How do I Choose the Best Acupuncture Training?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 25 February 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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Acupuncture, a form of alternative medical treatment in which select areas of the body are stimulated with small needles inserted into the skin, requires extensive training. Choosing the right locale for acupuncture training is important, as students need to receive adequate training to perform acupuncture safely and proficiently, and they need to learn acupuncture techniques from a school which provides education from the perspective of the approach they are interested in. There are a lot of things to think about when selecting acupuncture training programs.

The first thing to consider is the type of acupuncture a student is interested in. All acupuncture is not alike. Some examples of different approaches include Korean acupuncture, acupuncture from within the framework of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Western or “medical” acupuncture. In addition to thinking about areas of interest, students should also be aware that their existing training and qualifications will determine where they can go to school. For example, some medical acupuncture training programs only offer training to practicing nurses and doctors.


Another issue is accreditation. Once students have narrowed down a list of schools which will suit their needs, they should confirm that these schools are accredited by organizations such as the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) as well as accrediting agencies which handle educational facilities in general. Qualifications and experience of staffers is another topic which may be of interest, as is the reputation of the school in the acupuncture community and in rankings published by trade journals and groups which rank health education programs.

Location of an acupuncture training program may be important. Students should think about whether or not they are willing to relocate, and how far, and they may want to consider the cost of attendance and the cost of living in the area, along with financial aid eligibility. Some schools provide no financial assistance, while others have financial aid resources available.

Scheduling may be a concern as well. A school which offers lots of clinical experience in the student schedule tends to be of higher quality, and a school which can be flexible to accommodate a student with special needs may be important to people who plan to work through school or who are raising children, caring for disabled family members, or engaging in other activities outside of school which may limit flexibility. Access to classes in specialty topics like fertility acupuncture and facial acupuncture may also be important for some students as they evaluate acupuncture training programs.



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