Medication knowledge among dental students in Australia – a cross-sectional study

Joon Soo Park, Jasmine Li, Emma Turner, Amy Page, Estie Kruger, Marc Tennant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Purpose/objectives: Prescribing medicine is integral to clinical dentistry. Future dental practitioners need to have a thorough knowledge of how to prescribe safely and effectively. To date, medication knowledge among dental students in Australia has not been assessed at a national scale. Methods: Australian dental students were invited to undertake the survey comprising 12 multiple choice questions to investigate their medication knowledge. A total of 185 responses were received. The questions were 11 clinically relevant questions and 1 opinion-based question with 4 options from which to select. Results were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: The 185 respondents had a mean correct response of 6.77 ± 1.8 (range: 2−11 out of 11). Out of 185 students, 142 students (77%) answered more than half of the questions correctly. Only 1 student (1%) answered all 11 questions correctly. There were 135 students (73%) who either agreed or strongly agreed that they would feel confident to prescribe safe and effective medication for their patients after having completed dental school. Conclusion: Most respondents answered more than half, but not all, of the clinical questions correctly. Despite this, many reported confidence in their prescribing skills. Future research needs to further investigate pharmacotherapeutic knowledge to determine detailed knowledge gaps in prescribing.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Dental Education
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 1 Jan 2020


  • competence
  • dental students
  • medication knowledge
  • pharmacotherapy
  • quality use of medicines

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