Kavyn, Popovych, Fedorak, Bilinskyi, Romaniuk, and Semeniv: Questioning of Dental Students as a Means of Internal Monitoring of the Educational Process at the Department of Clinical Anatomy and Operative Surgery



Introduction

Due to the gradual entry of Ukraine into both European economic and educational space which is based on national traditions and financial possibilities [2] of each particular country, our country continues to reform its higher medical education.

The goal of Ukrainian higher medical education is to train a doctor who would meet the required EU requirements and standards. A departure from the traditional methods of teaching students, changes and improvement of the educational process using modern innovative technologies, reorientation of students towards self-study and self-improvement are some priority directions of the credit-transfer system which Ukraine joined in 2005.

When starting the study in higher medical institution, dental students are directed to active and independent acquisition of theoretical and then practical knowledge that is a prerequisite for the development of clinical thinking and a key to successful diagnosis and treatment of patients.

The teacher, who, under new conditions, acts as a partner in the educational process, should promote the students’ desire to acquire knowledge as well as to be persistent; to develop the ability to make decisions quickly and independently as well as to direct their own motivation towards activity [6]. These qualities develop when students are engaged in a meaningful dialogue with their teacher, discuss and express their own opinions related to the solution of certain problems concerning the theme of practical lesson, affect the learning process, i.e. they act as a full partner of the educational process.

Questioning of students is one of the means of monitoring the educational process to improve its quality in higher medical institutions [1].

Results and Discussion

The Department of Clinical Anatomy and Operative Surgery had carried out a survey of 92 third-year dental students, before they completed the discipline “Operative Surgery and Topographic Anatomy”. Among the questions that were included in the survey, there were questions related to the organization of the educational process when studying the discipline, suggestions for improving practical classes and techniques of practical skill acquisition, the students’ preparation for self-study themes, the usage of consultation days by students. At the same time, we used a survey to assess the “survival of students’ knowledge” related to the studied topics. Despite the reduction in the study hours of the subject “Operative Surgery and Topographic Anatomy”, its important role has not been reduced. At this stage, the students encounter clinical material; in addition to theoretical training they master practical skills which will be subsequently used at clinical departments and in daily practice of a dentist. Modern dentist should diagnose emergencies, determine tactics for emergent medical care, provide emergency medical response based on knowledge of human anatomy based on educational qualification characteristics of a specialist according to the specialty 7.110106 “Dentistry” [3]. In daily practice, a dentist often uses the methods of bleeding arrest, suturing the wound, tying knots, conduction of local anesthesia.

The survey results showed that 80% of dental students support practical training at the Department of Clinical Anatomy and Operative Surgery. 41% of students indicated their mastering of practical skills; about 57% of students indicated that training at the Department of Clinical Anatomy and Operative Surgery helped them generalize their knowledge concerning the subject “Human Head and Neck”; about 1% of students indicated that the discipline “Operative Surgery and Topographic Anatomy” helped them master practical skills. One of the disadvantages when studying the discipline “Operative Surgery and Topographic Anatomy” was an excessive number of self-study themes, that was noticed by 37% of students and 23% of students indicated the overload of practical lessons with theoretical material. “During training, there was not enough time to master practical skills,” - noted 33% of students. Most dental students (90%) think that there were enough textbooks to prepare for practical classes. 40% of students prefer practical classes, which involved testing (the evaluation of the level of knowledge), recitation and practicing their skills on corpses. The combination of practical skills and practical skill videos, recitation and testing while carrying out practical class were positively estimated by 28% of students. “It is advisable to carry out practical class which consists of testing and mastering practical skills on corpses,” - noticed 14% of students. However, the experience showed that it is necessary to use modern methods of interactive teaching combined with innovative methods that will affect the development of effective self-realization, outside-the-box thinking, creativity of a student and then a dentist [5]. Under such circumstances, the student will not feel as an object of the educational process, but its subject, which increases the intrinsic motivation to learn [4]. Using a survey, we conducted a preliminary assessment of the “survival of knowledge”. The questionnaire survey included two questions and probable answers concerning the previous topics. The questions being not discussed with the students previously were randomly selected. The first question was about the mouth diaphragm, the second one was about the trago-orbital line. 62% of students answered the first question correctly and only 49% of students answered the second question correctly. These results appear to be deeply disturbing as dental students will pass “Krok”.

Refining of practical skills as well as their mastering is an integral part of the educational process at our department. For this purpose, all the necessary conditions are created. Dental students understand this indicating it in the questionnaire. Consultation days, reworking of missed practical classes, daily presence of teachers after working hours enable students to rework missed practical classes and master practical skills at the Department of Clinical Anatomy and Operative Surgery. However, according to the results of the survey, only 22% of students attended consultations, and 18% of students reworked the negative points during consultations. About 60% of students never attended consultations explaining that they had not enough time (68% of students) and the material was sufficiently covered in the lectures and textbooks (22% of students). 38% of students noticed that the number of lectures was insufficient, what is contrary to the previous opinion. While answering the question whether there were enough opportunities for mastering practical skills, most students (59%) gave an affirmative answer, as compared to 41% of students who consider that there was little time for mastering and practicing practical skills (although, most students did not fully use both consultation and reworking days).

The establishment of practical training centers that contribute to the realization of professionally motivated students’ activity is of particular importance [7]. Recently, such practical training center has been set up at our department; under the supervision of a teacher, dental students have an opportunity to work out the main stages of suturing the models as well as tying knots (simple, surgical and marine) adhering to the basic requirements for these procedures. Its main advantage is that each student can perform a practical skill independently. Each practical skill has an algorithm, following which dental student can work out the technique. 53% of students indicated that this model helps in working out their practical skills, and 39% of students noted that one of the advantages of this model is “self-working out of practical skills”. According to the authors [4], US scientists state that a student learns 75% to 90% of teaching material when working out practical skill or when he/she has an opportunity to immediately apply the acquired knowledge. Student groups, which often consist of 15 students as well as a large amount of self-study material make the learning process more difficult.

Conclusions

Despite the reform of higher medical education as well as the introduction of the credit-transfer system in the educational process there are still many unsolved issues. The educational process requires constant monitoring and one of the means of its controlling is student questioning. The questionnaire survey of dental students helps improve their training and learning clinical disciplines in the future.

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Copyright (c) 2017 Vasyl Kavyn, Yuriy Popovich, Volodymyr Fedorak, Ihor Bilinskuy, Stephan Romaniuk, Iryna Semeniv

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