How to integrate Manual Dexterity in your Personal Statement?

STEPS to integrating manual dexterity into your Dental School application!

Displaying your ability to make coordinated hand, eye and finger movements is integral for stepping your application up a notch, after all, Dentistry is an art!

1. Get creative. Ask yourself ‘what do I do to show I am artistic?’ Brainstorm ideas, and if you are struggling to think of something, you still have time and there is so much out there!

Playing a musical instrument, or dancing, which requires intricate hand movements, training in a martial art which requires highly controlled movements, even building models or knitting, can all be considered! These and many more can display your ability to use your hands and develop your skills further at dental school.

2. Start preparation early. Do not leave things till last minute. During your free time, practise so that you can eventually document what you have been doing

3. Build up your evidence. You could take pictures, make a portfolio, or gather references- essentially prepare your own work to showcase at a panel interview, just in case!

4. In your personal statement, you could mention manual dexterity with how it relates to Dentistry and why you have the ability to develop these skills further. Make sure you can talk about everything you mention in your personal statement!

5. At the interview, if you are given the opportunity, mention your skills and take in evidence to show them what you have done. This may help create conversation and enable you to stand out to other students.

For example, for interviews I would take a ceramic crown I made in a restorative lab and kept it in a little box in my pocket! In the other pocket I kept an example of the artificial flowers I make. For panel interviews, I also carried an A4 sized portfolio to show any references and key certificates from playing the piano, doing karate and carrying out intricate henna designs.

6. The main thing is that you present what you are passionate about and display that you can use your hands, your skill set doesn’t have to be anything extravagant! We go to dental school to develop the skills further however they want to see we have the foundations to do so. It is also a good conversation topic and an opportunity to show off anything which you are enthusiastic about!

This piece has been written by Shivani Kotecha. You can find her on Instagram @shivani_kotxcha.

This piece was reviewed by Dr Pooja Devani, @step2med.

As always, please do not hesitate to email us for advice on hello@step2med.co.uk

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