Online Professional Development- What's it all about

Welcome to the Professional Development section of the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association website. As a dental hygienist, you are probably visiting this section of the website because you want to know about the professional development opportunities courses offered online, and to find out what the buzz is all about. Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions (FAQ). Should you have other questions, don't hesitate to contact us

Frequently Asked Questions - FAQs

What is online education? Is online education the same as elearning?

Online education or elearning is an innovative approach to making professional development available to you from the comfort of your own home or wherever you may be, through the use of various electronic media via the Internet. You may take one or more courses online at a time and complete them at your own pace. Upon successful completion of each course, you will be provided with a certification of completion that may be submitted to your dental hygiene regulatory authority (DHRA) for recognition of your professional development requirements.

Can I take an online course if I'm not comfortable with using a computer?

Indeed, you can. Like anything else that you are not familiar with, it will take some time and practice to learn how to navigate the CDHA website and online courses. Once you understand the basic approach in taking an online course, you will become comfortable with using the computer. The only way to become comfortable with completing online education is to take an online course. The courses offer helpful tips to assist you along the way.

Is online education recognized by the dental hygiene regulatory authority (DHRA) in my jurisdiction for professional development credits required to renew my annual registration/license?

Each dental hygiene regulatory authority (DHRA) has different requirements around their quality assurance programs. The number of credits required annually of registered dental hygienists is determined by each DHRA. The estimated length of time for each course is listed under the format for learning tab at the bottom of the course description page. Webinars offered by CDHA are one hour in length. Generally most CDHA offerings are recognized by the different DHRA, but it is always the responsibility of the member to ensure that the courses and webinars they are taking are accepted by their regulatory body.

What equipment do I need to take an online course? Do I need a special computer program?

To take an online course you will need to have access to a computer that has the ability of running Adobe Flash. You will need access to high speed Internet, and the minimum resolution should be 1024 x 768. Please note that are courses do note currently work on tablets or other mobile devices.

How do I register for a course?

You register for an online course by clicking on Register Now! This will bring you to a page that will ask you to login to the member site (if you are not already logged in), enter your login and password. Insert your credit card information for the registration fee, and click Submit Order. As soon as your registration is processed, you will be provided access to the electronic material and you may start taking the course. Should you require assistance during the registration process, please call CDHA's accounting staff at 613.224.5515 or 800.267.5235 extension 126.

How do I take the course?

Once you are registered in a course, you must login to the members' only website, navigate to the My Profile page, and click on your course title. You will have access to the course modules, handouts, a resource manual, and the final examination. Note that you must view the video presentation of Module 1 to completion to have access to the next module, and so on. You may go back and view a module previously viewed, but you cannot skip forward when viewing the modules. The handouts are the PowerPoint handouts you may wish to print for taking notes when viewing the video presentation of the same module. The resource manual is a workbook that you may print and use to complete the learning activities. The manual also provides useful tips, additional references and templates. You will have access to the final examination only when you have viewed to completion the last module in the course.

How much time do I have to do the course?

One of the many benefits of elearning is that you take the course at your pace. Each course indicates the suggested number of hours it will take to view the videos, to do the readings and learning activities, as well as prepare for the final examination. You may take more or less time to complete the course, since you do not have a limited amount of time to complete the course. Also, you may stop and come back to complete the course as many times as you like, and review the video presentations as you prepare to take the final examination. You will have one year from the date of purchase to complete the activities required in order to obtain your certificate of completion. After that time, the course or webinar will be removed from your profile, and you would need to re-purchase in order to complete.

Do I need to purchase required texts?

Most courses do not require you to purchase a text, however, access to a textbook is required for some courses in order to complete the learning activities assigned in the modules and prepare for the final exam. The course information provides the textbook reference and the website link of the publisher and one other source to purchase the text online. Note that you will not be able to complete the learning activities without the text. The learning activities were designed to complement the course content by ensuring the amount and depth of the content meets the learning objectives, and to assist you when you review the content in your preparation to take the final examination.

Is there a final examination? How many questions are there? What is the passing grade?

Yes, each course has an evaluative component. This means to pass the course you must complete a final examination online. It is the only timed component of the course. You will have 1-hour to answer 30 multiple choice questions, and the passing score is 80%. Remember to read each question carefully and choose the correct answer. Should you not pass your first attempt, you may attempt the second version of the examination.

Will I get a certificate when I pass the course?

Yes, upon completing the final examination with a score of 80% or more, you will be able to print off a certificate of completion. This certificate will be available on your My Profile page of the CDHA website. This certificate may be submitted to the dental hygiene regulatory authority in your jurisdiction for recognition of the professional development you have completed and can count towards your annual professional development requirements.

What happens if I fail the course? Can I take the course again?

Should you not pass the first and second attempts of the final examination, please call the CDHA at 613.224.5515 or 800.267.5235 to discuss your options.

What do I do if I have questions or need help?

Should you have questions or require assistance, please call the CDHA at 613.224.5515 or 800.267.5235. For technical support contact CDHA Technical Support at extension 500 and for questions relating to content, the learning activities or the final examination contact the Manager of Professional Development at extension 128.