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J Dent Educ. 2018 Dec;82(12):1265-1272. doi: 10.21815/JDE.018.132.

A Long-Term Follow-Up Study of Former Dental School Teaching Assistants: Are They Teaching After Graduation?

Author information

1
Maureen McAndrew, DDS, MSEd, is Clinical Professor and Senior Director, Office of Professional Development, New York University College of Dentistry; Oksana Nad is a fourth-year dental student, New York University College of Dentistry. mm154@nyu.edu.
2
Maureen McAndrew, DDS, MSEd, is Clinical Professor and Senior Director, Office of Professional Development, New York University College of Dentistry; Oksana Nad is a fourth-year dental student, New York University College of Dentistry.

Abstract

There has been growth in teaching opportunities for dental students over the past two decades, but little research on whether these experiences have led to actual positions in academia. The aims of this study were to determine whether former teaching assistants at New York University College of Dentistry continued in dental academia after graduation or intended to teach during their careers and to assess their reasons for or for not teaching. Of the 294 former teaching assistants who taught their peers from 2003 to 2014, 106 responded to a survey, for a response rate of 36%. Of the respondents, 28% reported having teaching appointments, with 7% (n=8) having full-time teaching appointments and 21% (n=22) having part-time teaching appointments in a dental school or hospital-based program at some point after graduation. The most common reasons given for teaching were "intellectual stimulation" and "enjoyment" followed by "interactions with students." The most reported reason for not teaching was "student loan debt," followed by "too busy building private practice," "limited teaching opportunities in area," and "family commitments." Significantly, 95% of these former teaching assistants either taught or intended to teach during their careers, and they were six times less likely to rule out future teaching than dental school seniors in national surveys. These findings suggest that participating in teaching opportunities in dental school plants the seed for future teaching. More follow-up studies should be undertaken to see which types of teaching assistant programs are more successful in creating long-term teaching commitments.

KEYWORDS:

academic careers; dental education; dental faculty; educational preparation; faculty recruitment; faculty retention; peer teaching; peer tutoring; teaching assistant

PMID:
30504463
DOI:
10.21815/JDE.018.132

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