About The DAT


What is the Dental Aptitude Test (DAT)?

The DAT is a test designed to help students assess their aptitude for a career in dentistry and to assist dental schools in selecting first-year students.

The complete DAT consists of 4 components for the English test and 3 components for the French test. Read a brief description of each test component.

The English test consists of a Survey of Natural Sciences, a Perceptual Ability Test, a Reading Comprehension Test and a Manual Dexterity Test. There is no Reading Comprehension Test on the French DAT.

The Manual Dexterity Test is optional as some dental schools do not use the manual dexterity test results. It is your responsibility to check with the school(s) you are interested in applying to and to understand their admission requirements.  


Why do I need to take the DAT?

Most of the 10 Canadian dental schools require DAT scores as part of their admission requirements. Canadian DAT scores are also accepted by most American dental schools.


When can I take the DAT?

The DAT is held twice a year, in November and February.


Where do I write the DAT?

There are DAT test centres across Canada.


How many questions are on the DAT?

There are  210 questions on the English DAT, plus the Manual Dexterity Test. There are  160 questions on the French DAT (no reading comprehension test), plus the Manual Dexterity Test.

  • The Survey of the Natural Sciences consists of 40 Biology and 30 General Chemistry questions.
  • The Perceptual Ability Test consists of 90 questions.
  • The Reading Comprehension Test (English only) consists of 50 questions.

What is the format of the DAT?

All   DAT test questions are multiple choice format, except for the Manual Dexterity Test.


How many times can I write the DAT?

Applicants are allowed to participate in the DAT Program an unlimited amount of times. However, only the results of the most recent attempt, and the total number of attempts, will be reported on your official DAT transcript. Applicants who want the results of a previous DAT test sent to one or more faculties of dentistry must make such a request online.



Registering For The DAT


How do I register for the DAT?

You must  register for the DAT online.

All registrations must be completed using the DAT website.  You must register before the DAT registration deadline.  Email or phone requests to register are not accepted and will  not receive a response . It is your responsibility to register for the DAT through the website.


When do I register for the DAT?

Registration for both tests (November and February) opens in July. You are advised to register as early as possible for your preferred test location and date and well in advance of the registration deadline. Seats fill quickly at certain test centres and CDA cannot guarantee that seats will be available at the end of the registration period.



How do I Add The Manual Dexterity Test (MDT) Component To My Existing DAT Registration?

All DAT MDT Registrations must be completed using the DAT website. You must register for the MDT before the DAT registration deadline.  Email or phone requests to register are not accepted and will not receive a response. It is your responsibility to register for the MDT through the website.

Here is the link to add the MDT section to your DAT registration.


Can I email a registration request?

Registration requests sent by email are not considered as registering for the DAT nor of meeting the registration deadline.  The DAT office receives a large volume of emails and will not always reply or provide immediate information about how to register.  It is your responsibility to ensure you read all the information on the DAT website and register for the DAT and the MDT prior to the deadline. 

You must register for the DAT via the website before the DAT registration deadline.  See the links above on how to register for the DAT or add the MDT to your existing registration.


I completed an online registration, but have yet to receive a confirmation email. What should I do?

An email confirming your DAT registration is automatically sent to you from CDA immediately after your registration is processed. If you have not received your confirmation email by the end of the following day, check your spam filter to ensure the email was not blocked. Next, confirm with your credit card company that you were, in fact, billed for the test registration. If so, email the DAT Office at dat@cda-adc.ca to verify that your application has been processed.


I was billed twice for my online DAT registration. How do I get a refund?

CDA monitors online transactions and will provide a refund directly to the same credit card account.


What is my DAT ID number?

Your DAT ID number is your unique ID number that must be used in all communication with the DAT Office. A new ID number will be assigned to you each time you register for the DAT.


Are standby or walk-in registrations permitted for the DAT?

There are absolutely no standbys or walk-ins permitted for the DAT.



Test Cancellation


If I choose not to take the DAT, can I get my registration fee refunded?

No. Registration fees are neither refundable nor transferable. You are required to complete a new registration and submit a fee for each exam.


How can I cancel my entire DAT registration?

DAT fees are not refundable nor transferable. To cancel your entire DAT after the registration deadline, simply do not show up for your DAT exam.

  • There is no need to send an email to the DAT Office
  • Your record will be cancelled after the DAT Exam date
  • No information is sent to dental schools regarding your cancellation or your no show

How can I cancel only my MDT portion?

DAT fees are not refundable nor transferable. To cancel your MDT portion of the DAT exam, simply do not show up for your MDT portion of the DAT.

  • There is no need to send an email to the DAT Office
  • Your record will be cancelled after the DAT Exam date
  • No information is sent to dental schools regarding your cancellation or your no-show

If I cancel my MDT or my entire DAT registration will you send any information to dental schools about my cancellation?

No information or scores are sent or provided to dental schools regarding your MDT cancellation or your entire DAT registration cancellation.


What are the DAT no show consequences?

DAT Fees are not refundable nor transferable.  By not showing up for (not attending) your scheduled DAT, your record will be cancelled after the DAT exam date and no information or scores are given or sent to dental schools.  No emails are required to be sent to DAT office if you choose to not attend the exam.  Please do not email the DAT Office the day of or before the test and expect a response.


If there are circumstances beyond my control that prevent me from taking the DAT, can I get a refund of my registration fee or transfer to another exam date?

No. Registration fees are neither refundable nor transferable.



Changes to applicant contact information


My address has changed since I registered for the DAT. How can I update my address?

Send an email to dat@cda-adc.ca with your new address. Remember to refer to your DAT ID Number. No phone calls, please.

Please report any change of address as soon as possible after you move.  If changes are not reported to the DAT office before the registration deadline, please email us your change of address after the DAT exam date.


My name has changed (or needs to be corrected) since I registered for the DAT. Can you correct it?

Send an email to dat@cda-adc.ca with your new or correct name. Remember to refer to your DAT ID Number. You must fax or email supporting documents, such as a marriage certificate or a court document, that indicate the name change, to the attention of the Dental Aptitude Test Program at 613-523-7736. No phone calls, please.



DAT Scores


When do I get my DAT scores?

The DAT score transcripts are available 8 weeks after the DAT is written.


How do I send transcripts of my DAT scores to dental schools?

When you register for a DAT exam, up to 5 official transcripts of your DAT scores are included in the DAT registration fee (and 1 personal copy). Applicants are advised to carefully select the schools that will receive their DAT scores at the time of registration. Applicants can choose to send official transcripts to any school of their choice.


How can I check to see which schools I selected to receive my DAT scores?

When registering for the DAT, or placing a DAT transcript request, please print a copy of your confirmation page to ensure that you have a record of which schools you requested to receive a copy of your DAT scores.

If you misplaced your DAT score confirmation page, you can request a new one. However, a fee will be charged for this service.



Modifying Dental Schools On Your List To Receive Your DAT Scores


When is the deadline to cancel the list of the selected schools that I have chosen to receive my DAT scores?

You have 5 business days after the DAT test date to send your cancellation email to the DAT Office.


How can I cancel some or all the schools from those I have chosen to receive my DAT scores?

To cancel schools that you have identified to receive your DAT transcripts (scores), you must:

  • Understand that there is no refund for any such cancellation
  • Send an email to the DAT Office dat@cda-adc.ca  once you are certain that you wish to proceed with cancelling your request to send your DAT scores to one or more schools
  • The subject heading of your email must include the phrase :    school cancellation of scores 
  • In this email you must clearly indicate and list all the schools that you had chosen that you no longer want to receive your DAT scores.

Can I switch the list of the schools I have chosen to receive my DAT scores?

No switching of schools list is permitted.  New schools must be added via the DAT website.  There is fee for each new school.  See the fee section for more details.


I am not applying to dental school this academic year. Will I still be able to order the 5 transcripts included with registration fees at a later date?

No, your registration fee entitles you to select 5 schools at time of registration only.  You can order transcripts later, however there are additional fees that apply.

The DAT registration fee includes one personal copy and up to 5 official transcripts of your DAT scores sent to dental schools of your choice, if the schools are selected during registration. If during registration you do not know which schools you plan to apply to, or are deferring application to dental school until another year, you can send your official DAT scores to the dental schools of your choice at a later time. There is an administration fee for each transcript you request.

There is no deadline to order additional transcripts. Transcripts and DAT scores are processed and shipped to dental schools on a regular basis. See the Transcript Fees section for more information.

For admission or transcript requirements, please contact dental schools directly.

There is no refund nor discount if you choose to not send a copy of your transcripts to any dental schools during registration.

Ordering DAT preparation material


Where can I order DAT study material?

You can order DAT preparation materials at any point during the year. Visit the Test Preparation page for information on DAT preparation materials and pricing.


How long will it take for my order to arrive?

DAT orders are shipped via Canada Post. Canada Post lists shipping times of 10 to 12 business days after receiving the request for shipments in Canada. All information on delivery times on this website are based on shipping to Canadian addresses only. Applicants should allow for extra time for deliveries to the United States or outside of North America. We cannot guarantee delivery times for shipments outside of Canada.

If you have allowed a reasonable amount of time and your order has not yet arrived, email the DAT Office with your complete mailing address and your full name exactly as entered during your DAT Registration.

There is an administration fee of $10.00 to resend returned DAT preparation materials. This fee will be charged to your credit card. The payment information (credit card number and its expiry date) must be sent by FAX ONLY (613-523-7736) to the DAT Office before the materials will be reshipped.

Special accommodations


Does the DAT provide special accommodations for individuals with disabilities?

Yes, please click here for more information.


If I am unable to take the DAT on a Saturday for religious reasons, what can I do?

Please click here for more information.

DAT testing day


What time do I need to show up for my DAT exam?

Your DAT Letter of Confirmation & Admittance provides you with the information about what time you should show up at your test centre.  Students are encouraged to arrive before the time indicated on their DAT Letter.


What items are allowed on my desk during the DAT examination?

DAT candidates may only have tissues, personal ID documents, Letter of Confirmation & Admittance and their MDT Tools box.  No electronic devices are permitted during the DAT examination.  For more information, please visit the DAT Test Day Regulations.



What are the rules and regulations during the test?

Please refer to DAT Test Day Regulations.