There are a number of educational resources available to trainees in OMFS. To date there has been no comprehensive review of the educational resources available to trainees and their opinions of these resources.
Methods: In September 2010, an online and paper questionnaire was sent out to all the OMFS trainees in the United Kingdom (UK). The questionnaire asked about their exposure to six main areas. Demographics; teaching days, study days and budget allowance; courses and conferences attended; the impact of European working time directive (EWTD) on training; educational resources used and their opinions of these and books readily available in hospital library.
Results: In the UK there are 137 trainees, 113 (82%) males and 24 (18%) females. 83 (61%) completed the questionnaire. Annual study budgets allowance ranged from £320 to £1100. There was a wide range of exposure to study days, study sessions, regular journal club and teaching days throughout the UK. The top three educational resources were books, the internet and attending courses and conferences. 47% of respondents reported that EWTD had a significant or moderate impact on their training. There are few OMFS specific electronic resources available to OMFS trainees which the trainees rated as good.
Conclusion: This baseline study demonstrates there is wide regional variation in educational support for trainees in OMFS in the UK. This may need to be addressed to standardise opportunities in OMFS education nationally. There are a number of e-learning packages specific to OMFS, however these are still in their infancy.
Conflict of interest: Four books (Operative Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery by Langdon, Patel, Ord & Brennan and The Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Handbook by Newlands and Kerawala) were used in a prize draw for the completion of the questionnaire. Two books of each were kindly sponsored by Endo-Ethicon and Mrs Carrie Newlands.