Teacher feedback and student learning: a quantitative study

Albert Leung, Peter Fine*, Robert Blizard, Ingrid Tonni, Chris Louca

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Introduction: Feedback plays a significant role in informing students about the outcome of their assessments and contributes to their ongoing learning. The aim of this study was to investigate feedback currently given by clinical teachers to dental students throughout Europe. 

Methods: This study used a piloted questionnaire, delivered on-line to members of the Association for Dental Education in Europe (ADEE). A largely quantitative approach was adopted with multiple-choice, single answer, open text boxes and Likert scale type questions. These data were collected via Google Forms, transferred to an excel spreadsheet and analysed using SPSS software Version 24. 

Results: Data were collected from 223 questionnaires completed by respondents from 42 countries. Students received feedback following: (i) formative assessment (70%; n = 155), (ii) summative assessment (88%; n = 196) and iii) informally at any time (85%; n = 188). Feedback was delivered by different people including administrative staff (15%; n = 25). Several methods were used to deliver feedback, including written, oral/spoken, email and individually or as a group. 85% (n = 184) of teachers reported that their teaching had changed following feedback they had received from students. 

Conclusion: The study showed a strong ethos of delivering feedback from teachers to dental students following both assessment and non-assessment related activities. Teachers should understand/appreciate the individualistic nature of feedback and the importance of cultivating a congenial environment for feedback delivery. Challenges remain in delivering them to a high standard and in a timely manner.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)600-606
JournalEuropean Journal of Dental Education
Issue number3
Early online date3 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2021


  • feedback delivery
  • feedback methods
  • student learning


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