John Drummond neglects to mention that dental school recruitment problems extend to non-clinical academics, who are usually responsible for 30-40 per cent of teaching (Letters, THES , January 30).
He attributes the problem to an overemphasis on research.
However, the importance of high-quality research to underpin dentistry as an academic discipline, rather than purely vocational training, cannot be underestimated. The challenge for dental schools is to ensure the optimum balance between teaching and research, for the benefit of both, by attracting and retaining high-calibre staff with clinical and non-clinical qualifications.
Association of Basic Science Teachers in Dentistry