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How to Avoid Being a ‘CE Junkie’ in 2020



Attendees at the Spear Seminar Honest question: what are your personal views on continuing education?

At this point in the calendar year—some of the busiest months for dentists—you may just want to “check the box” to fulfill remaining requirements. It’s the reality for busy professionals with even busier lives outside the office, but it’s also a bit concerning given the time and money you spend on CE.

If you’re mindlessly flipping through a CE quiz to get to the credits, there’s no guarantee you’ll retain and apply useful information in a way that benefits your business. There has to be a greater goal beyond “checking the box”—but you might have to think outside the box in order to realize it. You may need an immersive experience.

In a blog for Spear Education, Dr. Michael Monokian of Marlton, NJ, recalls attending a seminar in a casino early in his career. “When the lecturer came to the front of the room, he started his presentation by saying, “there are two types of dentists in the audience today: ones that are CE junkies and ones that are going to go back to their practice on Monday morning and change something,” Dr. Monokian recalled. “Fast-forward a few years. My brother Dave and I were out at a Spear lecture and I remember sitting outside after one of the courses and having a very deep and important conversation. We decided on that day that we were not going to become CE junkies. We were going to change the way we practice, and we were going to get our team on board to help us.” 

Dr. Monokian believes “continuing education takes credits, implementation takes effort.” Part of that effort is actionable strategies. 

Dr. Monokian speaking at the Spear SeminarThis is why Spear Education began its on-campus, two-day Spear Seminars. These immersive conferences are led in a peer-to-peer, supportive environment, and participants walk away with actionable plans that they can apply in their everyday practice.

Take, for instance, the upcoming seminar, Treating the Worn Dentition, taking place Dec. 5-6 at the Spear Campus in Scottsdale, AZ. This sold-out seminar will offer “a systematic and simple-to-follow step-by-step approach to treatment planning patients with tooth wear.” Dentists will also learn how to maximize the predictability of treatment, how to spread out the cost, and what material choices to consider.

These courses and others are taught by practicing dentists who understand their students’ needs on a peer-to-peer level. To reinforce what attendees learn at the seminar, Spear faculty  choose video courses to pre-watch as well as post-course resources to help attendees implement what they just learned into practice. These seminars are not for the “CE junkie” —they’re built on success and driven by accountability.

Upcoming seminars include:

  • •Airway Prosthodontics – Taking Dentistry Beyond Sleep Apnea and Advancement Appliances
  • •The Art of Treatment Planning and Case Presentation
  • •Interdisciplinary Management of Esthetic Dilemmas
  • •Implants – The Surgical/Restorative Connection
  • •Demystifying Occlusion
  • •Treating the Terminal Dentition and the Fully Edentulous Patient

Spear Seminars sell out quickly as Spear Study Clubs are invited to attend an energizing two-day session at the Spear Campus as a membership benefit. Read this article to learn more about the benefits of becoming a Spear Study Club member, and how it helps dentists feel less professionally isolated. 

To learn more, visit and click on a seminar for upcoming dates.

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