Is it worth studying dentistry abroad

Studied dentistry in Eastern Europe

Sina - a participant in the student advisory service at planZ explains how she applied to study medicine in Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Latvia, what was important to her when choosing the university and the location and how she can process her applications and the admission has prepared and experienced tests.

I'm Sina, I come from Berlin and I graduated from high school with 2.4 in 2014. Even in high school I wanted to study dentistry. I knew the NC was high, of course, but thought that would be it. After graduating from high school, I first traveled through Australia for a year: Work and Travel! This was the opportunity for me to rethink my career aspirations in order to come back home with the perfect solution. It turned out, however, that in Australia you have much better things to do than worry about the future ...

And so I came back in the summer of 2015 and faced the same problem as before. It was the third time that I had applied for dentistry - without success. I slowly realized that there was some truth to the rumors about the endless waiting for a medical college place.

In autumn I started a Voluntary Ecological Year in the Natural History Museum to gain time to think. I found out about the study advisory service planZ through friends and decided to go to a study advisory service based on aptitude diagnosis in order to perhaps find a few alternatives to dentistry. My study advisor recommended a couple of very exciting courses to me and showed me another option that I hadn't thought about yet: studying dentistry abroad.

At first I still had doubts, but in the end I decided to go abroad: I definitely didn't want to wait any longer and study anything else either! With the help of my study advisor, I looked for the various English and German-language dental courses in Eastern Europe that I wanted to apply for: My choice fell on the German-language courses in

  • Pécs (Hungary) and
  • Budapest (Hungary)

and the English-speaking in

  • Riga (Latvia),
  • Wroclaw (Poland),
  • Szczecin (Poland),
  • Brno (Czech Republic),
  • Pilsen (Czech Republic) and
  • Bratislava (Slovakia).

You can find the links to the universities at the bottom of this page!

When I made my choice, the amount of the tuition fees, the accessibility of the university from Berlin and the selection criteria of the universities were important for me.

In my opinion, eight universities are enough for the application! Because the whole application procedure is very time-consuming and energy-intensive:

So I had to run from office to office to get all the certificates and notifications. There was also the TOEFL, an English certificate that some universities want. As a preparation, I took a community college course and saw and read films and books in English and ultimately passed the TOEFL well. Riga Stradins University wanted a letter of motivation and two letters of recommendation from my teachers. That turned out to be a bit difficult as the letters have to be in English of course and my teachers hadn't written anything like that yet. And then I also had to prepare for the entrance tests at some universities.

In order to devote myself to all of this, I broke off my FÖJ in the spring to have time for the application and the test preparation. My study advisor recommended a tutor to me, with whom I worked through my deficits in bio, chemistry and physics. I voted out physics in tenth grade and chemistry in eleventh grade! So I was faced with quite a hole that I had to fill within a few weeks. I really had to hang in there from morning to evening.

At the beginning of June there was the first test for them Masaryk University in Brno at. College Contact organizes a test in Münster every year, which was really useful for me. To prepare, I also looked at the tests of the last few years on the Internet and was totally desperate: I had first worked through the material in German, because it was important to me to understand everything in such a short time. The test was of course entirely in English, which made many of the questions very complicated and incomprehensible.
On the day of the test, around 30 other applicants sat in the room with me. In addition to bio and chemistry, you could choose between math or physics as part of the exam. A nice university employee from Brno told us something about the university and answered a few questions, then we had three hours to take the test. There was no official break in between and I personally made full use of all three hours. But some were finished much earlier (or just didn't know what to do next ...)
The test wasn't easy. It is particularly worthwhile to work through the old test questions in bio, as some of them are reused. Chemistry goes very deep, but I was well prepared through the tutoring. With a lot of luck, I slipped through physics - at least I managed to answer 60% of the questions correctly. You need at least that to pass the test. And so a few days later I held my promise from Brno in my hand: A great feeling! I could hardly believe that I could get my place at university so quickly!

For the second test I had to go to the Charles University to Pilsen drive. Overall, the test day was similar, although there were significantly more international applicants. The Germans were nevertheless in the majority, which may be due to the fact that Pilsen is very close to the border. Before the test, our passports were checked and then some instructions about the test were given.
The test in Pilsen was a little longer than that at Masaryk University and there was a break after each test section. In the end, pretty much the same subject areas are examined. In each of the three subject areas you have to answer 50% of the questions correctly in order to pass. Of course, I was much more hardened than the first time and came through again!

The third and final test for me was in Bratislava at the Comenius University. For this purpose, you could buy a questionnaire with 500 questions each on chemistry and biology over the Internet. I highly recommend this book because in the end the test is based on these questions. I didn't believe it and instead tried to work out all the topics from the questions, which of course was way too much! The test went similarly to the others. However, we had to hand in our bags at the entrance and were given a pen and calculator. I failed the test in Bratislava because I hadn't memorized the questions one on one. I would argue that this test is the easiest to pass with the right approach.
I received further commitments from Riga Riga Stradinš University and from Breslau from the Wroclaw Medical University - only the two German-speaking universities in Hungary did not want to offer me a place to study. Now I was faced with the next problem: which university should I choose? That was one of the hardest decisions ever because it is a decision for the next 5 years!

My student advisor put me in touch with students who were already studying at the universities I wanted. I contacted them by email and Facebook. That was extremely helpful and motivating: We received only positive feedback from everyone and I received a lot of tips and advice on starting my studies. I then drove to the various cities that I had not yet seen through one of the tests and took a closer look at the city and university. In the end I chose Szczecin. As a Berliner, the reasons lay with me, especially the proximity and easy accessibility. But also because Szczecin should offer very, very good dental training in Poland and the tuition fees are comparatively low.

As promised, here are the links to the universities to which I have applied:

The booklet plan Zukunft - the magazine: ZAHN- UND HUMANMEDIZINER (ISBN 978-3-946620-00-6) offers a great overview of tuition fees, living costs, accessibility and safety at the various university locations for studying medicine abroad. You can order the volume at ⇒ this link or simply buy it in bookshops.

I also want you guys Facebook group Medical studies in Eastern Europe recommend. There you can get to know people who are already studying and who network, for example, for the joint preparation of entrance tests, etc.
⇒ to the Facebook group