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What the SPEC? Why a Student Professionalism and ethics Club can help your school and how to Start your own chapter. We would introduce ourselves and give.

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Presentation on theme: "What the SPEC? Why a Student Professionalism and ethics Club can help your school and how to Start your own chapter. We would introduce ourselves and give."— Presentation transcript:

1 What the SPEC? Why a Student Professionalism and ethics Club can help your school and how to Start your own chapter. We would introduce ourselves and give a brief overview of our presentation

2 A comical moment

3 Student Professionalism and Ethics Club
Why SPEC? “The August 2007 issue of the Journal of Dental Education, reports a study by Andrews et al. in which 1,153 dental students were surveyed regarding academic integrity. The results showed that 74.7% of students admitted to some level of cheating. This report, coupled with accounts of students forging faculty signatures on patient charts, performing unnecessary procedures on patients in order to complete requirements and of institutions taking monetary contributions to accept students to specialty programs, among many others, conveys to us that immediate action must be taken.” ASDA White Paper on Ethics I wanted to discuss what the original purpose of SPEC was, that being simply promoting ethics. Here I also wanted to cover where the studes/research show dental schools have problems, where we think we see problems and why this is such an important issue. Basically answer the question, “Why is it worth all my time and effort to start a SPEC chapter, and what can we really get out of a SPEC chapter”

4 Student Professionalism and Ethics Club
Resolution Number: Title: Collaboration of ASDA and SPEC Sponsors: Ray Klein Southern California   Nicola Malik Southern California   Anahita Taraporewalla Southern California   Nima Mirmoghtadaei Southern California   Andrew Seymore Southern California   Board of Trustees Comments: The Board recommends a yes vote. RESOLUTION Resolved, that ASDA collaborate with the Student Professionalism and Ethics Club (SPEC), and be it further, Resolved, that the ASDA Council on Professional Issues, in collaboration with at least one SPEC founder, determine the most appropriate method of disseminating information regarding SPEC, and be it further Resolved, that the ASDA Council on Professional Issues, in collaboration with at least one SPEC founder, determine the most appropriate method of starting SPEC chapters at each dental school, and be it further House Action: Adopted by the House Great job with getting this adopted by the way. I would like to explain to those present that the house has obviously put a some effort into promoting SPEC and pose the question why? Why are we as students so concerned about this issue.

5 How it all got started In May of 2007 the first SPEC chapter was formed at USC. From there it has grown into chapters at schools across the country. Would we give a brief overview of the history of SPEC, I think you would be better equipped than me for this since you attend USC. (I stole the picture from the website and hope it includes some of the founders

6 SPEC at USC SPEC Mission Statement: The purpose of this organization is to increase the overall level of ethics and professionalism at the USC School of Dentistry. By uniting the community of students, faculty and staff of USCSD, SPEC will promote lifelong thought and action in the arena of dental ethics. Through various programs, activities and associations, SPEC aims to foster an environment where ethical and professional behavior issues can be addressed in an open, unbiased forum. SPEC aims to further the ethical education of every student at USCSD and help achieve the development of ethical and professional behavior in the educational setting that will accompany the students throughout their professional careers. SPEC also aims to form a student-centered committee to mediate and resolve concerns relative to professional behavior.

7 SPEC at USC Is not: Closed to any student for any reason.
A substitution for the Ethics Committee. Any concerns you bring about student or faculty behavior will remain confidential. A “policing” body. Boring … I wanted you to talk about what SPEC is at USC. What are your activities like, how is it organized, what are some of the issues you are trying to deal with and how. Basically presenting the organization as it exists there. I will do the same for OHSU SPEC on the next slides so they can compare and contrast the two chapters and hopefully garner some useful information for them to take back to their schools.

8 SPEC at USC Monthly gathering to discuss the field of ethics, asking questions, and sharing ideas Bringing renowned speakers in the field to USC as part of the Dean’s Lecture Series Providing early exposure at 1st year orientation Acting as student advocates and improving student-faculty relations What do we do? Delima, speaker, open forums Seek resources (American Collage)

9 SPEC at USC Amalgam vs composite

10 SPEC at USC Recognition and sponsorship from the American Society for Dental Ethics, the American College of Dentists, and the American Student Dental Association Helping dental schools across the country start their own chapters of SPEC through the use of an Ethics Start-up Kit and advising

11 SPEC at USC Catching up with technology Website:
SPEC Blog and Facebook page, Group: “SPEC Dental”

12 SPEC at OHSU Started in April of 2009 after ASDA passed the resolution to support SPEC. We wanted SPEC at OHSU to be specific for our school and to get as many students involved in the process as possible. Step One: “What would students at the OHSU School of Dentistry like to see from an ethics club?” What does the administration and faculty want to see from an ethics club? Slides on the OHSU SPEC Chapter.

13 SPEC at OHSU What did the students want?
Better forum for student teacher communication More preventive measures put in place to prevent cheating More students advocacy on the ethics committee, a stronger student voice Discussions about ethics in a variety of Dental settings What some common ethical lawsuits brought against dentists? What are some problems students face in the clinic? What problems are practicing dentists facing in ethics?

14 SPEC at OHSU What the Administration and Faculty wanted to see.
Better communications with the students, ideas on how to prevent unethical behavior. Ideas on how to better enforce the code of ethics. See more students discuss ethical issues. To have students more involved in dealing with ethical problems or situations when they do occur, more students on the ethics committee.

15 SPEC at OHSU Declarations Page: Faculty wanted a better way to prevent cheating and uphold the Code of Ethics without making students feel like they are already cheaters. “As a condition of having my examination scored, I, __________________________(print name), hereby affirm my understanding and obligation to abide by the of the OHSU School of Dentistry Code of Ethics.”

16 SPEC at OHSU 1st years designing their own code of ethics
Familiarity with the Code of Ethics Personal input in the Code Better enforcement of the Code Fewer questions and gray areas in the Code Personal accountability to uphold the Code

17 SPEC at Your School What do you as ASDA leaders envision SPEC to be like at your school? Each school has its own strengths and weaknesses, how will you work with these? What does your school need? Do you want to organize case studies in Ethics? Revise your school code of ethics? Break the culture of unethical behavior? Have guest speakers come? Here we would help them identify areas of their school they believe SPEC can help them with and how. Once we are done here we would divide them into small groups and let brainstorm some ideas on their own about SPEC. This can be as specific or general as they want but I wanted them to go back to their schools with some sort of plan of action. It could be a list of potential SPEC leaders, issues SPEC should deal with, a mission statement or a goal to meet with school administration to discuss SPEC. For the last minutes we would come back together and compile a list of ideas from the whole group, which we would give to all in attendance, another thing they can return with. We would also field any questions.

18 SPEC at Your School Why start-up a chapter? “why does ethics matter?”
How do we start?  core group of 10 students and a faculty member.  A knowledgeable club advisor is invaluable when discussing things such as ethics history or theory, or even clinical protocol. How often to meet?  What about the administration/faculty?  Now what? (What do we do at the meetings?)  ACD ( Funding –school’s general “club” fund, ACD regional reps, etc Auxillary Sources of help SPEC National - Newsletter, Facebook! Why start-up a chapter? It seems obvious, but a clear understanding of the why makes everything cl ear down the road.  The question “why does ethics matter?” seems so simple but try articulating why without getting stuck in a cliché. How do we start?  My reply is always  – You need a good, committed core group of 10 students and a faculty member who will help when needed, but as this is a student-run/student-led group, they should be willing and able to keep quiet when necessary.  A knowledgeable club advisor is invaluable when discussing things such as ethics history or theory, or even clinical protocol. How often to meet? A 1 minute topic, but too much or too little can cripple a start-up chapter either way.  Forming our chapter at USC we needed to meet almost weekly, but eventually that got to be too much.  We now meet monthly, with a “core” group meeting the week before.  For the officers and those involved, twice a month is enough.  Other schools may be different. What about the administration/faculty?  Some schools seem to have an easier time getting the admin on board.  You’d think they’d all jump for joy at students wanting to do this.  But it seems that schools where they try to control the ethics education much as they would, say, clinical information (amalgam -> composite -> fixed) are sometimes put-off by the idea of students taking ethics education into their own hands.  This isn’t a deal-breaker per se, but should be addressed briefly for students at schools where this may come up. Now what? (aka What do we do at the meetings?) - Everyone wants to know what to do once the chapter is formed, which is why question #1 above is so important.  One of the goals of SPEC is that each chapter be tailored to each school and what the students at that school want to learn about or discuss.  One may lack a background in ethical theory while another has major issues in clinic.  There is no SPEC hierarchy to dictate what to do at the meetings, but this can cause confusion once the club is formed and the entire student body is been invited to the inaugural meeting.  You’ve got the first meeting or two to put on a good face and provide a meeting that is engaging and informative without being getting stuffy.  I like to provide a list of topics we’ve discussed, speakers we’ve brought in, and how we try to leave at least one meeting a trimester open for students to bring topics/issues to discuss.  The ACD website  a great source for dilemmas when you need a good topic fast. Funding – Some chapters have gotten funds from their school’s general “club” fund.  Others have gotten money from their ACD regional reps.  Funding the club is good for many reasons, not the least of which is that 10 pizzas means more people showing up to listen. Auxillary Sources of help – Talk about ASDA and ACD’s involvement to SPEC, plus the tight knit group which makes up ASDE.  Contacting local ACD members is an easy way to get an ethical/professional practiciing dentist to come in and talk “real-world” topics, which students love to hear. SPEC National – In the fall we’ll compile a newsletter and hope to list every chapter formed, the officer’s contact info, and a blurb about what they’re up to (including meeting topics, something we all can learn from each other).  The SPEC facebook page (sign up!) will hopefully grow into a place SPEC members and officers can go to share what we’re up to.  See  

19 Contacts Facebook (Group: SPEC Dental) Website:
Patrick Corning – Oregon Health Science University Nima Mir – University of Southern California

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