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Angelhwz

Chinese Medicine Master Degree in China! INFO Please!

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Angelhwz

Hi all, I was thinking of getting a master degree in Chinese Medicine, I actually didn't come from TCM background, and was graduated from Sinology (in which I am fluent  and already passed HSK 6) But I was told it is possible to get in to master degree without Chinese medicine background, so I was wondering if there is anyone who ever in my situation and can shed some light on the course offered and the quality of education. I am thinking of applying to Chengdu TCM university, thus it would be nice to get some personal opinions of people that have actually attended it! I would also be very grateful if anyone can give me more info on this. THANK YOU!

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hbuchtel

This info might be out of date, as I started my program in 2006, but at the time the only prerequisite was the (old) HSK 6. 

 

I was was talking to someone recently who had to take an entrance exam to start a doctoral program at 成都中医药大学, but I don’t know if this applies to bachelor and masters degrees. 

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hbuchtel

I would recommend enrolling as a bachelors degree student, rather than a masters. The masters programs in China are not intended to be a first professional degree, like they are in the US.

 

I ended up taking two years of courses with the local undergrads before starting the masters degree program. If I hadn’t done it this way I would not have qualified to sit the national board exams in the US. 

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somethingfunny

I know that the forum user @bigtops has written extensively about their experience studying TCM here.  However, that was in Beijing, so I'm not sure it would be useful in terms of specific advice for Chengdu TCM university.  I believe the medical school in Chengdu is fairly well respected, so hopefully the TCM would be likewise.

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bigtops

@Angelhwz@somethingfunny

 

Yep, most of what I wrote applies specifically to Beijing University of Chinese Medicine. However, as I also attended Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine for two years and had good friends who attended the schools in Tianjin, Nanjing, Hangzhou, and Guangdong, I must warn that it's likely that many of the problems I described are also to be found in Chengdu. Due to the PRC's centralized planning of higher education the same problems end up getting replicated on campus after campus after campus. One simply does not hear rumors of any TCM colleges that are markedly different from the rest--if there were, we'd all have transferred there!! After writing everything I wrote in the other thread, I even got a message from a French classmate of mine who graduated from the undergraduate program in Beijing and then went to Guangdong. He wrote that things are actually worse in that school than they were in Beijing! I wish I had better news to deliver...

 

So, Angelhwz, I recommend you do some serious research before committing to the Chengdu program. If you can, visit. If you do visit, don't just listen to what the administrators in the international college tell you--hang out in the cafeteria, lobby, wherever there are foreign students, and spend an afternoon asking people detailed questions about their experiences there.

 

______________________________

 

Regarding the practical aspects of your question, Angelhwz, I can also tell you that it's totally possible to enter a master's program in a PRC TCM school even if you did not study any form of medicine during undergrad. However, as hbuchtel points out, if you go this route you won't be qualified to sit for exams in the US and, likely, many other countries, unless you take numerous elective classes with the undergraduates so that you get all of your requisites completed. If you go that route, you will need to extend your time at whatever university you attend by at least a year or two, because these classes (especially biology, physiology, and pathology) are not easy. I knew two Americans who did this, one in Zhejiang Chinese Medicine University and one at Beijing University of Chinese Medicine. At the former institution, where the administrators are quite reasonable people (I met many of them and almost stayed in China to continue studying there in a masters program I was accepted to there; my impression of ZCMU was quite positive, though to be sure nobody who graduated from there claimed to have actually learned much), my friend had no trouble getting all the course hours he needed. However, at BUCM, my other American friend went through constant hell dealing with the capricious, petty, irascible administrators who found every excuse they could to prevent him from simply enrolling in classes and learning. Even when he did succeed in entering classes, years later the grades failed to show up on his transcripts, meaning more administrative hell to deal with.

 

Choose your university carefully... and if you're committed to studying in Chinese... at least give Taiwan and HK a look!

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