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ADEA DHCAS Quick Start Guide and FAQs

What is ADEA DHCAS? 

ADEA DHCAS® (American Dental Education Association Dental Hygiene Centralized Application Service) simplifies the process of applying to dental hygiene programs. You start by selecting the programs you wish to apply to, then you submit one application that includes all necessary materials. Once received by ADEA DHCAS, your application and materials go through a verification process before being transmitted to all of your selected programs.

Start your 2021-2022 application.

How long does the application process take? 

It's important you apply as early as possible since completing your application can be a lengthy process, and since application processing times vary throughout the cycle. Below is a suggested timeline that includes key actions to keep the application process on track. This timeline may need to be adjusted based on your programs' deadlines and requirements. 


Key Actions

Prior to the Start of the Application Process

  1. Research programs you wish to apply to. Pay special attention to:
    • Cycle dates and deadline requirements. 
    • Application fees.
    • Evaluation requirements (these are also known as references or letters of recommendation). 
    • Minimum requirements, including prerequisites, standardized test scores, supplemental applications, foreign evaluations, etc. 
    • Transcript and coursework requirements. 
  2. Begin contacting potential evaluators to confirm their participation. 
  3. Review all information in this Help Center. 

At Least 3 Months Prior to Deadline

  1. Create your account and begin adding programs.
  2. Complete the Colleges Attended section, and review each program's transcript requirements. Some programs may require that you send official transcripts to ADEA DHCAS, some may require unofficial transcripts, and others might not require any transcripts.
  3. Review each program's Transcript Entry requirements. Some programs may require that you enter all of your coursework, some may require that you enter only prerequisite coursework, and others might not require that you enter any coursework. 
  4. If required by your programs, request your Evaluations in the Program Materials section. 

At Least 10-12 Weeks Prior to Deadline

  1. If required by your programs, ask your schools to send official transcripts directly to ADEA DHCAS (you may also need to request that transcripts be sent to you if a program requires that you enter your coursework). If there are any holds on your account at a school, resolve them now to avoid delays in sending transcripts. 
  2. If applicable, begin entering coursework into your application. 
  3. Check in with your evaluators to confirm that they received the evaluation request via email.

At Least 6-8 Weeks Prior to Deadline

  1. Complete and submit your application
  2. Review the verification process, if applicable. 
  3. Monitor your application for receipt of all required transcripts and letters of evaluation and follow up on any missing items.

At Least 4-6 Weeks Prior to Deadline

Continue monitoring your application. If your program requires that your coursework be verified, note the following:

Once all of your required application materials are received, your application's status changes to Complete, and your application is placed in line to be verified. Verifications occur in chronological order and can take up to 10 business days to complete. Once your application is verified, you will receive a notification and your application's status will change to Verified.

After Deadline

Download a copy of your application for your records. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Coursework, Transcripts, and GPAs Programs and Statuses Fees and Payments
Do I need to send transcripts?

Each program decides if you need to submit official or unofficial transcripts. Review each program's transcript requirements under Colleges Attended.


Where do I find the Transcript ID Form?

The Transcript ID Form is found in the Colleges Attended section, after you submit a college or university entry.


Should I send my high school transcripts?



My transfer credits are listed on my primary transcript. Do I still need to send all transcripts?

You must report all colleges and universities attended, even if your transfer credits are listed on your primary transcript. Review each program's transcript requirements under Colleges Attended.


How do I know what my primary institution is?

Your primary institution is the college or university where you earned or will earn your first undergraduate college degree.


Do I really have to enter all coursework?

Each program decides if you need to enter all coursework, prerequisites, or no coursework. Review each program's coursework requirements under Transcript Entry.


How do I list my repeated courses?

ADEA DHCAS considers a course to be repeated if you enrolled in the same course (with the same course title and prefix) again at the same college or university.

Report all attempts of repeated coursework (including those that are currently in-progress or planned) and be sure to mark them as repeated during Transcript Review. Enter the number of credit hours attempted for each course, regardless of how many credits were actually earned. 


Should I include foreign coursework in the Transcript Entry section?



Why is my ADEA DHCAS GPA different from the GPA on my transcripts?

If your program requires that your coursework be verified, the ADEA DHCAS GPAs factor in all coursework taken, regardless of the college or university and any academic forgiveness policies. See Calculating Your ADEA DHCAS GPAs for more information.


I don't agree with the GPA. How do I change it?

If your program requires that your coursework be verified, the ADEA DHCAS GPAs factor in all coursework taken, regardless of the college or university and any academic forgiveness policies. If after reviewing your calculated coursework you find an error with your GPA, review Disputing and Correcting ADEA DHCAS Course Subjects and GPAs.


How do I remove a program?

Your application must always have at least one program selected. To remove a program, click the checkmark next to the program name on the Add Program tab or click the trash icon on the Submit Application tab.


Can I apply to more programs after I submit my application?

Yes, if the program's deadline date has not yet passed and the application cycle is open.


Should I submit my application if I'm still waiting on transcripts and/or evaluations?

Yes. You can submit your application before your transcripts and/or evaluations are received by ADEA DHCAS.


Will ADEA DHCAS update me on the status of my application?

Your application status for each program is listed in the Check Status section of the application. ADEA DHCAS will notify you when official transcripts and evaluations are received, and when you are verified, if applicable.


When will I learn about admissions decisions? Did I get in!?

You must reach out to your program(s) to learn about a school's admissions decisions.


Is there any other way to pay other than by credit card?

We currently only accept payments by credit card: Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover.


I want a refund. What do I need to do?

Refunds are typically not given for any reason. Review Refunding/Withdrawing Your ADEA DHCAS Application for more information.



Do fee waivers expire?

If you qualified for and were awarded a ADEA DHCAS fee waiver, your fee waiver expires in 30 days, including weekends and holidays. See ADEA DHCAS Application Fees and Fee Waivers for more information.


Why don’t I see the option for a fee waiver?

ADEA DHCAS has a limited amount of fee waivers to award over a cycle. If you do not see the option to apply for a fee waiver, then all fee waivers have been awarded and none are left to be dispersed. 

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