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Doctoral Program Statement of Purpose and Educational Objectives

The American Academy of Health and Wellness has established our doctorate of Oriental medicine program with the goal of providing advanced training for qualified practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine. The integrated approach to healing which is central to our program enables our graduates to combine advanced knowledge of classical and contemporary Chinese medicine with an educated understanding of the Western medical approach to disease. In-depth study of one of the five specialty areas covered by our program enables our graduates to bring exceptional healing skills to their personal practice. The Academy is committed to the training of advanced TCM professionals. We strive to prepare our students for careers of lifelong learning and professional development so that they, in turn, can transmit the benefits of traditional Chinese medicine to the wider community.

Graduates of AAHW’s doctoral program in acupuncture and Oriental medicine will be well-prepared to meet the challenges and expectations of practicing traditional Chinese medicine in the 21st Century. The capabilities of our graduates are assured as they master the following educational objectives of the program.

Doctoral candidates will:

  • Exhibit in-depth understanding of health conditions within their selected field of study from the perspective of both traditional Chinese medicine and modern Western medicine.
  • Demonstrate advanced skill levels in the assessment and diagnosis of health conditions in their selected field of study from a TCM perspective.
  • Demonstrate advanced clinical practice skills in the areas of diagnosis, needling, and herbal prescriptions.
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively utilize both classical and contemporary Chinese medical techniques in their practice.
  • Demonstrate effective management of their on-site clinical practice, including the ability to collaborate effectively with their adviser and other practitioners.
  • Demonstrate mastery of clinical research techniques through successful completion of a “capstone” research project in their chosen Chinese medicine specialty.

Flexible Schedule

To complete the academic part of the program, doctoral candidates attend a long-weekend (Friday through Monday) instruction module every four weeks for 30 hours of instruction. Academic courses and face-to-face time with advisors are scheduled during these 4-day attendance periods. Clinical practicum hours are scheduled individually. The required 660 hours of clinical training/practicum are completed either on-campus at AAHW, or off-campus at clinic locations affiliated with and designated by


In the best tradition of Chinese culture, AAHW’s doctoral program is constructed according to the principles of Confucian architecture: there is a main axis of study consisting of five specialty areas; and two parallel supporting branches of study: classical Chinese texts and modern scientific applications. The nucleus of AAHW’s doctorate degree program is its focus on five specific areas of TCM medicine: TCM neurology; TCM gynecology; TCM orthopedics; TCM oncology; and TCM psychiatry. In each of the specialty areas the focus is on integrative practice and effective clinical application of the material. Candidates study classical and modern Chinese medicine texts pertaining to each specialty, as well as the most relevant research-based information available from modern TCM and Western sources. Courses in each area are taught by instructors who are trained specialists in that field.

The total doctoral program curriculum of 1260 hours (62 credits) is composed of 600 hours of classroom instruction, including a capstone research project, and 660 hours of clinical practice. Academic instruction is presented on-campus, in a monthly four-day attendance period, with clinical practicum hours scheduled on an individual basis. Candidates organize their clinical practicum and determine a topic for their capstone research project in relation to the specialty area they have chosen to focus on, and present an oral defense of their capstone report prior to graduation. The program is designed to be completed in two years.

Doctoral Program Curriculum Outline

5101Yellow Emperor’s Classic of MedicineDAOM302
5102Integrative NeurologyDAOM604
5103Clinical Research MethodologyDAOM151
5104Clinical Practicum and Training IDAOM1204
5201Treatise on Febrile DiseaseDAOM302
5202Integrative GynecologyDAOM604
5203Clinical Research Paper WritingDAOM151
5204Clinical Practicum and Training IIDAOM1204
5301Differentiation of Warm DiseasesDAOM302
5302Integrative PsychiatryDAOM604
5303Advanced Acupuncture TechniquesDAOM302
5304Clinical Practicum and Training IIIDAOM1505
5401Acupuncture Classics and StylesDAOM302
5402Integrative OncologyDAOM604
5403Scientific AcupunctureDAOM302
5404Clinical Practicum and Training IVDAOM1505
5501Synopsis of the Golden CabinetDAOM302
5502Integrative OrthopedicsDAOM604
5503Research ProjectDAOM604
5504Clinical Practicum and Training VDAOM1204

Outstanding Faculty

AAHW has assembled a world-class team of leading professors and scholars to teach the classes in our DAOM program, including both our permanent faculty members and visiting faculty. AAHWs permanent faculty is made up of Chinese-trained Ph. D.s with a strongly diversified background and many years of clinical experience. Visiting faculty members are carefully selected for their areas of expertise and ability to contribute to the overall quality of the program. After teaching a weekend course on-campus, visiting faculty members follow up individually with doctoral candidates’ projects.

Click here to review the outstanding instructors participating in AAHW’s DAOM program.


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