As the director of the doctorate program at the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, a typical day involves meeting with doctoral students to provide career direction and assist with educational goals. As the research director, the daily tasks involve setting up partnerships with medical facilities to research acupuncture and traditional Asian medicine. Refining knowledge and training in healthcare to meet both Eastern and Western medicine through integrated medicine, thus allowing Eastern medicine to be practiced in a Western medical setting is the goal of the program.
Acupuncture/Oriental Medicine (AOM) is an ancient and empirical system of medicine based on the concept of qi (pronounced “chee”), which is usually translated as energy. AOM treatments identify a pattern of energetic imbalance within a patient and redress that disharmony through a variety of therapies that may include acupuncture needling, cupping, acupressure, and exercises such as tai ji and qi gong, as well as Chinese herbal preparations.
Depending on how you gain your training, acupuncturists often practice under the guidance of someone more experienced when they start working.
Specific academic requirements and programs may vary from one AOM college to another, but in general, a Bachelor’s or Associate’s degree (or the equivalent, with 60 semester units from an accredited college or university) is required for admission into an AOM program.
The length of training at most accredited AOM schools is 3 years for acupuncture and 4 years for the combination of acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. The Oriental Medicine program includes the study of Chinese herbology. NOTE: A number of schools offer multiple language tracks that include Chinese and Korean, in addition to English.
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