2024's Best Chiropractic Schools in the Nation

Written By: Editorial Staff @ NursingProcess.org

Is getting a chiropractic degree worth it? It can be if you’re after a healthcare career that offers autonomy, a generous salary, and the opportunity to make a positive difference in your clients’ lives. Many graduates of chiropractic schools in the nation go on to establish independent practices, which means they can be their own boss, setting their own hours. Career opportunities for chiropractors are growing; demand for chiropractic services is projected to increase 10 percent in the next 10 years. Chiropractors make good money, too: Across all parts of the U.S., the average chiropractic salary is $83,720 annually. This guide will provide you with all the information you need to know about the 15 best chiropractic schools in the nation for 2024.


How We Ranked the Best Chiropractic Schools?

Factor Weightage
1. Year Wise Weightage Assigned for NBCE Exam Completion Rates 2018 = 0.10 70%
2019 = 0.20
2020 = 0.30
2021 = 0.40
2. Number of Students who Attempted any or all Parts (I, II, III, IV) of NBCE Exam in the last 4 years (2018-2021) 30%

Ranking FAQ

Why Only CCE Accredited Schools were considered for our National Ranking?

CCE is the only accrediting agency for chiropractic education in the United States. The agency reviews programs for quality and the overall learning experience. A program accredited by CCE is an assurance of receiving chiropractic education that has gone through a stringent quality check. Keeping this in mind, we have ensured that only CCE accredited schools make it to our ranking.

Why 70% of weightage was assigned to NBCE Exam completion rates?

We have allotted a maximum weightage of 70% to the NBCE Exam completion rates as the success on this exam is crucial to obtain chiropractic licensure in any state. The exam tests the knowledge of candidates, covering every aspect of practice as a chiropractor. Schools with a high exam completion rate indicate students being well prepared with professional knowledge and skills.

Why 30% of weightage was assigned to Number of Students who attempted the NBCE Exam?

The number of students who attempt to take the NBCE exam is directly proportional to the number of students who are being trained by the college to become a chiropractor. We have considered this factor as it testifies consistency of the faculty in delivering the curriculum.

Where was the NBCE Completion Rate Data Collected from?

The NBCE completion rate data was collected from individual college websites.

What are the Best Chiropractic Schools Accredited by CCE in the Nation for 2024?

1. Life University

Location: Marietta, Georgia
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 4 Years

Life University, located in a suburb of Atlanta, holds the reputation of being the largest single-campus chiropractic institute in the world. The 110-acre campus, established in 1974, is also home to the Applied Clinical Neuroscience Institute, which is a global leader in chiropractic neurology research and vestibular therapy.

The 14-semester long sequential chiropractic training at LIFE starts four times every year (January, April, July & October) and usually takes students 14 quarters to complete. Each quarter is around 11 weeks long, which also includes a week for exams. Coursework focuses on basic life sciences like anatomy, physiology, and biochemistry as well as on specific chiropractic assessments and techniques, and practice management skills. This program’s clinical focus is on the relief of vertebral subluxation complexes, which are spinal misalignments that may not show up on X-rays but may be responsible for symptoms like pain and range of motion limitations.

2. Cleveland University

Location: Overland Park, Kansas
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.3 years

Cleveland University is one of the oldest non-profit chiropractic colleges in the United States, and 1 out of every 10 chiropractors practicing in North America is a graduate of this institution. Many people throughout the Kansas City Area rely upon the University’s Health Center as their primary health care provider.

Cleveland University’s Doctor of Chiropractic training is an accelerated 10-trimester program, which typically takes three and one-third years to complete; the University is flexible, however, when students need more time to complete degree requirements. Incoming students can begin in September, January, or May. You’ll start practicing hands-on techniques your very first trimester. Students spend their tenth trimester as interns in a variety of clinical settings, including Cleveland University’s Health Center, the Kansas City CARE Clinic, and the local Veterans Administration. The University also sponsors a preceptor program that allows new graduates to work hand-in-hand with established practitioners in locations throughout the nation.

3. University of Western States

Location: Portland, Oregon
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3 - 4 Years

The University of Western States, which was founded in 1904, is the second-oldest chiropractic educational provider in the world. It is also the first chiropractic educational provider to receive a grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (USHRSA): USHRSA is an agency dedicated to improving access to health care among underserved populations.

The University’s rigorous Doctor of Chiropractic program is a 12-quarter curriculum that can be completed in three years. Students have the option of taking summers off, however, and completing the program in four years. The University accepts incoming students in October and January of each year. Students sit for the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners exam in their fifth quarter, and the ninth and tenth quarters are taken up with clinical internships at the Campus Health Center. Doctor of Chiropractic students also have the opportunity to pursue concurrent Master’s degrees in human nutrition, sports and exercise, and sport and performance psychology.

4. Palmer College of Chiropractic

Location: Davenport, Iowa | San Jose, California | Port Orange, Florida
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.4 Years

Palmer College of Chiropractic is both a training institute for chiropractic clinicians and a renowned research center. Current scientific investigations include a project exploring the benefits of chiropractic care for veterans. This project is funded by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, which is an agency under the auspices of the National Institutes of Health.

The Doctor of Chiropractic program is a three-and-a-half-year long curriculum at all three Palmer chiropractic schools in the nation. Incoming classes are admitted in March, July, and November in Davenport and in January, April, July, and October in San Jose and Port Orange. The curriculum includes classes in basic sciences, chiropractic techniques, chiropractic philosophy, and business management. The College also offers specialized hands-on workshops in specialty areas like sports chiropractic and pediatric chiropractic as well as internship programs.

Upon graduation, you can either start your own clinic or take up a job in a healthcare organization or even pursue careers in teaching.

5. Parker University

Location: Dallas, Texas
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.4 Years

Parker University maintains a traditional view of chiropractic where the emphasis is on subluxations and how to relieve them. The University operates two chiropractic therapy clinics: one in Dallas and the other in nearby Irving.

The 10-trimester Doctor of Chiropractic program focuses upon basic sciences as well as upon chiropractic principles and the fundamentals of diagnostic imaging. Students are introduced to hands-on techniques in their third semester. Although the school does not require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree, students without bachelor’s degrees are strongly encouraged to complete either a Bachelor of Science in Anatomy or a Bachelor of Science in Health and Wellness concurrently with their chiropractic studies. Students spend their last three trimesters pursuing internship practicums in either one of the two clinics affiliated with the College.

6. Logan University

Location: Chesterfield, Missouri
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3 Years

Logan University is a special focus college that provides chiropractic education with a strong focus on hands-on learning. It is the only program in the nation which trains students in 15-different chiropractic techniques. The Logan Basic Technique, which is widely used by chiropractors around the world, was first developed here.

The Doctor of chiropractic students begin practicing hands-on body mechanics right from Year One of the three-year curriculum. By the time they start their second year at the University, they will be spending 90 percent of their time developing their clinical skill sets under the supervision of teaching clinicians. The third-year is entirely devoted to clinical rotations. Clinical opportunities include stints at St. Louis’s Affinia Healthcare system, which provides services for underinsured and uninsured patients, and St. Louis’s CareSTL Health Hospital. Logan University interns also provide chiropractic care to athletes associated with four nearby schools: Harris–Stowe State University, Lindenwood University, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and University of Missouri.

7. Northwestern Health Sciences University

Location: Bloomington, Minnesota
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.5 years

Northwestern Health Sciences University focuses on alternative healing regimens. In addition to its chiropractic training, the University also offers educational programs in acupuncture, oriental medicine, and therapeutic massage. Through its clinical network, which encompasses several natural care centers as well as more than 150 private-practice clinics, the University sees more than 65,000 patients every year.

The College of Chiropractic’s Doctor of Chiropractic degree program admits new students twice a year in January and in September. The curriculum takes ten trimesters to complete, and most students complete their training in three and a half years. Training in hands-on techniques begins during the first trimester; the final trimester is entirely dedicated to a clinical internship at one of the sites in the University’s network.

The College of Chiropractic also offers a popular Doctor of Chiropractic – Sports Emphasis program, which provides care for National Football League alumni as well as for high-profile teams like the Minnesota Vixen, Minnesota Freeze and Minnesota Alliance Brazilian Jiu Jitsu/Crossfit.

8. New York Chiropractic College

Location: Seneca Falls, New York
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.4 Years

New York Chiropractic College has been educating health professionals for nearly a century. The college offers training in acupuncture, oriental medicine, clinical nutrition, sports nutrition, and diagnostic imaging as well as chiropractic. The college faculty is well-recognized across the world for their contribution to the field of chiropractic medicine.

The 10-trimester Doctor of Chiropractic program takes three years and four months to complete. In addition to basic science classes like anatomy, biochemistry, and microbiology, students learn the basics of practice management. Students are introduced to chiropractic techniques in their first trimester, and before they graduate, they will have completed a full, one-year internship. Clinical rotations take place in conjunction with health care providers that include Veterans Administration medical centers in Florida and upstate New York; University of Rochester Medical Center; Walter Reed National Military Center and the College’s own network of clinics in Seneca Falls, Buffalo/Depew, Rochester, and Long Island/Levittown. Students will also be well prepared to take national board exams both in the U.S. and Canada.

9. National University of Health Sciences

Location: Lombard, Illinois | Seminole, Florida
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.4 Years

National University of Health Sciences offers training in integrative health fields such as chiropractic, acupuncture, oriental medicine, and massage therapy. Students can also pursue a doctor of naturopathic medicine degree. Although the disciplines it teaches can be described as alternative, the University is fully in the camp of evidence-based medicine.

This Doctor of Chiropractic program will prepare you to become your patients’ primary health care provider. Instruction in hands-on manipulations and adjustments begins in chiropractic lab rooms during the very first term. Phase 1 of the curriculum covers basic sciences, while Phase 2 is devoted to clinical sciences. In Phase 3, you will be assigned to a clinical internship at campus-affiliated Whole Health Clinics either in Lombard or Aurora (Lombard students) or in St. Petersburg or Pinellas Park (Florida students.) The University also offers numerous electives in practice management and sports medicine.

10. Sherman College of Chiropractic

Location: Spartanburg, South Carolina
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3 ½ years

Sherman College of Chiropractic is an exponent of the vertebral subluxation-based school of chiropractic philosophy. The college’s Chiropractic Health Center is open to the public and logs 35,000 patient visits every year. The College also hosts an annual conference of seminars and workshops every year for the chiropractic community. The conference is called the Lyceum.

The Doctor of Chiropractic curriculum spreads out over 14 quarters and consists of coursework and hands-on instruction, internships, research opportunities, and volunteer community service. Incoming classes begin in January, April, July, and September. Class sizes are small to promote a sense of community and to encourage mentoring relationships between teachers and students. Interns are assigned to work at the campus Chiropractic Health Center.

11. Life Chiropractic College West

Location: Hayward, California
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic & Accelerated Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.5 years & 3 Years

Life Chiropractic College West educates chiropractors to function as direct-access, primary care providers. The College is affiliated with Life University in Georgia. The school sponsors a Mission Trip America program that provides free chiropractic care to the indigent, homeless, and jobless populations throughout the nation.

In addition to the traditional 14-quarter Doctor of Chiropractic program that’s designed to be completed in three and a half years, the College also offers a 12-quarter accelerated program option that students can finish in three years. The basic sciences that students learn during their first year become the foundation for the specialized chiropractic techniques and examination skills they master in Year 2. The third-year is spent in a clinical setting. Incoming classes are admitted four times a year in January, April, July, and October. One of the College’s goals is to become a leader in the application of assessment technologies, and students are trained in the use of computed radiography, noninvasive neurological testing, and similar diagnostic procedures.

12. Southern California University of Health Sciences

Location: Whittier, California
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.33 years

Since its founding as a college of chiropractic in 1911, Southern California University of Health Sciences has branched out to offer training in a variety of alternative health spheres, including acupuncture and oriental medicine.

The Los Angeles College of Chiropractic within the University offers a 10-trimester Doctor of Chiropractic degree that takes three and one-third years to finish. The College also offers a 12-trimester, four-year curriculum. Students are admitted in the fall and in the spring. Clinical rotations take place at Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Northridge, Cal State LA, Mount San Antonio College as well as at community colleges, Veterans Administration facilities in Orange County, Orange County Rescue Mission, LA Free Clinic, Being Alive Clinic and LA City Help.

Three different sports medicine pathways are also available for Doctor of Chiropractic students: a sports medicine track, a sports medicine honors track and a post-doctoral sports medicine residency.

13. University of Bridgeport

Location: Bridgeport, Connecticut
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 4-year

University of Bridgeport is a career-oriented school that got its start as a junior college offering practical job training. The University’s chiropractic program was the first university-oriented program of its kind in the nation. The University also offers postgraduate programs in naturopathic medicine and acupuncture and trains Physician Assistants and baccalaureate nurses.

The University’s College of Chiropractic admits students into its Doctor of Chiropractic program twice a year in August and in January. The evidence-based curriculum is spread out over eight semesters, which takes students four years to complete. The College places a strong emphasis on scientific explanations for the benefits of chiropractic. Clinical internships take place at Community Health Center Inc. clinics throughout the state as well as at the Connecticut Veterans Administration Center and Stony Brook Medical Center Department of Neuroradiology. Students also have the option of pursuing certifications in athletics or orthotics or concurrent master’s degrees in human nutrition or acupuncture.

14. Texas Chiropractic College

Location: Pasadena, Texas
Program Type: Doctor of Chiropractic
Program Length: 3.4 Years

Texas Chiropractic College has a reputation for innovative chiropractic training. The College was founded in 1908, making it the fourth oldest chiropractic learning institution in the nation. One of its graduates, Louisiana State Senator Gerry E. Hinton, led the charge to get chiropractic practice recognized in the Bayou State. When that legislation was finally passed in 1974, Louisiana became the last state in the U.S. to acknowledge chiropractic as a profession.

The College trains Doctor of Chiropractic students to become holistic primary care providers who are able to partner with colleagues in related health care professions ranging from orthopedics and neurology to physical therapy. Students are trained as experts in nutrition and exercise as well as in basic sciences and chiropractic techniques. The program’s hospital rotation program allows students to get a jumpstart on clinical training as they shadow orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons. Internships also take place at community outreach programs that focus on underserved populations throughout the Houston area.

15. D’Youville College

Location: Buffalo, New York
Program Type: Two Doctor of Chiropractic Degrees (Three-and-a-Half-Years Doctoral Degree (Professional) & Seven - Year Dual Degree)
Program Length: 3.5 years & 7 Years

D’Youville College was founded as a Roman Catholic college by the Grey Nuns in 1908, but it accepts students from all religious denominations. The Military Times consistently ranks it as one of the best colleges for veterans in the nation. Oblates of Mary Immaculate, the Catholic Church’s missionary religious congregation, sends its novitiate seminarians to D’Youville College for their undergraduate degrees.

D’Youville’s Doctor of Chiropractic program is one of the few such programs to be affiliated with a liberal arts institution. The College offers two chiropractic tracks. Undergraduates who know they want to become chiropractors can enroll in the dual Doctor of Chiropractic/bachelor’s degree program straight out of high school. This program will take seven years to complete. Alternatively, students who have bachelor’s degrees already can enroll in the traditional three-and-a-half-year program.

The curriculum consists of hard sciences, evidence-based clinical practice courses, and rotating internships through four D’Youville-affiliated clinics in western New York state. The final phase of the clinical experience partners students with licensed chiropractic practitioners in settings that include urban hospitals, community-based clinics, and rural practices.

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