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Table 11 Results of EVA III: Excerpts from the work shadowing reports

From: Work shadowing in dental teaching practices: evaluation results of a collaborative study between university and general dental practices

Positive feedback
„I have gained a lot of knowledge, important experience, immense value, tips and tricks, as well as a lot of joy for having chosen the right course of study. My curiosity and passion for dentistry has grown and I look forward to taking on the coming challenges that this profession entails.”; “After this week’s work shadowing with Dr. Schmidt [name changed], my enthusiasm for dentistry has grown significantly! On a final note, I must emphasise how educational and sensible this work shadowing has been for my future career path as a dentist.”; “I will remember this work shadowing week for a long time. Despite the brief time period, the knowledge I have gained is immense – both on a human and specialised level.”; “Besides, it was extremely comforting to receive 1-to-1 attention that cannot be achieved at the university, due to the large number of students. On the whole, I assess the project as being a positive experience and a very important addition to my degree course. I am ending this enlightening week in the hope of leaving the university after my exams to enter my working life that little more experienced.”; “I learned a lot in these two days and would most of all liked to have completed the work shadowing in two weeks rather than two days, as the gain in knowledge is enormous. Thank you for this great opportunity […]!; “Finally, I can only say that my time during the work shadowing internship was enriching to me and I would not like to have missed out on the experiences.”; “an interesting view outside of the box”; “My work shadowing […] was really amazing. […] I was thrilled by both the practice and assistants, as well as the dentists.”; “The work shadowing at the dentistry practice Dr. med. Dent Fischer [name changed] was extremely informative and encouraging. It was motivating and above all made me more confident in conversing with patients.”; “The learning effect is extremely sophisticated and the work shadowing time is definitely well-invested. I am sure one can gain a wide range of knowledge from it at a later stage.”; “I expanded my knowledge during the work shadowing days and would do it again anytime, to improve my knowledge.”; “I was very well-treated and felt extremely welcome. […]The entire practice team became a role model to me and I would be glad to work shadow again.”
Negative feedback
“Unfortunately, the work shadowing period was much too short to gain a clear view over the full range of duties”; “Unfortunately, my dental skills only slightly improved. On the whole, I was not allowed to do a lot independently and had the feeling my doctor was also not very interested.”; “However, in my opinion, the work shadowing day is not enough to convey a suitable overview of the daily life of a practice.”; “I find that participating in a project at this point in the degree is too late […].”; “The work shadowing was not good. From Dr. Weber [name changed] I could only really gather how things should not be done.”; “Unfortunately, in retrospect, the duration of the work shadowing was far too short.”; “Due to a lack of time, it was not possible to address topics such as accounting, for example, in which we have not been trained in any way up to now.”; “[…], however, it is not possible to become fully acquainted with a practice in such a brief period of time.”; “I found that the internship was too early after the 6th semester.”
Suggestions for improvement
“As a suggestion for improvement, I would like to add that it would be far more interesting for students if they could involve themselves in the treatment more, through assisting or similar […].”; “[…] something like this should be on a voluntary basis.”; “It would be better to offer a seminar in bookkeeping at the university clinic or something similar.”