Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:

  • Explain why the oral health practitioner needs to know how to judge the quality of a research report.
  • State why the oral health practitioner should know when the research report was published.
  • Explain why the oral health practitioner should know where the research report was published.
  • State why the oral health practitioner should review the qualifications of the authors.
  • Explain why it is important to evaluate whether the purpose is clearly stated.
  • Explain why it is important to evaluate whether the experimental design is clearly described and appropriate.
  • Explain why the oral health practitioner should evaluate whether all possible influences on the findings are identified and controls instituted.
  • Explain why the oral health practitioner should determine if the sample is appropriate with regard to the number and characteristics of the subjects.
  • Discuss why the oral health practitioner should determine if the reliability of the scoring has been assessed.
  • Describe some of the considerations in deciding whether comparisons between groups are appropriate.
  • Describe some of the considerations in deciding whether the investigation is of sufficient duration.
  • Explain why it is important to know if the statistical analysis is appropriate to answer the research questions or hypotheses.
  • Describe how the oral health practitioner determines if the research questions or hypotheses were answered.
  • Explain the importance of evaluating whether the interpretations and conclusions logically follow the experimental findings and to what population the findings may be generalized.
  • Determine the basis for adopting new therapy or products in clinical practice.