School of Dentistry

School of Dentistry Student Research Group

SOD Stock DMD Student

The School of Dentistry SRG is a student-run group that supports dental students interested in scientific research at OHSU.  We represent the School of Dentistry as a member university of the International and American Associations for Dental Research (IADR/AADR).  We are interested in improving the dental field through research, outreach, and community education.  It is our goal to impart the importance of science and research to our community to improve our patient care and our participation in the field of dentistry.  We want to help fuel the desire for life-long learning, a quality that epitomizes our profession.

Who are you guys?

The SRG is composed of dental students who are interested in scientific dental research and inquiry. Many of us have already conducted research in some capacity, or plan to do so in the future. Information about how we work as a school group can be found in our Constitution and Bylaws.

Research helps us gain an appreciation and understanding of evidence based learning established by systematic methods. Research helps establish a methodology of organized, critical thinking. Ultimately, our exposure to the scientific method will augment our skills as practitioners, enabling us to discriminate quality dental products that have been proven through clinical trials and be skeptical of advertising claims from companies geared towards sales of dental products.

  • Research experience is not necessary to be a member - only interest!
  • Check out our Calendar (see below) for events you can attend.
  • Start as soon as possible, but remember that it's never too late!
  • Here are some options:
    • Get connected with a faculty mentor.
    • Check with post-doc graduate students for opportunities to help.
    • Ask about clinic-based research.
    • For more information, don't hesitate to contact any of the SRG members.

The dental school’s CaseCAT Program is an opportunity for students to review research literature with a focused clinical question, and present a CAT (Critically-Appraised Topic), in poster form, to students and faculty in a competition.  This is a great way to get experience with reading science for a specific purpose, and to learn how to present your findings to others (after all, we’ll be doing it for our patients!).


  1. To provide additional opportunities for students to become familiar with evidence-based dentistry.
  2. To provide additional opportunities for students to learn how to conduct reviews of the peer-reviewed literature to answer questions relevant to the everyday practice of dentistry.
  3. To provide additional opportunities for students to do presentations at scientific, local, national and international meetings.
  4. To encourage students to become involved in, or continue involvement with scholarly activity in the clinical years of their dental education.
  5. To provide opportunities for faculty to be involved in learning how to mentor students in the skills of critically reviewing the peer-reviewed literature, as well as organizing a professional presentation.


Evidence is being published at an ever-accelerating rate.  It is impossible for dentists, especially general dentists, to read all relevant dental scientific journals.  Yet the profession and patients are demanding that the best, most cost-effective and most scientifically sound treatment be provided, or at the very least presented as an option for care.  The only way for the modern practitioner to remain current is to have the skills that allow them to perform literature searches and critically review relevant articles to answer questions they confront in their practices.  The Critically-Appraised Topic (CAT) is a technique being increasingly used, particularly in dental schools, to address this need in practice. 

2023 CaseCAT timeline

  1. Topic/clinical question selected and faculty mentor assigned: Jan 20
  2. Preliminary poster draft: Feb 10
  3. Final title and poster draft: Feb 17
  4. Final poster: Feb 24
  5. Poster printed: Feb 28
  6. Poster presented: Research Day: March 2
  7. Poster competition: ODA: April 15
Avathamsa Athirasala, Ph.D. student in Biomedical Engineering, presents her award winning poster at OHSU SoD Research Day 2020.

Research Day 2024 is March 7th! 

March 7, 2024 at RLSB 

Revisit the 2023 Research Day event schedule.

Meet the Mentor Event in October

All students are welcome and encouraged to join SRG and the Office of Research in 3A003A/B at noon, on Monday, October 2, 2023, for an overview of research at the School of Dentistry. For more information on Meet the Mentor, please contact SOD SRG President Clara Park or faculty advisor Dr. Yifan Zhang. 

Faculty Mentor

Faculty Mentor (CaseCATs)

2023-2024 Student Officers

President: Clara Park

Vice President: Chris Steiner

Internal Communications: Bilal Manzer

External Communications: Jonathan Nguyen

Director of Fundraising: Sarah Wiskoski