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Three Dugoni School Faculty Members Complete ADEA/AAL Dental Educators Program

January  09, 2014

Three faculty members from the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, Dr. Lola Giusti, Dr. Jessie Vallee, and Dr. Takahiro Chino, completed the 2013 American Dental Education Association/AAL Institute for Teaching and Learning (ADEA/AAL ITL), a two-phase, 50-hour program for early career faculty and dentists who are transitioning from private practice to a career in academia. The final phase of the ADEA/AAL ITL took place in October in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition to far-ranging class-wide discussions about dental education, participants engaged in intensive small-group projects and individual development work. The class included 79 participants from schools in the United States, Canada and Saudi Arabia, as well as individuals from private practice.

"The ADEA/AAL ITL has [graduated] almost 400 alumni since its launch in 2006," says N. Karl Haden, Ph.D., President of AAL. "Evaluations from participants and ongoing educational research conducted by our instructors keep the curriculum current and ensure that the program prepares faculty with teaching skills necessary to understand and communicate with today's students." 

The ADEA/AAL ITL curriculum is designed to provide participants with hands-on experience in key teacher tasks, and help them attain a higher level of excellence in evidence-based clinical and didactic modalities of dental education. Topics covered include instructional design and course planning, teaching in the classroom and the clinic, writing assessments, learning styles and critical thinking, mentorship, contemporary dental education models and academic career planning. 

"The ADEA/AAL ITL is dental education's premier program for faculty development in teaching and learning," says Richard W. Valachovic, D.M.D., M.P.H., ADEA president and CEO. "The continued growth and popularity of the program shows the commitment of academic dental institutions and their faculty to excellence in teaching and learning." 

The six days of onsite classes were conducted in two phases approximately two months apart, supplemented by a distance learning module. Nationally recognized experts in curriculum development, higher education administration, leadership and pedagogy gave presentations, including William Hendricson, M.S., M.A.; John Littlefield, Ph.D.; Elaine Demps, Ph.D.; Paula O'Neill, M.Ed., Ed.D.; Janet Guthmiller, Ph.D., D.D.S.; Nader Nadershahi, D.D.S., Ed.D.; M.B.A.; and Tobias Rodriguez, Ph.D. 

Lola Giusti, D.D.S. is an associate professor in the Department of Dental Practice, a group practice administrator, and a coordinator of Radiology Clinical Services at the Dugoni School of Dentistry. Dr. Giusti is a 1981 Graduate of the University of Southern California Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry. She practiced dentistry for 20 years in both Salt Lake City and Marin County, California, owning and operating her own practices. Since 2002, she has served as clinical faculty at University of the Pacific. As course director of the Complete Denture Preclinical Series, she was recognized for excellence in teaching three times by the student body. Her current position requires oversight of the radiology curriculum from the first year through the Western Regional Examining Board examinations.

Dr. Giusti's scholarly work includes the following publications: "Different Labs," 2013, American College of Dentists Journal of Ethics; "The Hygienist's Role in Impacting Tooth Loss in Partially Edentulous Patients," 2013, Dimensions of Dental Hygiene; and "Development of Chairside Communication via Video Simulation," 2013, MedEdPortal.

Jessie Vallee Stachowiak, D.D.S. is an assistant professor in the Department of Integrated Reconstructive Dental Sciences at the Dugoni School of Dentistry and director of Preclinical Education. She earned her dental degree in 2004 from Pacific and spent three years serving in the United States Navy upon graduation. She completed an Advanced Education in General Dentistry program through the Naval Hospital in San Diego and deployed to Iraq, Kuwait, and Japan during her tenure as a dental officer.

Dr. Stachowiak has planned and implemented a fully integrated preclinical reconstructive dentistry curriculum. This model, which launched in June 2013, utilizes a patient-based, "spiral staircase" approach to learning whereby the curriculum grows in difficulty and complexity as students continue to build knowledge and experience. She has served as course director of Preclinical Fixed Prosthodontics and as an instructor of Occlusion and Temporomandibular Disorders, as well as being a clinical floor daily leader. In addition to teaching, she maintains a part-time private practice in San Francisco.

Takahiro Chino, D.D.S., M.S.D., Ph.D. is an assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the Dugoni School of Dentistry. Dr. Chino received a D.D.S. degree from the Matsumoto Dental University in Japan, an M.S.D. from Indiana University (major in Diagnostic Sciences, minor in Oral Pathology), and a Ph.D. in Oral Biology from the University of Washington. He currently teaches the immunology and microbiology laboratory course to first- and second- year dental students. He also is involved in teaching the Oral Pathology course to third-year students. 

Dr. Chino's research laboratory studies oral mucosal homeostasis. Two areas of particular interest are host-pathogen interaction and cytokine network. In addition, he investigates the regulatory mechanisms of apoptosis in oral cancer cells. Dr. Chino also serves as a reviewer for the International Endodontic Journal. In 2013, he was awarded the Northern California Section faculty development grant from the Dugoni School of Dentistry's Pierre Fauchard Academy.

For more information about the ADEA/AAL ITL, visit

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