While education doesn’t always provide a direct correlation to excellence, the training required for becoming an acupuncturists starts with a masters degree then continues on to a degree or doctorate from a graduate school of acupuncture that is accredited by the Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM).
The course work builds on a foundation of hard science course work, from organic chemistry to microbiology and then spans into the theory, history and application of Chinese medicine, culminating in 1000 hours of supervised clinical training.
While some students study acupuncture alone, in either the Chinese or Japanese styles, many others choose to include Chinese herbal medicine as well. An herbal student first learns the uses and contraindications of hundreds of herbs and then learns formulas, many of which pre-date even Greek and Roman medical practices. Unlike many of the herbs used in Western pharmacopeia, Chinese herbal medicine is a highly structured, and complex system that relies on the synergistic effect of all of the ingredients in a formula.Here is a list of some links to some of the most well respected acupuncture schools in the US.