ADEA AADSAS® Guidelines for Dental Schools When Extending Offers of Admission

ADEA Guidelines for Dental Schools When Extending Offers of Admission

The following guidelines were approved by the ADEA House of Delegates and serve as recommendations and guidelines for dental education institutions. The purpose of these guidelines is to establish an open and fair process among dental schools when extending offers of admission to applicants and for applicants to have a reasonable time frame in which to consider all offers of admission. Additionally, these guidelines are established to assist dental schools in meeting enrollment objectives.

All predoctoral institutions should:

  • Pre-professional Education Requirements. Grant final acceptance only to students who have completed at least two academic years of preprofessional education (which must include all of the prerequisite courses for dental school), and who have completed the Dental Admission Test or the Canadian Dental Aptitude Test. Applicants should be encouraged to earn their baccalaureate degrees before entering dental school.
  • Early Selection Programs. Have the option of waiving for students accepted for an early selection program the requirement for at least two years of preprofessional education. An early selection program is one where a formal and published agreement exists between a dental school and an undergraduate institution(s) that a student, either upon the student’s admission to the undergraduate institution or at some time before the completion of the student’s first academic year at the undergraduate institution, is guaranteed admission to the dental school, provided that the student successfully completes the dental school’s entrance requirements and normal application procedures.
  • Class to Which Applied. Consider students for acceptance to only the class to which they have applied.
  • Earliest Notification Date. Notify applicants, either orally or in writing, of provisional or final acceptance no earlier than December 1 of the academic year prior to the academic year of matriculation.
  • Applicant Response Periods. Allow an applicant who has been given a provisional or final acceptance between December 1 and January 31, the minimum response period shall be 30 days, and for applicants accepted on or after February 1, the minimum response period may be reduced to 15 days. The response period may be lifted after May 15, or two weeks before the beginning of the academic year, whichever comes first.
    1. If the candidate does not respond within the allotted notification time frame, the dental school may choose to withdraw the candidate from the entering class.
  • Applicants Holding Positions at Multiple Institutions. Dental schools participating in ADEA AADSAS will report to ADEA AADSAS by March 1 the names of candidates who hold a position in their entering class. After March 5, ADEA AADSAS will report to each institution the names of candidates in their entering class who are holding acceptance(s) at additional institutions (only names are reported with no other additional information). The process for candidates holding multiple positions is as follows: 
    1. Dental schools with candidates holding multiple positions on March 1 of the year of admission will contact such candidates and give the candidates a minimum fifteen-day notice to affirm their position in the class or to withdraw their position.
    2. If the candidate does not respond within the allotted notification time frame, the dental school may choose to withdraw the candidate from the entering class.
    3. Notification times may be shortened after April 15.
    4. Dental schools will have the option of rescinding an offer of admission to candidates who are holding positions at multiple institutions.

    This policy will be evaluated every two years by the ADEA Section on Dental School Admissions Officers to assess its impact on applicants and dental schools and whether it provides applicants a reasonable time frame to complete their enrollment process. Evaluation of this policy will be maintained by ADEA Division of Educational Pathways.


Approved in March 2010 by the ADEA House of Delegates. 

Note: In March 2018, the ADEA House of Delegates approved the revised "ADEA Guidelines for Dental Schools When Extending Offers of Admissions."

Revised and updated “ADEA Guidelines for Dental Schools When Extending Offers of Admissions” approved in January 2019 by the ADEA Board of Directors