Academic Performance of Dental Students in the Subject of Morphology as a Predictor of their Actual Graduation Time and Academic Performance in High Credit Subjects

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Melisa Grob; César Orsini; Daniela Becerra; Natividad Sabag & María Paz Rojas


The relevance of basic sciences as predictors of students’ academic performance has great impact in healthcare education. Therefore, the aim of this study was to analyze the predictive role of den- tal students’ academic performance in the subject of Morphology on high credit subjects in the preclinical and clinical phase, and on real time of graduation. A retrospective correlational study was conducted with 672 dental students (2002 to 2012) at the Universidad de los Andes, Chile. The variables studied were sex, year of admission and graduation, and academic performance in the subjects of Morphology (first year), Preclinics (third year), and Integral Adult Clinics of fourth and fifth year. Data analysis were conducted by means of Pearson’s correlation tests and structural equation modeling. Morphology academic performance was significantly associated, and predicted the academic performance in Adult Preclinical (r=0.25 p<.01, b=0.250 p<.001), fourth-year Adult Clinic (r=0.20 p<.01, b=0.198 p<.001) and fifth-year Adult Clinic (r=0.14 p<.01, b=0.138 p<.001), and was negatively with real graduation time. The model analyzed explained a 68.5 % variance in real time of the graduation. The results of this study contribute to strengthening the available evidence in relation to the relevance of students’ performance in the subject of Morphology for their development and training throughout the dental curriculum, as well as justifying the timely identification and support for those students experiencing difficulties in this subject.KEY WORDS: Actual graduation time; Credit transfer system; Dentistry; Higher education; Morphology.

How to cite this article

GROB, M.; ORSINI, C.; BECERRA, D.; SABAG, N. & ROJAS, M. P. Academic performance of dental students in the subject of morphology as a predictor of their actual graduation time and academic performance in high credit subjects. Int. J. Morphol., 38(5):1508-1512, 2020.