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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Dental geriatric interview reflection and the use of the life grid in oral health research Salehi, Mohammadmahdi


Objectives: Undergraduate dental students at the University of British Columbia are required to interview an older adult, while optionally using the life grid, and critically reflecting on this experience. The present study undertook a scoping review to map out the applications of the life grid in oral health research and a thematic analysis to explore how the interview assignment impacted the students and their views about their future profession. Methods: The Joanna Briggs Institute’s methodology was used for the scoping review performed by two reviewers. Studies published until April 21, 2022, were searched regardless of language. Also, assignments collected from one entire cohort of students from 2021/22 academic year were analyzed thematically including an interactive coding process in a qualitative exploratory inquiry. Results: From 724 initially identified records, 22 studies were included, which used the life grid at the beginning of the interview, during the process, or at the end. This tool reduced recall bias, increased data reliability, helped establish rapport with participants, and ensured information accuracy. All the fifty-four assignments delivered in December of 2021 were thematically analyzed, in which five main themes emerged: communication, life course journey, person-centered care, social determinants of health, and access to care. A wide range of ideas emerged under each theme, with several practical suggestions to improve future practice as an oral health professional. Conclusion: Although the impact of using the life grid in dental education, in general, remains unknown, its flexibility in structure and method of use, and various perspectives on its impacts were identified. Also, the students seemed to establish effective relationships with the interviewees and provide various reflections regarding this experience and its implications for their future practice.

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