Dr Ilona Johnson is a Senior Clinical Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Dental Public Health.
Committed to improving health and health education, Ilona’s teaching has focused on inspiring students to become committed and reflective learners, working in partnership across professions to deliver evidence informed, safe care for all.
Ilona qualified as a dentist in 1997, completed General Professional Training in 1999 and Memberships for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in 2002. She was awarded her Masters in Public Health (Distinction) in 2008 then joined Cardiff University as a Clinical Lecturer. She completed an intensive academic Consultant training programme in 2012. In 2013 she was awarded her PhD, this involved working across dentistry, nursing and psychology disciplines to examine how carers’ emotional experiences affected simple oral care tasks in hospital wards, with a view to developing educational approaches to help overcome barriers to care.
Ilona’s experiences as a mature student, while teaching, training and juggling family commitments provided her with the motivation to develop student-centred learning environments and opportunities.
Impact of work
As an innovator and early adoptor, Ilona has embraced technologies and learning from many disciplines to inspire her students. Working in partnership with staff and students, she has created a range of novel learning resources and opportunities for students, earning her awards and nominations for her innovative approaches. Building from this she has developed mouth cancer resources and teaching for postgraduate healthcare professionals across Wales; an exemplar for interprofessional partnership and learning for Health, recognised across professions and sectors.
Plans for the future
As the Deputy Director for Assessment across all taught programmes in the School of Dentistry, and the lead for student experience and engagement, Ilona contributes to national work to enhance assessments and has worked with a colleague to set up a national group to share professionalism teaching practices. Within the University, she leads multidisciplinary projects for enhancing experience and quality assurance. This work includes the introduction of video based examiner calibration, standard setting and interactive student facing resources, which have improved students’ understanding of assessment and feelings of stress; sharing her work across the UK and across professions.