John D.B. Featherstone, M.Sc., Ph.D., Dean of the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), School of
Dentistry is now leading a new
CAMBRA-themed massive open online course (MOOC) on
Coursera, offering dental professionals and non-professionals alike access to the “scientific basis for caries
(dental decay) risk assessment and practice interventions,” according to the website. “You will immediately be able
to apply ‘caries management by risk assessment’ (CAMBRA) into your clinical setting, or into your personal health
The course, launching in August 2013, is one of the first such offerings concerned with dentistry and oral health
science and practice. It will consist of lecture videos, containing integrated quiz questions for review, and
additional features to prepare the learner to practice CAMBRA. Students will be asked to participate in discussion
forums and use their forum posts as the basis for peer-reviewed writing assignments. A final examination will be
provided at the end of the course.
The course is free. Certificates of Completion are available for a small fee, as well as 12 units of UCSF
Continuing Dental Education credits for dental professionals, also available for a fee, with registration.
A dental background is ideal, but not required. Organizers believe the course will be of interest to all
clinicians who have a basic understanding of oral health and disease, and the significance of oral health
“I hope to greatly expand awareness and understanding of CAMBRA and its application through Coursera, and to
engage learners at all levels through interactivity and active participation. It’s exciting to be pioneering what may
prove to be a tool for exponentially increasing access to dental and oral health knowledge, and the UCSF School of
Dentistry has the expertise and experience to provide that knowledge authoritatively,” says Dr. Featherstone.