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Why UK dental education should take a greater interest in the behavioural and social sciences

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667-670
Number of pages4
JournalBritish Dental Journal
Issue number8
DateAccepted/In press - 3 Jul 2019
DatePublished (current) - 25 Oct 2019


Recent moves by public health academics and social scientists for increased recognition of the behavioural and social sciences (BeSS) in medical education in the UK have put the role and place of the BeSS in dental education back on the curricular agenda. Behavioural and social sciences have been a component of the UK dental curriculum since 1990 but, to our knowledge; have only been reviewed once in 1999. The aim of this article is to reignite a discussion about the role and place of BeSS in dental education in the UK. It reiterates the benefits of BeSS to dental education and dentistry in general, while remaining cognisant of the implicit and explicit barriers that can conspire to side-line their contribution to dental education. This paper concludes by making renewed calls for more integration of BeSS into the dental undergraduate curriculum as well as sectoral recognition for its contribution to the advancement of dental education and the professional development of dentists.



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