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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 45-49

Introduction of problem-based learning in undergraduate dentistry program in Nepal

1 Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal
2 Department of Basic and Clinical Physiology, BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal
3 Public Health Dentistry, BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Jyotsna Rimal
Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, College of Dental Surgery, BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2229-516X.162276

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Context: Problem-based learning (PBL) is a methodology widely used in medical education and is growing in dental education. Initiation of new ideas and teaching methods requires a change in perception from faculty and institute management. Student-centered education is a need of the day and PBL provides the best outlet to it. Aim: To introduce PBL, assess feasibility and challenges in undergraduate dentistry program and evaluate the impact on their learning. Settings and Design: PBL was used as a teaching methodology on 37 students in 2 nd year BDS program. The PBL was duplicated as that of MBBS program. PBL was spread over 5 days. Pre- and post-test questions along with different questionnaires were designed for the students and tutors/faculty to be administered after PBL session. Subjects and Methods: Case with temporomandibular joint and muscles of mastication and occlusion was designed as a module with five triggers given to students who were divided into five groups over two tutorials facilitated by tutor. Resource sessions were held by involved departments (Oral Biology, Oral Pathology, Oral Medicine and Radiology, Orthodontics, and Oral Surgery). Students were allotted time for search, research and discover to search literature. Statistical Analysis Used: Descriptive statistics. Results: Pre and post-test comparison showed that the knowledge increased immensely following PBL sessions. Students' assessment by tutors following two PBL tutorials showed a mean score of 34.9 ± 4.01 and 35.5 ± 3.86, respectively. Students' feedback showed that most of them preferred PBL because they found it interactive, collaborative, goal and research oriented. Students were motivated to learn new topic because learning objectives were formulated by themselves and they developed self-directed learning skills. The tutors learned to design cases. Conclusions: PBL encouraged students to use more interactive methods of learning which possibly will make them lifelong learners.

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