Texas Woman's University
Leslie Koberna, RDH, M.P.H./H.S.A., Associate Clinical Professor at Texas Woman's University's Dental Hygiene program, surveyed dental hygiene faculty across the United States to determine perceptions and use of online instruction.
Preliminary results found that dental hygiene faculty participants who had more knowledge of online instruction, were more confident in their ability to teach online, or felt online instruction was important were more likely to use online instruction.
Participants were also asked about barriers and incentives to teaching online. Participants who were more confident in their ability to teach online indicated there were fewer barriers to teaching online, as did non-tenure-track faculty when compared with tenure-track faculty. Faculty who felt online instruction was important perceived more incentives for teaching online than faculty who did not feel online instruction was important.
Prof. Koberna said, "It is not surprising that dental hygiene faculty who are ADEA members have higher incentive scores and were more likely to teach online than faculty who were not ADEA members." She will publish the survey results as part of a dissertation titled "Factors Predictive of Online Usage of Dental Hygiene Faculty in the United States."
Three hundred and fifty first-year students from the College of Health Professions at Pacific University Oregon participated in a 2009-10 interdisciplinary course on the developing professional. Students from the dental hygiene, physicians assistant, pharmacy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, professional psychology, and healthcare administration programs participated. They formed cross-disciplinary teams and focused on leadership and professionalism, team-building skills, diversity, and community resources.
The experience taught the students cooperation amidst conflict and differing personalities, and they gained insight into other health disciplines. The experience included community volunteerism, where each team gave at least four hours of time. As the teams progressed through the volunteer effort, they created a poster to reflect understanding and integration of the four subject areas. This helped each member of the teams appreciate the value he or she brought to the group.
Beginning in June, Pacific University Oregon will offer students an interdisciplinary program in a diabetes clinic, teaching diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis from the view of total health.