First-year dental students' motivation for choosing the dental profession: A questionnaire study of budding dentists in Central India
Aishwarya Singh1, Sudhanshu Saxena2, Vidhatri Tiwari3, Utkarsh Tiwari4, Vineesh Vishnu5
1 Department of Public Health Dentistry, People's College of Dental Sciences and Research Centre, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Department of Public Health Dentistry, Hitkarini Dental College, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, India
3 Department of Public Health Dentistry, People's Dental Academy, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
4 Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, People's Dental Academy, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
5 PG Student, Department of Public Health Dentistry, People's Dental Academy, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
Dr. Aishwarya Singh
64, Vaishali, Kotra, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
Source of Support: Nil., Conflict of Interest: There are no conflicts of interest.
Background: The choice of a career is a crucial decision that has a lifelong impact on a person's living pattern. It is important to understand the motives of those choosing to study dentistry, because these motives may influence an individual's level of commitment to the profession. The aim of the present study was to highlight the motives of choosing dentistry as a career among 432 1st year dental students. Methods: A pretested close ended questionnaire comprising of 30 questions, was administered to 1st year dental students registered under Barkatullah University, Bhopal. Students were asked questions pertaining to the importance of five central motives money, people, business, flexibility, and personal background for selecting dentistry as a career. The data were analyzed using SPSS version 17. Results: It was observed that being self-employed (54%) and helping people (51%) were reported as the top two factors for joining dentistry. Conclusion: Students' vision of a being self-employed and helping people appears to have influenced their choice of dentistry. This implies that being independent may be one of the most motivating factors underlying the bright image projected by the dental profession. The policy makers should work on making dentistry a lucrative profession, and improve the other motivating factors.