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ERIC Number: ED551056
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 219
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2676-8095-2
Dental Hygienists' Perceptions of Preparedness for Clinical Practice: A Phenomenological Study
Cantrell, Lezlie M.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
The purpose of this phenomenological study was to identify, compile, and describe how community college graduate dental hygienists perceived their initial dental hygiene curriculum preparation and how they subsequently adapted their curriculum preparation in order to perform their responsibilities in their first clinical dental hygiene job. Individual interviews with eight recently graduated and licensed dental hygienists were conducted using open-ended questions designed to facilitate dialogue, and to gain a perspective that was noticeably lacking in the dental literature. The dental hygienists' perceptions of preparedness to enter clinical dental hygiene practice were overall positive. All co-researchers acknowledged the roles experience, feedback, and reflection played in contributing to the technical skill preparation of their dental hygiene training. However, the dental hygienists also identified perceptions of the dental hygiene school experience including the modification of communication skills and critical thinking skills that influenced a negative perception of preparedness for clinical dental hygiene practice. Personal growth in the identified form of self-advocacy, patient advocacy, formulation of personal philosophy, and adapting to a team concept were made based on experiences influenced by positive and negative role-models. While the co-researchers did not verbalize the process of utilizing feedback and reflection as components in their decision making process, they did demonstrate its utilization, supporting the need for a theoretical framework within the dental hygiene curriculum. The Dreyfus model of skill acquisition and the Adult Learning Theory, the framework of this study, both advocate implementing learning experiences with open dialogue that encourages critical thinking skill development that complements learner needs, learning styles, and desired learner outcomes. The use of a model, such as the Dreyfus model within the learning environment, provides the learners experience in the use of positive strategies that can transfer to clinical dental hygiene practice for the education of dental patients. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A