best buddha sealMidwest College of Oriental Medicine

Mission Statement

It is the Midwest College’s mission to provide an education that is rooted in the historical context and teachings of Traditional Chinese Medicine and combine it with modern clinical applications to create a practitioner of Acupuncture or Oriental Medicine that embraces the spirit of an …

“ancient medicine for modern times”   


The combination of Eastern and Western science, together with an appreciation of the natural healing philosophies of Asia, develops the qualities that are the “Heart of Chinese Medicine“. With this foundation, graduates will become true practitioners of Oriental healing. The subtle balance of clinical science and compassion is the key to a successful practice.

The Acupuncture Program is modeled on the modern eight-principle style, currently taught at TCM universities in China.  Combined with the bio-medicine courses, it prepares graduates to practice “Classic Chinese Medicine” using acupuncture, moxibustion, and other accessory modalities.  The curriculum in the Oriental Medicine program provides a distinctive course of study in the areas of food and herb therapy that are fundamental to Traditional Oriental Medicine. Baccalaureate study in nutrition within the Oriental Medicine program leads to a simultaneously granted Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and a master of Science degree in Oriental Medicine.

To meet the needs of students, the Midwest College affirms its commitment to educate broadly informed, ethically responsible, and scientifically competent professionals by offering the highest accredited entry-level degree in the field.  To meet the needs of a community that is increasingly aware of the importance of nutrition and herb therapy, the Oriental Medicine program combines TCM theory with principles of nutrition.


Diagnosis in Chinese Medicine has always consisted of two levels of differentiation: a disease differentiation (bian bing) and a syndrome differentiation (bian zheng).  In modern times, there has been a shift away from the energetic model of syndrome differentiation to an emphasis on biomedical disease based treatment.

The ancient practice of Chinese Medicine has seven different methods of syndrome differentiation, plus an eighth for acupuncture only. In order to support our mission of combining historical and modern models of health and disease, the Midwest College includes all eight models of syndrome differentiation in our curriculum.

  1. Differentiation according to cause/ seven emotion / six evils / diet (san yin bian zheng)
  2. Differentiation by eight principles (ba gang bian zheng)
  3. Differentiation according to the zang fu (zang fu bian zheng)
  4. Differentiation according to six channels (liu jing bian zheng)
  5. Differentiation by qi & blood / wen bing (wei qi ying xue bian zheng)
  6. Differentiation by qi, blood and fluids (qi xue jinye bian zheng)
  7. Differentiation by according to the san jiao (san jiao bian zheng)
  8. Differentiation by channels & collateral / acupuncture (jing luo bian zheng)

The Midwest College maintains the historical context of traditional medicine by acknowledging the full range of Energetics syndromes, counteracting the unbalanced focus on the modern bio-medical disease name.  The old saying “same disease different treatment” shows why this multifaceted approach is so important.                                                                                                                 





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This course is a practical study of the internal and external causes of disease within the Eastern medical model. A clear understanding of 'TCM pathologies' is needed in order to apply the sophisticated system of Oriental Medicine based on sign and symptom patterns.
This course consists of procedures of physical and neurological examination; providing an understanding of the methods used in making physical diagnosis.
Courses begin with a review of the normal physiological  processes and then discuss how these are altered by disease.  Students will be able to recognize pathological indicators and biochemical pathways to better correlate the basic science of pathology with physical diagnosis and disorders related to nutrition.
This course is a review of the basic sciences focusing on chemistry, microbiology and human biology. Includes an overview of the basic structures of organic molecules sufficient to understand the structure of chemical compounds studied in human chemistry. This course prepares students for courses in physiology, pathology and other western clinical sciences.
This directed learning paper develops additional competencies in basic sciences. Five pathological disorders from different systems are assigned.
This class concentrates on the processes involved with taking in and utilizing food substances by which growth, repair and maintenance of activities in the body as a whole or in any of its parts are accomplished. This includes ingestion, digestion, absorption and metabolism, as well as, basic nutritional needs and the use of vitamins, minerals and supplements.
This class includes topics in neuroanatomy and neurophysiology. Mechanisms of the nervous system are covered as related to the scientific basis of Acupuncture and its application to the treatment of disease. Students in this class gain the ability to explain the mechanisms of Acupuncture in modern medical terms. Communication skills between Acupuncturists and Medical professionals are stressed.
Students continue to practice needle insertion with combinations of points that would be used in treatment.  There is emphasis on safety with difficult points and more complex point prescriptions.
Students review the anatomical structures through which needles pass at progressive depths of the body.  This includes proper insertion, angle, depth, duration and withdrawl of needles.
At the beginning of the second year, students begin developing needle insertion skills. Students receive intensive instruction in techniques of clean needle insertion as approved by current national standards.
This course helps students develop their skills in organization and analysis of presenting symptoms.  The clinic review class includes evaluation of the physical and psychological components of an illness and specific treatment strategies.
This class covers the basis of treatment using the eight principle and secondary vessel pathology. Students learn to formulate a treatment using the information gathered from pulse and tongue diagnosis. Practical use of classical point categories such as antique points, influential points and windows of the sky points in the treatment of eight principle disease patterns will be covered.
It is in this class that the prior three quarter of TCM theory begin to flower and faculty can see the "light bulb go on", as students get a sense of how well the TCM theory fits together.  At this point, students are beginning their next phase of clinic and now have responsibility of using this information in a clinical setting.
A continuation of Anatomy 1, this course is an in-depth study of visceral structure and physiologic function of the human body.
This course is an in-depth study of the somatic structure of the human body: skeletal, muscular, ligamentous, and an introduction to the peripheral nerves. There is attention given to the palpatory anatomy that will be needed for Point Location and Needle Technique classes.
In this course, students are oriented to the procedures and protocol needed to successfully complete internship. Physical assessment skills needed in the practice of Oriental Medicine are covered including: vital signs, temperature, pulse, and blood pressure. Standards of history taking, SOAP noting and unique documentation found in TCM clinical records are part of this course.
This course includes discussion that brings up pertinent issues in healthcare practice and examines the approach taken by a counselor. It focuses on ethical decision-making and the patient practitioner relationship.
The directed learning paper traces the development of Chinese medicine including: the classics, historical figures and periods, and a discussion of important theoretical developments. It gives students a respect for the ancient traditions from which the modern, clinical practice of TCM developed.
The moral and ethical principles that are the core of the teachings of Confucius and Lao Tzu are taught in a manner that can be applied in present day. The influence of these schools on the development of Chinese medicine is stressed in this course.
This course continues massage techniques to regions of the body for local and systemic problem. Good Tui Na technique combined with accessory techniques is an important adjunct to an acupuncture practice.
Tui Na is a form of Chinese massage that includes different hand techniques applied to specific areas of the body. Students will gain proficiency in manipulation skill and sensitivity to energy balancing as they practice techniques in class and apply them in clinic.
Students will attend lectures, demonstrate and practice in the traditional and modern accessory techniques of Oriental Medicine: moxibustion, magnets, guasha, cupping and auricular techniques.
In this course, students will use charts, models and their fellow students as subjects to locate and mark the most important acupuncture points. Students will spend six quarters developing the sensitivity needed to achieve the Qi sensation required for effective treatment.
In this course, students will use charts, models and their fellow students as subjects to locate and mark the most important acupuncture points. Students will spend six quarters developing the sensitivity needed to achieve the Qi sensation required for effective treatment.
This course further studies the eight principle theory as it applies to the pathology of the five phases, the Zang Fu organs and the triple burner.
The rigorous clinic –based educational experience is designed to take classroom learning and first year theory so have students see the clinical application of concepts during their internship activities and experiences.
This is the first class in Chinese medical theory and introduces students to the language and refinement found in Midwest’s academic program. This class will also establish the foundation from which student’s understandings will grow.