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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 42-48

Role of internet on overall development of knowledge and attitude among undergraduate, postgraduate students, and staff members in a dental institution – A questionnaire-based study


1 Department of Dentistry, Pacific Institute of Medical Sciences, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India
2 Department of OMDR, Pacific Institute of Medical Sciences, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India
3 Department of Periodontology, Himachal Dental College, Mandi, Himachal Pradesh, India

Date of Submission26-May-2021
Date of Acceptance27-Oct-2021
Date of Web Publication29-Dec-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Apoorva Bhargava Daga
Department of Dentistry, Pacific Institute of Medical Sciences, Umarda, Udaipur, Rajasthan
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/sidj.sidj_7_21

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  Abstract 

Introduction: Everyone nowadays needs access to the Internet for recreational and educational purposes. The goal of this study was to find out how undergraduate, postgraduate, and college faculty members use the Internet for various purposes.
Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted by preparing 18 questions in 240 participants with the help of a semi-structured, pretested questionnaire, 7 closed-ended and the rest multiple-choice questionnaire containing demographic information, information related to Internet addiction test questions, undergraduate, postgraduate, and faculty members of the college were selected and evaluated.
Results and Observations: This study revealed that the Internet was used as a source of learning for all the groups. Mainly undergraduates use the Internet for entertainment and educational purposes both. Postgraduates, apart from these, also used the Internet for their research work. Staff members used it for all the reasons mentioned above and used email, learning exercises, and teaching purposes.
Conclusion: The Internet not only provides a great source of entertainment and information, but it is also essential for the exchange of information, social communication, education, banking, business, shopping, administration, and proper evaluation of data sources. It is a constantly changing phenomenon that is getting more and more ingrained into our daily life.

Keywords: Dentistry, internet, postgraduate, research, undergraduate


How to cite this article:
Daga AB, Nahar P, Singh MP, Daga D, Sharma P, Fanda K. Role of internet on overall development of knowledge and attitude among undergraduate, postgraduate students, and staff members in a dental institution – A questionnaire-based study. Saint Int Dent J 2021;5:42-8

How to cite this URL:
Daga AB, Nahar P, Singh MP, Daga D, Sharma P, Fanda K. Role of internet on overall development of knowledge and attitude among undergraduate, postgraduate students, and staff members in a dental institution – A questionnaire-based study. Saint Int Dent J [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 Jan 24];5:42-8. Available from: https://www.sidj.org/text.asp?2021/5/2/42/334158




  Introduction Top


Internet nowadays has become an essential part of our life both for education and social purposes. In particular, it has become an integral part of education and research, and its impact on teaching and learning is widely acknowledged.[1] It is making substantial inroads into research, patient care education, and dissemination of health care information.[2] It has become one of the most important sources of information for students of higher education institutions worldwide by providing access to educational materials.[3]

Education and research, communication, healthcare services, online monetary transactions, trade, buying items, entertainment, and other benefits of the Internet have all been extensively investigated.[3] According to research, 73% of college students use the Internet at least once a day and spend between 1.6 and 4.5 hours a day online, preferably at night.[3]

According to the literature, the internet is fast expanding, and it has become a vital resource for patient care, evidence-based care, and the transmission of high-quality health-related information.[2] Furthermore, greater internet use allows for the transfer of patient records, online diagnosis, and distinct learning through webinars without the presence of faculty.[4],[5],[6] The internet's widespread use in medicine has had a considerable impact on research, training, and patient care 8. Electronic learning is a flexible approach to dentistry students' education that allows them to work at their own pace.[7],[8],[9]

Aim and objectives

  • Aim of the study was to access the importance of internet in improving the skills and knowledge among undergraduate, postgraduate, and staff members of Pacific Dental College and Hospital.


The objectives were:

  • To evaluate the most frequently used mode to operate internet
  • To evaluate the total working hours of an individual on internet
  • To evaluate the main indication of using internet
  • To evaluate that whether internet can replace the classroom teaching method.
  • To evaluate that can internet be a boon for academics and clinical practice
  • To evaluate the various communication modes through which internet is used for exchange of dental information
  • To evaluate that whether the information available on internet is actually reliable or not.


Study design

A questionnaire-based study on Internet use was undertaken in a dental institution with 100 undergraduate, 100 postgraduate, and 40 Pacific Dental and Hospital staff members.


  Materials and Methods Top


A self-administered pretested questionnaire was prepared with 18 questions to assess the role of the internet in the overall development of knowledge and attitude. Seven questions were close-ended, and the rest all had multiple choices to answer. The questionnaire was handed to all included participants before the start of the survey, and they were collected from them immediately after they completed it, which took about 10 to 20 minutes. Out of a total of 240 respondents, 40 staff members and 200 students (111 women and 89 males) participated in the survey. The purpose of the study was explained in detail to the respondents, and respondents were reminded not to write their names on the form. They were also reminded that they had to choose only one option for each question. The data were analyzed using Microsoft office excel 2007. Chi-squared test was applied, and the P < 0.05, which showed that the data were significant.

DEPARTMENT OF ORAL MEDICINE AND RADIOLOGY

PACIFIC DENTAL COLLEGE AND HOSPITAL

UDAIPUR, RAJASTHAN

ROLE OF INTERNET ON OVERALL DEVELOPMENT OF KNOWLEDGE AND ATTITUDE AMONG UNDERGRADUATES, POSTGRADUATES STUDENTS AND STAFF MEMBERS IN A DENTAL INSTITUTION -A QUESTIONNAIRE BASED STUDY.



AGE (in years):………………… GENDER: MALE/FEMALE

KINDLY ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS

(PUT⫿ MARK ON ONLY 1 APPROPRIATE OPTION AND PREFERENCE SCORE AS 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 IN Q 4,13)

Q1. WHICH MODE DO YOU USE MOST FREQUENTLY TO ACCESS INTERNET?



Q2. WHICH IS THE MOST PREFERED PLACE FOR YOU TO WORK ON INTERNET?



Q3. FOR HOW MANY HOURS A DAY DO YOU ACCESS INTERNET?



Q4.WHAT IS YOUR INDICATION FOR USING INTERNET? (SPECIFY PREFERENCE – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)



Q5. WHICH OF THE FOLLOWING ARE YOU AWARE OF?



Q6. DO YOU ENCOUNTER PATIENTS COMING WITH KNOWLEDGE GAINED THROUGH INTERNET ABOUT DENTAL DISEASES/TREATMENT?



IF YES, DO YOU THINK IT CREATES HINDRANCE IN DENTIST PATIENT RELATIONSHIP and MANAGEMENT OF PATIENT?



Q7. DOES INTERNET IN ANY WAY IMPROVE THE TEACHING/LEARNING SKILLS OF A TEACHER/STUDENT?



Q8. HOW WILL YOU RATE YOUR SKILLS IN USING INTERNET?



Q9. HOW MANY YEARS EXPERIENCE DO YOU HAVE IN USING INTERNET?



Q 10. ARE YOU AWARE OF COMMUNICATION THROUGH INTERNET FOR EXCHANGE OF MEDICAL AND DENTAL INFORMATION?



IF YES, WHICH TYPE OF COMMUNICATION YOU ARE FAMILIAR WITH?



Q11.HOW DID YOU LEARN TO USE INTERNET?



Q12. WHICH WEBSITE/SEARCH ENGINES DO YOU USE MOST COMMONLY TO GAIN KNOWLEDGE?



Q13. WHICH OF THE FOLLOWING METHOD IS USED MORE COMMONLY FOR STUDY AND TEACHING PURPOSES?



Q14. DO YOU SURF OTHER SITES WHILE USING INTERNET FOR DENTISTRY?



Q15. DO YOU THINK INFORMATION AVAILABLE ON INTERNET IS RELIABLE?



Q16. DO YOU THINK GAINING KNOWLEDGE ABOUT DENTISTRY THROUGH INTERNET IS A BOON FOR ACADEMICS and CLINICAL PRACTICE?



Q17. HOW WOULD YOU RATE THE QUALITY OF KNOWLEDGE GAINED BY INTERNET AS COMPARED TO TEXTBOOK and JOURNALS?



Q18. DO YOU THINK THE ATTAINMENT OF KNOWLEDGE THROUGH INTERNET CAN BE AN ALTERNATIVE TO CLASSROOM TEACHING, E.g. (WEBINAR)?



Statistical analysis

Discrete (categorical) data were summarized in number (n) and percentage (%). Categorical groups were compared by the Chi-square test. A two-tailed (α = 2) P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Analysis was performed on SPSS software (Window's version 22) [Table 1] and [Table 2].
Table 1: Distribution of response to different questions by recruited participants

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Table 2: Distribution and comparison of responses to different questions among undergraduate, postgraduate students, and faculty/ staff members (n=240)

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  Results and Observations Top


In the present study total, no of participants were 240 out of them, 100 were undergraduates, 100 were postgraduates, and 40 were staff members among 100 undergraduates, 40 were males, 60 were females among 100 postgraduates, 49 were males, 51 were females, and among 40 staff members 18 were males and 22 were females [Table 3] and [Figure 1].
Table 3: Characteristics of recruited participants

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Figure 1: Ratio of male and female participants in all three groups

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  Discussion Top


Advances occurring in the field of information and communication technology have revolutionized the way people think and work. At present, the Internet is making a substantial contribution to research, patient care, education, and dissemination, of health-care information.[10] The Internet is a beautiful communication tool that has undoubtedly carved a niche in dentistry; however, the same caution and criteria should be applied to evaluating information and data from Internet sources. In this situation, the academic dental community needs to ensure that electronic dental information is authentic. They should help the students to get reliable dental information from the Internet.

Data from the current study indicate that dental students and staff members use the internet to access dental information and entertainment purposes. Most postgraduate students use the internet to discover the most up-to-date research methodologies and journals, and graduate students mainly use it for recreation purposes. The study also discovered that the majority of dental students and staff members support the fact that the internet improves teaching and learning skills.[11],[12]

Completed questionnaire was collected from the respondents and was analyzed through statistical analysis. It was found that among all the groups of respondents, 57% postgraduates mainly use their personal laptops to operate internet. More than 50% of PGs were operating internet mainly for finding latest journals and articles. This data is in support of the study conducted in Jordan by Spallek et al. where 91.1% of students use internet for academic purposes that is for mailing and discussion with colleagues.[11] 40% PGs were operating internet from college due to the easy availability of net, this finding is consistent with data found in an earlier study conducted in India by Grover et al. 65.38% use internet on regular basis for an average time spent was approx. 2.13 h (standard deviation1.98). Giving us an indication that internet had become an integral part in field of education.[13] Around 57% of pgs were well aware of the recent journals published on internet.[14],[15] Increased use of internet by patients to enquire about the treatment modalities had led to some hindrance in clinical practice and which has led to increased demand of inappropriate care and unrealistic expectations in treatment modalities 88% pgs and 92% staff members answer yes to it.[16] According to the study 61.1% of students preferred using internet from the hostel and college this data is in consistence with study conducted by Hamissi et al. 84.1%[17] preferred university, 76.3% connected to the Internet from their home and 13 percent from others' computers 86.8% of the students used mailing system.[15] A study conducted in Karnataka by Gupta et al. revealed 94.6% XII grade students said yes that it creates hindrance in clinical practice.[12] 80% of PGS agreed that information available on internet is reliable to an extent, according to Grover et al. 73.2% PG agree that the information available is reliable.[13]

When skills in using internet was rated, the postgraduates were found more competent than the staff and undergraduates. Majority of postgraduates were aware of communication through internet and mainly aware of telemedicine. Google was found to be the most common website used. Majority of the staff members deny that the internet cannot replace the classroom teaching, but dental students were with the fact that yes webinars can replace the classroom teaching.


  conclusion Top


Hence, we can conclude that the Internet as medium of communication is useful in medicine and has become an important means of delivering dental care. The use of the Internet is an evolving phenomenon at this stage. Its use in the dental colleges and hospitals under study is still in a state of infancy or early maturation. We can very well visualize a situation when all users will have achieved near perfection in the use of and full dependency on the Internet for their information needs. Hence, still there is a vast scope of future research in different types of users' behavior and comparison of users' behavior toward the Internet.[2]

Acknowledgments

My sincere thanks to all the Undergraduate, Postgraduate, and Faculties who participated in this study.

Ethics approval and consent to participate

All of the participants provided written informed consent. This study was carried out in accordance with the Helsinki Declaration and was approved by the Institutional Ethical Committee. The principal investigator is responsible for ensuring the confidentiality of the study documents and protecting the anonymity of all respondents.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

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Mahmood K. Gender, subject and degree differences in university students' access, use and attitudes toward information and communication technology (ICT). IJEDICT 2009;5:206-16.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Ayatollahi J, Ayatollahi F, Bahrololoomi R. Using the internet among dental students in Yazd. Dent Res J (Isfahan) 2010;7:7-11.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
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Dhamnetiya D, Singh S, Jha RP. Correlates of problematic internet use among undergraduate medical students of Delhi. BMC Psychiatry 2021;21:511.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
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Kumar S, Tadakamadla J, Tibdewal H, Duraiswamy P Kulkarni S. Internet usage among undergraduate dental students in India. Rev Odonto ciênc 2010;25:261-5.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
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Kumar M, Mondal A. A study on Internet addiction and its relation to psychopathology and self-esteem among college students. Ind Psychiatry J 2018;27:61-6.  Back to cited text no. 5
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Chestnutt IG, Reynolds K. Perceptions of how the internet has impacted on dentistry. Br Dent J 2006;200:161-5.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
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Maharani DA, El Tantawi M, Yoseph MG, Rahardjo A. The use of internet platforms for oral health information and associated factors among adolescents from Jakarta: A cross sectional study. BMC Oral Health 2021;21:22.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
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Revankar AV, Gandedkar NH. Effective communication in the cyberage. Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop 2010;137:712-4.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
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Andrews KG, Demps EL. Distance education in the U.S. and Canadian undergraduate dental curriculum. J Dent Educ 2003;67:427-38.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
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Gupta B, White DA, Walmsley AD. The attitudes of undergraduate students and staff to the use of electronic learning. Br Dent J 2004;196:487-92.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
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Spallek H, Turner SP, Donate-Bartfield E, Chambers D, McAndrew M, Zarkowski P, et al. Social media in the dental school environment, part A: Benefits, challenges, and recommendations for use. J Dent Educ 2015;79:1140-52.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
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Gupta P, Gupta S, Ankola A, Jindal V. Computer use among post graduate dental students in India. J Oral Health Community Dent 2014;8:135-2.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
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Grover S, Chakraborty K, Basu D. Pattern of Internet use among professionals in India: Critical look at a surprising survey result. Ind Psychiatry J 2010;19:94-100.  Back to cited text no. 13
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Apuke OD, Iyendo TO. University students' usage of the internet resources for research and learning: Forms of access and perceptions of utility. Heliyon 2018;4:e01052.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
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Wang L, Wang J, Wang M, Li Y, Liang Y, Xu D. Using internet search engines to obtain medical information: A comparative study. J Med Internet Res 2012;14:e74.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
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Kumar S, Tadakamadla J, Tibdewal H, Duraiswamy P, Kulkarni S. Internet usage among undergraduate dental students in India. Rev Odonto Cienc 2010;25:261-4.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
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Hamissi J, Gholami S, Hamissi H. The emerging role of computer literacy in improving the performance of dental students. Int J Collab Res Intern Med Public Health 2013;5:517-25.  Back to cited text no. 17
    


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