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Master of Acupuncture (MAc)

Location: Worcester
Start Term: Fall

The Master of Acupuncture (MAc) is a 32-month program that provides students with the knowledge, skills, and competencies to deliver highly effective care to patients of all ages in a variety of settings, including in private practice and hospitals. The program features both classroom and clinical training in acupuncture studies, emphasizing hands-on learning under direct supervision of experienced faculty.

In the first year, students learn essential foundational theories and principles of both Eastern and Western medicine. You will immediately begin to practice clinical skills and develop the professional competencies necessary to become a successful acupuncturist with a special emphasis on acupuncture needle techniques. Students begin their clinical experiences by observing and assisting in the delivery of patient care.

In the second-year, students integrate fundamental material from year one of the program with more advanced concepts of Eastern and Western medical theory. Students also develop professional competencies and learn to formulate a diagnosis and treatment plan. Students continue their clinical experience as interns responsible for the management and delivery of patient care.

In the third year, students complete clinical experiences and are placed in a variety of clinical settings providing patient care under the direct supervision of senior faculty. Students continue their professional development by completing a series of practice management courses. Upon completion of the program, graduates are eligible to sit for national board examinations and seek licensure.

We prioritize the review and admission of applications submitted earlier in our rolling admission process. All applicants are eligible to receive merit-based scholarships up to $8,000, renewable each year. Consideration for this scholarship is based on a holistic review evaluating candidates’ passion, interest, academic background, and work experience.

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

  • Completed MCPHS Application
  • Official college transcript(s) from all colleges/universities attended demonstrating satisfactory completion of at least two (2) years of undergraduate-level education (60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits) from an institution accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education.
  •  A formal statement of purpose indicating your desire to study acupuncture at MCPHS University

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

*Students with international coursework must submit a course-by-course evaluation from the World Education Service (WES). Please note that a WES evaluation is not required for applicants for coursework from English-Speaking Canadian universities and colleges.

The following prerequisite undergraduate-level education courses required for admission must be completed either prior to enrollment, or at MCPHS as part of your NESA program. Linked courses are available through the MCPHS School of Professional Studies.

Corequisite courses (as indicated above) must have been completed at a regionally accredited college or university with a grade of C or better. Math and science courses taken more than ten years prior to the anticipated date of matriculation to MCPHS will not be accepted.

English Language Competency

Candidates applying to the New England School of Acupuncture programs must demonstrate English language competency by one of the following means:

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:

I. accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education, or
II. 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;

2. Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test (TOEFL® iBT) - Acceptable score: TOEFL iBT total score – 80; or

3. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic Format - Acceptable score: IELTS overall band score – 6.5.

All official college transcripts, letters of recommendation, and supporting materials can be sent to:

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

The New England School of Acupuncture offers a Master of Acupuncture (MAc) program which focuses on Chinese acupuncture styles. Students may also opt to specialize in Japanese Acupuncture Styles (JAS) by completing an additional sequence of courses and clinics.

Semester Hours
MAc w/JAC 
Semester Hours

Fall Term 1st Year

SACAS 101 Traditional Chinese Medicine Theory I 4 4
SACAS 111 Point Location I 2.5 2.5
SACAS 121 Materials & Methods of TCM I 2 2
SACAS 131 Living Anatomy I 2 2
SAMTP100 Internal Exercise  1 1
SACLC AA30 Clinical Assistantship I  1 1
SASCI 101 Anatomy & Physiology I 3 3
SASCI 110 Anatomy & Physiology Lab  1  1
Total Credits 16.5 16.5 

Spring Term 1st Year

SACAS 102 Traditional Chinese Medicine Theory II 4 4
SACAS 112 Point Location II  2.5 2.5
SACAS 122 Materials & Methods of TCM II  2 2
SACAS 132 Living Anatomy II   2 2
SAJAS 100 Introduction to Japanese Acupuncture Styles  1 1
SACHM 100 Introduction to Chinese Herbal Medicine 2 2
SACLC AA30 Clinical Assistantship II 1 1
SASCI 102 Anatomy & Physiology II 3 3
Total 17.5 17.5

Summer Term 1st Year

SAJAS 111 JAS: Root Treatment I 0 2
SACAS 161/162 Actions and Effects of Points and Channels 3 3
SACAS 190  Clinical Skills of TCM 2 2
SACAS 211 Western Pathophysiology & Pharmacology I  3 3
Research Design and Evaluation 3 3
SAEL MAc Elective 1 1 1
SACLC AA30 Clinical Assistantship III  1  1
SASCI 120 General Biology 3  3
First Comprehensive Examination 0 0
Total 16 18

Fall Term 2nd Year

SAJAS 112 JAS: Root Treatment II 0 2.5
SACAS 171 TCM Etiology & Pathology of Disease I  3 3
SACAS 201 Introduction to Chinese Acupuncture Clinical Internship I  2.5 2.5
SACAS 212 Western Medical Pathology and Pharmacology II  3 3
SARES 145 Introduction to Epidemiology/Biostatistics 2 2
SABUS 121 Practice Management: Marketing 1 1
SACLC AA30 Clinical Assistantship IV 1 1
Total 12.5 15

Spring Term 2nd Year

SAJAS 120 JAS: Local Treatment 0 2.5
SACAS 172 TCM Etiology and Pathology of Disease II 3 3
SACAS 202 Introduction to Chinese Acupuncture Clinical Internship II 2.5 2.5
SACAS 213 Western Pathophysiology and Pharmacology III 3 3
SACAS 270 Clinical Theater 1 1
SAEL MAc Elective 2 1 1
SAEL MAc Elective 3 1 1
SACLC AA30 Clinical Assistantship V 1 1
SASCI 130 General Psychology  3 3
Second Year Comprehensive Exam  0 0
Total 15.5 18

Summer Term 2nd Year

SAJAS 130 JAS: Introduction to Clinical Internship 0 2
SACAS 220 Patient Provider Relationship  3  3
SACAS 180 Microsystems of Acupuncture Treatment  1 1
SAEL MAc Elective 4  1 1
SAEL MAc Elective5 1 1
SACLC, CAS MAc Clinical Internship I, II, III*  6 6
SAEXM JAS JAS Comprehensive Examination N/A 0
Total 12 14

Fall Term 3rd Year

SAJAS 140 JAS: Shakuju 0 2
SAMTP 130 Bodywork Therapy  1  1
SACAS 231 Clinical Case Management  1  1
SACAS 250 Chinese Nutrition  1  1
SAMTP 100  Internal Exercise  1 1
SABUS 122 Practice Management: Business Skills   1  1
MAc Elective 6  1 1
SASCI 170 Microbiology  3 3
SACLC CAS60 MAc Clinical Internship IV, V & VI* 6  6
Total 15 17

Spring Term 3rd Year

SABUS 123 Practice Management: Acupuncture Professional Issues  1  1
SACAS 240 Survey Classic Chinese Medical Texts  1  1
SACAS 140 History of Chinese Medicine  1  1
SACAS 260  Western Nutrition  1  1
SACAS 280 Acupuncture Channel Treatment 2 2
SACLC CAS60 MAc Clinical Internship VII, VIII, IX*  6 6
Total 12 12
 *Valid CPR/First Aid certification is required throughout Clinical Internships.  
Total credits to complete degree requirements: MAc (CAS and JAS) 117  128

Japanese acupuncture places an emphasis on palpation (touch) as part of the diagnostic and treatment process. It includes the use of very thin needles as well as other tools for non-needling techniques, which allow for especially gentle treatments. While Japanese acupuncture is beneficial for patients of all ages, it is well suited for children.

All students take an introduction to Japanese Acupuncture Styles course in the first year of the program to familiarize themselves with this specialization. After completion of this course, student may elect to pursue this course of study.

Upon successful completion of the Master of Acupuncture (MAc) program, students will be able to:

  • Apply the foundational knowledge of acupuncture and Chinese medicine including philosophies and theories, to patient care.
  • Synthesize information from the health history, intake and physical examination to accurately diagnose illness and develop and implement an effective treatment plan for patients.
  • Utilize critical thinking and professional judgment to manage a case appropriately over time.
  • Apply sufficient understanding of western biomedical terminology, pathophysiology and treatment strategies to support effective communication with other healthcare professionals.
  • Demonstrate preparedness to establish and maintain a successful clinical practice and to participate collaboratively in a variety of clinical settings.
  • Honor ethical standards in all interactions with patients and healthcare professionals.
  • Evaluate published research to inform clinical practice and an understanding of public health.
  • Respond appropriately to medical emergencies, and make informed and appropriate referrals.
  • Demonstrate the capacity to engage in regular self-assessment and lifelong learning to achieve continuous professional growth.

For detailed tuition information, visit: Tuition and Fees.

Our students learn from faculty who are leaders in their fields and are committed to the success of each student. Discover our full list of Acupuncture faculty


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