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1. Collaborate with VCU Dental Hygiene Program faculty to develop and evaluate a model of evidence-based practice (EBP) for students in didactic and clinical settings.
2. Describe how a course was modified to emphasize evidence-based practice.
3. Analyze course evaluations and student scholarly output.
Dental educators strive to develop graduates who practice evidence-based practice and whose clinical decisions are based on current scientific research. A medical librarian was invited to assist in integrating EBP into the dentistry curriculum in 2012. To gain a better understanding of EBP in dental settings, the librarian and dental hygiene faculty attended the Forsyth ADA Evidence-Based Dentistry training in Boston, Massachusetts that same year. The collaborators revised a course to take students through the mechanics of EBP, including demonstrating transfer into the clinic setting and developing a model of real-time information retrieval useful after graduation in the “real world.”
In didactic activities, students received instruction on information retrieval as well as critical appraisal skills to answer clinical questions, reinforcing the EBP model. This culminated in students creating improved literature reviews for capstone projects, posters and table clinic presentations, stronger clinical information retrieval skills, and increased publications in refereed professional journals. Interaction between students, the librarian and faculty resulted in positive outcomes in EBP concepts used for generation of decision making in clinic as well as peer presentations in local, regional and national settings.
The collaborative effort was valuable as it strengthened the relationship between dental hygiene faculty, students and the librarian. Additionally, students’ experience was enhanced as they practiced retrieval strategies and critical appraisal of research literature. This enabled them to develop as “consumers” of current professional research literature, model evidence-based practice and publish their writing in professional journals.
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VCU Libraries Faculty and Staff Presentations