Getting to Class: The academic schedule at NYCC
Wednesday, September 5th was my first day of class at New York Chiropractic College. My alarm sounded at 7 AM, I showered and shoveled down some breakfast, and by 8:00 I was sitting among my 122 First Trimester classmates for an introductory class called Reflections on Chiropractic. This was to be the beginning of a very busy class schedule, with 32 hours spent in lectures and labs each week.
Like other health care professionals, my classes here begin with a rigorous background in basic sciences before they shift over to clinical sciences later in my education. For a little taste, here are the classes that my fellow first-trimester students and I will attend this fall:
- Cell and Tissue Biology (with histology lab) – 5 credits, 6 hours per week
- Gross Anatomy 1 (with cadaver lab) – 5 credits, 7 hr/wk
- Neuroscience 1 (with cadaver lab) – 5 credits, 6 hr/wk
- Principles of Biochemistry – 3 credits, 3 hr/wk
- Chiropractic Philosophy & History – 2 credits, 2 hr/wk
- Technique 1: Introduction to Palpation – 1 credit, 2 hr/wk
- Technique 2: Psychomotor Skills – 1 credit, 2 hr/wk
- Reflections on Chiropractic – 1 credit, 4 hr/wk
This schedule will continue until break in December. At NYCC the academic calendar is broken into three trimesters each year, and the program lasts for a total of ten trimesters, or 3.3 years. Short holidays of just a couple weeks break up each trimester. This is an accelerated schedule, covering what the Association of Chiropractic Colleges considers to be 4 years of material.
Outside of class, so far I have found that studying takes up most of the rest of my time. One instructor noted that in college a healthy dose of studying is often considered 3 hours out of class for every 1 hour in class. That would mean 128 hours in class or studying, which would not even leave time for the eight hours of sleep per night recommended in Neurology. So of course, the situation is not quite that extreme, but during the week I can be almost guaranteed to be studying, eating, running or writing at all times.
“Don’t study more, study smart,” one professor noted, and my classmates and I have spent much of the first weeks learning to do just that.
New York Chiropractic College. Curriculum Summary. Available at: http://www.nycc.edu/webdocs/registrar/DC_Curriculum.pdf. Accessed September 21, 2012
New York Chiropractic College. Academic Calendar. Available at: http://www.nycc.edu/webdocs/registrar/acadCalendar.pdf. Accessed September 21, 2012
One reader noted via the NYCC Facebook page that the curriculum as he understood is 10 semesters or 5 academic years. Rumor has it that the NYCC curriculum was a full 5 calendar years in the past, but the curriculum guidelines that the Association of Chiropractic Colleges adheres to now state 4 years as the standard. This information came from the ACC page on curriculum, which you can view here: http://www.chirocolleges.org/prospective_students.html. Thanks to Bill for speaking up!