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IMU, Malaysia and UNIMUS, Indonesia Dental Students Gained Virtual Global Experience

19 Jul 2021

The success of the collaborative project between the IMU and its mobility partner, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital on providing online training has led IMU to roll out another collaboration with its partner in Indonesia. The School of Dentistry at the IMU collaborated with its mobility partner Universitas Muhammadiyah Semarang (UNIMUS) in offering a virtual Global Experience Programme for dental students. This was the second virtual programme conducted by IMU in collaboration with its mobility partners this year.

UNIMUS students has been coming to IMU for mobility activities since 2018, and the COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented disruption to their usual quest for a dental and health training experience in Malaysia. Being appreciative of UNIMUS’s partnership and support in education, IMU indicated to UNIMUS that a joint distant learning programme would be able to cater for both IMU and UNIMUS students who are not able to travel for their mobility electives. The proposal was well-received by UNIMUS.

Virtual Global Experience – IMU and UNIMUS
Conducted for two weeks 14 June to 25 June 2021
67 students registered for this programme 49 students from UNIMUS
18 students from IMU

Many of the UNIMUS Global Experience participants have been to IMU in the past years for mobility activities and naturally, they were keen to participate again, albeit virtually. The running of the programme showed that although the IMU was not able to be a host to the  students in the physical campus, the students can still explore and experience the learning virtually with IMU.

The online opening ceremony took place in conjunction with the class commencement on 14 June 2021. Representing IMU was Prof Vishna Devi Nadarajah, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Education & Institutional Development. She highlighted the importance of building a strong relationship to develop programmes such as the Global Experience between partners and she was delighted that this was achieved by the UNIMUS – IMU collaboration.

“Our relationship is so strong that even the pandemic can’t stop us from having a mobility programme that could benefit both UNIMUS and IMU students and faculty.”

“I hope that the relationship can continue between our students. Dentistry is not about just dental skills, it is about connecting with people. And dentistry has a role in taking care of the people.”

Dr drg Risyandi Anwar, Dean, School of Dentistry at UNIMUS said, “The collaboration is indeed very important as we don’t only discuss on dentistry, but to learn and gain knowledge beyond dental and culture for our students. This programme is to fulfil each other’s differences. We hope that our students will to be able achieve their learning objectives and practice the knowledge learnt from this programme. “

What Students Say About the Programme
Jolin Toh IMU Jolin found the programme to be an incredible experience for her. “I realised that there’s a difference in terms of the teaching and learning style between us and UNIMUS students. In one of the role play sessions where I was pretending to be the child patient, I found the way they asked questions and their interaction are different from us. Instead of giving treatment choices after complete history taking, they gave treatment options in between the conversation which allowed the parent to have more time to decide and not be overwhelmed by too much information at once. I learnt a lot from them in this programme.”
Vina Widya Putri UNIMUS Vina was extremely satisfied with the overall course delivery and content. She commented that the virtual Global Experience has helped to improve her understanding on the topic. “The materials are presented in various interesting ways, such as script concordance test, virtual role-play, videos, animations, etc.” She added that she would recommend others to attend this virtual mobility programme.

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