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Unit information: Personal and Professional Development Year 3 in 2020/21

Unit name Personal and Professional Development Year 3
Unit code ORDS30006
Credit points 10
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Dr. Waylen
Open unit status Not open




School/department Bristol Dental School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences


Dentistry requires practical clinical skill and expertise; it is also involves building rapport and communicating effectively with patients and colleagues, together with acting in an ethical and professional manner. In order to practice evidence-based dentistry, all dentists need to understand the principles of good research.

The unit is comprised of the following 3 elements:

  1. The Dentist in Society Year 3
  2. Critical Appraisal Projects
  3. Portfolio Year 3

The Unit aims to build on the previous years’ teaching of The Dentist in Society and to provide students with training in critical appraisal.

Intended learning outcomes

The Dentist in Society

By the end of the Dentist in Society unit students will:

  1. Have added to their understanding of the psychology of dentistry, specifically child development and the perception and impact of pain
  2. Have had continued opportunities to learn about and apply principles of evidence- and population-based approaches towards the provision of oral health care and clinical and professional practice with particular respect to health promotion and policy.
  3. Have continued to learn about the ethical and legal perspectives in the provision of oral health care
  4. Continued to build their communication skills by learning about written forms of communication relevant to dental practice
  5. Considered the application of professional behaviour to the use of social media

Critical Appraisal Projects

By the end of the Critical Appraisal Project students will be able to:

  1. Source recent journal articles in a research field, assess their relevance and extract the most relevant material in a new, possibly unfamiliar subject area
  2. Carefully read and critique a specific research paper, illustrating that you are able to evaluate the work in the context of the research field
  3. Evaluate their own work and that of others, recognising strengths and areas for improvement
  4. Demonstrate skills in scientific writing, integrating information and knowledge provided by different individuals in the team and from different sources
  5. Illustrate skills in project management, such as prioritising information and activities and working to deadlines


By the end of the Portfolio element students will:

  1. Be able to explain the different methods of learning and teaching available for reflective practice
  2. Appreciate the importance of assessment, feedback and critical reflection in dental practice
  3. Identify their learning needs and the role of appraisal in personal development planning

This unit contributes to delivery and assessment of the following General Dental Council learning outcomes as specified in Preparing for Practice:

Q1 / Q2 / Q4 / Q5 / Q6 / Q7

1.1: 1.1.1 / 1.1.13

1.2: 1.2.1 / 1.2.5

1:5: 1.5.3 / 1.5.4

1.7: 1.7.1 / 1.7.2 / 1.7.4

1.8: 1.8.8

1.9: 1.9.4

1.10: 1.10.1 / 1.10.2 / 1.10.7

1.13: 1.13.5

2: 2.1 / 2.2 / 2.3 / 2.4

3: 3.1 / 3.2 / 3.3 / 3.4

4: 4.1 / 4.2 / 4.3 / 4.4

5: 5.1 / 5.3 / 5.4 / 5.5

6: 6.1 / 6.2 / 6.3 / 6.4 / 6.5

7: 7.1 / 7.2 / 7.3 / 7.4 / 7.5

8: 8.2 / 8.3

9: 9.1 / 9.2 / 9.3 / 9.4 / 9.6 / 9.7

10: 10.1 / 10.2 / 10.3 / 10.4 / 10.5 / 10.6 / 10.7 / 10.8

11: 11.1 / 11.2 / 11.3 / 11.4 / 11.5 / 11.7 / 11.8 / 11.9

12: 12.1 / 12.3 / 12.5

Teaching details

Teaching will use a blended learning approach delivered through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous activities. Students will be expected to engage with all learning.

1. The Dentist in Society: * 11 lectures including guest lecturers

2. Critical Appraisal Projects:

  • Three lectures
  • one e-tutorial
  • Two small group tutorials

3. Portfolio: * No contact time required. e-resources are provided.

Assessment Details

1. The Dentist in Society Element:

Formative assessment: online self- assessment (required reading) and self-assessment questions at the end of lectures
Summative assessment (60% of the Unit mark): open-book course assignment; case based scenario with 3 guided questions, max word limit 1500. Questions will be based around the learning within the different components of Dentist in Society.

The pass mark for this assignment is 50%. Students who fail this assignment will be asked to resubmit, taking into consideration the markers feedback. Resubmitted Dentist in Society assignment will be capped at 50%

2. Critical Appraisal Projects (CAP):

Formative assessment: critical appraisal assignment assessed by tutor and peers    Summative assessment (40% of the Unit Mark): Element breakdown of marks are an oral presentation to staff and peers (40%) and written assignment (60%).

The pass mark for the CAP is 50%. Students who fails the CAP overall OR do not achieve 45% or more for either the oral presentation or the written assignment will be asked to re-sit one or both of the components that were failed. A resit for the CAP written assignment must be submitted within 4 academic weeks. The candidate must rewrite their original assignment. A re-sit of the oral presentation will involve a 10-minute presentation to two members of staff and answering questions on the paper presented. The student will present an evaluation of the same research paper.

After passing any resit, the marks for the Element as a whole will be capped at 50%.

3. Portfolio - must pass

(Communication skills to be assessed in Year 3 OSCE)

Reading and References

The Dentist in Society:

  1. Daly B, Batchelor P, Treasure E, Watt RG. Essential Dental Public Health. 2nd ed. Oxford University Press; 2013. ISBN:9780199679379.
  2. Pine C. Community Oral Health. Butterworth Heinemann; 1996. ISBN:9780192632791.
  3. Patel M, Patel N. Dental Public Health: A Primer. Radcliffe Publishing Ltd; 2006. ISBN:9781857756470.
  4. Brennan M, Oliver R, Harvey B, Jones G. Ethics and Law for the Dental Team. Knutsford, PasTest; 2006. ISBN:9781446201886.
  5. Scambler S, Scott SE, Asimakopoulou K. Sociology & Psychology for the Dental Team. Bristol: Polity Press. 2016.

Critical Appraisal Projects:

  1. Greenhalgh T. How to read a paper. Getting your bearings (deciding what the paper is about). BMJ 1997; 26: 315(7102): 243-6.
  2. Greenhalgh T. Assessing the methodological quality of published papers. BMJ 1997; 2: 315(7103): 305-8.