The National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) in Portland, Oregon, will introduce its newest degree program in fall 2015, the doctor of science in Oriental medicine (DSOM). The DSOM is an accredited, 4-year professional doctoral program that integrates modern biomedical science into a comprehensive framework of ancient Chinese medical science and philosophy to achieve enhanced clinical outcomes for practitioners and patients. This is the first doctoral-level classical Chinese medicine degree offered by the college and one of the first of its kind in North America. The college’s School of Classical Chinese Medicine has offered a master of science in Oriental medicine program since 1995.
The classical approach to Chinese medicine honors the thousands of years of clinical knowledge and experience that in modern times has been standardized into a system called traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), the version taught by most Chinese medical schools in the United States and abroad. With its focus on the ancient roots of TCM, classical Chinese medicine presents a highly complex system of knowledge that brings balance and healing to body, mind, and spirit through a highly individualized approach to the medicine.
NCNM has been expanding its programmatic offerings in recent years by launching 2 undergraduate degrees and master’s programs in integrative mental health, global health, nutrition, and integrative medicine research. These programs have grown NCNM’s enrollment 33% since 2007.
The new doctoral program is designed to provide students a solid foundation in Chinese medicine theory through an appreciation of the original language of the ancient, classical Chinese medical texts. These texts provide the foundation for training within a broad spectrum of Chinese medicine modalities, including acupuncture and herbal medicine. A strong focus of the DSOM program is the integration of CCM with biomedicine, training practitioners to develop the capacity to communicate, educate, and collaborate within the larger system of healthcare.