1Department of Dental Hygiene, Silla University 2Department of Dental Hygiene, Dong-Eui University 3Department of Dental Hygiene, Jeonju-Kijeon College
Objectives: This study aimed to investigate the association between interpersonal relationships and the 4C core competencies of dental hygiene students. It also examined how interpersonal competence can be enhanced by the development and application of programs so that the 4C core competencies of university students can be improved. Methods: A survey was conducted from March to May 2019 on students from the Department of dental hygiene in Busan, South Korea, and 177 valid responses were analyzed. The general characteristics of the students were calculated using frequency and percentage, and their degree of 4C core competencies and interpersonal abilities were expressed as means (±standard deviation). Multiple regression analysis was used to analyze the effects of interpersonal competence on the 4C core competencies. Results: The findings revealed the factors affecting the 4C core competencies as; (a) communication ability was affected by interpersonal cognition and confidence building; (b) critical thinking ability was affected by person-oriented, self-expression, and confidence building; (c) creative problem-solving ability was affected by self-confidence, person-orientation, self-expression, and confidence building, and (d) cooperative self-efficacy was affected by person-oriented and confidence building. Conclusions: Based on the above findings, it is necessary to develop systematic program items and education systems that can effectively develop interpersonal competency, and thereby improve 4C core competencies among students.