Associate of Applied Science in Holistic Health Science

The experiences I have had and the opportunities I have been afforded at PCOM have been pivotal in shaping my life and career. Pacific College offered me the foundation necessary to support a successful lifetime of learning and self-exploration, as well as the ability to relish the benefits and the joys of a private practice.
Gretchen Seitz, LAc, DiplAc, DiplOM

Associate of Applied Science in Holistic Health Science

Pacific College’s Associate of Applied Science program is paramount among San Diego massage schools, offering unparalleled opportunities to advance your career in Asian holistic massage with a blend of classroom and online learning. Led by our expert faculty, online activities and in-class sessions have now merged to give students flexibility in addition to the distinguished hands-on instruction for which Pacific College is known.

The purpose of the AAS degree program is to develop the student into an expertly trained body therapist. Focus is on Oriental medical theory with comprehensive practical and holistic massage training, including Tui Na, Chinese massage therapy, shiatsu, Thai massage, and a variety of other Asian bodywork therapies. A wide array of electives allows the student to study specific areas of interest, such as pediatrics, sports medicine, or reflexology.

In China and Japan, therapeutic massage is one of the major branches of the traditional healing arts. Hospitals in China commonly have an entire department devoted to massage therapy, working with the acupuncture and herbal departments to create a comprehensive plan of treatment.

Pacific College’s Associate of Applied Science degree curriculum reflects the college’s respect for this type of complete massage practitioner. Toward the valuable and important goal of becoming an expertly trained body therapist, the Pacific College Associate degree (Associate of Applied Science degree) program gives students an excellent introduction to Oriental medical theory and comprehensive training in practical massage skills. Students may select courses from a wide array of electives, for example, Japanese shiatsu massage and a unique derivative, seitai shiatsu; acupuncture point location and functions, movement therapies such as tai ji, qi gong, and more.

The purpose of the Associate of Applied Science degree programs is to prepare students for employment nationally in the profession of body therapy and massage and for certification by the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) and the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (BCTMB), as well as the Massage Board License Exam and the requirements for California certification. Graduates are also eligible for membership in the American Organization of Bodywork Therapies of Asia.

Graduates of this holistic medicine degree program will: 

  • Discuss and demonstrate professional ethics.
  • Demonstrate a wide and well-practiced variety of body therapy skills.
  • Know and demonstrate essential, hygienic considerations in the performance of massage.
  • Know and respect conditions contraindicating massage.
  • Be eligible for the examination by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
  • Demonstrate competency in basic business skills related to the practice of massage.

The Pacific College Associate of Applied Science (Holistic Health Science) (AAS) program combines PCOM’s standard of excellence in quality education with the convenience of online activities and courses that are fully integrated with on-location, hands-on training and clinical rotations. As a student in our hybrid program, you will be taught under the same rigorous academic standards as our traditional classroom programs. Pacific College offers students one-click access to college resources and support. One click and you’re beginning a class. One click and the world is your campus. One click and you receive one-on-one attention from distinguished and dedicated faculty members, and an open invitation to on- and off-campus programs and activities that can be tailored to each student’s preferred schedule. One click and you will start your new career.

Have questions on how distance education works? Visit our eLearning Frequently Asked Questions page.

Federal Consumer Disclosure Information About This Program

Pacific College of Oriental Medicine is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The college and all its programs in San Diego are approved by BPPE. The college’s MSTOM, MSAc (CH and NY), and DAOM (SD) programs are accredited by ACAOM. For important information on program costs, completion and placement rates, median debt incurred, etc., please see the program disclosure document.

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