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J Dent Educ. 2019 Mar;83(3):342-350. doi: 10.21815/JDE.019.026. Epub 2019 Jan 28.

Teaching and Learning in an Active Learning Classroom: A Mixed-Methods Empirical Cohort Study of Dental Hygiene Students.

Author information

1
Xiaoshan Z. Gordy, PhD, is Adjunct Faculty, School of Health-Related Professions, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Lei Zhang, PhD, is Director of Office of Health Data and Research, Mississippi State Department of Health, and Professor, School of Nursing, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Amy L. Sullivan, PhD, RDH, is Professor, School of Dentistry, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Jessica H. Bailey, PhD, RHIA, is Dean and Professor, School of Health-Related Professions, University of Mississippi Medical Center; and Elizabeth O. Carr, MDH, DHA, RDH, MAADH, is Associate Professor, School of Dentistry, University of Mississippi Medical Center. xgordy@umc.edu.
2
Xiaoshan Z. Gordy, PhD, is Adjunct Faculty, School of Health-Related Professions, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Lei Zhang, PhD, is Director of Office of Health Data and Research, Mississippi State Department of Health, and Professor, School of Nursing, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Amy L. Sullivan, PhD, RDH, is Professor, School of Dentistry, University of Mississippi Medical Center; Jessica H. Bailey, PhD, RHIA, is Dean and Professor, School of Health-Related Professions, University of Mississippi Medical Center; and Elizabeth O. Carr, MDH, DHA, RDH, MAADH, is Associate Professor, School of Dentistry, University of Mississippi Medical Center.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to discover how an active learning classroom (ALC) influenced the teaching and learning of dental radiology with dental hygiene students through a mixed-methods approach. A year-long observation of a dental hygiene professor who was teaching two consecutive courses in an ALC was conducted in 2015-16. Nineteen classes were recorded and transcribed, and observational notes on classroom activities were taken. Towards the end of the academic year, the professor was interviewed with use of a 13-question guide, and the students were surveyed with a 25-question survey. Moreover, five-year grades in the same two courses, including four-year historical grades earned in the traditional classrooms (TCs) and one year from the ALC, were collected along with demographic and prior academic performance data. Thirty-two of the 38 students responded to the survey, for a response rate of 84%. The results showed that 63% of the students preferred to take classes in the ALC rather than TC. They especially enjoyed the ALC's spaciousness, mobility, unobstructed views, and ease of information-sharing and engagement in class. However, the ALC presented both the faculty and students with sensory and technique challenges. The analysis of students' grades suggested that GPA was one of the strongest predictors for both courses' final grades in the TCs but had weaker predicting significance in the ALC setting. Overall, the majority of students enjoyed taking classes in the ALC due to its physical charm and dynamic collaboration. Sensory and technique challenges coexisted with benefits.

KEYWORDS:

active learning; active learning classroom; allied dental education; dental hygiene education; dental hygiene students; e-learning; educational methodology; educational technology; information-sharing

PMID:
30692191
DOI:
10.21815/JDE.019.026
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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