Admission requirements

While each prospective student is considered on an individual basis, we have prerequisites that all students must meet.

We’d like the opportunity to discuss your qualifications to help you make an informed decision about attending Palmer. Contact an admissions representative or apply today.

Admission standards for the Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) Program – all campuses

There are several ways to qualify for admission to the D.C. program. Multiple factors are taken into consideration during the application-review process. Those factors include credits earned, transfer credits, classes taken, grade point average (GPA) and degree(s) earned.

Palmer College is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). Its D.C. program is professionally accredited by the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE).

Prerequisite calculator >

Doctor of Chiropractic Program

  • Minimum of 90 credit hours
  • 3.0 GPA or greater on a 4.0 scale*
  • 24 semester hours in life and physical sciences, half with labs
  • Official transcript and favorable background check review
  • A well-rounded general education includes required coursework in life and physical sciences; humanities; social and behavioral sciences; and communications and languages. Coursework in each of these domains may include:
    • Life Sciences:
      • Biology (human anatomy, physiology, embryology, genetics, microbiology, immunology, cellular biology, exercise physiology, kinesiology),
      • Chemistry (general chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, biochemistry, toxicology/pharmacology, and nuclear medicine)
    • Physical Sciences: physics, biomechanics, statistics, mathematic
    • Humanities: literature, history, philosophy, art, theater, music, religion, physical education
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences: psychology, sociology, political science, business, economics, geography, anthropology, computer science
    • Communication and Languages: oral communication, written communication, digital communication, foreign languages

*Applicants with less than 24 semester credits in life and physical sciences and/or a cumulative GPA less than 2.75 for degreed students and 3.0 for non-degreed students may be considered under an alternative admissions track plan (AATP). This point of entry requires a more extensive review of the applicant's enrollment factors by both academic and admissions personnel. Decisions for admission are made on a case-by-case basis.

Already have an undergraduate degree?

Palmer values a diverse, broadly educated student body, and that’s why we consider applicants from all undergraduate majors. Some of these majors include:

Health disciplines: pre-medicine and pre-dentistry, as well as exercise physiology, athletic training, kinesiology, physical therapy, biology, nursing, health science and chemistry.

Other disciplines: psychology, marketing, anthropology, management, communications, mathematics, sociology, business, criminal justice, history, liberal studies, engineering, education and religion.

Working on your undergraduate degree now?

If you’re currently an undergraduate student and hope to join the Palmer family, we suggest course work that includes:

  • 24 semester credits of science, with half of those credits with corresponding labs

We suggest labs in:

  • Biology: human anatomy and physiology, embryology, genetics, microbiology, immunology, cellular biology, exercise physiology and kinesiology
  • Chemistry: general chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, biochemistry, toxicology/pharmacology, nutrition and nuclear medicine
  • Physical sciences: physics, biomechanics and statistics

This download contains a quick one-page overview of recommended courses for future students.

Save time and money. Check out our D.C. Degree Pathways and see how you can save one year of time and tuition dollars.

How admissions guidelines are determined

The Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) sets the above admissions guidelines. The CCE is recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education for the accreditation of programs and institutions offering the Doctor of Chiropractic degree. Palmer also is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (contact information).

Master of Science in Clinical Research

Continue your education as part of a clinical research team in large clinical trials. Conduct patient-oriented research in our extensive, world renowned research facility.

Part of your role will be to develop high-quality research proposals. To succeed, you'll need a strong academic background with the ability to search, read, synthesize and interpret scientific literature. We’re looking for students with appropriate credentials and a strong background in health care, such as a Doctor of Chiropractic degree.

You'll need:

  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
  • A professional doctoral degree from an accredited, health profession institution.
  • A minimum overall grade point average of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale.

To learn more, email us or call (800) 682-1625 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. (CST).

Bachelor of Science in General Science

At Palmer, you can complete your bachelor’s degree while working toward your Doctor of Chiropractic degree.

The Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in General Science degree complements the D.C. degree. Your B.S. degree coursework will enhance your ability to successfully earn a D.C. degree and will build a solid foundation for your future as a chiropractor.

The minimum program requirements are 120 total credit hours:

Candidates must have applied to the Doctor of Chiropractic Program (DCP), have a cumulative grade point average of 2.25 on a 4.0 scale, and have completed 45 college-level credit hours. Candidates who are not currently enrolled in the DCP and who have a minimum of 45 credit hours, may be selected if they have completed an application for the DCP at Palmer College of Chiropractic.

  • 30 credit hours of basic science courses from the Palmer DCP.
  • 90 credit hours of undergraduate courses (60 credit hours freshman/sophomore level and 30 credit hours junior/senior level) from an institution or institutions accredited at the college level by an accrediting body that is nationally recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education. No grade below a “C” (2.0 on a 4.0 scale) will be accepted toward the Bachelor of Science in General Science Degree.
  • Up to 15 credit hours may be granted from coursework in vocational/technical programs (transferable as freshman/sophomore level courses).
  • Up to 20 credit hours of College Level Examination Program (CLEP) credit may be granted (transferable as freshman/sophomore level courses).

Get a head start with these credits:

  • Earn up to 15 hours credit for vocational/technical programs. (Credits may be granted towards freshman/sophomore level courses.)
  • Earn up to 20 credit hours through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). (Credits may be granted towards freshman/sophomore level courses.)
  • Earn up to 35 credit hours from a previous undergraduate degree.

Credit hours at-a-glance

These are the minimum hours you must take by category:

  • Natural and Physical Sciences - 24 credit hours. Includes biology, chemistry, physics, geology, astronomy and nutrition.
  • Humanities - 6 credit hours. Includes literature, history, philosophy, art, theater, music, religion and physical education.
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences - 9 credit hours. Includes psychology, sociology, political science, business, economics, geography, anthropology and computer science.
  • Communication and Languages - 9 credit hours. Includes classical languages, foreign languages, English, communication and speech communication.
  • Mathematics - 3 credit hours. Includes algebra, physics, statistics, math for statistics, applied math and calculus.

Other types of courses will be reviewed and considered for credit by the Undergraduate Program Oversight Committee.

To learn more please contact the Undergraduate Studies Department by email or call (563) 884-5867.

Recommended courses checklist

This checklist features the top recommended classes that you should consider when enrolling in an undergraduate program.

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Palmer curriculum topics

The checklist provides a broad overview of the topics that are covered by our highly skilled team of accomplished instructors.

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