You will be attending classes for two days per week, for roughly three weeks out of four. This enables you to have all the regular academic breaks throughout the year (Christmas, Easter, Summer, etc.) and also gives you time for additional home study.
Your first two years will be spent studying what we call our TCM Core Modules. We teach practical skills such as taking the tongue and pulse, palpating, needling, cupping, gua sha, etc. across all of these Core Modules so that you will already be highly skilled in these therapies when faced with real patients in your final clinical year.
The clinical module in the third year is where all of the different strands of the course come together and it is always inspiring to see watch our students treating their own patients under the watchful eyes of our clinical supervision team. Our most recent graduates completed an average of 78 treatments each, giving them the breadth and depth of experience needed to become a confident and capable acupuncturist.
The third year is also where you complete your business module. We want you to succeed in your new career and we make sure that you have a clear idea of how you will get into business on graduation. Currently 100% of our graduates are practising acupuncturists!
CM – Chinese Medicine
These modules introduce the historical background and modern interpretations of the theoretical building blocks of Chinese Medicine – Yin yang, the Three Treasures, the Four Levels, the Five Elements, the Six Division Jing luo acupuncture channels, the Seven Emotions, the Eight Principles and the Zang fu Organ Network. You also spend a significant amount of time developing practical skills such as tongue and pulse diagnosis.
AES – Anatomical and Energetic Structures
These modules introduce you to the anatomical structures that make up the body and the pathways of Qi that animate them. Palpable surface anatomy (what you can feel when you touch the body) is taught in small groups under close supervision. Once you can identify anatomical landmarks, you will be guided in locating the acupuncture points. These are activity-based classes where you also develop your skills in needling and cupping from an early stage.
PPD – Personal and Practitioner Development
These modules focus on the relationship between the therapist and the patient. Time spent observing in the teaching clinic is interspersed with activity-based classes examining the therapeutic relationship. You also do practical work looking at how your personal Qi is cultivated and used through the medium of supervised exercises and bodywork. Developing and practicing an understanding of ‘Elemental rapport’ will give you the tools to be able to work with your patients at a much deeper level
CMP – Chinese Medicine Practice
Building on the theoretical building blocks established in year one, CMP introduces the differentiation of TCM patterns of disharmony in relation to the disease categories of conventional medicine. Every lesson contains a guided clinical section where you practice how to treat the conditions you are studying.
APS – Acupoints and Practical Skills
This module develops the practical anatomy and point location started in year one. Whole afternoons in this module are given over to practical skills so that you are confident in performing a wide range of ancillary techniques before you progress to the clinic.
WMS – Western Medical Sciences
These modules look at conventional Western medicine both in terms of how the body works when it is healthy (physiology) and in sickness (pathology). An appropriate understanding of Western medicine is necessary as this ensures safe practice and the ability to converse with a conventional medical practitioners and insurance companies.
PRP – Professional and Reflective Practice
This module encourages professional maturity by consolidating the understanding of the therapeutic relationship. You will be asked to explore your motivations more deeply through reflective practice. You also start taking real case histories and performing treatments on your classmates under close clinical supervision.
ACL – Acupuncture clinic
A minimum of 200 hours will be spent in close contact with real patients in our multi-bed clinic. You will be supervised taking cases, forming a diagnosis and treating with acupuncture. As the year progresses, you will be given increasing autonomy in your actions until you are able to work as stand-alone professional acupuncturist.
RES – Research
An appreciation of research is embedded in all modules and is drawn together here in year three where you will write a 3,000 word article ready for submission to a peer-reviewed journal. This will give you a tool to promote yourself when you graduate.
IP – Integrative Practice
This module links the study of pathology across the Western and Chinese medical modules. Emphasis is placed on safe practice, ‘red flags’, understanding commonly encountered medication, and knowing when to refer on to a conventional medical practitioner. Common medical tests such as taking blood pressure are practiced.
PQD – Pre-Qualifying Development
This module has you formulate a plan for your practice once you qualify, and helps you get back in touch with the initial motivation that made you to retrain as an acupuncturist. It covers all legal aspect relating to the practice of acupuncture and enables you to graduate with a clear business strategy to follow.