Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Prosthodontics, School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Pediatric Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Clinical Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Safety, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


BACKGROUND: This study investigated the reasons for the students’ attendance in and absenteeism
from lecture classes from the perspective of professors, students, and educational planning to change
the unsatisfactory status quo.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The present study was a narrow needs assessment survey which was
performed on students (n = 70) of the Faculty of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences,
in four stages. In the first stage, the opinions of professors and students about the reasons for
absenteeism from the lecture classes were collected. In the second stage, the results of the first
stage were discussed by an expert panel to find solutions for the problem. The results of the survey
were tabulated, summarized, and discussed. In the third stage, online classes were held as one of
the solutions and evaluated in the fourth stage.
RESULTS: The results showed that various factors, such as professor empowerment, evaluation
system, audiovisual equipment of the classes, educational curriculum, and class schedules, are
associated with the students’ attendance in the classes. Along with these factors, one of the most
important reasons for students’ absenteeism from classes in recent years might be the generational
differences of students. The evaluation of online classes showed that the ratio of the number of
students who actively participated in the online classes to the number of students participating in
the online classes varied from 30% to 64% (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: In addition to improving the factors associating students’ attendance in classes,
online education is a proper solution for reducing absenteeism in lecture classes and increasing
students’ active participation from the perspective of professors and students.


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