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An evaluation of computer-aided learning in orthodontics

, University of Toronto , Canada

Master of Science, University of Toronto . Awarded


Introduction. Both objective and subjective outcomes have been widely documented in the literature, however to date, there does not appear to be a study that attempts to correlate these two outcome measures. Methods. The main objective outcome measured was performance on a written test covering material found in the ODET administered to 92 fourth year undergraduate dental students. The main subjective outcome measured was a 12 statement questionnaire to elicit students' perception of the ODET and CAL as teaching modalities. Results. When analyzing male and female subgroups, a statistically significant difference in mean lecture test scores favouring females (72.46%) over males (67.08%) was observed (p=0.05). Nevertheless, this difference was not observed for mean ODET test scores (p=0.52). Although responses to the questionnaire were for the most part positive, students are not prepared to replace lectures with CAL tutorials. Responses revealed that male students preferred self-instruction as a mode of learning more than female students did (p=0.05). When linking objective and subjective outcomes, mean ODET test scores demonstrated a statistically significant (p=0.025), but weak, positive correlation (r=0.243) with self-reported time spent reviewing the ODET but not with any other statement in the questionnaire. Conclusions. Despite a difference in lecture test scores between male and female students there was no difference in mean ODET test scores between the two subgroups which may be explained by gender differences with male students preferring self-instruction more so than female students did. Improved performance on the ODET test was noted for students that reported longer times spent reviewing the tutorial. Because students are not prepared to replace lectures with CAL tutorials, from their perspective the ODET should continue to be used in conjunction with traditional modes of learning.


Rosenberg, H. An evaluation of computer-aided learning in orthodontics. Master of Science thesis, University of Toronto. Retrieved October 26, 2021 from .

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