Comparison of the effect of e-learning compared with face-to-face learning in diagnosis of oral diseases among dental students during COVID-19 outbreak

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Medicine, School of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran

2 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Medicine, School of Dentistry, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran


Background: After the COVID-19 outbreak, most education systems have adopted online learning as alternatives to face-to-face learning. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect of e-learning compared with face-to-face learning in diagnosing oral diseases among dental students.
Method: The present experimental study was conducted in 2020 at the Faculty of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences. A total of 54 dental students (11th semester) who have not yet taken or passed the practical diagnostics course 3 participated in the study. The participants were divided into two groups of A (traditional teaching method) and B (e-learning teaching method). In the first week after the completion of training, a test was taken to assess the immediate learning. At the end of one month, the groups were tested again. Finally, the students' scores in both tests were analyzed. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 26.
Results: The mean scores of the two groups in the first test were not significantly different. The mean score of traditional and electronic methods in the second exam was higher than the first exam (p <0.001). The mean score of the combination of traditional and e-learning methods was more than e-learning alone. (p <0.01).
Conclusions: Traditional or electronic education can support student learning; however, e-learning alone cannot compensate for traditional learning. Successful learning can be achieved through the combination of traditional learning and e-learning (blended model). E-learning can be used as a complementary method to face-to-face learning.


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