The fear of letting go and the Ivory Tower of dental educational training

Journal of dental education(2023)

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Abstract
IssueClinical training in dental education is complex and happens mostly within a well-controlled environment such as a university dental clinic where oral health care services are delivered; it is mostly student-centered. While such training is important, it is also possible to augment and enhance it by training predoctoral dental students outside such a clinic within off-site community-based placements using a more person-centered approach. However, there seems to exist a reluctance in recognizing and utilizing the work produced in these off-site placements holistically as an integral part of students' clinical assessment. ApproachCommunity-based clinical experience adds value to the training of our predoctoral dental students. This perspective describes the benefits of community placements and recognizes their importance in the clinical and professional development of a future graduate. It also presents a way to assess students' performance that by-and-large mirrors that of the university dental clinic while striking a balance between student-centered education and person-centered care. ImpactIn this perspective, we argue that the clinical work delivered at a community placement ought to be weighted equitably with the clinical work delivered at a university clinic when assessing students' competency as a whole. Our message is to keep a balance of student-centered education and person-centered care to the benefit of all those involved.
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Key words
fear,training,ivory tower
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