SIOM’s single purpose is to train the most effective practitioners possible through our programs.


The Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine (SIOM) represents a modern take on the age-old model of apprenticeship training: one experienced teacher working with a small group of students focused on the clinical interaction with a patient.Using this approach not only allows us to provide the highest level of clinical training available today, it also grounds our program in the traditional methodologies used for centuries in the training of medical practitioners. Enrolling at SIOM means that you accept the challenges of a demanding medical school program. It means that you are willing to put your own needs and desires aside for the good of your patients. It means that you recognize that East Asian medicine is a varied tradition with many paths leading to effective patient care. And finally, it means that you are committed to being an active, self-motivated participant in your own learning process.

SIOM offers an accredited master ’s degree in acupuncture (M.Ac.), an accredited master’s degree in acupuncture and Oriental medicine (M.Ac.O.M.), and a doctoral degree in acupuncture and herbal medicine (D.A.H.M.).  These programs are based on the philosophy that a small group of students, working in the clinic and classroom with experienced faculty practitioners, will gain a deep awareness of the vitality of East Asian approaches to health.  The educational approach at SIOM emphasizes learning a variety of approaches to the medicine with a hands-on focus that insures sufficient practical and clinical expertise for graduates to be competent and successful in their profession.

Key differences between SIOM and other programs:

  • Real clinical training begins within weeks of entering the program. 
  • Our small size means that faculty know you personally. 
  • The SIOM curriculum includes a variety of approaches to qi cultivation, channel and point palpation, diagnosis, acupuncture techniques and herbal therapies from China, Japan, Europe and American medical systems.  
  • A minimum of ten years of experience treating patients is required for our faculty. 
  • SIOM students learn medical Chinese. 
  • Our graduates succeed in clinical practice and stay in practice. 

Both of SIOM’s master's degrees are accredited by the Accreditation Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM), eligible for financial aid, and lead to licensure in Washington state as well as states around the country (see the individual state licensure requirements for whether a M.Ac. or M.Ac.O.M. is required).

SIOM’s doctoral degree (D.A.H.M.) includes the three years of study in the M.Ac.O.M. plus an additional year of clinical practice and individualized specialty training.  Those enrolled in this program receive licensure at the end of three years through their enrollment in the accredited M.Ac.O.M. program.

The D.A.H.M. is not accredited or reaccredited by ACAOM at this time.  Graduates of the D.A.H.M. program are not considered to have graduated from an ACAOM accredited or candidate program and may not rely on ACAOM accreditation or candidacy for professional licensure or other purposes.  This program is eligible for ACAOM accreditation and SIOM is in the process of seeking ACAOM candidacy/accreditation for the program.  However SIOM can provide no assurance that candidacy or accreditation will be granted by ACAOM.   SIOM also does not have financial aid for the fourth year of this program.