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Laura Ichajapanich, Integrated Masters in Chinese Medicine: Acupuncture

After teaching Taiji and Qigong for 10 years, Laura began our Integrated Masters in Chinese Medicine: Acupuncture

A long-term fascination with Chinese culture led Laura to stumble across Taijiquan while working in publishing. This led her into teaching Taiji and Qigong for 10 years. However, she wanted to go even further, so with its Chinese roots and ability to improve people's health, learning about Acupuncture was the perfect choice.

Chinese connection

LSBU is home to the Chine Medicine: Acupuncture course run by the first Confucius Institute for Chinese Medicine (CITCM) which particularly excited Laura. In fact, LSBU has won Confucius Institute of the Year Award for 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. Confucius are non-profit public institutions aligned with the Government of the People's Republic of China, aiming to promote Chinese language and culture, support local Chinese teaching internationally, and facilitate cultural exchanges.

This provides students with a fantastic opportunity to truly understand Chinese culture, Chinese medicine and to also learn Mandarin. It means that at the end of the course, students will be qualified to teach in both the UK and China.

Complete picture

The course structure allows students to immerse themselves in Chinese culture, facilitated by working with a diverse group of fellow students and lecturers. "The small number of students with almost the same ratio to staff from both the UK and China provides a friendly and intense learning environment. The small group is perfect for learning Mandarin in the classroom and the Language lab. And by studying both Chinese and Western medicine, we get a comparative and more complete picture of healthcare."

The size of study groups vary from small groups learning acupuncture points and tui na massage with a Chinese tutor to large seminars with other allied health practitioners on basic anatomy and physiology. There are also week-long modules with nurses and radiographers on 'Facilitated Learning in Professional Practice'.

Pioneering course

"I feel that I am on a pioneering course. Acupuncture and complementary health is undergoing many changes with new government guidelines and restrictions in the UK and I feel that studying at LSBU will keep me up to date with these new initiatives." Laura is now hoping to work in a private practice with other health care professionals, as well as within an NHS setting if possible. She will continue to teach taiji and qigong, and is now able to bring the knowledge and additional skills gained on the course to her students.