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Post-qualification dental training. Part 1: perceptions of different dental foundation and dental core training pathways


Introduction Upon completion of dental foundation training (DFT), a number of dental graduates apply for further training known as dental core training (DCT). Alternatively, there are two-year integrated training pathways within both primary and secondary care; known as longitudinal dental foundation training (LDFT). There is a lack of evidence supporting LDFT and how this compares to DFT and DCT.

Aim To explore perceptions and experiences of three post-qualification dental training pathways (DFT, DFT+DCT1, LDFT) and understand how this training prepares trainees for independent clinical practice and their future career.

Method A qualitative study, employing a 'grounded theory' approach. Theoretical sampling was carried out until data saturation was achieved; 36 individual in-depth semi-structured interviews of trainees and supervisors were conducted. Data analysis was iterative and inductive. The development of codes and generation of sub-themes resulted in major themes grounded within the data of participants.

Results Seven major themes were generated: training pathway choice, skill development, career development, identity, team, setting and training programme.

Conclusion The first part of this short series provides an understanding of perceptions of the different training pathways and factors considered when choosing a training pathway; in particular the impact of the recruitment process, peer opinion and service pressures.

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The authors wish to thank all participants who contributed towards this project.

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Correspondence to Alexandra J. Coleman.

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This study was funded by Health Education England.

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J. Coleman, A., M. Finn, G. Post-qualification dental training. Part 1: perceptions of different dental foundation and dental core training pathways. Br Dent J 227, 915–921 (2019).

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