Trends in Basic Sciences Education in Dental Schools, 1999-2016

Marilyn Lantz
2017 Journal of Dental Education  
The purpose of this study was to examine data published over the past two decades to identify trends in the basic sciences curriculum in dental education, provide an analysis of those trends, and compare them with trends in the basic sciences curriculum in medical education. Data published from the American Dental Association (ADA) Surveys of Dental Education, American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Surveys of Dental School Seniors, and two additional surveys were examined. In large part,
more » ... urvey data collected focused on the structure, content, and instructional strategies used in dental education: what was taught and how. Great variability was noted in the total clock hours of instruction and the clock hours of basic sciences instruction reported by dental schools. Moreover, the participation of medical schools in the basic sciences education of dental students appears to have decreased dramatically over the past decade. Although modest progress has been made in implementing some of the curriculum changes recommended in the 1995 Institute of Medicine report such as integrated basic and clinical sciences curricula, adoption of active learning methods, and closer engagement with medical and other health professions education programs, educational effectiveness studies needed to generate data to support evidence-based approaches to curriculum reform are lacking. Overall, trends in the basic sciences curriculum in medical education were similar to those for dental education. Potential drivers of curriculum change were identified, as was recent work in other fields that should encourage reconsideration of dentistry's approach to basic sciences education.
doi:10.21815/jde.017.008 pmid:28765456 fatcat:expuqgkusvebpjplu5bomrn6v4