Studying chiropractic care

Overview of chiropractic medicine

Doctors of chiropractic medicine treat patients whose health problems are primarily associated with the muscular, nervous, and skeletal systems, especially the spine. These practitioners believe that spine and nervous system imbalance affects overall health. Chiropractors are holistic in their health care approach and generally provide natural, non-drug options for health care. Chiropractors can work in group practices and can specialize in areas such as sports injuries, pediatrics, or orthopedics. Chiropractors must be licensed in the state in which they practice, and most programs require at least two years of undergraduate preparation in addition to four years of chiropractic college. Many programs require a Bachelor's degree.

Pre-requisite coursework

Each chiropractic program has its own prerequisite requirements, so be sure to check with the programs you are interested in for the most specific information. However, many programs require a minimum of 24 semester hours of science courses with laboratories. These might include the following:

  • Biological Sciences with lab (Bio 106 and lab, Bio 113 and lab, Bio 208 with lab, Bio 427 Immunology, Pathophysiology or other advanced topic in biomedical science with lab))
  • Human Anatomy (Bio 233) and Human Physiology (Bio 234)
  • General Chemistry with lab (Chem 150 and lab, Chem 151 and lab)
  • Organic Chemistry with lab (Chem 250 and lab)
  • Biochemistry (Chem 311 and 312)
  • Physics with lab (Phys 201 and lab and Phys 202 and lab) OR (Phys 217 and 218)
  • Exercise Physiology with lab (ES 360)
  • Kinesiology with lab (ES 335)

For many programs a grade of C or better is required in these courses.

Application procedures & timeline

Each chiropractic program has its own application and admission procedures. Many schools have two admission deadlines - one for a start in a Fall class, and one for a start in a Winter class. Some applications can be completed via an on-line process for the individual school, but there is no central on-line application service for all schools.

Additional resources