Date of Award

Fall 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Community & Environmental Health

Committee Director

Susan J. Daniel

Committee Member

Muge Akpinar-Elci

Committee Member

Linda Bennington


The purpose of this study was to determine if the use of a theory-based educational intervention would increase the frequency of performing oralhealth assessments (OHAs) during well-child visits among nurses. A randomized experimental design was conducted to determine if the educationalintervention would improve frequency of performing OHAs, in addition to, knowledge, confidence in performing OHAs, and advising parents. Using a non-probability sampling frame, “snowball technique,” a total of 46 participants were recruited. After exclusion criteria, 33 advanced practice registered nurses(APRNs), registered nurses (RNs), and licensed practical nurses (LPNs); were randomized into a control or experimental group. Data collection occurred over afour-week period. An adapted validated 21-question survey designed through Qualtrics© software was used to measure oral health-related practices onchildren of all participants at pre and post-intervention. The electronically delivered intervention was a continuing education (CE) course that focused onchildren’s oral health. Participants in the experimental group received the CE course immediately following completion of the electronic survey whereas; participants in the control group received the CE course content after completing the post-survey at 4 weeks. At 3 weeks, a trivia question related tochildren’s oral health, and a brochure, “Promoting Oral Health” sponsored by the American Academy of Pediatrics was electronically delivered. Participants received 1 free CME credit as an incentive for participating and completing all portions of the study. A two-way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) mixed design statistical analysis was used to determine statistical significant difference (p =<0.05). There was no significant main effect, or difference between the experimental and control groups for frequency of performing OHAs on children. However, there were significant main effects of time from pre to post-tests within the experimental and control groups for the following variables: knowledge (F (1, 31) = 12.67, p = 0.001), confidence in performing OHAs (F (1, 30) =10.17, p = 0.003), and confidence advising parents (F (1, 30) = 10.78, p = 0.003). While there were no significant differences found between-groups, or interactions for all four dependent variables measured, scores related to knowledge, confidence in performing OHAs, and advising parents improved within groups.


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