Academics Overview

Note Regarding COVID-19: Due to public health orders (PHO) issued by the State of Colorado most of the School’s classes are conducted online with the exception being practical classes and classes with practical components which are held under strictly controlled circumstances onsite. Clinical classes are held online and onsite with preference given to graduating and near graduating students for onsite clinics. The School will end online classes and resume all classes and clinics onsite when public health orders allow.

Academics Overview

Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine (CSTCM) offers four graduate-level programs with strong theoretical and practical foundations in Chinese Medicine. Our Master of Acupuncture (MAc) and Doctor of Acupuncture (DAc) programs focus expertise in the study and application of acupuncture and related Acumoxa modalities, Tui-na (physiotherapy/ therapeutic massage), Chinese nutrition, and energetic exercise/meditation with a grounding in Western biomedicine and sciences.

Our Master of Acupuncture with a Chinese Herbal Medicine specialization (MAcCHM) and Doctor of Acupuncture with a Chinese Herbal Medicine specialization (DAcCHM) Programs further integrates the comprehensive understanding, application, and practice of Chinese Herbal Medicine and TCM Internal Medicine.

CSTCM utilizes 15 week trimesters, offering 3 trimesters per year. Students have 7 weeks off per year. Our programs can be designed for working adults to learn TCM in a supportive environment at their own pace. We are dedicated to students actually learning the medicine, not just graduating.

Picture from the top of Pikes Peak in Colorado.
Pikes Peak

Our programs allow Accelerated* students to earn the MAc Degree in 28 months or the MAcCHM degree in 36 months (ACAHM minimum completion time), taking approximately 21 classroom hours per week.

The Professional Doctorate (PD) program is an additional Accelerated* Trimester of 330 clock hours and 17 credit hours above/in addition to the MAc and the MAcCHM degrees. Accelerated students can earn the DAc Degree in 32 months and the DAcCHM degree in 40 months.

Students must choose a track that commits to the Master’s program only (MAc or MAcCHM) or that commits to Doctors Program only (DAc or DAcCHM) or they can select the dual degree track by simultaneously enrolling in the MAc and DAc or MAcCHM and DAcCHM..

Graduates of ACAHM accredited Master degree programs in Acupuncture or Acupuncture with CHM (MAc or MAcCHM equivalents) can apply to the DAc or the DAcCHM completers program. ((Please see Admissions for more information on DAc and DAcCHM completers program, to be offered following ACAHM program approval/accreditation which is expected in the summer or fall of 2022) The 17 credits for the PD can be completed in one 15 week trimester as an Accelerated* program or in 2 Trimesters as a combination of Full-time and / or Part time programs.

The combined MAc-DAc or the DAc degree program can be completed in a minimum completion time of 32 months. The combined MAcCHM-DAcCHM or the DAcCHM can be completed in a minimum completion time of 40 months in the Accelerated* program.

CSTCM accepts new students three times per year. This allows students to take a trimester off at any time or move between Accelerated or Full-time status without creating problems in the program’s sequencing.

Credits are calculated according to the US Department of Education’s and ACAHM’s credit hour standards; 1 credit for every 15 hours of classroom work completed for didactic courses; 1 credit for every 30 hours of completed work in practical/clinical courses. Trimesters begin the first Monday in January, early May, and late August/early September.

All programs are offered on an accelerated, full-time, and half-time basis, with 6.66 years (80 months) to complete our MAc program and 8.33 calendar years (100 months) as the maximum allowable time to complete our MAcCHM program. The DAc maximum allowable time to complete is 7.33 years (88 months) and 9.33 years (112 months) to complete the DAcCHM.

The half-time pace is advised for students with financial or employment difficulties. It allows students to study at a more gradual and less stressful pace. Please note that a student may need to go full time for some trimesters to complete the program in the required time frames.

*Please keep in mind that being on an accelerated track does not guarantee graduation from any program in the minimum amount of time. In order to graduate in the minimum time allowed from a program, a student must take every class offered for each trimester; this will be more than 16 credits each trimester.

*Part time is available but limited to enrolled students who have had a life event; maternity leave, health reasons, family or work obligations, etcetera; it is not intended to be for long term.

16 or more credits per-trimester – Accelerated*
12 to 15 credits per-trimester – Full-Time
6 to 11 credits per-trimester – Half-Time
5 or less credits per-trimester – Part-Time* (financial aid is not available to part-time students)

Due to the comprehensive nature and length of our programs, classes may be held on secular and religious holidays. While recognizing the importance of religious observation, CSTCM cannot promise students that the scheduled classes will not conflict with religious obligations.

Continuing Education Program

CSTCM offers an extensive number of optional seminars and workshops that provide valuable education for students, graduates, and all practitioners to refine and further develop their skills. CSTCM has brought in many national and internationally known instructors to give workshops. These continuing education units (CEU) qualify for the NCCAOM CEU credits. Students may elect to take CEU seminars at any time. Students are not required to take these seminars but they are recommended.

Public Education Programs

CSTCM offers some classes and workshops that are appropriate for the general public.

China Clinical Training Certificate Program

CSTCM is educationally associated and has an agreement with many universities in the People’s Republic of China, such as Heilongjiang University of TCM, Beijing University of TCM, Chengdu University of TCM, and Jiang Xi College of TCM. We offer intensive clinical training programs in acupuncture, internal medicine, tui na, tai ji, and qi gong at these various TCM universities. Our training programs allow for a great deal of flexibility to satisfy the varied interests of everyone. Upon completion, certificates are awarded. Interested students, graduates, practitioners, and the general public should consult the brochures available each year on the China Clinical Training Program.


Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine (CSTCM) and its following programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine (ACAHM):

(1) Master of Acupuncture

(2) Master of Acupuncture with a Chinese herbal medicine specialization

Accreditation status and notes may be viewed on the ACAHM Directory.

ACAHM is recognized by the United States Department of Education as the specialized accreditation agency for institutions/programs preparing acupuncture and Oriental medicine practitioners. ACAHM does not accredit any programs at the undergraduate/bachelor level. ACAHM is located at 8941 Aztec Drive, Eden Prairie, Minnesota 55347; phone 952/212-2434; fax 952/657-7068;

The entry-level professional doctoral programs, Doctor of Acupuncture and Doctor of Acupuncture with a Chinese herbal medicine specialization, and the advanced practice doctoral, Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, program offered by Colorado School of Traditional Chinese Medicine are approved to begin enrolling students but are not accredited or pre-accredited by ACAHM. These programs are eligible for ACAHM accreditation, and CSTCM is currently in the process of seeking ACAHM accreditation for the programs. However, CSTCM can provide no assurance that accreditation will be granted by ACAHM. Graduates of an unaccredited program are not considered to have graduated from an ACAHM-accredited or pre-accredited program and may not rely on ACAHM accreditation or pre-accreditation for professional licensure or other purposes.

Call Now Button