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Saudi dental students’ opinions on the qualities and attributes of an effective dental teacher

Authors Al-Jobair A, Al-Sarheed M

Received 20 May 2016

Accepted for publication 26 July 2016

Published 23 September 2016 Volume 2016:7 Pages 533—539

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/AMEP.S113212

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Amy Norman

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Anwarul Azim Majumder


Asma M Al-Jobair, Maha A AlSarheed

Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, College of Dentistry, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


Objective: To evaluate Saudi dental students’ opinions on the qualities and attributes of an effective dental teacher.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted between March and May 2014 at the College of Dentistry, King Saud University. Self-administered questionnaires were distributed to all students enrolled in the 2013/2014 academic year. The questionnaire contained 43 items regarding students’ opinions on the qualities and attributes of a good dental teacher. The attributes were grouped into two main categories: performance and personality. Mean and standard deviations were calculated for each item and then for the whole category. Performance and personality were compared between male and female students and between junior and senior students using Mann–Whitney U test.
Results: Four hundred and seventy-seven questionnaires were completed, representing a response rate of 79%. Performance attributes were significantly more important than personality attributes to Saudi dental students (P<0.001). Perceptions of performance and personality attributes did not differ between male and female students; however, junior students put more emphasis on personality attributes than senior students.
Conclusion: Saudi dental students consider performance attributes more important than personality attributes for their successful learning. Teachers’ educational skills are valued more than the attributes, which do not connect directly to students’ learning process.

Keywords: perceptions, dental students, characteristics, dental teacher

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