Assuring quality

Eaton, K. A.; Reynolds, P. A.; Mason, R. and Cardell, R. (2008). Assuring quality. British Dental Journal, 205(3) pp. 145–150.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.bdj.2008.662

Abstract

- This paper considers how the quality of higher education in general, and dental education in particular, is assessed.

-It then considers how the principles of quality assurance have been applied to dental distance learning.

-It concludes that, to date, it appears that relatively little work has been done to formulate quality guidelines for e-learning in dentistry.

All those involved in education have a strong motivation to ensure that all its aspects, including content and teaching practice, are of the highest standard. This paper describes how agencies such as the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) and the General Dental Council (GDC) have established frameworks and specifications to monitor the quality of education provided in dental schools and other institutes that provide education and training for dentists and dental care professionals (DCPs). It then considers quality issues in programme and course development, techniques for assessing the quality of education, including content and presentation, and the role of students. It goes on to review the work that has been done in developing quality assessment for distance learning in dentistry. It concludes that, to date, much of the work on quality applies to education as a whole and that the assessment of the quality of e-learning in dentistry is in its infancy.

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