The Pre-Dental Pathway, taken in conjunction with a major area of study at Carroll College, prepares students to apply to dental school, and helps fulfill the student’s desire to ease pain and empower healthy living in their communities. To truly thrive in this profession, more is required than knowledge alone. At Carroll College, the pre-dental pathway offers a well-rounded perspective of a liberal arts learning experience, so you’ll better understand the issues affecting your patients from all angles. The compassion at the heart of the diocesan Catholic learning mission, along with the depth and character you will inherit, will take you there.

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About the Program

The Pre-Dental Pathway, in conjunction with a major area of study at Carroll College, prepares you for entry into graduate school and a successful career in dentistry.  For example, those at Carroll who complete the pre-dental pathway are consistently accepted into medical school at a rate of 85 percent — far higher than the national average of less than 50 percent.  Many pre-dental students major in biology, chemistry, and biochemistry/molecular biology.  However, it is possible to major in any subject that interests you, and also follow the pre-dental pathway to prepare yourself well for entry into Dental School.

Graduates of Carroll who completed the pre-dental pathway are accepted into some of the finest graduate programs in the region and the country. Recent pre-medicine and pre-dentistry students have been accepted into their respective graduate programs at the University of Washington, Mayo Medical School, Georgetown University, University of Colorado, University of Iowa, and Penn State University, among others.

Courses and Student Learning Objectives

Carroll College's pre-dental pathway requires completion of courses in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, and English. Carroll students on the Pre-Dental Pathway often major in either biology or chemistry since many of the course requirements coincide with these majors; however, a science degree is not required.  Through these classes, graduates will be ready to:

  • Apply to dental school and be accepted into some of the finest graduate programs in the region
  • Use the provided guidance and pre-dental coursework to prepare for an internship at a hospital or volunteer with a health organization

Students are encouraged to consult with the pre-dental advisor for coursework that may be of value and for a description of experiences that are important to have prior to declaring the pre-dental pathway. 

Professional Educational Outcomes

The pre-dental pathway at Carroll College is set to produce students who have:

  • Self-motivation, compassion, and integrity.
  • The necessary education and reputable degree to be accepted into the finest graduate programs.
  • A well-rounded perspective of a liberal arts learning experience.

Program Highlights

Throughout the pre-dental pathway, you’ll explore a wide range of areas, such as courses in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, and English. Pre-dental students also cover such areas as sociology and psychology. For certain students, a three-year curriculum is possible, as well.

Will you be able to complete your degree in three or four years? In almost all cases, you will be able to enter dental school after completing a four-year undergraduate program. Occasionally, highly qualified students enter after three years. A student who enters dental school after three years of undergraduate study may receive a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in biology under the following condition:

I want to improve the health of my community.


Of course! Dental careers give you the opportunity to become a respected member of your community. High-demand is likely to continue in the future, proving constant demand and opportunities in the industry.

It’s most important to make sure the pre-dental pathway is right for you. A career in dentistry is a career in teamwork, service, effective communication and so much more. It’s most important to take the time to get to know each profession and understand the path you would like to take. Learn the basics about dental school at Carroll College and reach out to a pre-dental professor.

There are so many great opportunities! The list really goes on, but earning your degree along with completion of the pre-dental pathway here at Carroll opens the door to a range of career opportunities for you that include:

  • Child Life Specialist
  • Dentist
  • Environmental Health Specialist
  • Emergency Medical Technician
  • Oral Surgeon
  • Orthodontist
  • Medical Assistant
  • Physician
  • Physical Therapist
  • Surgeon
  • Teacher
  • Scientist
  • Health Services Specialist

When we award a financial aid package it is not just to get you here —it is a four-year commitment to see you graduate and succeed. Every year you will have the opportunity to meet with financial aid, renew your goals, explore opportunities for on-campus work, and make sure you are on track with any borrowing. Find out more.

See the cost of attendance information for full-time students.

Students with different financial backgrounds choose to attend Carroll College every year. There are many ways to fund your college experience and invest in your education and future. Find out more

We are happy to answer any questions you may have! Request information or call us at (406) 447-4384.

You can also speak with Carroll's Pre-Medical and Pre-Dental Advisor, Grant Hokit, Ph.D.

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