The NDECC™ Blueprint Explained
In 2022, the NDECC™ will replace the Assessment of Clinical Skills (ACS™) as the third examination in the NDEB® Equivalency Process.
The NDEB® consulted with practicing dentists, academics, and regulators to determine the knowledge, skills, and abilities that are required to practice dentistry in Canada today. This process, called practice analysis, used to establish the blueprints for all NDEB® examinations, was applied to determine what should be assessed on the NDECC™.
Introducing Assessment of Situational Judgement
The professionals consulted in the practice analysis recommended expanding on the knowledge, skills, and abilities tested in the ACS™. This led to the development of the Situational Judgement component of the NDECC™ that will assess the aptitudes required for solving problems in work‑related situations dealing with Patient-Centered Care, Professionalism, Communication and Collaboration, Practice and Information Management, and Health Promotion. These knowledge, skills and abilities were not tested in the ACS ™ and are not tested in the Assessment of Fundamental Knowledge (AFK™) or Assessment of Clinical Judgement (ACJ™).
Changing Clinical Requirements
As part of the blueprint review process, the original 12 ACS™ requirements, in place since 2011, were also revised. Decisions regarding what clinical requirements would be tested were based on a survey of practicing dentists that ranked the frequency and importance of different clinical skills in practice. The number of clinical requirements in the NDECC™ will be less than in the ACS™ and will be performed in a single day.
Those familiar with the clinical procedures in the ACS™ will see that the Class III composite preparation, the full metal crown preparation, and the dental dam application requirements have been eliminated from the NDECC™.
The purpose of the Class III composite preparation was to test minimal intervention. Minimal intervention is now tested in the Class II amalgam preparation requirement. Because the NDEB® no longer uses teeth with caries, the Class II amalgam preparation is a minimal preparation on a stock tooth.
The NDECC™ includes one amalgam restoration (Class II amalgam restoration) and two composite restorations (Class IV composite restoration and Class II composite restoration). The NDECC™ is testing more composite restorations than amalgam restorations, which reflects current practice in Canada. An amalgam restoration continues to be part of the blueprint as all accredited Canadian dental program continue to teach the use of amalgam restorations. The durability and cost of amalgam restoration often make them the first choice of treatment for people with poor access to care, high-risk for caries patients, and low-income populations.
The ACS™ included two crown preparations. The full metal crown was eliminated as it is rarely performed in practice today. The NDECC™ includes only one crown preparation, which will vary between a metal-ceramic crown preparation and an all-ceramic crown preparation (Lithium disilicate or Zirconia), reflecting current practice. The Provisional Restoration requirement is performed on the crown preparation prepared by the examinee, reflecting what takes place in practice and addressing comments received by examinees.
The Dental Dam requirement was eliminated to focus on skills that are unique to dentists and are not shared with other members of the healthcare team.
The full NDECC™ blueprint can be found on our website.