Program Layout


The CAO program is offered in a FLEXIBLE format to allow integration into the work & home lives of our students. The program generally requires students to come to the school 5 days a month. The rest of the month students partake in online curriculum and independent home study. This allows students to maintain employment and other personal responsibilities while taking on the program.

Semesters & Start Dates

The program runs on a 12-month schedule, rotating with Winter and Summer semesters. One semester is dedicated to classroom work, the other to clinical training. Students can begin the program in October or in April. If students choose the Fall Start, their classes will run in the winter semester, and they will complete clinical training in the summer semester. If students choose a Spring Start, they will have classes in the summer and clinical training in the winter. Classroom semester module dates are fixed, practical training dates are flexible. Students often choose their start date, based on which time of year is better suited personally for each component.

The Inductions (Osteo Prep) course can be started anytime and can be completed in as little as 2 months for added flexibility.

Full Time vs Part Time

The CAO has a full time curriculum in a MODIFIED attendance format. This means CAO students get all the benefits of a complete and comprehensive osteopathic education (no shortcuts!) with all the flexibility to manage work and home-life.

Time Requirement at the School

In the 6 month Classroom semester students must be at the college one week each month (5 consecutive days) for the six-month semester.

In the 6 month Clinical semester students must be at the college.

  • About 4 days a month, in the clinical semester of years 1 and 2
  • About 9 days a month, in the clinical semester of years 3 and 4

but these days are spread out over the month. Although, students coming from over 2 hours away will be accommodated and allowed to schedule their clinical training in the same week.

Years vs Hours 

Don’t be fooled by the number of years in a program, look at HOURS in both theoretical training and clinical training. Some programs last 4 or 5 years but still only total a couple thousand hours. The Type 1 standard must include is a MINIMUM of 4200 total hours of education.

Classroom Semester

During the classroom semester, students come to the college for class one week per month – Monday to Friday, 8:45 am to 3:45 pm daily – for a total of 6 times over the semester. Dates for classroom modules are set far in advance and attendance at all modules is mandatory. Between classroom modules students have a significant amount of self-study/homework.

Semester Subjects:

• Clinical Anatomy
• Clinical Physiology
• Osteopathic Theory & History
• Osteopathic Principles & Practices

Practical Semester

During the practical semester, students are responsible for accumulating their clinical hours. 1000 total Supervised clinical training & practice hours hours are required to graduate.

Semester Training:

• Training in the CAO Under-year clinic
• Training in the CAO Upper-year clinic
• Table Tutoring in the clinic
• Table Tutoring in classroom labs


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