Dual Diplomas of Acupuncture and Phytotherapy
Study Option Overview
This opportunity to earn dual diplomas in Acupuncture and Phytotherapy from one institution is a world-first. Both 3-year (6-semester) programs can be completed within 5 academic years (10 semesters). By electing a year-round study option, a student can complete both programs in 3.5 years.
Below is a list of all courses that must be completed for a student to be eligible for graduation with a Diplomas of Acupuncture and a Diploma of Phytotherapy. Some course prerequisites do exist, and it is the responsibility of students to ensure that they are eligible to enrol in any particular course. Please click on course links below to see more course information including descriptions and prerequisites.
Chinese Medicine Clinical Practice
Phytotherapy Clinical Practice
Western Herbal Sciences
Both the School of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine and the School of Phytotherapy offer year-round educational opportunities with an academic calendar based on 3 semesters per year. New students may enrol every January, May and September and students may either choose to pursue year-round studies or to take a semester or more off at their discretion. By choosing their course load each semester, students may complete any semester on a part-time or a full-time basis.
Students who wish not to enrol in any program are also eligible to take individual courses for personal enrichment provided that applicable course prerequisites have been met. Please see Non-Matriculating Students below for more information.
Students aiming to be Registered Acupuncturists in British Columbia must complete the Diploma of Acupuncture program in no less than 2 calendar years and in no more than 5.
Students in the Diploma of Acupuncture and Diploma of Phytotherapy programs can complete all clinical training in PRC’s on-campus Student Clinic, or can participate in our Global Outreach Program, Clinical Externship Program, or with our clinical partner in China, Liaoning University of TCM. Full-time students generally begin clinical training via observation during the very first week of studies.
Graduates of the Diploma of Phytotherapy are eligible for membership into the Canadian Herbalist’s Association of British Columbia (CHA of BC), the American Herbalists Guild (AHG), and the Ontario Herbalists Association (OHA).
Graduates of the Diploma of Acupuncture program who have met the requirements of the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists (CTCMA) of BC, which includes 60 university credits of liberal arts or sciences, will be eligible to sit for the Canadian national registration exam to become Registered Acupuncturists (R.Ac.) in the province of British Columbia. Based on reciprocity agreements, this distinction permits registrants to practice acupuncture across Canada.
Past graduates who have completed required electives in appropriate disciplines have also met the professional standards set by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) in the United States. This has permitted them to sit for the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) acupuncture examination and thus be licensed in the majority of US states. PRC graduates aiming for licensure in the United States must have their credentials evaluated by ACCRAO.
The 3-year program is an intensive curriculum that will lay the foundation for your life. Not only will you be learning skills in Herbal Medicine, you will be learning skills for your own personal development as well as your business!
– Krista Poulton, Alumnus
Practitioner licensing requirements vary based on region of governance. The Diploma of Acupuncture program is approved by the CTCMA of BC and meets the education requirements of many other provinces, states and countries. The Diploma of Phytotherapy is recognized by numerous practitioner bodies and organizations. It is students’ responsibility to ensure they meet eligibility criteria in their chosen region.
Admission into both the Diploma of Acupuncture and Diploma of Phytotherapy is on a competitive basis. Entering students must have a high school diploma or an equivalency test. In addition, all non-native English speaking applicants must demonstrate a mastery of written and spoken English. Any foreign applicant may be required to submit an official score report from an English proficiency exam such as TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Test System).
Pacific Rim College is determined to produce only the highest quality health practitioners. As a result, we reserve the right to admit and to retain only students who demonstrate the potential to achieve at the upper-most level. Applicants will be evaluated based on merits such as high academic achievement, emotional maturity, humanitarian activities, morality, community involvement and health-related experience.
To apply for admission, please click on the link below. Applicants are encouraged to apply apply no less than 6 weeks prior to the start date of the semester. Applications will still be accepted beyond this point, and will be evaluated, but enrolment space may not be available until the next semester. Upon favourable review of your application by our admissions committee, you may be contacted for an interview, which may be carried out via telephone if a person-to-person interview is not possible.
All successful applicants must submit a non-refundable enrolment deposit of $200, which is credited toward tuition fees. Should a student decide not to enrol for the specific semester of study as stated in the application form, the fee is forfeited and cannot be used to offset any charges that the student may incur. All accepted applicants must submit this deposit within 14 days of the date of acceptance if accepted more than 60 days prior to the semester start date, or within 7 days of the date of acceptance if accepted 60 days or fewer prior to the semester start date. Official date of acceptance is the date indicated on the applicant’s acceptance letter. Enrolment space will not be reserved without this deposit.
I love teaching herbal medicine at Pacific Rim College. Students are keen, apothecary is incredible. It is a magical place that celebrates plants and healing at a high level of intuition, intelligence and imagination.
– Robert Rogers, author of Fungal Pharmacy
Students who have earned credits in another recognized Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine program in North America can apply for transfer into the School of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine at PRC. Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AOM) transfer students need to complete the equivalent of one year of coursework (46 credits) at PRC to be eligible to receive a diploma, and all eligible AOM-school credits will be transferred for a total transfer fee of $150 for each AOM college attended. Contact our Admissions Office today for more information.
Phytotherapy students may also apply for transfer credit for prior coursework. Transfer credit fees applies.
International students are welcome to attend Pacific Rim College and are encouraged to apply. Canadian law requires foreign students to have a valid study permit to study in Canada. Pacific Rim College provides international students with the necessary documentation to receive a valid study permit. In some cases students can apply for and obtain a permit upon entering Canada.
From the incredibly knowledgeable teaching staff to the friendly administration, PRC really does a lot to nurture and inspire its students. Our clinical training is extensive and unparallelled in the field of herbal medicine, giving students an opportunity to gain real therapeutic experience in a professional setting with expert supervision.
– Tony Acworth, Alumnus
Via the International Student Program, full-time international students enrolled at designated institutions in certain programs are permitted to work part-time off campus and full-time during scheduled school breaks without a work permit. According to regulations, international students are 1) eligible to work off campus without a work permit; 2) allowed to work off campus for up to 20 hours per week during a regular academic session and full-time during regularly scheduled breaks; and 3) able to work off campus immediately rather than waiting 6 months. Please visit the Government of Canada website for more information.
Students who wish to take courses at PRC without enrolling in any particular program are welcome to do so as non-matriculating students. Provided that a student has satisfied course prerequisites, he or she is eligible to enrol in virtually any diploma program course. Enrolment priority is given to program students, and full course tuition is due at time of course registration. Any student who has previously been denied admission into any program at PRC or has had an enrolment position revoked must receive written permission from PRC Administration before enrolling as a non-matriculating student. PRC reserves the right to academically dismiss any non-matriculating student who knowingly or blatantly interferes with the learning of program students. Please click on the link below to see a current selection of courses and for registration info.
|Summer 2019||Fall 2019||Winter 2020|
|Orientation||May 5||September 2||January 5|
|First Day of Class||May 6||September 3||January 6|
|Reading Break||July 1-5||October 14-18||February 18-20|
|Holidays||May 20 (Victoria Day)|
July 1 (Canada Day)
August 5 (BC Day)
|October 14 (Thanksgiving)|
November 11 (Remembrance Day)
|February 17 (Family Day)|
April 10 (Good Friday)
|Last Day of Class||August 26||December 23||April 24|
|Graduation Ceremony||May 11|
Please click below for the current and upcoming (when available) course schedules for the Diplomas of Acupuncture and Phytotherapy.
Tuition and Fees
Tuition is based on a per credit system. Although the college provides a template for course completion within each program, ultimately each student determines his or her course load and schedule and thus per semester tuition. Audited credits do not apply towards graduation requirements. All prices listed are in Canadian dollars. For each semester, full tuition payment is due on the first day of class.
Auditing: $150*/credit / $80**/credit
**Discount Audit tuition is available to current program students and diploma alumni. Current program students must maintain the equivalent registration of 9 semester credits to be eligible and pay the regular rate should registration drop below that threshold. Discounted audit rate is not available for courses for which there is a waitlist, weekend workshops, or CPR and First Aid. Diploma alumni no longer enrolled in a program are required to pay all applicable tuition at the time of course registration.
Please click here for a description of Academic Fees in PDF format.
These programs are approved for Canada Student Loans. British Columbia residents can apply for student loans online through StudentAid BC. Students can also pick up a paper application from PRC or any other academic institution registered with Canada Student Loans. For non-British Columbia residents, please visit hrsdc.gc.ca for information about Canada Student Loans.
For a list of all financial aid programs available to PRC students, please visit our Financial Aid page.