Skip to content

Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Chinese Herbal Medicine (CAGS)

The New England School of Acupuncture (NESA)'s Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in Chinese Herbal Medicine (CAGS CHM) program is designed for those currently enrolled in or who have completed an ACAHM-accredited/pre-accredited entry level program (master's level or professional doctoral) in acupuncture. MCPHS is the only accredited Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine institution in Massachusetts by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine (ACAHM).

This program encompasses the comprehensive study of Chinese herbal medicine and its clinical application. In addition to extensive coursework, students complete over 200 hours of clinical training. In the NESA Treatment Center interns treat patients with a variety of conditions under the direct supervision of clinical faculty highly experienced in Chinese herbal medicine.

Students assist in NESA’s herbal dispensary, which is stocked with an extensive selection of high-quality herbal products. Students learn to compound concentrated granule and raw herbal formulas in a safe and accurate manner. They also gain experience in operating a successful herbal dispensary.

Graduates will be prepared to effectively utilize Chinese herbal medicine in clinical practice. Graduates are eligible to sit for the NCCAOM board examination in Chinese Herbal Medicine. This program meets the standard required by most states to dispense Chinese herbs.

For admission consideration, the following application materials must be submitted:

  • Completed MCPHS Application
  • Official college transcript(s) from all colleges/universities attended demonstrating enrollment in, or satisfactory completion of, an ACAHM-accredited/pre-accredited entry-level master's-level or professional doctoral program in acupuncture.
  • Applicants who earned credits at a foreign educational institution must have their transcripts validated and submitted by a recognized educational credentialing evaluation service.
  • A formal statement of purpose indicating your desire to study acupuncture at MCPHS.

Additionally, students will be required to successfully complete a faculty interview (by invitation only) to be considered for admission.

English Language Competency

English language competency must be demonstrated via one of the following:

  1. The student must have completed a two-year (60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits) undergraduate- or graduate-level, English-based education in an institution:
    1. accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education, or
    2. in the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada (except Quebec), New Zealand, or Ireland.

In all cases, English must have been both the language of instruction and the language of the curriculum used;

  1. Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test (TOEFL® iBT) - Acceptable score: TOEFL iBT total score – 80; or
  2. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic Format - Acceptable score: IELTS overall band score – 6.5.

All official college transcripts and supporting materials can be sent to:

Worcester Admission Office
19 Foster Street
Worcester, MA 01608
508.373.5607 or 800.225.5506



Year I—Spring

SACHM 100 Introduction to Chinese Herbal Medicine 2
Biomedical Clinical Sciences* 2

Year I—Summer

SACHM 111 CHM: Pharmacopoeia I 4
SACLC DA15 CHM Dispensary Assistantship at NESA 0

Biomedical Clinical Sciences*  4

Year I—Fall

SACHM 112 CHM: Pharmacopoeia II 4

Year II—Spring

SACHM 121 CHM: Formulas I 4
TOTAL    4

Year II—Summer

SACHM 122 CHM: Formulas II 4
SACHM 130 CHM: Patent Herbal Medicine 2

Year II—Fall

SACHM 141 CHM: Internal Medicine I 4
SACHM 150 CHM: Formula Writing 2
SAEXMCHM CHM Comprehensive Examination 0


SACHM 142 CHM: Internal Medicine II 4
SACHM 160 CHM: Clinical Pharmacology 2
TOTAL    6


SACLC OM CHM **CHM: Clinical Internship I, II & III 6


SACLC OM CHM **CHM: Clinical Internship IV 1

Total semester hours: 43

*If an applicant has not completed the required 60 clock hours in biomedical clinical sciences.

**CPR/First Aid certification must be current throughout all Clinical Internships.


New England School of Acupuncture (NESA) Students Study Chinese Herbal Medicine

Two female acupuncture students in the NESA herbal dispensary.

MCPHS is the only accredited Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine institution in Massachusetts.

Read More 

Acupuncture in Increasing Demand as Healthcare Grows More Integrative

NESA Acupuncture Clinic

The acupuncturist job outlook gives plenty of reasons for optimism.

Read More