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, 22 (2), 115-121

Implementation of a Digital Preparation Validation Tool in Dental Skills Laboratory Training


Implementation of a Digital Preparation Validation Tool in Dental Skills Laboratory Training

A Kozarovska et al. Eur J Dent Educ.


Aim: To describe the implementation of a digital tool for preparation validation and evaluate it as an aid in students' self-assessment.

Methods: Students at the final semester of skills laboratory training were asked to use a digital preparation validation tool (PVT) when performing two different tasks; preparation of crowns for teeth 11 and 21. The students were divided into two groups. Group A self-assessed and scanned all three attempts at 21 ("prep-and-scan"). Group B self-assessed all attempts chose the best one and scanned it ("best-of-three"). The situation was reversed for 11. The students assessed five parameters of the preparation and marked them as approved (A) or failed (F). These marks were compared with the information from the PVT. The students also completed a questionnaire. Each question was rated from 1 to 5. Teachers' opinions were collected at staff meetings throughout the project.

Results: Most students in the "prep-and-scan" groups showed an increase in agreement between their self-assessment and the information from the PVT, whereas students in the "best-of-three" groups showed lower levels of agreement. All students rated the PVT positively. Most strongly agreed that the tool was helpful in developing skills (mean 4.15), easy to use (mean 4.23) and that it added benefits in comparison to existing assessment tools (mean 4.05). They did not however, fully agree that the tool is time efficient (mean 2.55), and they did not consider it a substitute for verbal teacher feedback. Teachers' feedback suggested advantages of the tool in the form of ease of use, visual aid and increasing interest and motivation during skills laboratory training however, they did not notice a reduction in need of verbal feedback.

Conclusions: Within the limitations of the study, our conclusion is that a digital PVT may be a valuable adjunct to other assessment tools in skills laboratory training.

Keywords: dental education; preclinical; preparation validation; self-assessment; skills laboratory; virtual reality.

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