top of page

Educational Requirements for Chiropractors

Often the question comes up asking about the education for chiropractors and to my surprise many do not know of all the requirements and steps it takes to become a licensed Doctor of Chiropractic. Like most professions, the requirements vary state by state, so in order to be as concise as possible, I will cover the requirements for our state, Iowa. First, in the state of Iowa, you need to have graduated from a Council on Chiropractic Education accredited college (1). Here in Iowa we are lucky enough to have the founding school of chiropractic and my alma mater, Palmer College of Chiropractic located in Davenport. There are several other accredited schools across the country including Palmer’s other campus in Port Orange, FL, Life University in Marietta, GA, and Logan University in Chesterfield, MO to name a few (2).

In order to be admitted to Palmer-Davenport, aspiring students must have: earned a minimum of 90 credit hours from an accredited university or college, a 3.0 GPA or higher, 24 credit hours in life and physical sciences (half of which have labs) (3). The undergraduate science courses that would prepare one best for the Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) program would be in the areas of biology, physiology, anatomy, chemistry, physics, biomechanics and psychology. Once in the program, the first year is a vigorous submersion into the life sciences previously mentioned. Classes at Palmer go year round with small breaks for holidays and time between trimesters. The second year of coursework is focused more toward doctor related material in the fields of physical diagnosis, neuromusculoskeletal diagnosis, radiology, physiotherapy and of course adjusting technique courses. After the first two years of the program, you enter into the clinical component. This phase consists of caring for patients from their initial exam, adjusting according to their treatment plans, taking and interpreting radiographs if needed, as well as all of the fun paperwork associated with it.

What has been mentioned thus far is what you are required to go through and pass in order to graduate from Palmer. However, there are still board examinations you need to pass in order to become a licensed D.C. For chiropractors, there are five parts of the board examination process. Parts I, II, III, and IV are taken throughout the program after completing the necessary coursework to qualify. Additionally, there is a physiotherapy board that is required to obtain your license in some states, Iowa being one of them (1).

If you know anyone who is interested in pursuing a career in chiropractic, have them reach out to Dr. Kennedy and he would be more than happy to answer questions!


6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Landmark Opioid Study

What is being called a “Landmark” trial study has shown something that impacts all patients suffering from low back and neck pain. The study which is being called “the OPAL trial” is the first randomi

Mid Back Pain and Chiropractic

Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to help with neck and low back pain, but what about mid back or thoracic pain? Chances are you already know the answer! The thoracic spine or the middle aspect

Supplement Safety

When it comes to most consumer products in the United States, there is typically a large amount of regulation surrounding them. In most scenarios, the safety regulations have been put in place for goo


bottom of page