Reaching Consensus on Essential Biomedical Science Learning Objectives in a Dental Curriculum.

Abstract

This article describes how the University of British Columbia Faculty of Dentistry reached consensus on essential basic biomedical science objectives for DMD students and applied the information to the renewal of its DMD curriculum. The Delphi Method was used to build consensus among dental faculty members and students regarding the relevance of over 1,500 existing biomedical science objectives. Volunteer panels of at least three faculty members (a basic scientist, a general dentist, and a dental specialist) and a fourth-year dental student were formed for each of 13 biomedical courses in the first two years of the program. Panel members worked independently and anonymously, rating each course objective as "need to know," "nice to know," "irrelevant," or "don't know." Panel members were advised after each round which objectives had not yet achieved a 75% consensus and were asked to reconsider their ratings. After a maximum of three rounds to reach consensus, a second group of faculty experts reviewed and refined the results to establish the biomedical science objectives for the renewed curriculum. There was consensus on 46% of the learning objectives after round one, 80% after round two, and 95% after round three. The second expert group addressed any remaining objectives as part of its review process. Only 47% of previous biomedical science course objectives were judged to be essential or "need to know" for the general dentist. The consensus reached by participants in the Delphi Method panels and a second group of faculty experts led to a streamlined, better integrated DMD curriculum to prepare graduates for future practice.

Cite this paper

@article{Best2016ReachingCO, title={Reaching Consensus on Essential Biomedical Science Learning Objectives in a Dental Curriculum.}, author={Leandra Best and Joanne N Walton and J Malcolm Walker and Hsingchi von Bergmann}, journal={Journal of dental education}, year={2016}, volume={80 4}, pages={422-9} }