Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Degree Programs

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Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine: Help People Live Healthier Lives. Naturally.

Explore whole-person health, natural pain management, and a fusion of Eastern and Western approaches

At Northwestern Health Sciences University, your educational experience centers on the heart of Chinese medicine – working with people. We emphasize clinical training, hands-on skill building, and a foundation in both Eastern tradition and modern science.

Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Program Director Dr. Christian Jovanovic discusses the Doctor of Chinese Medicine degree.

Our Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Programs

NEW: Doctor of Chinese Medicine (10 trimesters)

Develop a deep understanding of classical Chinese medicine while learning to apply that knowledge in modern clinical settings. This 10-trimester program provides comprehensive training in Chinese medicine with a focus on herbal medicine. As part of the Doctor of Chinese Medicine program, you will earn a Master of Acupuncture degree by your ninth academic term.

Master of Acupuncture (8 trimesters)

The Master of Acupuncture degree program teaches you traditional acupuncture, therapeutic application of heat (moxibustion), vacuum pressure (cupping), electrical current (electroacupuncture), Chinese massage (tui na) and Chinese exercise system (tai ji).

Master of Chinese Medicine* (9 trimesters)

In addition to the acupuncture techniques above, as a Master of Chinese Medicine student, you'll gain proficiency in Chinese herbal medicine.

Work in one of the Largest Herbal Dispensaries in the United States

Photo of herbs in the Edith Davis Herbal Dispensary

‌‌Northwestern Health Sciences University is home to the Edith Davis Herbal Dispensary, which serves NWHSU as well as licensed acupuncturists in the community. Here you will find more than 800 herbal products, including:

  • Raw herbs
  • Patent medicines
  • Powdered individual herbs and formulas
  • Herbal linaments and plasters

As part of your clinical education experience, you may choose to complete an internship at the dispensary and gain valuable knowledge in prescribing a wide array of herbal products.

China Study Trip - April 2019

Travel with us to Henan TCM University and Hospital in ZhengZhou, China to attend four days of specialty lectures and five days of interacting with traditional Chinese medicine doctors in small groups through the hospital. The time includes two weekends of cultural tours including a Shaolin Temple, Xian City, herb gardens, and ends with three days of study, tours, and shopping in Beijing. Up to 30 PDAs are available for licensed acupuncturists; current NWHSU students can earn observation and clinical seminar credits.

Henan Traditional Chinese Medicine University is considered one of the top traditional Chinese medicine universities in China, and is alma mater to NWHSU faculty who have helped design and facilitate this opportunity. For more information, contact

Hands-on, Patient-Centered Clinical Experience

  • Skills training begins on day one, including point location, needling, cupping, accessory techniques and tui na
  • Wide range of clinical settings and patient populations due to our relationships with community healthcare providers
  • Emphasis on compassionate care
  • Careful supervision – one clinical faculty for every three student interns

We offer many other clinical opportunities for you to hone your skills working with a broad range of patient types:

  • Patients living with HIV/AIDS and other life-threatening illnesses
  • Patients with spinal cord and brain injuries
  • Professional athletes
  • Pregnant women and women dealing with fertility issues or post-partum depression
  • Elders
  • Cancer patients
  • Homeless, low-income and underserved populations

Types of practices you can enter

With an acupuncture or Chinese medicine degree from NWHSU, you can practice in a number of settings, including:

  • Solo, group and community-style practices
  • Hospitals and integrative outpatient clinics
  • Specialty practices focused on special patient populations 

The new Doctor of Chinese Medicine degree will additionally prepare you to practice virtually anywhere, in the most modern clinical settings. The doctorate will give you a competitive edge in the field while offering you the most career options.

*Please note, the Master of Chinese Medicine program will be available through May 2019; this program will no longer be offered starting in the Fall of 2019. 

Apply now for summer 2019!

Don't have your bachelor's degree yet? Enroll in our Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine-focused B.S. in Human Biology degree completion program.


Learn more about our Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine programs

Download our ACM Info Sheet!


Career outlook

  • Visits to acupuncturists in the U.S. increased three-fold between 1997 and 2007. —Centers for Disease Control
  • Acupuncture as a career is expected to grow by as much as 32 percent by 2022. —
  • In response to the growing desire for natural, drug-free pain management, more clinics and hospitals are bringing acupuncturists on staff. Abbott Northwestern was the first hospital in the country to offer acupuncture in the emergency room through a partnership with NWHSU.

Join our family of alumni


Wherever you practice, you’ll be among colleagues.

Be fully supported

Our internationally trained faculty have earned degrees in traditional Chinese medicine from institutions in China, the United States and elsewhere. Each one is fully dedicated to helping ensure your success.

Learn in a modern environment

Experience all the benefits of a large, well-established university such as contemporary laboratories, classrooms, clinics and an herbal dispensary – while enjoying small class sizes and lots of one-on-one time with your professors.

Study at an institution committed to service

NWHSU is one of very few nonprofit acupuncture schools in the Midwest with values centered on inclusiveness, service and a mission to improve the lives of others. Nearly all of the clinical externships we coordinate and partner with offer free acupuncture to the community.

Enjoy schedule flexibility as a student

We will work with you to design a schedule that fits your life. We offer full-time, part-time and hybrid schedules depending on your needs.

Live, learn and serve in the healthy Twin Cities

Immerse yourself in the metro area of Minneapolis, ranked #1 in the nation for healthy living by

Connect with us

Call 952-885-5409

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