Virtual and augmented reality in dental education: The good, the bad and the better

Nikita Dzyuba, Jai Jandu, Julian Yates, Evgeny Kushnerev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Virtual reality and augmented reality (VR/AR) are becoming established technologies with a wide range of possibilities in various academic fields, including dentistry. The practice of dentistry encompasses a spectrum of skills and knowledge of anatomy, complex technical and clinical skills and sound academic understanding. This review aims to scope the current use of these technologies in dental education, explore their impact on teaching and learning and envisage their potential in this field. Materials and Methods: The Cochrane Library, PubMed and EMBASE were searched. Cochrane Handbook was used to conduct this systematic review. Inclusion and exclusion criteria were applied; randomised control trials published in English in the last 10 years (2010–2020) were considered and screened independently by two authors. Results: Fourteen of 524 studies were included and assessed. The majority of articles describing the use of VR/AR focused on an Undergraduate/General Dental Practitioner audience. Its use in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Endodontics and Restorative dentistry was also described. There is evidence of motor skill acquisition using these systems which is comparative to that of traditional methods. Conclusion: The use of VR/AR is well established in dental education; most applications relate to undergraduate education as a useful adjunct to dental training. In this article, the breadth of learning in dental education using VR/AR was exploited providing an overview to aid dental education. VR/AR is a useful adjunct to conventional learning in dentistry. However, there are limitations preventing VR/AR widespread use and applications, such as lack of trials, standardisation and accreditation of systems/content.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Dental Education
Early online date6 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 20 Nov 2022


  • augmented reality
  • dental education
  • higher education
  • pandemic education
  • virtual reality


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