Welcome to the web site of the Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. The Council is a 501(c)(6) voluntary membership association for acupuncture schools and programs in the U.S. Established in 1982, the Council's primary mission is to support member institutions to deliver educational excellence and quality patient care. The vision of the organization is to maximize opportunities available to graduates of its member schools to achieve their full potential in healthcare in the United States.
Currently the Council consists of 54 acupuncture schools. As a requirement of membership, all of the Council's member schools have obtained either full accreditation or accreditation candidacy status with the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM), the only national organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education to accredit AOM schools and programs in the U.S.
The membership of the Council meets twice each year to engage in committee work, conduct strategic planning (approximately every two years), host special panels and workshops on topics of interest to its members, and participate in plenary business sessions. Each of these activities provides a forum for Council members to come together with their colleagues for dialogue and planning around the major issues affecting AOM education and the AOM profession. The meetings also provide additional benefits through an opportunity for Council members to hear reports from other national AOM organizations and to share information and resources among themselves in an atmosphere of collegiality and mutual support.
The Council administers a national needle safety course known as the Clean Needle Technique Course. This course is required by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) to take the Commission's national certification examination in acupuncture. As an important verification of an acupuncture graduate's safe needling technique, the CNT course contributes to the high confidence level in the safety of acupuncture by patients, regulators, and third party payors in the U.S.
As recommendations for ACAOM, the Council developed academic and clinical guidelines and core curriculum requirements for first-professional master's level programs in acupuncture and in Oriental medicine. The Council also developed core curriculum recommendations to ACAOM for master's level programs in Chinese herbology and for post-graduate doctoral programs in acupuncture and in Oriental medicine. The Council was also represented on ACAOM's Doctoral Task Force for the development of standards for the first-professional doctoral degree.
Beginning in 2005, the Council annually has invited the leadership of other national AOM organizations to an informal dialogue concerning issues of interest to the profession, including a discussion of the work plans of each organization and opportunities for mutual collaboration. These meetings serve not only to inform the Council of the views of other organizations when the Council reviews its strategic plan, but also to enhance mutual understanding among all the participating organizations.
The Council's primary focus on advancing AOM by promoting educational excellence in the field is complemented by its participation in a number of other organizations whose work is consistent with that goal. Within the AOM field, the Council is a member of the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (AAAOM) and provides representation to various task forces of ACAOM. Outside the AOM field, the Council is a member of the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (ACCAHC), National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions (NAAHP), Society for Acupuncture Research (SAR), and the International Tiger Coalition (ITC).