT 141PSY 201, or KIN 398) or calculus ( MAT 111). One semester of calculus is recommended as a prerequisite for physics.

Behavioral/Social Science: The behavioral science and humanities requirements vary at dental schools. We recommend one semester each of psychology (PSY 101 or PSY 102) and sociology (SOC 110 or SOC 111). 

Additional Science Courses: Students not majoring in the sciences should complete additional upper-level coursework in the sciences as electives. Students majoring in a science are encouraged to take additional coursework in the humanities, social sciences and business. Please work with the Pre-Health Advisor to select courses.

Elective Courses

HRP 101 allows students to explore different health professions.

HRP 111 introduces students to medical terminology.

HRP 201 and HRP 202 allow students to explore areas of medicine in more depth.

HRP 498 is an internship in medical informatics. A medical scribe internship is also available.

HRP 498A is a medical and dental service learning trip.