Educational Research: Studies of Teaching / Learning Methods
The goal of this paper is to stimulate discussion within the dental education community concerning teaching / learning strategies employed during the initial injection experience for dental students. To gather information about approaches to teaching local anesthesia injection technique, we developed a survey that requested information from United States (U.S.) dental schools about the local anesthetic didactic curriculum and the students’ actual experiences during initial injection “practice”. The core question driving this research was: what are the risks versus benefits of having students inject each other during their initial learning experiences. Findings from the local anesthesia training survey are reviewed, and then alternative approaches for local anesthesia injection training are described.
The purpose of this presentation is to review the available evidence (as of 2005) supporting best practices for helping dental students acquire the knowledge and skills needed to function as entry-level general dentists upon graduation, with focus on strategies for “teaching with the student’s brain in mind.” The presentation addresses: evidence for best practices for teaching in the classroom, in the clinic, and in the laboratory; effectiveness of online learning and other types of computer-based instruction; and effectiveness of small group and collaborative learning. Although the presentation focuses on teaching and learning in the dental school environment, the principles and reviewed evidence likely apply to other health professions education programs.
In this presentation, we’ll consider the grant reviewer’s perspectives and priorities. We’ll start with an examination of the grant reviewers’ world and explore the factors that frame their approach to the review process. Next, we’ll discuss how to produce a “reviewer-friendly” proposal that helps reviewers do their job efficiently, focusing on six characteristics of grants that are guaranteed to annoy reviewers, and thus, must be avoided. Then we’ll review several assumptions about reviewer behavior that grant writers should keep in mind, based on the fact that you are competing for the reviewer’s attention – you cannot assume that you automatically have their full attention. Writers must earn it with clear, concise and compelling writing. The presentation concludes with a brief review of other, more fundamental, reasons why grant applications receive low scores, in addition to substandard written communication of the research plan.
This manual provides an overview of the fundamental steps and processes in writing grant applications, with focus on avoiding common errors, or "Red Flags" that minimize the chances of an application being strongly considered for funding. The grant writer's goals in each component of the application are emphasized and examples are provided to illustrate key writing and organizational techniques. The manual is a principle learning resource used in a 2-3 day workshop on "Writing Grant Applications" conducted by the author.
Dental students' clinical learning is dictated by patients' needs. Thus, not all students have identical educational experiences. Even routine treatment can require different approaches depending on concurrent dental problems, patients' health status, or unexpected complications. No curriculum can expose students to all treatment alternatives when issues arise. Consequently, mechanisms to facilitate students' learning from the collective experiences of their classmates can augment their clinical acumen. The aim of this pilot study was to investigate a blended learning experience consisting of a website on which third-and fourth-year students posted and discussed PowerPoint presentations depicting patient treatment and weekly seminars in which students and faculty discussed posted cases to retrospectively assess treatment decisions. All 49 students in two of the school's general practice groups (23 fourth-year and 26 third-year students) in academic year 2011-12 participated, using a PowerPoint template to create cases to share with their peers. The students completed the Clinical Education Instructional Quality Inventory (Clin-EdIQ) before and after the case-sharing experience. The results showed statistically significant pre-to posttest increases on the four ClinEdIQ dimensions: overall clinical learning experience, specific learning opportunities, interaction among students and instructors, and collaborative learning. These students also reported that the online case-sharing and follow-up seminars were a valuable educational experience. However, students not involved in case-sharing had similar pre to post ClinEdIQ score changes. The results suggest that online case-sharing supported by case analysis seminars facilitated exchange of clinical insight among students and instructors, but may not have altered students' perceptions of the clinical learning environment.
The effects of four different endodontic self-instructional review formats (slide-tape, latent-image simulation, computer text simulation and computer-assisted video interactive simulation) on senior dental students' clinical endodontic performance was compared. A senior class of 105 students at one U.S. dental school was divided into eight groups of 13-14 academically equivalent students prior to initiating endodontic treatment in the 1985-86 academic year. With the exception of a control group, each group participated in a program to review principles of endodontic diagnosis and treatment using one of the four review formats. All clinical endodontic cases were subsequently critiqued by a calibrated panel of two general dentists and one endodontist. Overall, students in the study group (i.e., participated in some form of endodontic review) made fewer diagnostic errors compared to the control group, while the errors in treatment were not significantly different between study and control groups. No significant difference in errors was noted among groups of students using the four different simulation formats. Student evaluations, as well as comparative developmental expenditures for the simulations types, are discussed.
This paper explains the differences between qualitative and qualitative research and describes potential applications of qualitative techniques to knowledge gaps in health services delivery, provider behaviors and education of future health care professionals. A process for identifying research questions that can be addressed by qualitative techniques using WHIF questions (What Would Happen If) is demonstrated.
Education of nonscientists by scientists is assumed to be beneficial for enhancing public understanding of the research process and increasing public excitement about science. However, evaluation of audience response to receiving such information has rarely been performed. In particular, the effectiveness of communicating new research on alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence has never been evaluated. Evaluation data in the present study show significant knowledge transfer, belief changes, and participant reports of possible behavioral changes in targeted audiences. These occur when alcohol researchers present basic neuropharmacological concepts and new neurobiological research to audiences consisting primarily of chemical dependency counselors, social workers, criminal justice workers, physicians, nurses, family, clergy, and others interested in alcohol-related problems (defined as "clinicians" and the "reachable public"). Together, these results suggest that it is possible to change the beliefs, knowledge, and behavior of chemical dependency clinicians and the reachable public about alcoholism, its causes, and its treatment.
Seven PharmD residents at a U.S. university participated in a study to determine if providing feedback to instructors improves the quality of subsequent lecture presentations. METHOD: Each resident presented a lecture in the Fall Semester and then immediately participated in a two-hour feedback session consisting of an objective critique, guided by a rating scale (rubric), by a trained observer (educational specialist), viewing a videotape of the lecture with the observer making comments and completing a self-assessment form. Each residents then presented the same lecture in the Spring Semester 100 - 154 days later but had opportunity to make improvements based on the feedback. Before critique (Fall) and after critique (Spring) lectures were videotaped and evaluated by three educational psychologists using a standardized critique form. RESULTS: The residents demonstrated statistically significant improvement in lecture skills between Fall and Spring presentations. They reduced organizational and delivery problems by over 60 percent from Fall to Spring presentations. CONCLUSION: Focused feedback including observer consultation, videotape review and self-assessment can enhance lecture skills.
Computer-Based Instruction (CBI) has been gaining increasing popularity in the health professions and especially in dental education, but its development is seldom problem-free. This paper describes a longitudinal study of endodontic simulations for senior dental students which employ latent image, computer-assisted video interactive (CAVI), and computer text instruction (CTI). Particular attention is devoted to developmental problems, use of time and manpower, and student performance on and reaction to the pilot test. Preliminary results of the pilot testing demonstrate favorable student performance on the computer-based mode, as well as an enthusiastic acceptance of this format. Future directions and goals of the study are discussed.