In a bid to encourage teenagers to think about dentistry as a career, Sheffield University has launched the first course of its type online.
The course, which lasts six weeks, aims to encourage high school children to learn more about dentistry and its allied professions.
The university also believes that it will give students a better chance of gaining a place at dental school. Competition is generally quite fierce for places on undergraduate courses. Therefore, this kind of course could help students to decide a little earlier as to whether it is something they really want to do or just something they would like to try.
Recommending that young people take the free online course, Dr Stokes, who is the Discover Dentistry (massive open online courses) MOOC’s lead educator, said that providing such a course online will equip potential undergraduates better.
He also added that the course will have further reach beyond Britain. Many undergraduates these days perceive higher education in Britain to be better than their own country’s provision.
Gaining a place at a dental school is also not like that of other university subjects. Apart from a comprehensive interview, candidates undergo a Clinical Aptitude Test.
This particular test checks the individual’s mental abilities, attitudes and professional behaviour. Being a dentist or medical practitioner is not just about applying theory but is also about knowing how to deal with the general public.