CareerExplorer’s step-by-step guide on how to become a chiropractor.

Step 1

Is becoming a chiropractor right for me?

The first step to choosing a career is to make sure you are actually willing to commit to pursuing the career. You don’t want to waste your time doing something you don’t want to do. If you’re new here, you should read about:

What do chiropractors do?
Career Satisfaction
Are chiropractors happy with their careers?
What are chiropractors like?

Still unsure if becoming a chiropractor is the right career path? to find out if this career is right for you. Perhaps you are well-suited to become a chiropractor or another similar career!

Described by our users as being “shockingly accurate”, you might discover careers you haven’t thought of before.

Step 2

Bachelor's Degree

Chiropractic candidates must first complete at least 90 credits of undergraduate coursework before attending a chiropractic college, however, there are a few states that don't require a bachelor's degree, so individuals should check with the state board they wish to practice in.

Students may want to take their undergraduate degree in the sciences, such as chemistry, biology, or physics. Doing so will help to meet chiropractic college prerequisites.

Elective courses in communication, sociology, or interpersonal relations will also be helpful since so much of this career requires close personal contact with patients.

Step 3

Chiropractic College

There are only a handful of schools in the United States that offer a four-year degree program in which future chiropractors can earn a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) degree.

Most chiropractic studies degree programs include an internship where students can practice their skills under the supervision of a licensed chiropractor.

Step 4


Chiropractors must pass a board exam and then obtain a license in the state in which they wish to practice. Chiropractors must meet yearly continuing educational requirements to maintain their licensure.

Certification and licensure of chiropractors is governed by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE). The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners offers a three-part exam (with an optional fourth section) that is accepted by most states, while some states have their own exam.

Step 5

Maintaining Licensure

Many state licensing boards require continuing education for annual licensure. Chiropractors often attend workshops or classes to learn about developments in chiropractic medicine.

Many chiropractors may also study naturopathy, massage or alternative medicine to add to their practice.