The quality of dental faculty work-life: report on the 2007 dental school faculty work environment survey.

N. Karl Haden, William Hendricson, Richard R. Ranney, Adriana Vargas, Lina Cardenas, William Rose, Ridley Ross, Edward Funk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


This report is the third in a series of articles on the dental school work environment commissioned by the American Dental Education Association's Commission on Change and Innovation in Dental Education. The report is based on the most extensive research to date on faculty satisfaction in the dental school environment. The purpose of the study was to assess faculty perceptions and recommendations related to work environment, sources of job satisfaction and dissatisfaction, and professional development needs. More broadly, the study intends to provide insight into the "change readiness" of dental schools to move forward with curricular improvements and innovations. Findings are based on 1,748 responses from forty-nine U.S. dental schools obtained during the time frame of February to April 2007. The total number of respondents constituted 17 percent of all U.S. dental school faculty. The average response rate per school was thirty-six (21 percent). To elucidate the data in terms of issues related to the quality of faculty work-life based on demographics, the authors compared perceptions of various aspects of the work culture in academic dentistry among faculty with different academic ranks and academic degrees and by other variables such as age and gender, tenure versus non-tenure appointments, and full- versus part-time status. Quantitative and qualitative analyses show that the majority of faculty members described themselves as very satisfied to satisfied with their dental school overall and with their department as a place to work. Tenured associate professors expressed the greatest level of dissatisfaction. Opportunities for and support of professional development emerged as an area requiring substantially more attention from dental schools. The authors of the study suggest that dental school leaders use these findings to assess their individual dental school's work environment and to plan changes as needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)514-531
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of dental education
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Dentistry


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