Document Type : Original Article
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Medicine, School of Dentistry, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Medicine, School of Dentistry, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran
Background: Internet-based e-learning has become one of the dominant approaches in educational systems. The aim of the present study was to examine the effect of the blended learning approach compared with the conventional method in dental education (oral diagnosis course) during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Method: The present experimental study was conducted in 2020. A total of 76 (n=76) fourth-year general dentistry students from the school of dentistry of Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences (AJUMS) participated in the study. All students had chosen the Oral Diseases and Diagnosis course (Practical course 1). The students were divided into two equal groups (group A, Group B, n=38) according to age, sex and grade point average. Teaching in Group A was conducted traditionally in a physical learning environment. Students in Group B received theoretical topics in the form of offline-online education and practiced clinical skills (like group A) in the clinical settings. The posttest intervention was conducted immediately and one month after the educational program. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 26.
Results: The mean test score of students (immediately and one month after the educational program) via the traditional instruction method was lower than the blended instructional method (p<0.001). The mean score of students in both groups in the one month follow up exam decreased significantly compared with the immediate posttest exam (p<0.01).
Conclusion: Blended learning with the educational benefits of online learning and face-to-face learning has the greatest impact on the immediate and long-term academic achievement compared to traditional learning.