Document Type


Original Publication Date


Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Dental Education





First Page


Last Page



This project was supported by Virginia Commonwealth University’s A.D. Williams Student Research Fellowship and Center for Teaching Excellence Small Grant Project and the American Dental Association Education Foundation’s Program to Stimulate Innovation in Dental Education

Date of Submission

March 2015


Lack of curricular time, faculty time, and funding are potential limitations for communication skills training in dentistry. Interdisciplinary collaboration amongst health care faculties could address these limitations. This article describes the development, implementation, and student perceptions of a communication skills program in dentistry. The program has four components: Knowledge, Observation, Simulation, and Experience (KOSE) and spans over the second and third years of dental school. KOSE allows students to obtain knowledge of and observe effective communication skills and practice these skills in the simulated and nonsimulated environment. A key feature of KOSE is the utilization of fourth-year medical and dental students as peer teachers. Evaluation of KOSE was geared toward student perceptions. Cross-sectional data were gathered via written surveys from 143 learners (second- and third-year dental students) in 2006–07. Students perceived the ability to recognize effective communication, demonstrated awareness of their communication strengths and weaknesses, and reported that skills gained were transferable to actual patient care. Interdisciplinary collaboration was a feasible way to address the lack of resources in the development of a communications skills program, which was perceived to be worthwhile by learners.


Reprinted by permission of Journal of Dental Education, Volume 72, 2 (February 2008). Copyright 2008 by the American Dental Education Association.

Is Part Of

VCU Periodontics Publications