dentist tools

Our recent graduates have been accepted by dental schools at institutions such as the University of Michigan, Indiana University, Southern Illinois University, and the University of Illinois at Chicago.


At Illinois Wesleyan, students receive premier preparation in the sciences, along with challenging coursework in the
liberal arts, highly personal instruction from a well-qualified faculty and hands-on experience with state-of-the-art equipment.

As at most universities, students cannot major in pre-dentistry at Illinois Wesleyan. Instead, students will major in their primary field of interest, while also working to complete the courses required by the pre-dentistry program.

Pre-Dentistry at Illinois Wesleyan — Our Advantages

  • Top-quality scientific equipment in the labs, including dedicated space for student research.
  • Students can pursue independent research projects under the supervision of Ph.D. professors.
  • The Dental Extern Program pairs pre-dental students with a local dentist, orthodontist, oral surgeon, or other specialist, which provides the opportunity to observe everything from patient examinations to surgery.
  • Students benefit from the assistance and expertise of the Pre-Dental Advisory Committee, who advise students on the pre-dentistry curriculum and the dental school admissions process.

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Courses Required for Pre-Dentistry

  • General Biology
  • General Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • General Physics

Courses Recommended for Pre-Dentistry

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Histology
  • Microbiology
  • Cell Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Biostatistics and Experimental Design
  • Molecular Biology/Genetics
  • Neurophysiology

Michele Darnell, Biology and Pre-Health Career Advisor
(309) 556-3060

Pre-Dentistry Course Plan

The course plan below outlines the courses students need to successfully complete prior to taking the DAT (Dental Admissions Test). Your faculty advisor will work with you to complete each semester's schedule.

Students will major in their primary field of interest, while also working to complete the courses required by the pre-dentistry program.  However, it is highly recommended that students take as many upper level biology courses as possible.  Applicants are ranked on the total number and number of upper level biology courses completed. Careful consideration should be given to electives in biology if not pursuing a biology degree.

As an IWU student, it is your responsibility to track your progress each semester towards completing graduation requirements using the MyIWU degree evaluation tool.

Year 1
Year 2

Fall Semester

Spring Semester

Year 3

Fall Semester

Spring Semester

**Either Physics sequence (101-102 or 105-106) is acceptable; however, MATH 161 is required for PHYS 105, and MATH 162 is required for PHYS 106.

Year 4
  • Biology Elective


Study Abroad

For students interested in studying abroad, the fall semester of the third year is recommended for students who plan to apply to dental school at the end of their junior year and fall semester junior or senior year for students planning to apply in their senior year. It is highly recommended that students consult with Dr. Walker as early as possible if they plan to study abroad.

Additional Information
  • The courses listed above must be completed prior to taking the Dental Admissions test (DAT).
  • The DAT is taken during the spring of a student's junior or senior year.
    • With the computer version of the DAT, there are many possible dates. Consult a member of the Premedical/Predental Advisory Committee with any questions.
  • Resources:
    • Premed Listserv – Students should be told to subscribe to the premed listserv. The premed committee uses this listserv to disseminate important information throughout the academic year and summer. Students can subscribe to the list through the MyIWU portal.
    • Career Center – The career center has a wealth of information concerning the health professions.