Objective assessment and feedback generation in dental surgical simulation: A framework based on correlating procedure and outcome

Myat Su Yin
advisor: Peter Haddawy

Fine motor skill is indispensable for dental surgeons, as every movement needs to be precise given the minute margins of error in endodontic surgery. Training in manual dexterity and proper instrument handling are crucial components in the dental curriculum. My research focuses on providing formative feedback to teach psychomotor skills in a virtual reality (VR) simulator for dental surgery. Assessment of outcome and the procedure, pedagogical models, multiple modalities to provide feedback are the integral components of my research. At present I am working on the component to generate formative feedback. The current task specifically focusses on taking the highly detailed information from the assessment and transforming it into a form comprehensible to students and determining which modality to use in providing feedback to them. The functionality to generate comprehensible language to establish effective communication with students and the effective use of available modalities to provide feedback are key questions to be addressed. But this is not yet completely sufficient to generate precise tutorial feedback since procedural mistakes may be due to insufficient manual dexterity or to lack of knowledge or understanding in how to carry out the procedure. It is essential to separate the cognitive errors from errors caused from physical factors such as incorrect application of force, inappropriate orientation of tool and undirected movements of the tool to generate appropriate feedback. Therefore, distinguishing cognitive errors from technical errors in procedure mistakes is also part of my ongoing work.