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Unformatted text preview: August 2004 Journal of Dental Education 867 Equivalence Study of a Dental Anatomy Computer-Assisted Learning Program Russell E. Bogacki, D.D.S., M.S.; Al Best, Ph.D.; Louis M. Abbey, D.M.D., M.S. Abstract: Tooth Morphology is a computer-assisted learning program designed to teach the anatomy of the adult dentition. The purpose of this study was to test whether Tooth Morphology could teach dental anatomy to first-year dental students as well as the traditional lecture. A randomized controlled trial was performed with forty-five first-year dental students. The students were randomly assigned to either the Tooth Morphology group (n=23), which used the computer-assisted learning program and did not attend lecture, or the lecture group (n=22), which attended the traditional lecture and did not use Tooth Morphology . The Tooth Morphology group had a final exam average of 90.0 (standard deviation=5.2), and the lecture group had a final exam average of 90.9 (sd=5.3). Analysis showed that the two groups scores were statistically equivalent (p<0.05), with a priori equivalence bounds around the difference between the groups set at +/-5 points. It was concluded that Tooth Morphology taught the anatomy of the adult dentition as well as traditional lecture, as measured by exams. Based on the results of this study and student feedback, Tooth Morphology , in combination with interactive class meetings, has replaced the traditional dental anatomy lectures. Dr. Bogacki is Assistant Professor, Department of General Practice, School of Dentistry; Dr. Best is Associate Professor, Department of Biostatistics, School of Medicine; and Dr. Abbey is Professor, Department of Oral Pathology, School of Den- tistryall at Virginia Commonwealth University. Direct correspondence and requests for reprints to Dr. Russell E. Bogacki, 520 North 12 th Street, P.O. Box 980566, Richmond, VA 23298-0566; 804-828-2977 phone; 804-828-3159 fax; email@example.com. The Instructional Development Center of Virginia Commonwealth University provided support for supplies for this project. Key words: dental education, randomized controlled trial, computer-assisted instruction, morphology Submitted for publication 2/5/03; accepted 6/6/04 D ental anatomy at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) has been taught in the past using traditional lectures, with the fac- ulty showing slides and describing the anatomical features of each tooth. The traditional lecture was acceptable, but there were problems that sometimes resulted in frustration for both students and faculty. Student evaluations reflected boredom. Each ana- tomical feature was reviewed in detail, and since the goal was for the student to memorize the anatomy of each tooth, very little creative thought was required....
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