Dental students' perceptions of self-efficacy and cultural competence with school-based programs

David Gundersen, Pradeep Bhagavatula, Jessica E Pruszynski, Christopher Okunseri
Journal of Dental Education 2012, 76 (9): 1175-82
This study explored perceptions of first-year dental students' self-efficacy, cultural competence, and intent to provide care in school-based settings before and after the completion of an oral health educational rotation with inner-city public school children. The oral health educational rotation is mandatory for all first-year dental students at Marquette University School of Dentistry (MUSoD). Pre- and post-rotation surveys on perceptions of self-efficacy, cultural competence, and intent to provide care in school-based settings were administered online to first-year dental students at MUSoD. The pre- and post-rotation survey response rates were 75 percent and 70 percent, respectively. The percentages of students reporting a dentist as a family member in the pre and post surveys were 36.7 percent and 39.3 percent, respectively. Students who reported having a dentist as a family member had significantly higher adjusted odds for self-efficacy (1.73, CI: 1.06-2.84) and cultural competence (2.03, 95 percent CI: 1.03-4.00). Dental students' participation in a mandatory oral health education rotation was associated with an increase in self-efficacy and cultural competence, but not with their intent to provide dental care in school-based settings.

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