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Chiropractic Training Requirements: For Aspiring Chiropractors

By November 6, 2023January 31st, 2024No Comments5 min read

Chiropractic Training Requirements: Understanding the Educational Path for Doctors of Chiropractic

Have you ever delved into the specific chiropractic training requirements that your chiropractor has met? What educational journey have they embarked on? From the institutions they attended to the extensive courses undertaken, and the rigorous class hours required for qualification, these aspects form the backbone of chiropractic expertise.

Unfortunately, the details of these chiropractic training requirements are often unknown to many, even among regular chiropractic patients. While it’s common knowledge that chiropractors don’t attend traditional medical schools, the comprehensive training they undergo is a topic worth exploring.

Requirements for Admittance to a Chiropractic College

Well, it turns out, comparing Chiropractic college to medical school is actually a pretty good place to start. Considering both are training students to understand and work with the human body, a lot of the course topics are very similar. They include anatomy, physiology, pathology, chemistry, microbiology, diagnosis, neurology, x-rays, psychiatry, obstetrics, and orthopedics. [1]

To attend Chiropractic college, like medical school, chiropractic students must complete at least two years of prerequisite studies, though some states require a completed bachelor’s degree in order to apply for a Chiropractic doctorate degree.

The two to four years of prerequisite college classes are typically the same as or at least similar to a standard ‘pre-med’ program, including courses in biology, chemistry, physics, and general education requirements. [2]

Chiropractic Degree and College Structure & How Long is Chiropractic School?

Upon acceptance into a Chiropractic college, students must complete an intensive 4-year program, which focuses heavily on the sciences, diagnosis, and adjusting techniques. Some students pair down this 4-year timeline by choosing to enroll year-round, completing more than the standard two semesters per calendar year. [3]

It’s in these years of study that Chiropractors get their qualifications, and they are far more plentiful than most would think.

Consider for a moment, the amount of trust we place in our traditional primary care doctors. We know that they went to college for a bachelor’s and then attended medical school. We don’t necessarily know the details of what they learned in those studies, but we trust them to monitor our health, diagnose us, and treat us. In other words, we trust them with our lives, mostly because they carry the title “doctor.”

Are Chiropractors Doctors?

Chiropractors have often been slighted by the contraction of their true title: Doctor of Chiropractic, or DC to the Chiropractic-savvy. For some of the history behind why Doctor of Chiropractic has frequently been simplified to ‘Chiropractor,” check out our article on the history of Chiropractic to learn more.
However, the degree that Chiropractic students achieve is a “doctorate of chiropractic,” and actually requires more course hours than a standard medical school program!

Chiropractor Training and Intensity of Study

Chiropractic students complete more course hours studying anatomy, microbiology, diagnosis, microbiology, x-rays, and orthopedics than medical students. Plus, their programs usually include an internship program (think of it similar to a residency for a medical student) where the chiropractor-to-be must carry out x-rays, laboratory studies, diagnoses, and adjustments on real patients. [4]

During Chiropractic college, students are also required to complete several rounds of national boards, the first after 2 years of basic sciences and the second after two years of clinical sciences. Under the chiropractic training requirements, students are mandated to complete Part 3 of the National Boards for physiotherapy practice, and Part 4 to demonstrate proficiency in diagnostic imaging (X-ray), chiropractic techniques, and case management.

These components are crucial in the chiropractic training requirements. Upon completing these demanding studies, students earn the ‘Dr.’ title, empowering them to diagnose and treat independently, without needing a referral from another healthcare provider. [5] And, if that wasn’t enough to convince you that your chiropractor knows what he or she is doing, perhaps the 16 hours of continuing education requirements each year will! Every year, chiropractors are required to study subjects including ethics and risk management, along with refresher courses in their scientific and diagnostic knowledge. [6]

In other words, chiropractors are incredibly dedicated, well-trained, and knowledgeable healthcare professionals!

What Makes MaxLiving Chiropractors Different

At MaxLiving, our doctors often take it even further, achieving advanced certifications in areas such as orthopedics, neurology, and nutrition. Our chiropractors do this in order to become an expert in all areas of human health, allowing them to give you the best advice on promoting health throughout your body.

MaxLiving chiropractors are able to diagnose conditions like subluxation, which may be causing other health concerns, and can both treat that subluxation and offer fitness and nutrition advice. [7] Plus our chiropractors are versed in prescribing nutraceuticals, teaching natural detoxification techniques, and more!

So, the next time you wonder what exactly you have to do to become a chiropractor, you’ll know just how much hard work and dedication it takes!
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Truth Family Chiropractic

Our mission is to have a family-centered healing culture. We teach natural healing principles, which allow the body to heal itself from the inside out with no drugs or surgery. Our vision is to educate and adjust as many people in our community as we can based on the 5 Essentials of Maximized Living. We meet with our patients to break down seemingly complicated health and fitness concepts by providing simple, common-sense tips to preventing disease and living a fuller, healthier lifestyle.

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