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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 47-48

Quality management in dental education

1 Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Sciences, College of Dentistry, King Khalid University, Abha, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
2 Professor and Dean, RAK College of Dental Sciences, Ras Al Khaimah Medical and Health Sciences University, Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates

Date of Web Publication16-Jun-2016

Correspondence Address:
Mohammed Nadeem Ahmed Bijle
Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Sciences, College of Dentistry, King Khalid University, Abha
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2348-2915.184214

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How to cite this article:
Bijle MN, Rahman MM. Quality management in dental education. J Dent Res Rev 2016;3:47-8

How to cite this URL:
Bijle MN, Rahman MM. Quality management in dental education. J Dent Res Rev [serial online] 2016 [cited 2023 Mar 27];3:47-8. Available from: https://www.jdrr.org/text.asp?2016/3/2/47/184214

Quality and quantity are measurable instruments used in diversified aspects of science to define objects significant property. Quantity defines the magnitude of an object by specifically applicable measurements, whereas quality is the conformation of the essential characteristics as per the listed specifications for a particular object. Objects can be described as tangible and intangible depending on the core properties that it possesses. One of the intangible objects which play a vital part in today's era is education. Education sphere in recent times has gained projectile importance in human society. Due to its ever-widening popularity, the society demands continuous improvement in the field for successful sustenance. When we quote of continuous improvement, it specifies the efficacy with which the specifications listed has matched in the direction of deliverables. Dental education being a part of education sphere is nowhere different from the appetite of the society. Thus, education in dentistry also requires a model for continuous assessment and thereby development marking the significance of “Survival of the Fittest.”

Dental sciences have two major aspects mainly – Clinics and Academics. Both the aspects are inter-rated to each other and cannot be regarded as separate entities unless classified on career aspect which demands specialty. Dental academics are concerned with the development, administration, provision, and maintenance of taught and dental research edification. Thus, the stakeholders in the subfield increase many folds, thereby increasing the levels of demand and supply. Satisfying the need of all the stakeholders depends upon what has been specified to be provided. In instances, whereby the provisions are not met leads to a kind of imbalance in the entire system. A third eye should usually look around for the deficit in the provisions and intimate accordingly. The inclusion of the third party becomes necessary to exclude bias from the deficit identification process. Providing information and management of such a services at a primary level in dentistry being dental education would help professionals to employ the same later in their respective careers that they wish to pursue. Such a system can lead to evaluation, improvement, and maintenance on a continuous basis making the fraternity self-compatible over the coming years. This system is referred to broadly as quality control or management. In reference to the dental field, it can be regarded as quality management in dentistry.

The trend in dentistry both clinics and education is moving toward the solicitation of quality approvals and regulations in recent times. Clinical extent – its upstream or downstream sections – has enormous bodies to follow regulations and gain approvals for respective quality certifications apart from the regular government norms and standards. However, dental education section is slightly special on this aspect since a quality certification is only available from a government organization regulating the system. This applies to both government and private bodies which appear to be an exclusion in the clinical sector. The bodies known for such purposes to name a few are Commission on Dental Accreditation, USA; National Commission Academic Accreditation and Assessment, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, UAE; and National Assessment and Accreditation Council, India. There are a few accessory bodies also that play part in assessment and accreditation system in education sector namely International Organization for Standardization and American National Standard Institutes but with minimal impact. The major significance still lies with the government organizations which regulate the industry.

The quality in dental education also needs to be focused on evidence-based oral health care performance and professional accountability. Limited diagnostic data and collection of data for benchmarks are still challengeable. Effectiveness of dental institution can be evaluated using certain benchmarks such as student satisfaction on dental program, satisfaction rate of graduating students in clinical training, patient satisfaction on dental care, and employer satisfaction.

There are few basic philosophies laid by quality management leaders on the basis, of which such assessment and accreditation systems run. Maxwell's concept of quality, Donabedian's quality concept, W. Edwards Deming philosophy of quality, Ishikawa total quality control concept are to name a few. Although every system has a novel approach in itself, the basis of approach belongs to the philosophies listed. Finally, the flow in quality is practiced under the following heads on a general note: assessment, certification, accreditation, licensing, and supervision based on respective indicators in the system being assessed.

Thus, a need for understanding the basis and application of quality control or management seems to be uprising and demanding. The application irrespective of the field will form the future and mark its importance in resulting decades. Hence, the prevailing era requests inception of imparting quality management aspects in dental education.


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