Application to Upper Division

Important Information about impacts of COVID-19 on Dental Hygiene admissions ► DH Admissions COVID-19

Deadline to Apply for 2021 Admission Cycle: January 15th

The upper division of the dental hygiene program consists of two years of full time study at the School of Dentistry, including clinical and didactic courses to prepare graduates for license as a dental hygienist. Admission to the upper division is competitive with applicants evaluated on academic as well as nonacademic attributes demonstrated in their DHCAS application materials. Each year, 30 students are admitted to the upper division and begin study at the School of Dentistry in the fall term.

Applicants must apply using the ADEA Dental Hygiene Centralized Application Service (DHCAS) Application. The DHCAS application will open on October 29th for the Fall 2021 upper division admission cycle.

Admission Statistics

DH ClassCumulative GPAProgram GPAScience GPAACT Average

Academic Requirements

Visit our curriculum information and the UofL Undergraduate catalog for complete academic requirements. 

Prerequisite Coursework
Successful completion of, or in the process of completing, all lower division coursework at time of application. Applicants must submit official transcripts from all previously attended institutions to DHCAS at time of application.

Grade Point Average
Minimum 2.8 cumulative college GPA, including coursework from all institutions, and completion of program sciences with a "C" grade or higher and within 10 years of application cycle year.

ACT/SAT Completion
While there is no minimum composite score to apply to the upper division, preference is given to applicants with a 21 ACT/SAT equivalent or higher, the minimum composite score to be admitted to the dental hygiene lower division at UofL.

Additional Requirements

Dental Hygiene Shadowing-Updated requirement for 2020 admission cycle
Minimum of 12 hours of observation of a dental hygienist in a general dentistry setting. Additional experience in related dental areas is considered, but does not count toward this minimum requirement. For applicants that are unable to meet the 12 hour minimum during the pandemic, please note that you are still encouraged to apply. Please see "important information about impacts of COVID-19 on Dental Hygiene admissions" at the top of the page for more information.

Letters of Recommendation
Three letters of recommendation submitted directly from reference to the DHCAS application. Recommendations should include one (1) science instructor, one (1) additional instructor, and one (1) personal or supervisor reference.

CASPer® Assessment Online
Students must complete the CASPer assessment during one of the predetermined dates below. CASPer is a situational judgement assessment for professional programs and is available online at You will be charged a fee to take the assessment/have the results sent to UofL and it requires a DENTPIN, which can be set up at

  • Note that you need to sign up for a specific date for this assessment prior to the application deadline. See test dates for application window November 2020 – January2021 below. They are subject to change.
  • Sep 13, 2020 - 2:00 PM ET*
  • Oct 13, 2020 - 5:00 PM ET*
  • Nov 19, 2020 - 8:00 PM ET
  • Dec 10, 2020 - 8:00 PM ET
  • Jan 17, 2021 - 1:00 PM ET^^
*This CASPer session is held before the application opens on October 29th, 2020. Your DENTPIN will be used on your DHCAS application as well, so your CASPer scores and "snapshot" video response will be retroactively assigned to your DHCAS application once it is submitted during the October 29th, 2020 - January 15th, 2021 application window.  ^^ This CASPer session is held after the application deadline of January 15th, 2021. Your DENTPIN is the same one used on your DHCAS application, so your CASPer scores and "snapshot" video response will be retroactively assigned to your already submitted DHCAS application. Any CASPer assessments and "snapshots" submitted without a corresponding DHCAS application will not be accepted.

CASPer® Snapshot
Altus Assessments will ask all CASPer test takers to complete their CASPer Snapshot this admissions cycle. CASPer Snapshot is a short video response tool that mimics an informal interview by asking questions to which you respond through video and audio, using your webcam to record your answers. More information can be found at

Personal Statement 
The essay prompt(s) included in the DHCAS application should be addressed clearly and concisely.

Current Resume
Consideration given to applicants demonstrating significant supporting experiences in leadership, service, and/or work experience.

Transfer applicants

Applicants not currently enrolled at the University of Louisville must also apply for admission through the UofL Undergraduate Admissions Office

Transfer students should complete the following in their application to UofL as a transfer student:

  • Declare DHL as intended major
  • Submit official transcripts to the undergraduate admissions office
  • Include ACT/SAT composite scores

Because command of the English language is essential for successful professional school study, applicants whose first language is not English, regardless of citizenship, must demonstrate their English proficiency by taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Preference is given to candidates with a score of 100 or above and with listening and speaking section scores at 26 or above. Students who have graduated from a high school in which English is the primary language and/or have completed a minimum of 30 credit hours at a fully accredited U.S. college or university may qualify for a waiver.


As a part of the holistic review of applications to the upper division dental hygiene program, the Dental Hygiene Admissions Committee will select applicants to invite for interview as a part of the upper division admissions process. If selected for interview, the applicant will be notified via email invitation. An interview is required prior to admission.


Students offered admission to the upper division of the dental hygiene program must comply with additional requirements as indicated below and described in additional detail at time of offer. Failure to comply with written requirements may result in forfeiture of acceptance.

Background Check
Applicants offered admission to the upper division of the dental hygiene program must complete and satisfactorily clear a background check, by a servicer of the School of Dentistry in order to reserve their space in the class.

In order to matriculate in to the upper division, accepted students must fulfill all requirements of the ULSD contingencies provided at time of conditional offer of admission. All planned courses listed on the DHCAS application must be completed or approved for waiver by the Dental Hygiene Admissions Committee. Acceptance may be withdrawn for failure to maintain high scholastic or behavioral standards during the remainder of pre-matriculation period. 

Minimum Technical Standards
Both cognitive and technical skills are required to successfully negotiate School of Dentistry curriculum. With this in mind, applicants must be able to meet the minimum technical standards for admission and matriculation with or without accommodation.

Students admitted to study on the Health Science campus of UofL must comply with mandatory immunization requirements. Immunization requirements have been established to safeguard the health and well-being of patients, students, and all healthcare workers.

Laptop Requirement

Dental hygiene upper division students must comply with the UofL School of Dentistry laptop requirement policy. See here for more detailed information.

The University of Louisville School of Dentistry gives equal opportunity without regard to race, color, creed or religion, sex, national origin, age, physical or mental handicaps or disabilities, military status, sexual orientation, marital status, or other factors, prohibited by law. The university, when requested, provides reasonable accommodations for disabled individuals who provide required documentation.