Admission Requirements - College of Chiropractic

Pre-Chiropractic Curriculum Guides

Pre-chiropractic curriculum guides are available for selected colleges and universities in the U.S. and Canada.

These suggested curriculum guides may be helpful in planning your undergraduate prerequisite coursework.

Doctor of Chiropractic - Standard Track

Admission requirements for incoming classes beginning September 2013 include:

  1. Total credits and cumulative GPA
  2. Prerequisites - required and recommended
  3. Qualifications
  4. Admission application

1. Total credits and cumulative GPA

90 semester credits at bachelor's degree level:

A minimum of 90 college or university level semester (135 quarter) credits at an institution accredited by a regional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or an equivalent foreign institution. All final decisions regarding applicable coursework are determined by the Dean of the College of Chiropractic.

24 semester credits in the Life and Physical Sciences:

A minimum of 24 semester credits (36 quarter credits) in the Life and Physical Sciences. Of these 24 semester credits (36 quarter credits), at least half must include a lecture and lab component.

Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on the best of the 90 semester credits:

A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale on the best of the 90 semester credits (135 quarter credits) completed. The best 90 credits must include the 24 semester credits (36 quarter credits) of Life and Physical Sciences.

Custom Track Plan

Students with a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 2.75 on a 4.0 scale on the best of the 90 semester credits (135 quarter credits) may be admitted under a Custom Track Plan and will work closely with an academic advisor. Students who do not meet other requirements should consult the Office of Admissions for further options under the Custom Track Plan.

NOTE: A maximum of 16 of the 90 semester credits (24 of the 135 quarter credits) may be earned in a certificate or vocational/technical AAS program from a regionally accredited institution. These credits will be considered pass/fail and will not raise or lower the minimium cumulative GPA.

No more than 20 of the 90 semester credits (30 of the 135 quarter credits) may be acquired through CLEP examinations or challenging of courses and only in courses other than required science courses.

2. Prerequisites

Required courses in the Life and Physical Sciences

For success in the doctor of chiropractic program, these courses are required:

  • General Chemistry 1 (with lab) - Principles of Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry or Introductory Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry 1 (with lab)
  • Biology 1 (with lab) - Animal, Vertebrate or General Biology, Zoology, Anatomy, Physiology or Microbiology

Recommended additional courses in the Life and Physical Sciences

The doctor of chiropractic program has a rigorous basic sciences curriculum. These additional science courses are strongly recommended for a student's successful progress:

  • General Chemistry 2 (with lab) - Principles of Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry or Introductory Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry 2 (with lab)
  • Biology 2 (with lab) - Animal, Vertebrate, or General Biology, Zoology, Anatomy, Physiology or Microbiology
  • Physics 1 (with lab) and/or Physics 2 (with lab)
  • Biochemistry (with lab)

Other science courses may qualify, including Human Anatomy, Cell Biology, Cell Physiology, Immunology and Genetics. Students may check with one of our admissions representatives to review science prerequisites.

The importance of basic science courses

Basic science courses in biology, chemistry and physics provide you with a solid foundation to ensure your academic success in the doctor of chiropractic program. Find out more about why basic science courses are so important.

Recommended general education courses:

English, Speech or Communications, and Psychology are recommended.

3. Qualifications

You must meet all additional qualifications. These qualifications assist you in progressing through the curriculum and clinical training in the doctor of chiropractic program.

Review qualifications

4. Admission application

Students are encouraged to apply early. However, we continue to take applications if spots are available.

Complete an application


Note to applicant: Admission is competitive and enrollment is limited. Satisfying the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission. Transfer students from other chiropractic schools who meet Northwestern's admission requirements can be accommodated.

Transfer and prerequisite approval: Approval of transfer or prerequisite course work for one academic program does not guarantee transfer or prerequisite approval of the same courses for another program.

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