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Human disease/clinical medical sciences in dentistry: Current state and future development of undergraduate assessments in the UK and Ireland

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Philip A. Atkin, Amanda Willis, Clare Doncahie, Ross O.C. Elledge, Steven J. Thomas, Richeal Ni Riordain, Sheila Galvin, Clare Marney, Jane F. Setterfield, Peter M. Smith, Douglas Hammond

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)442-448
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Dental Education
Issue number3
Accepted/In press1 Jan 2020
Published1 Aug 2020

King's Authors


Introduction: The United Kingdom and Ireland teachers of Human Disease/Clinical Medical Science for Dentistry (HD/CMSD) group continue to work together and most recently collaborated to review current and future assessments. Materials and methods: The first part of the review of assessments in HD/CMSD took place at a face-to-face meeting with presentations from delegates on assessments in their home institutions. The second and larger part comprised an online survey where all eighteen schools in the UK and Ireland participated. Results: All schools had some element of formative assessment, and the majority had a stand-alone summative assessment at the end of the HD/CMSD teaching block. Most schools had a written paper and practical elements to their assessments, most commonly a combination of a multiple-choice type question combined with an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE). There was a trend towards the use of single best answer (SBA) questions and a willingness amongst participants to share a question bank. All schools incorporated elements of HD/CMSD in their final examinations. Discussion and Conclusion: This collaboration promoted the sharing of developments in assessment for HD/CMSD and demonstrated a willingness to cooperate between institutions. Assessment in HD/CMSD in the UK and Ireland continues to be refined by those responsible for its content and delivery, and assessment methods are progressing following evidence-based best practice.

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