Tips | Dentistry and Optometry

1. Dentistry Overview

Dentistry is the profession of oral healthcare. Through education, diagnosis and treatment, dentists provide the public with an essential health service. Research continues to show a strong link between oral health and general health. 


Dentistry Schools In Ontario

*Contact the individual school or academic department directly for the most up-to-date admissions information. Below are the websites to 2 of Ontario's top dental schools.


For a full listing of accredited Canadian universities offering dentistry programs, as well as schools offering dental hygiene and assisting training, visit the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada.


Dental Aptitude Test (DAT) (required by U of T and UWO)

Dental schools administer the DAT to help students assess their capacity for a career in dentistry and to assist schools with admissions.  The DAT measures perceptual ability, reading comprehension, as well as scientific knowledge, including biology and chemistry. There is also a section that tests manual dexterity, that is optional.

For information about the DAT, including test dates, visit the Canadian Dental Association’s website. 


Dentistry- Useful Links

Also, see programs offered by George Brown College. 


5. Dentistry - Gaining Experience

Most schools will evaluate your experiences and transferrable skills as relates to both of these professions. Scientific knowledge supported by strong marks and DAT/OAT scores are only part of the picture. Round out your skills by:

  • Volunteering in healthcare settings such as clinics and hospitals
  • Part-time and summer work in dental/optometric clinics and/or observer-ships
  • Any work or volunteering, working closely with people in a helping or medical capacity
  • Medical, dental, or optometric related research experience
  • Direct experience as a first responder or medical relief volunteer


2. Optometry Overview

An optometrist, or Doctor of Optometry (OD), is a healthcare professional who provides primary vision care ranging from sight testing and correction to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of eye diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.

*Contact the individual school or academic department directly for the most up-to-date admissions information


There are only 2 Optometry schools in Canada:


Optometry Admission Test (OAT) (required by UWO)  

The OAT is an optometry admission test designed to provide optometry education programs with a means to assess program applicants’ potential for success. The OAT is administered year-round by Prometric test centers in the United States, its territories (including Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands), and Canada.

For information about the OAT, including test dates, visit the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry website


Optometry - Useful Links

To learn about related careers (i.e. optometric assistant, optician), visit the Canadian Association of Optometrists website. 

Visit Seneca College's website to learn about their Opticianry program.  



Information is subject to change.


Updated June 20, 2023.