Doctor of Acupuncture sitting at her desk

The Doctor of Acupuncture degree is the most prestigious and highest distinction in the field of acupuncture. Here are the 10 steps you’ll need to take to become a Doctor of Acupuncture

1. Have a strong desire to help other people

Using natural, holistic, complementary, alternative, and integrative medicine.  You should be open minded to new ideas and ways of  thinking about integrative medicine that are based upon classic ancient healing methods from East Asia.

2. Get your bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university

In order to apply for the Doctor of Acupuncture Program at Won Institute, you must have your Bachelor’s degree.  Be sure to include courses in psychology, biology, chemistry, and anatomy & physiology that are required prerequisite courses in the Doctor of Acupuncture Program. Click here to learn more about our admission requirements.

3. Attend an info session and have a tour of the Won Institute of Graduate Studies

To get more information about becoming a Doctor of Acupuncture. By attending an info session, we will waive your application fee if you decide to apply to our Doctor of Acupuncture program.

4. Apply to the Won Institute’s Doctor of Acupuncture Program 

Upon acceptance, you are officially a doctoral student.  Your program will be a four-year hybrid (classes both online and on campus) program that includes courses in East Asian medical theory, acupuncture needling and point location, bodywork, meditation, clinical practices such as moxa and cupping,  nutrition, business management, tai qi, qi gong, biomedical sciences, counseling, and more (3). While the first three years of the program are offered in a hybrid format, the fourth year of the program is offered 100% online. 

5. Study diligently and keep those grades up

While you complete your Doctor of Acupuncture program. Meeting friends with similar interests, learning amazing acupuncture healing techniques, and helping people in the community during your internship are great motivators for continued success in the Doctor of Acupuncture Program.

6. Complete your clinical internship

At the Won Institute’s onsite student clinic in your third year of the program. Students also have the option to intern at our offsite Go To Them Clinics for additional clinic hours, where they treat individuals from local organizations in the Philadelphia area. You’ll be able to treat patients with acupuncture in our clinics and function as a student acupuncture intern under the supervision of your professors.

7. Graduate with your Doctor of Acupuncture Degree

After the successful completion of your program.  The fourth year of the program is offered 100% online! Students also receive a Master’s of Acupuncture degree after completing the third year of the program.

8. Pass your NCCAOM national board exams

In Pennsylvania, you are required to pass the NCCAOM Foundations of Oriental Medicine board and the Acupuncture and Points board in order to be eligible to apply for a PA state acupuncture license. The Won Institute will fully prepare you to take your NCCAOM boards. *Note – if your states requires.

9. Apply for your state acupuncture license. 

Information about this process in Pennsylvania can be found at the PA State Board of Medicine website. For licensure information in other states, view the NCCAOM State Licensure map

10. Start your career as a Doctor of Acupuncture! 

After graduation, you can either work in another acupuncturist’s office or open your own office.  There are also many opportunities at wellness centers, hospitals, rehab facilities, community clinics, etc. The choice is yours.  But either way, you’ll be living the career of your dreams and helping people every day as a licensed Doctor of Acupuncture!