One thing many people forget to think about when considering a school, or area of study, is to ask what the classes are actually like. Between choosing the right school, which degree you’d like to get, and what you’d like to study, many students don’t take the time to ask what they’ll be doing every day while in school.
This becomes very important when you’re attending a school that emphasizes a split between classroom learning and field experience, like acupuncture. If you go into a course expecting and preparing for one thing, and it turns out to be something completely different, that can be a major disappointment. Here's a quick look into what acupuncture classes are like here at AMC.
The average first year courses for AMC’s acupuncture program is what you would most likely expect - a classroom setting and textbooks. We want to make sure our students learn the facts and have a grasp of the concepts and practices behind acupuncture before anything else. We’ll cover the history of acupuncture, how it is used, and students will learn all about the different acupoints and their purposes.
When it comes to learning the acupoints, it requires an extensive knowledge of the human anatomy. While learning anatomy and acupoints may be done via textbook, we emphasize looking at the physical body in a philosophical way. While this may seem confusing to people outside the Oriental medicine community, once you begin taking acupuncture courses, you’ll understand Oriental medicine has a language, and mindset, that’s all its own.
Beyond learning about the body, you’ll learn about the mind, particularly about its relationship to the body. Many Western medical courses focus on the mind and the body as two completely separate entities, however, Oriental medicine emphasizes how intertwined the two truly are. This idea is particularly important when it comes to learning acupuncture, since the treatment is used for both mental and physical ailments.
The first year also provides many opportunities to engage both your professors and classmates in dialogue about acupuncture, Oriental medicine, and their teachings. Our professors are experts in their field and are always happy to answer questions and start a classroom discussion about the ideas and concepts surrounding Oriental medicine. I often find the students who take the time to engage in these discussions are the ones that have the most understanding of the subject and are the most engaged in their education.
Acupuncture students won’t get to begin working with actual patients until their second year of studying, as they spend the majority of their first year in classes. That first year is an important time to really buckle down and put in the work to fully understand the basics of acupuncture and Oriental medicine. Later on, our students begin working with patients and in our Miami clinic. This balance between textbooks and working with actual patients makes AMC students very well prepared for careers in acupuncture after graduation.
For students considering AMC’s acupuncture program, or any acupuncture program, knowing the curriculum and what an average class looks like is very important. Our admissions department is always happy to discuss AMC’s programs and give tours to prospective students. I encourage anyone considering any school to take advantage of these offers. The more you know and understand about a school and it’s curriculum, the more prepared you’ll be when you choose to enroll.