Dental students like case-based OMR course

A case-based, team-based oral and maxillofacial radiology (OMR) learning model at the University of Missouri-Kansas City is yielding positive results, according to a study in the Journal of Dental Education.

In the study, researchers from the School of Dentistry described the process of transitioning from a traditional face-to-face OMR lecture course to a case-based, team-based learning model for students ready to enter their fourth year (JDE, March 1, 2012, Vol. 76:3, pp. 330-337).

Data were collected from 294 new fourth-year students (classes of 2009, 2010, and 2011) who participated in the new OMR course. At the time the course was taken, students had completed one year of clinical experience in taking and evaluating radiographic images on patients with various clinical conditions.

Each class of approximately 100 students was divided into 10 teams of 10 each and assigned a topic on oral and maxillofacial lesions. The teams researched their assigned topics, created PowerPoint presentations, and posted them on the course management system Blackboard.

The instructor then posted eight to 10 cases representing various lesions on that topic along with minimal clinical history. Students reviewed the teams' PowerPoint presentations and the cases, answered the questions for each case, and turned in written assignments to be graded. The diagnoses were discussed in class.

An end-of-course survey found that 71% of the students felt the case-based instruction helped them learn the content in a more comprehensive manner and 77% felt the in-class discussion increased their knowledge of radiographic interpretation. National Board Dental Examination results for the classes of 2009 and 2010 showed slight improvement when compared to national scores.

As a result of student feedback, the course continues to be offered in the case-based, team-based format, the research team noted.

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