Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I study at World Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture College (WCMAAC)?

Both our program design and the qualification of our teaching staff have the support of the Beijing University of Chinese Medicine (BUCM) as well as the School of Chinese Medicine of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). We also have an agreement with the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS) to hold the “International Qualification Examination for TCM Professionals” here. In other words, there are strict quality controls in place on our programs, our teaching staff, as well as the examinations that we administer. We are in a position to possibly become the best TCM college in North America, and our graduates will therefore possess credible credentials, in terms of both academic and professional competence.

Why would WCMAAC graduates need to write the International Qualification Examination for TCM Professionals?

In 1999, after the Law on Licensed Doctors was passed in the People’s Republic of China, the Accreditation Center of TCM Physician [sic] was established and all graduates of universities of TCM had to pass its public examinations before they were licensed to practice. Clearly, any graudate from any university or college of TCM, both in or outside China, should pass a public examination of competency before practising TCM professionally.

What kind of organization is WFCMS? Are the diplomas that they award recognized?

The World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS) is an international academic organization headquartered in Beijing, China, approved by China’s State Council, and registered in China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs. It has six Decision-Making and Consultation Departments and 31 Specialty Committees that deal with every branch of TCM. As of writing, 195 Chinese medicine societies in 57 countries and regions are members of WFCMS. As TCM is a cultural treasure of China whose value has started to be acknowledged by other nations, the Chinese government has a certain duty for the global development of TCM and the certification of its practitioners.

WFCMS’s Examination Department traces its histroy to the national and international TCM examination centre that the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (SATCM) approved in 1989. In 1994 it was renamed the Accreditation Center of TCM Physician [sic]. On March 5, 2004 it was merged with WFCMS and charged with the coordination of international TCM examinations. As the origin of TCM, China administers TCM examinations that have an indisputable academic standard. In fact, whenever WFCMS is invited to administer an exam outside China, it would send two professors of TCM proficient in the local language to bring the examination papers from China, proctor the exams, and mark the papers. The grading of the examination papers is absolutely fair and the results of the examinations can thus serve as a powerful proof of competency in TCM anywhere in the world.

Further reading: About WFCMS

Can WCMAAC graduate become registered TCM practitioners in Ontario?

It is inevitable that each province (or country or region) will have its own licensing exams. However, the Transitional Council of the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of Ontario (CTCMPAO) has not yet created its own licensing exams. By March 2013, when the registration of TCM practitioners is expected to be completed, it is expected that applicants who have passed WFCMS’s international qualifications examinations will have an advantage over applicants who only have a diploma from a college of TCM. In the case that the advantage fails to materialize, applicants who have passed WFCMS’s examinations should have no difficulty passing Ontario’s licensing exams, as the prorgram requirements for our diploma programs are actually higher than the requirements for passing similar licensing exams in B.C., Alberta, and the States.

How many levels are present in WFCMS’s International Qualification Examinations for TCM practitioners and acupuncturists? Which of WCMAAC’s programs do each of these levels corresponds to?

WFCMS’s International Qualification Examinations for TCM Professionals are divded into five levels. Our Advanced Diploma program corresponds roughly to Level 3. Our Diploma programs correspond to Level 2. Our Certificate programs correspond to Level 1. Writing the exam at the levels 4 and 5 requires first passing Level 2. Canadian and American licensing examinations correspond roughly to Level 2.

My level of English is currently not very high. Is it still possible for me to enroll in a program offered at WCMAAC and work towards becoming a registered TCM practitioner or acupuncturist?

Yes, this is possible, although it will require hard work and determination. Each of our programs include three hours of English training for TCM practitioners in each of our 14-week semesters. If this is not sufficient you can take ESL courses. If you did not graduate from high school you can start by taking single courses first; after passing seven courses and accumulating a minimum of 300 teaching hours you can transfer to a Certificate program. Graduates of any of our Certificate programs can transfer to a Diploma program after passing an approved English proficiency test, and graduates of any of our Diploma programs can transfer to the Advanced Diploma program.

Which of WCMAAC’s programs will enable its graduates to write the future TCM licensing exams offered by CTCPAO in Ontario?

According to the information available at the time of writing (July 2011), CTCPAO’s requirements are roughly equivalent to Level 1 of the International Qualification Examinations for TCM Professionals. Therefore graduates of our Certificate programs will qualify writing the licensing exams.

Is it possible to write the International Qualification Examination for TCM Professionals in a language other than English?

The examination is administered by WFCMS in different languages. Candidates lacking sufficient English proficiency who are not students of WCMAAC may choose to write the examination in French, Chinese, Japanese, or Korean. However, in this case we will still require the candidate to either take an ESL course or pass the TOEFL test because accreditation in Ontario will still require English proficiency.

What kinds of diploma or certificate programs does WCMAAC offer?

We offer three kinds of diploma programs:

  1. TCM and Acupuncture Advanced Diploma program which consists of over 4200 teaching hours of training. Its program requirements are such that graduates are eligible to write WFCMS’s qualification exam at Level 3 provided that sufficient clinical experience is accumulated. Our program requirements, which are slightly higher than those required for TCM and Acupuncture qualification in B.C., fulfil the eligibility requirements for writing the licensing exam for TCM practitioners in Ontario.

  2. The Practitioner of TCM Diploma program which consists of over 3200 teaching hours of training. Its program requirements are such that graduates are eligible to write WFCMS’s qualification exam at Level 2. Our program requirements, which are roughly equivalent to those required for TCM and Acupuncture qualification in B.C., fulfil the eligibility requirements for writing the licensing exam for TCM practitioners in Ontario.

  3. The Acupuncture, Tuina Massage, Chinese Herbal Medicine, and TCM Osteopathy diploma programs, each of which consists of over 2300 teaching hours of training. Program requirements are such that graduates are eligible to write WFCMS’s qualification exam at Level 2 in the subject that is their program of study. The Acupuncture Diploma program, in particular, is comparable to the acupuncture programs in B.C. and Alberta and enables the graduate to be eligible to write the licensing exam for TCM practitioneres in Ontario.

We also offer two kinds of certificate programs:

  1. The Practitioner of TCM Certificate program which consists of over 2000 teaching hours. Its program requirements are such that graduates are eligible to write WFCMS’s qualification exam at Level 1 as well as the licensing exam for TCM practitioners in Ontario.

  2. The Acupuncture, Tuina Massage, Chinese Herbal Medicine, and TCM Osteopathy Certificate programs, each of which consists of over 1700 training hours. The Acupuncture Certificate program, in particular, has academic requirements that enable the graudate to be eligible to write the licensing exam for acupuncturists in Ontario.

How long does it take to complete WCMAAC’s acupuncture diploma or certificate programs?

The Diploma program takes three years or more to complete. The Certificate program takes two years or more. However, since our academic year is trimester based (with 14-week trimesters), courses are also offered in the summer. It is therefore possible to complete the required credits in the summer and fast-track your studies. With the fast-tracking, it is possible to finish a four-year program in two years and eight months, or a three-year program in two years. On the other hand, it is also possible to complete your program on a part-time basis in five to six years.

How much time is needed to complete my chosen program at WCMAAC?

TCM and Acupiuncture Advanced Diploma program takes four years to complete. Diploma programs with a single specialization of Acupuncture, Tuina Massage, Chinese Herbal Medicine or TCM Osteopathy take three years to complete. Practitioner of TCM Diploma programs with two to three specializations take three or more years to complete. Certificate programs take two years or more to complete.

Students enrolled in Certificate programs graduate sooner because many courses that are mandatory in Diploma programs are not mandatory in Certificate programs. In particular, both the Anatomy and TCM Osteopathy overseas practicums are elective; this allows the Certificate student to stay in Canada for the duration of his or her studies and avoid having to finish part of their studies in a Chinese university.

I have already taken one of the required courses in another school. Is it possible for me exempt that course so that I can graduate sooner?

See: Credit Transfer

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5183 Sheppard Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario  M1B 5Z5