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Therapeutic Massage: Associate of Applied Science Degree

The therapeutic massage industry is a rapidly growing profession. Taking into consideration the mind, body and spirit, the focus of the massage therapist is to meet the needs of the client by perceiving the body as a whole.

With over 50 different therapeutic approaches, the massage therapist is not limited to utilizing only one approach. Massage therapists may work with premature babies, infants, children with disabilities, adults, and geriatric clients. This program is designed to be the foundation of any massage therapist’s career.

Massage therapists are found in a variety of settings. They may be found under the supervision of a healthcare facility such as a hospital, nursing home, rehabilitation center, or chiropractic office. Other massage establishments may include fitness centers, day spas, cruise lines, nutrition centers, or hair salons, and they may be employed by the establishment or on an independent contract. Many therapists choose to be self-employed and open a private practice independently or with several associates. Administrative duties may include client scheduling, receptionist duties, client record management, office correspondence, medical insurance procedures, fees, and collections. Clinical duties may include interviewing the client, documenting client progress reports, administering massage techniques for the purpose of relaxation, revitalization, or rehabilitation, or conducting on-site corporate massage.

The therapeutic massage program utilizes a combination of lecture and "hands-on" laboratory sessions. Students will be required to demonstrate the massage techniques with accurate proficiency. Students must also complete all professional courses in the curriculum with a minimum of a "C" grade.

As an integrative part of the learning process, the student will be required to complete an internship program. Requirements to enter the internship program include program coordinator approval.

National American University’s therapeutic massage program may or may not meet the licensing requirements of all states in the United States.

Students enrolling in this program should possess hand/finger dexterity as well as the ability to communicate both orally and visually.

Program Goals

The program will:

  • Prepare learners to attain university core abilities and program learning outcomes by utilizing performance-based curriculum in a caring and supportive learning environment.
  • Measure and assess student learning and implement improvements, as needed, to ensure high quality academic programs and services.
  • Prepare learners to develop plans for the pursuit of graduate studies and/or continuing professional development activities and membership in professional and community organizations.
  • Confirm that faculty members meet university qualifications guidelines, utilize effective and innovative teaching methods that promote academic excellence, and pursue opportunities for professional development.
  • Monitor the needs of the program’s community of interest and maintain the currency and relevancy of program curriculum through regular faculty and advisory committee meetings and academic program reviews.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates of the program will:

  • Combine massage and bodywork techniques for therapeutic benefit.
  • Develop successful and ethical therapeutic relationships with clients.
  • Conduct research on the historical foundations of and recent developments in the therapeutic massage field.
  • Design a plan for participating in professional activities and pursuing personal and professional development.
  • Construct a comprehensive business plan for a therapeutic massage business.