This study evaluated the usage habits, attitudes, and perceptions of undergraduate
dental students toward distance (online) learning and identified variables related
to those attitudes.
Materials and Methods
The study included 1,605 undergraduate dental students who participated
voluntarily. The data collection tool consisted of a distance learning attitude
scale, a questionnaire on personal information, and open-ended questions. The
perceptions of dental students to distance education according to the year and
type of dental school they attended were evaluated.
Most students expressed that distance learning in dental courses was not as
effective as traditional face-to-face education (59.1%, n=949). While students
studying at state universities had a more negative view of distance education, the
satisfaction scores of the first-year students were found to be significantly lower
than the other students (p < 0.05).
Dental students were generally unhappy with the interruption of traditional
education caused by COVID-19 and having to continue their education online.
However, under the circumstances, they saw it as an advantage allowing them to
continue their education and avoid a complete suspension.
Keywords: COVID-19, survey, distance education, online education, undergraduate