How can dental hygiene schools help reform higher education?

November 8th, 2013

As the U.S. makes concerted efforts to tackle education reform on a comprehensive scale, individual institutions can benefit from investing in advanced technology. For example, software for dental hygiene schools provides both educators and students with unique opportunities to increase the efficiency of operations and ultimately come up with more effective ways to solve the most pressing problems in the health care industry.

Earlier this month, President Barack Obama announced he was nominating a new assistant secretary for postsecondary education. According to an official press release from the White House, Ericka Miller, who is currently the vice president for operations and strategic leadership for The Education Trust, will fill the position. A report from the Chronicle of Higher Education said Miller will now oversee the Office of Postsecondary Education, an agency responsible for designing and implementing various federal programs targeted toward universities and students.

Obstacles to education reform
If the Senate confirms the president's nomination, Miller will be responsible for overseeing a department that has faced unique challenges in recent years. For example, the cost of higher education has increased dramatically. As state governments suffer from lackluster economic conditions, many public universities have experienced a substantial reduction in funding. Charleston Daily Mail, a newspaper published in West Virginia, said state officials recently cut the education budget by 7.5 percent.

"We need to make a strong case to the governor that higher education can't afford any more cuts, period," state representative Nancy Guthrie, D-Kanawha, said at a recent forum at Marshall University. "Higher education can't do this and function."

King 5, an NBC affiliate based in Seattle, reported Melinda Gates, co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, would give the current U.S. public school system a C- in terms of its ability to address existing problems. However, there is plenty of room for improvement, she said. Many educators have a desire to incorporate a more innovative approach to classroom teaching but face significant obstacles to securing the appropriate funding, according to the station.

Dental hygiene schools can especially benefit from advanced tools now that recent legislation, such as the Affordable Care Act, has encouraged many oral health care clinics to find ways to reduce costs and increase efficiency.

Advanced technology for oral health education
Dental hygiene school software is a reliable way for universities to enhance the educational experience while simultaneously saving money on overhead expenses. For example, with the right technology, administrators can fully integrate both academic and clinical operations. Additionally, faculty and staff will be able to easily keep track of students' progress through specific programs by leveraging dynamic software to organize curriculum data.

Incorporating electronic health records into educational experience is also a valuable investment. The federal government even offers monetary incentives for institutions to employ a meaningful use of EHRs, meaning universities can ultimately increase internal funding in the long run. Providing students with hands-on experience using these new tools will also help prepare them for a rapidly changing professional environment.

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