The curriculum for Palmer’s Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degree consists of two components:

  1. Clinical meta-competencies that are mandated by the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE)
  2. Palmer Abilities, which present our vision of the knowledge, skills and attitudes demonstrated by our D.C. graduates.

To graduate, you’re required to complete a minimum of five traditional academic years in the prescribed curriculum. At Palmer, students study year-round in order to complete those requirements in just three and one-third years.

Students transferring from other accredited chiropractic colleges must complete a minimum of 25 percent of the prescribed curriculum while in residence at Palmer College. In addition, the final academic year prior to graduation must be completed at the Palmer campus where the degree is being awarded.

Download our curriculum overview >

CCE Meta-Competencies

  • Assessment & Diagnosis
  • Management Plan
  • Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
  • Communication and Record Keeping
  • Professional Ethics and Jurisprudence
  • Information and Technology Literacy
  • Intellectual and Professional Development
CCE Accreditation Standards >

The components skills associated with the Palmer Abilities and the CCE Meta-Competencies include:

  • History Taking
  • Physical Examination
  • Neuromusculoskeletal Examination
  • The Psychosocial Assessment
  • Diagnostic Studies
  • Diagnosis or Clinical Impression
  • Case Management
  • Adjusting Competencies
  • Emergency Care Competencies
  • Case Follow-up and Review
  • Record Keeping
  • The Doctor-Patient Relationship
  • Professional Issues
  • Wellness and Public Health
  • Ethics and Integrity
  • Non-adjustive Therapeutic Procedures
  • Nutrition
  • Patient Education
  • Business Management Issues
  • Chiropractic History and Philosophy
  • Information Literacy

In addition to learning each skill, students will be able to associate with it a cognitive, affective and psychomotor component.

For example, a student studying radiology examination should, among other things, be able to demonstrate knowledge of the various physical and chemical processes involved in taking an X-ray, demonstrate an attitudinal awareness of patient apprehensions and discomfort, and demonstrate the capability to select a proper exposure.

Curriculum overview

As part of our D.C. curriculum you’ll take courses in the basic sciences, chiropractic technique, chiropractic philosophy and business management. Under the supervision of a doctor of chiropractic, you’ll also care for patients in Palmer College outpatient and community outreach clinics.