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International Dental Journal of Student Research

Near-peer Facilitated Learning in a Dental School: A Student Reflection

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Author Details: Gregory D. Luk, Mary H. Glasheen, Ryan L. Quock

Volume : 4

Issue : 2

Online ISSN : 2278-3784

Print ISSN : 2394-708X

Article First Page : 60

Article End Page : 65


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the value of initial student near-peer directed study sessions for a dental school biomedical science core course.
Methods: A standardized pre-post questionnaire was administered prior to and immediately after the designated block of study sessions to collect subjective, experiential participant response to near-peer study sessions. Comparison analysis of participants’ final grades in the course selected for coverage in near-peer study sessions was retrospectively performed.
Results: 17% of first year dental students voluntarily participated in the near-peer study sessions. Frequency of participation in the study sessions seemed inversely related to student confidence levels and grade achievement in the biomedical science core course.
Conclusions: Near-peer led study sessions in a dental school are valuable to students who enter dental school with low confidence in their pre-dental educational preparation. Survey instruments that gauge student confidence levels at baseline may be predictive of student need for near-peer or other additional learning opportunities.

Key Words: 
Basic sciences; Critical thinking; Dental school; Near-peer