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J Dent Educ. 2019 Aug 12. pii: JDE.019.141. doi: 10.21815/JDE.019.141. [Epub ahead of print]

Examining the Case for Dental Hygienists' Teaching Predoctoral Dental Students: A Two-Part Study.

Author information

1
Yanira A. Owens, RDH, BS, MHA, is Clinical Instructor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Amy M. DeStaffany, RDH, BS, is Assistant Professor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Meghan E. Crow, RDH, BS, is Clinical Instructor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Lonnie R. Johnson, DDS, PhD, is Professor, Department of Surgical Dentistry and Senior Associate Dean for Clinics and Professional Practice, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Terri S. Tilliss, RDH, PhD, is Professor, Department of Orthodontics, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Rachel L. Johnson, BA, MS, is in the Department of Biostatistics and Analysis, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus; and Bryan K. McNair, MS, is in the Department of Biostatistics and Analysis, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus.
2
Yanira A. Owens, RDH, BS, MHA, is Clinical Instructor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Amy M. DeStaffany, RDH, BS, is Assistant Professor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Meghan E. Crow, RDH, BS, is Clinical Instructor, Department of Surgical Dentistry, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Lonnie R. Johnson, DDS, PhD, is Professor, Department of Surgical Dentistry and Senior Associate Dean for Clinics and Professional Practice, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Terri S. Tilliss, RDH, PhD, is Professor, Department of Orthodontics, University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine; Rachel L. Johnson, BA, MS, is in the Department of Biostatistics and Analysis, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus; and Bryan K. McNair, MS, is in the Department of Biostatistics and Analysis, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. amy.destaffany@cuanschutz.edu.

Abstract

Dental students in North American dental schools are exposed to faculty members with various professional backgrounds. These faculty members may include dentists, dental hygienists, and scientists without clinical dental credentials. The practice of dental hygienists' educating predoctoral dental students has not been well documented. The aims of this two-part study were to investigate the parameters of didactic, preclinical, and clinical instruction of dental students by dental hygienist faculty members in North American dental schools and to explore dental students' perceptions of this form of teaching. In part one, a survey was sent electronically to the clinical or academic affairs deans of all 76 American Dental Education Association (ADEA) member dental schools in 2017. Twenty-nine responded, for a 38.2% response rate. In 76% of the responding schools, dental hygienists were teaching dental students. Most respondents reported that, in their schools, the minimum degree required to teach didactically was a master's, while a bachelor's degree was required for preclinical and clinical courses. There was no significant association between dental hygienists' instructing dental students and having a dental hygiene educational program at the institution. In part two of the study, a questionnaire was completed by 102 graduating dental students (85% response rate) at one U.S. university to evaluate the impact of dental hygienist educators. Among the respondents, 87% reported feeling that dental hygienists were very effective educators. There were no significant differences in responses between traditional and advanced standing international dental students. This study found that dental hygienists were educating dental students in many North American dental schools and were doing so in curricular content beyond periodontics and that their educational contributions at a sample school were valued by the dental students there.

KEYWORDS:

curriculum; dental hygienists; faculty; predoctoral dental education; teaching

PMID:
31406006
DOI:
10.21815/JDE.019.141

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