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The Undergraduate preparation of dentists: Confidence levels of final year dental students at the School of Dentistry in Cardiff

Gilmour, Alan, Welply, Angharad, Cowpe, Jonathan, Bullock, Alison Deborah ORCID: and Jones, Rhiannon Jayne 2016. The Undergraduate preparation of dentists: Confidence levels of final year dental students at the School of Dentistry in Cardiff. British Dental Journal 221 (6) , pp. 349-354. 10.1038/sj.bdj.2016.686

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Objective To investigate the self-reported confidence and preparedness of final year undergraduate students in undertaking a range of clinical procedures. Methods A questionnaire was distributed to final year dental students at Cardiff University, six months prior to graduation. Respondents rated their confidence in undertaking 39 clinical procedures using a 5-point scale (1 = can undertake on own with confidence, 5 = unable to undertake). Students also responded yes/no to experiencing four difficulties and to three statements about general preparedness. Results 71% (N = 51) responded of which 55% (N = 28) were female. Over half reported being 'anxious that the supervisor was not helping enough' (57%) and 'relying heavily on supervisor for help' (53%). Eighty percent 'felt unprepared for the clinical work presented' and gender differences were most notable here (male: 65% N = 33; females: 93% N = 47). Mean confidence scores were calculated for each clinical procedure (1 = lowest; 5 = highest). Confidence was highest in performing 'simple scale' and 'fissure sealant' (mean-score = 5). Lowest scores were reported for 'surgical extractions involving a flap (mean-score = 2.28)', 'simple surgical procedures' (mean-score = 2.58) and the 'design/fit/adjustment of orthodontic appliances' (mean-score = 2.88). Conclusions As expected complex procedures that were least practised scored the lowest in overall mean confidence. Gender differences were noted in self-reported confidence for carrying out treatment unsupervised and feeling unprepared for clinical work.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Cardiff Unit for Research and Evaluation in Medical and Dental Education (CUREMeDE)
Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: R Medicine > RK Dentistry
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 0007-0610
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 15 September 2016
Date of Acceptance: 25 July 2016
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2023 14:54

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