There are a number of different chiropractic prerequisites, including earning a bachelor's degree, attending chiropractic school, and obtaining a state license in the United States. The state license cannot be earned until the aspiring chiropractor takes and passes an examination. During his or her schooling, the future chiropractor must excel in relevant scientific areas of study, as well as in hands-on experience with actual patients.
One of the main educational chiropractic prerequisites is obtaining a bachelor's degree, usually in some type of science. Chiropractors specialize in the alignment of human body's joints, which normally includes spinal manipulation; the aspiring chiropractor must be therefore be well-versed in natural science, from biology to chemistry, to safely treat patients. Common majors can include the life sciences, as well as the social sciences, like psychology.
The majority of the undergraduate courses must be completed before beginning a chiropractic school curriculum. This specialized program lasts for approximately four years; students will immerse themselves in the physiology and anatomy of the human body. In addition, courses can encompass working with geriatric patients and children to ensure that the aspiring chiropractor can treat people of all ages in a safe manner. Before choosing a chiropractic school, it is good practice to select an institution that is accredited by the government; unaccredited programs do not fulfill official chiropractic prerequisites to practice within the United States.
Chiropractic prerequisites usually demand both the mastery of scientific theory, as well as hands-on clinical experience. The first two years of chiropractic school normally involve concentrated lectures and studies regarding the human body; the last two years, however, allow the student to work within an actual clinical atmosphere. Students will manipulate and treat patients under supervision to enhance their understanding of chiropractic skills.
Completion of chiropractic school readies the student for a state examination. Each state within the United States requires a license for practicing chiropractors. The student should test in the state where he or she intends to work; the license will not be valid in another state. For example, obtaining a license in Delaware does not qualify the chiropractor to practice in Maine.
Many chiropractic schools offer exam preparation classes for their students. The examination usually includes scientific theory questions, as well as clinical application inquiries. Preparatory classes will explain the test format and even provide practice tests to make each student comfortable with the process. As a result of this preparation and practice, the student will generally feel more confident when taking the official state exam.