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Curriculum Development in Special Care Dentistry for Pre-Doctoral Students: Problems & Pearls

CE Credits: 1.5 Hour(s)
Date Course Online: January 28, 2021
Last Revision Date: N/A
Course Expiration Date: January 28, 2024
Cost: Free; registration required
Register: Click Here »


Accreditation standards and expectations for Dental School curriculum regarding care for individuals with Special Health Care Needs (SHCN) have changed considerably over the past 10-15 years. Fortunately, for those with SHCN, this is good news, as revisions to the standards should provide the ultimate goal of improving access to care to accommodate these needs. Curriculum development to meet such standards has been challenging for many dental schools, and includes a wide variety of instructional methods and modalities. As one example, we will explore the curriculum development at the University of Pittsburgh in the Center for Patients with Special Needs, established over 12 years ago.


  • Historical perspective of dentistry for individuals with disabilities, in general and specifically at the University of Pittsburgh
  • Commission on Dental Accreditation Standards
  • Direct involvement of pre-doctoral dental and dental hygiene students in treatment of patients with SHCN
  • Problems and Pearls along the way


Lynne M. Taiclet, BS, DMD, is currently serving as the Director for the Center for Patients with Special Needs (CPSN) at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Taiclet received her BS from Allegheny College in 1981, and earned her DMD from the University of Pittsburgh in 1985. Following graduation, she completed a one year GPR Residency at Montefiore Hospital, on the University of Pittsburgh campus.

During her career, Dr. Taiclet has always had a passion for educating dental patients, and increasing the awareness of the causes of the dental disease process, with the ultimate goal of raising the “dental IQ” of the general population. Now the focus groups of that goal are the family members and care givers of the special needs patients that are treated in the CPSN.

Dr. Taiclet also assists the residents, dental and dental hygiene students in developing a comfort level in providing care for the special needs population of patients. She finds it very rewarding to share her passion for dentistry with these young professionals. Through the process of developing a rapport with the students and residents, and exposing them to the needs and care of these patients, the long term result will likely be an improved access to care for the special needs patients


University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider. ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry.

University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine designates this activity for 1.5 continuing education credits.

Continuing Education
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