Degree Requirements: See Requirements Tab
Completion Time: 4.5 to 5.5 years
Earned Credits: 75 to 78
The specialization courses include:
- Contemporary Neuroscience
- Body-Oriented Approaches to Psychotherapy
- Mind-Body-Spirit Applications in Psychotherapy
- Mindfulness, Meditation and Health or Spirituality and Health
The Specialization in Integrative Mental Health (IMH) is oriented for licensed mental health practitioners and individuals who have a licensable Mental health degree including:
- Social work
- Psychiatric nursing
- Expressive arts therapy (when licensable)
Students in the IMH specialization learn a core of evidence-based complementary therapies and mind-body science courses. Practicing within the scope of their professional license, graduates will be prepared to provide interventions in integrative medicine for individuals suffering from acute and chronic mental health disorders. They may also choose to transition into new areas of care such as chronic pain, palliative care and integrative hospice services.
More information can be found in our academic catalog.
The requirements for the Ph.D. Mind-Body Medicine degree include 75 credits within specific categories of coursework: core (15 credits), research (21 credits), mind-body science (6 credits), practice (9 credits), electives (9 credits), and specialization (15 credits). Students who prefer to not to add a specialization will complete 15 credits of additional electives from any category or degree program. If the academic writing course is required, another elective may be added to the degree, thus increasing the requirements to 78 credits. Prerequisites must be met to register for certain courses.
Students enrolled in this degree program must attend five five-day residential conferences (RCs). They must also attend any additional RC days, as required for courses in which they choose to enroll.
Contemporary Neuroscience-Psychology and the Brain
This course investigates the brain and nervous system with special emphasis on clinical examples and mind body interactions. Beginning with the basic function of nerve cells (neurophysiology), students will be introduced to the process of cellular communication (the synapse and clinical neurochemistry) the structure of the nervous system (neuroanatomy), and the most current neuroimaging techniques. Throughout the term, students will also explore neuroscience of the senses, emotion, arousal, and stress. Furthermore, there will be opportunities to investigate contemporary neuroscience of eating and eating disorders, sleep and sleep disorders, hormones and sex, language, and memory. Class discussions involve the neuroscience of major depressive disorder, schizophrenia, ADHD, and autism spectrum disorders. The course concludes with a discussion of contemporary neuroscience of consciousness. 3 credits
Mind-Body-Spirit Applications in Psychotherapy
In this course, students examine integrative approaches to psychotherapy. Topics to be explored include: the historical, biopsychosocial-spiritual, cultural, and global contexts to promoting positive mental health outcomes; therapist-client relationship; non-ordinary states of consciousness; trauma and addictions; and the obstacles and ethical considerations in applying these approaches. Students will have an opportunity to present a case study through a paper and videoconference presentation. 3 credits
Body-Oriented Approaches to Psychotherapy
Body-oriented psychotherapy uses the pathway of connection with the body to approach psychological issues. This course provides students with a basic skill set to bring a somatic focus to their therapy sessions along with introductory knowledge of several body-oriented psychotherapy modalities. Students will explore experiential exercises from some of the techniques with each other and with a volunteer, as well as study the history and theories underlying these practices and the research done on these mind-body approaches to healing and well-being. 3 credits
“The College of Integrative Medicine and Health Sciences is dedicated to promoting interdisciplinary modalities and scholarship that enhance optimal health and well-being for individuals and communities. Multiple specializations, minors, and certificates are intricate to the degree programs to serve the students’ academic and professional goals.”
—Devorah Curtis, Ph.D., Mind-Body Medicine Department Chair