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Dental Admission Test


Why take the DAT? The DAT is required by the majority of dental schools and, in conjunction with the student's academic record, is used to identify qualified applicants. This multiple-choice, computer-based test measures natural science understanding, perceptual ability, reading comprehension, and quantitative reasoning.

Costs: $495 (includes administration and official score reporting to all dental schools selected at the time of application, an unofficial score report issued at testing center, and score reporting to candidate's pre-dental advisor); $45 per report for requests made after the time of application.

Length: 4 hours and 30 minutes

Test Dates: All year

Computerized: Yes

Scores: Scores range from 1-30. Average score accepted: 20-21

Important Notes

You can only take the DAT once every 60 days, and no more than three times overall.

You must create a DENTPIN (Dental Personal Identifier Number) before you can complete the application to register for the DAT.

It is recommended that you have completed biology (including physiology and genetics), general chemistry, and organic chemistry before taking the DAT. Test takers should consider taking the DAT at least one year before you want to begin dental school.



  • Questions: 100
  • Minutes: 90
  • Score: 1-30
  • Topics Covered: Biology (including physiology and genetics), general chemistry, organic chemistry


  • Questions: 90
  • Minutes: 60
  • Score: 1-30
  • Topics Covered: Apertures, angle discrimination, cube counting, 3D form development, paper folding, & view recognition


  • Questions: 50
  • Minutes: 60
  • Score: 1-30
  • Topics Covered: The Reading Comprehension Test contains three reading passages

    on various scientific topics. Prior understanding of the science topics is not a prerequisite to answering the test items. The reading passages require the ability to read, comprehend, and thoroughly analyze basic scientific information.


  • Questions: 40
  • Minutes: 45
  • Score: 1-30
  • Topics Covered: Algebra, fractions, decimals, percentages, probability & stats, geometry, trigonometry & word problem

Test preparation

MSU Pre-Health advisors do not endorse any specific test prep resource, but we encourage you to explore each of the different options to determine which will best fit your needs.  

Additional information

Please see the American Dental Association (ADA) website for more information and details regarding the DAT.