The Oregon Medical Board's Acupuncture Advisory Committee wanted to know what POCA Tech is all about. Our members went down and told their story.
Statement on POCA Tech’s program for the June 6 meeting, written by Robert Hayden of the POCA Tech BOD:
POCA Tech’s program is designed to meet the requirements of a standard Master’s level program as defined by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM). The program standards may be found here: https://www.acaom.org/documents/accreditation_manual_712.pdf
The program length will be sufficient to meet ACAOM’s requirements as defined in Criterion 8.1 of the Accreditation Manual.
POCA Tech has included all of the elements necessary to meet ACAOM standards for a Master’s level program in acupuncture. This means that traditional diagnosis will be taught, as will adjunctive techniques such as moxibustion, bloodletting, cupping, etc. The treatment classes will give a range of options to the students, far beyond what most TCM-based programs provide.
Diagnosis classes will not only include TCM-style pulse quality and tongue diagnosis, but will include classical methods like Jingei, Korean Sa-Ahm, and Japanese Meridian Therapy style pulse diagnosis. In addition, there will be channel diagnosis and auricular diagnosis presented.
Treatment classes will include TCM-style treatment strategies, but will focus on the use of Meridian-style strategies such as those of of Master Tung and Richard Tan, as well as the above-mentioned Korean, Japanese and auricular styles. Very few schools will teach such a range of methods and treatment strategies.
In addition, students will be able to apply these treatment approaches in clinic – which is a problem in many schools, where a variety of styles may be presented but the clinic faculty only uses one particular style (usually TCM). Students at POCA Tech will be required to apply critical thinking to all of the approaches taught, and choose the approaches that best fit their clinical experience.
POCA Tech will apply critical thinking skills throughout the program. The program has been written to a higher educational standard – the upper levels in Bloom’s Taxonomy – than many if not most other acupuncture programs. We’ve included Social Justice material, elements of Critical Theory, and parts of acupuncture history that are little-known among most of the profession.
The format for teaching will be a combination of intensive sessions at our campus in Portland, given over 10 weekends per year for three years, with clinic residency during the final six months of the program. Students maintain close contact with one another and the faculty through online interaction, utilizing 21st century technology and methods. This is similar to some other ACAOM-accredited schools, and will allow us to serve students from diverse geographic locations and populations.
The school will undergo a continuous process of self-evaluation and improvement, taking advantage of POCA’s data-gathering infrastructure which has proven to be the most advanced of any acupuncture professional organization, which will include all of the institution’s stakeholders and communities of interest. This is consistent with the school’s Mission and Objectives, as well as ACAOM and US Department of Education requirements.
As stated above, POCA Tech students will be taught the standard elements necessary for eligibility as an ACAOM program, but they will need to learn so much more than that. The students will need to be active learners, self-starting and self-organizing, and need to volunteer their time to POCA and/or member clinics in addition to studying and attending classes. We are looking to our students to be among the best, most engaged, most intelligent and most compassionate acupuncture students anywhere.
For more information and FAQs on POCA Tech, see the website: https://www.pocatech.org/