Program Goals and Competencies
The Department of Dental Hygiene, an educational program in
the College of Health Profession at the University of Arkansas for
Medical Sciences, derives its purposes and functions from the established
missions of the University and the College.
The mission of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences is to provide
excellent educational opportunities for students of the health care professions
in a stimulating environment of basic and clinical research, integrated with the
delivery of superb, comprehensive health care services. This four-pronged
mission, which includes education, service, research, and patient care, is
echoed in the mission of the College of Health Professions. The College
offers education opportunities for students to prepare them as graduates to be
effective and competent allied health professionals who can provide quality
health care. Additionally, the College is committed to community and
professional service, patient care, and research in a
quest to address the health and health care educational needs of the state, and
the sharing of this information with the scientific community.
The mission of the Department of Dental Hygiene is to provide high
quality educational opportunities for qualified students to prepare them as
graduates to assume and maintain the role of ethical, competent, and progressive
professional practitioners. We are committed to providing a curriculum that
facilitates instructional strategies that enhance student learning and provides
graduates a learning environment that fosters a commitment to scientific
inquiry, life-long learning, community service, and professional development.
Additionally, we are dedicated to addressing the oral health care needs of the
community by providing quality patient care, promoting community and
professional oral health education through service activities, and contributing
to the research base in order to advance the art and science of dental hygiene
and the dental hygiene profession.
The faculty are committed to creating an educational environment that is
conducive to the development of dental hygiene professionals who are
self-directed and who are capable of critical thinking, problem solving, and
responsible decision making. The dental hygiene program promotes an educational
environment that is positive and supportive and is characterized by mutual
respect among students, faculty, clients, and staff. The primary role of the
student within this educational environment is to acquire the knowledge, skills,
and professional characteristics needed for planning, implementing, and
evaluating dental hygiene treatment. The patient/client must be informed,
actively involved in treatment, and provided opportunities for comprehensive
dental care. The role of the faculty is to provide the translation and linkages
of theory to clinical practice. The faculty will provide guidance,
role-modeling, information, and positive feedback. The faculty will encourage
student self-assessment and will also evaluate the process involved in
performing clinical skills as well as the final outcome of dental hygiene
Program Goals and Competencies
The following dental hygiene
program goals reflect the mission of the University and College. Reflected in
the curriculum, the program competencies support the attainment of the program
Goal 1 (Education)
Through appropriate didactic and clinical education, the dental hygiene program
will prepare graduates with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to be competent
and qualified dental professionals.
Dental hygiene program will:
educational program sufficient in scope and depth to prepare graduates
for competent professional practice.
expertise and current educational methodologies to provide quality and
contemporary didactic and clinical dental hygiene education through a
positive environment that leads to maximized learning as well as
professional and ethical development.
Goal 2 (Patient Care)
Dental hygiene graduates will possess the clinical skills
and knowledge fundamental to providing high quality dental hygiene care to
diverse populations in an ethical and professional manner.
Dental hygiene graduates will:
Provide contemporary and quality dental hygiene care for
patients with a variety of oral health needs using the four phases of
assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation as described below:
Assessment - Systematic collection and analysis of data to identify
needs and oral health problems to include assessment of the general and
oral health of the patient via review of medical/dental histories, vital
signs, extra/intra-oral examinations, periodontal assessment, dental
charting, radiographs, indices, risk assessments, and consultations
Planning - Establishment of realistic patient care goals and
strategies to facilitate delivery of appropriate treatment to include
dental hygiene diagnosis, interpretation of radiographs, treatment
planning, case presentation, informed consent, emergency preparedness,
individualized oral hygiene instructions, and supportive care.
Implementation - Provision of the treatment as identified in the
assessment and planning phases to include infection control, periodontal debridement and scaling, pain control management, application of
chemotherapeutic agents, fluoride therapy, application of pit and
fissure sealants, coronal polishing, care of oral prostheses, care of
fixed and removal appliances, study models, nutritional counseling, and
oral hygiene instructions.
Evaluation - Measurement of the extent to which goals identified in
the planning phase were achieved and modify as needed. This includes
periodontal reevaluation, indices, subsequent treatment needs,
periodontal maintenance, referral, and patient satisfaction.
Demonstrate professional ethics and appropriate conduct
as established by the American Dental Hygienists? Association.
Comply with state and federal laws governing the practice
of dentistry and dental hygiene.
Goal 3 (Professional Service)
Dental hygiene graduates will promote oral health as an
integral part of the health and welfare of the community through involvement in
oral health care programs and activities for diverse populations.
Dental hygiene graduates will:
|Respond to the
evolving oral health care needs of a racially and culturally diverse
society by demonstrating a sense of commitment to the community.
implement, and evaluate community-based oral health care programs
including health promotion and disease prevention activities.
and support service activities and affiliations with organizations that
advance the mission of the University, College, and profession.
Goal 4 (Life-Long Learning and Scientific Activity)
Dental hygiene graduates and faculty will value the
profession through career growth and development and commitment to life-long
Dental hygiene graduates and faculty will:
|Assume responsibility for evidence-based decision making
and life-long learning.
|Participate in professional organizations and advance the
profession through leadership and service activities.
|Advance the science of dental hygiene practice through
participation in scholarly and research activities.
Department of Dental
4301 West Markham Street, #609 • Little Rock, Arkansas 72205
Telephone: (501) 686-5734