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A.T. Still University
Two medical students dawning scrubs, each smiling while reviewing information in a binder.

About ATSU

A.T. Still University (ATSU) of Health Sciences is the founding institution of osteopathic healthcare, established in 1892 by Andrew Taylor Still, DO. As a leading health sciences university, ATSU is comprised of two campuses (Kirksville, Mo., and Mesa, Ariz.) on more than 200 acres with six prestigious schools. The culturally rich learning environments include residential and online healthcare related graduate degrees as well as community-based partnerships worldwide. ATSU has more than 1,300 employees dedicated to its not-for-profit mission and an average annual enrollment of over 3,100 students from 35 countries.

ATSU is renowned for its preeminence as a multidisciplinary healthcare educator. The University is focused on integrating the founding tenets of osteopathic medicine and the advancing knowledge of today's science. ATSU continually earns distinctions as the graduate health sciences university with best-in-class curriculum and a community outreach mission to serve the underserved. The University has a rich history of leadership in both healthcare education and correlated research.

ATSU instills within students the compassion, experience and knowledge required to address the whole person and shape healthcare in communities where needs are greatest. Inspired to influence whole person healthcare, ATSU graduates contribute to the future of integrated care while also leading with a selfless passion in the communities they serve.

  • Mission and Vision +

    • MISSION

      A.T. Still University of Health Sciences serves as a learning-centered university dedicated to preparing highly competent professionals through innovative academic programs with a commitment to continue its osteopathic heritage and focus on whole person healthcare, scholarship, community health, interprofessional education, diversity, and underserved populations.

      VISION

      To be the preeminent University for health professions
      • Leading innovator in health professions education
      • Superior students and graduates who exemplify and support the University's mission
      • Osteopathic philosophy demonstrated and integrated
      • Pioneering contributions to healthcare education, knowledge, and practice
  • Awards and Recognition+

    • Image of icon for Fit-Ftiendly Worksite Gold Achievement 2015Fit-Friendly Worksite Gold Achievement (American Heart Association)
      Icon for Military Friendly School designationThe Military Friendly® Schools designation is awarded to the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the country that are doing the most to embrace military students, and to dedicate resources to ensure their success in the classroom and after graduation.
      The Chronicle Great College to Work For LogoA.T. Still University of Health Sciences (ATSU) is one of the best colleges in the nation to work for, according to a new survey by The Chronicle of Higher Education.
      Image of icon for Insight Into DiversityATSU received the Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine for 2017 and 2018. The HEED Award and the Health Professions HEED Award are the only national awards that honor individual institutions for being outstanding examples of colleges, universities, or health profession schools that are committed to making diversity and inclusion a top priority across their campuses.
  • Evidence-Based Medicine +

    • Image of ATSU student performing an eye inspection on a patient
      Image of ATSU physical therapy professor demonstrating patient care
      Image of ATSU dental student inspecting mouth of child patient

       

      Principles of evidence-based medicine

      A.T. Still University's (ATSU) integrated learning platform includes the principles of evidence-based medicine (EBM) alongside ATSU's founding tenets of whole person healthcare. Students learn not only in the classroom but also in actual practice settings. The elements of evidence-based medicine can be applied to any patient treatment-oriented practice field, allowing medical and healthcare workers to provide each patient with current treatment options based on the latest, most clinically relevant research including clinical trial results.

      Evidence-based medicine is defined as "the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best medicine in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence-based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research" according to David L. Sackett, pioneer of evidence-based medicine, and his colleagues.

      Because EBM also is used in allied fields, including dentistry, nursing and psychology, the healthcare industry is embracing a more universal term: evidence-based practice (EBP).

      The need for evidence-based medicine

      Studies suggest our need for best evidence occurs twice in every three outpatient visits and up to five times per inpatient visit. The amount of new medical information formed daily is overwhelming. It is impossible to know everything. With this rapid formation of data, familiar sources such as textbooks are out of date by the time they reach the shelf. The development of online EBM tools and journals containing pre-analyzed articles help individual providers keep current.

      Most importantly, practicing evidence-based medicine leads to improved patient outcomes and offers the surest and most objective way to determine and maintain consistently high quality and safety.

      Myths about evidence-based medicine

      Evidence-based medicine is not a new concept. The term evidence-based medicine was coined in 1992 by a group at McMaster University, but clinicians have always used evidence to make decisions about patient care. The evidence just may not have been the "best" evidence due to any number of reasons.

      Some fear that EBM is an example of cookbook medicine, a way to cut costs of health care, or a way to keep patients from receiving the care they deserve. None of these fears is true. There will never be one recipe that fits all patients, and as stated clearly in the definitions above, EBM involves integration of clinical expertise and individual patient values. In some cases, the results of EBM may cut costs by eliminating unnecessary procedures or treatments; however there also may be situations where it is the expensive procedure or treatment that provides the best results for patients. Along that same line, practicing EBM is a way to eliminate unnecessary expenditure which, in theory, would allow more money to decrease the treatment and diagnostic disparities present in today's society.

      Many can agree with the concept of EBM but are unsure that it can be practiced in a busy clinic. In reality, it is those busy clinicians who can benefit the most from the growth of EBM. As the search engines become quicker and the number of secondary sources grows, it will be easier than ever to find the answer to a clinical question that arises from a 15-minute office visit.

      Locate a particular topic

      To locate a specific topic, you may choose the most appropriate options from the sidebar navigation or you may use the search field above to access the information you want.

      Legal information

      This website is made possible by the Academic Administrative Units in Primary Care grant D54HP05442 between A.T. Still University-Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Division of Medicine. Margaret A. Wilson, D.O., is the project director.

      The use of the A.T. Still University (ATSU) - Evidence-Based Medicine website is intended to serve as a structured set of guidelines to improve clinical practice. ATSU and its affiliates shall not be held liable for any hardships suffered or incurred as a direct or indirect result of the use or misuse of the information presented in this website, including but not limited to damage to or loss of personal property, sickness or injury from whatever source, legal entanglements, imprisonment, death, or loss of money. As with all information, the material presented in this website should be critically evaluated by the user before being implemented in a clinical setting.

      Any and all information contained in this website is the property of ATSU. Reposting and redistribution of this material is strictly prohibited and is illegal without explicit written approval.

      The information presented on this website comes from a variety of sources, including not only official ATSU departments, but also unofficial sources and individuals. Although every effort is made to present current and accurate information, ATSU does not author or edit all of the pages presented here and therefore cannot assume responsibility for all information. The author of each web page is responsible for the content of that page and is expected to abide by organizational policies and local, state, and federal laws.

      To report possible copyright infringement, contact:
      Susan Coon, M.A.B.C
      NIH R25 Project Coordinator
      Academic Affairs

       

      A.T. Still University/Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine
      800 W. Jefferson
      Kirksville, MO 63501-1497

       

      Phone: 660-626-2276
      Fax: 660-626-2925
      scoon@atsu.edu

  • Hometown Scholars +

    • Do you want to help improve the health of your community?
      Do you desire to work in your community's health center?
      Do you aspire to be a doctor, dentist or physician assistant?

      If you answered "yes," then ATSU's Hometown Scholars may be for you!

      ATSU's Hometown Scholars programs were started in response to requests from community health centers (CHCs) and other safety net providers. Hometown Scholars help ATSU meet the needs of CHCs by attracting and training dedicated, motivated, and qualified community-minded dentists.

      Discover how you might become a Hometown Scholars endorsed applicant for:

      • Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health (DMD)
      • Arizona School of Health Sciences Physician Assistant program (MS)
      • Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (DMD)
      • School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (DO)

      Learn more about ATSU's Hometown Scholars program.

  • Our Communities +

    • Kirksville, Missouri

      view of Forest Lake in Kirksville, MO

      The best of education is represented in Kirksville. Among the notable colleges and other institutions of higher learning, Kirksville is the home of osteopathic medicine and the world's first osteopathic university - A.T. Still University - founded by Andrew Taylor Still, DO, in 1892. Steeped in tradition and infused with innovation while always highlighting the importance of community, the city is located in northeastern Missouri in a growing city of nearly 20,000 residents. Kirksville is a thriving college community, offering a low cost of living and a high quality of life. Kirksville residents enjoy a variety of cultural activities that appeal to a wide range of tastes. On Saturday mornings from May through October, local farmers' markets offer fresh fruits and vegetables during the prime growing season. For outdoor recreationists, a state park, five conservation areas, and three large lakes are just a few miles away with camping, swimming, and boating facilities. For those who prefer to stay active in the city, a sports complex, YMCA, aquatic center, and neighborhood parks are available for public use. Kirksville also is host to several festivals and offers one-of-a-kind shopping opportunities, especially in the historic downtown area, not to mention many dining options.

      Within easy driving distance of major cities such as Kansas City, Mo., St. Louis, Mo., and Des Moines, Ia., Kirksville also provides easy access to Missouri's notable Lake of the Ozarks, Hannibal, Nauvoo, and Mennonite and Amish communities. To learn more about Kirksville and tourism information, go to visitkirksville.com.

      Mesa, Arizona

      Image of Mesa, Arizona sunset featuring many saguaro and ocotillo cacti.

      Progressive, vibrant, and diverse, Mesa, Ariz., is the state's third largest city. It is nestled in the Valley of the Sun, boasting more than 300 days of sunshine every year. More than 468,012 residents call this dynamic urban setting their home, complete with a first-class business environment, highly educated work force, and quality of life that appeals to a variety of lifestyles.

      Just west of Mesa in the Valley of the Sun is the city of Phoenix, the capitol of Arizona and the nation's fifth largest city. The Valley offers professional football, baseball, hockey, and basketball; two national parks, including the Grand Canyon; 25 state parks; and hundreds of miles of trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding. World-class golf courses, shopping, movie theatres, symphony, opera, art festivals, museums, and restaurants provide diverse opportunities to sample the cosmopolitan lifestyle of the Valley of the Sun. In the desert areas of Arizona, there is little rain or snow, and the winter temperatures are mild. Although summers are hot in the desert, there is relatively low humidity, making the actual temperatures more comfortable than in most other states during the same time frame. To learn more about Mesa, please visit visitmesa.com.
      To learn more about the Phoenix metro area, please visit visitphoenix.com.

  • Our Founder +

    • Image of Andrew Taylor Still holding a staff

      Museum of Osteopathic Medicine SM [2000.34.05]

      Andrew Taylor Still, DO, was born Aug. 6, 1828, in a log cabin in Lee County, Va. Around 1853, he decided to become a physician. It was common practice in those days for an aspiring doctor to train by studying medical books and working with a practicing physician – in this case, his father. He may have received additional, formal training at a school in Kansas City, but no records remain to establish where and when this training took place.

      Personal Defeat

      In 1864, Dr. Still returned from the Civil War and faced a grave personal crisis. Earlier that year, an epidemic of spinal meningitis had swept through the area and killed three of his children. He had already lost his first wife, Mary Vaughan, to childbirth complications; a month after the epidemic, the daughter born to his second wife, Mary Elvira Turner, died of pneumonia. His inability to save his family, coupled with his grim experiences as a Civil War doctor, led Dr. Still to reject most of what he had learned about medicine and search for new and better methods.

      A New Revolution

      Dr. Still's explorations were grounded in the study of anatomy. Having grown up as a hunter and farmer, he had a basic understanding of the structural relationships of bones, muscles, and organs – knowledge he now extended through the study of human skeletons. He became convinced that most diseases could be alleviated or cured without drugs. The key was to find and correct anatomical deviations that interfered with the free flow of blood and "nerve force" in the body.

      Facing Challenges

      From the beginning, Dr. Still met with considerable opposition to his new theories and techniques. The local church denounced his claims of hands-on healing as sacrilegious. His brothers were embarrassed by his outspoken questioning of medical tradition; they criticized his willingness to risk his livelihood by driving away patients and to neglect his family and farm in pursuit of his "crazy" ideas. When Dr. Still asked to present his ideas at Baker University, which his family had helped to establish in the 1850s, school officials refused him permission. In 1874, Dr. Still decided to leave Kansas and travel to Macon, Mo., where he hoped his ideas would be better received. They were not, and after a few months of trying, Dr. Still moved north to Kirksville. There he finally began to find some acceptance, enough to open an office on the town square in March 1875. Advertising himself as a magnetic healer and a "lightning bonesetter" and traveling to towns as far away as Hannibal, Dr. Still slowly built up his reputation. Word spread about the doctor whose system of drugless, manipulative medicine - officially named "osteopathy" in 1885 - was able to cure many apparently hopeless cases.

      Thumbnail portrait of ATSU founder Andrew Taylor Still, DOThumbnail photo of ATSU founder Andrew Taylor Still, DO sitting in a chair outsidePainting depicting Andrew Taylor Still, DO, treating child, with family behind her

      Osteopathy is Born

      Finding he had more patients than he could handle, Dr. Still trained his children and a few others to assist him in his practice. Finally, there were enough people who wanted to learn his methods that he was persuaded to start a school. The American School of Osteopathy was founded in Kirksville in 1892 in a two-room frame building. The first class of five women and 16 men – including three of Still's children and one of his brothers – graduated in 1894. That institution is known today as A.T. Still University, the first osteopathic university in the world that now is the preeminent leader of whole person healthcare education.

      More information about Dr. Still is available through ATSU's Museum of Osteopathic Medicine, whose mission is to preserve and promote the history and tenets of osteopathy through collections and research to a global audience.

      Visit https://www.atsu.edu/museum-of-osteopathic-medicine/

  • Our President +

    • Image of video play button arrow. Image of ATSU President Craig Phelps, DO

      Craig Phelps, DO

      660.626.2391

      LinkedIn icon


      Craig M. Phelps, DO, '84, is the twelfth president of ATSU. Prior to his presidency, Dr. Phelps served as ATSU's executive vice president for strategic initiatives and as provost of ATSU's Mesa, Ariz., campus for 12 years, overseeing the development and operations of School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona, Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health, and Arizona School of Health Sciences.

      Dr. Phelps is a fellowship-trained primary care sports medicine physician and is board certified in family medicine. Practicing for more than 20 years in the Phoenix metropolitan area, Dr. Phelps served as primary care physician for the NBA Phoenix Suns and WNBA Phoenix Mercury, physician for Ballet Arizona, team physician for Grand Canyon University, Scottsdale Community College, Paradise Valley Community College, and Gateway Community College.

      Dr. Phelps is a fellow of the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine, and he is a member of the Kirksville Osteopathic Alumni Association. He also served as the 2013-14 president of the Arizona Osteopathic Medical Association.

      In 2012, Dr. Phelps was named to the Phoenix Business Journal's Most Admired CEOs and Top-Level Executives. He was chosen as one of the Phoenix-area's 25 most admired executives based on past achievements and ongoing outstanding leadership.

      Learn more about the Office of the President, the president's cabinet, staff and past ATSU presidents.

  • Quick Facts +

    • A.T. Still University is home to the founding college of osteopathic medicine. It is the oldest osteopathic institution in the world, founded in 1892.

      ATSU Schools

      • Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ASDOH)
      • Arizona School of Health Sciences (ASHS)
      • College of Graduate Health Studies (CGHS)
      • Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCOM)
      • Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (MOSDOH)
      • School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (SOMA)

      Campus Information

      Location

      Population

      Campus Size

      Kirksville, Missouri

      17,519

      160 acres

      Mesa, Arizona

      484,587

      53 acres

      Enrollment DATA
      (Fall 2020)

      ATSU School

      Students Enrolled

      KCOM

      717

      SOMA

      537

      CGHS

      1,156

      ASHS

      1,063

      ASDOH

      317

      MOSDOH DMD

      205

      Total

      3,995

      International Enrollment

      Approximately 123 Non-Resident students from more than fourteen countries.

      Enrollment Status

      Status

      Percentage of Enrolled

      Full-Time

      75%

      Part-Time

      25%

      Male

      39%

      Female

      59%

      Undisclosed

      2%

      Race/Ethnicity

      Ethnicity

      % of FT enrollment

      Non-Resident Alien

      3%

      Hispanic/Latino

      10%

      American Indian or Alaska Native

      1%

      Asian

      15%

      Black or African American

      7%

      Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander

      0.003%

      White

      54%

      Two or More Races

      5%

      Race/Ethnicity Unknown

      5%

      Degrees Granted (2019-20)

      Degree

      Total Degrees Issued

      Doctoral

      741

      Master's

      315

      Certificates

      125

      Full-Time Employees (Benefit-Eligible)

      848

      Student/Faculty Ratio

      9:1

      Number of Student Organizations

      Approximately 138

      GPA of Incoming Students
      (2019-20)

      school/college

      Average GPA

      KCOM DO

      3.66 cumulative, 3.60 science

      SOMA DO

      3.45 cumulative, 3.35 science

      ASDOH DMD

      3.41 cumulative, 3.28 science

      MOSDOH

      3.47 cumulative, 3.37 science

      MCAT Scores of Incoming Students
      (Average)

      School

      Average Score

      KCOM

      504

      SOMA

      505

      DAT Scores of Incoming Students
      (Average)

      School

      Average Score

      ASDOH

      19.32

      MOSDOH

      18.92

      Percentage of Students Awarded University Scholarships and/or Federal Financial Aid

      70%

    • Graduation Rates (2019-20)

      Note: Graduation rates for online programs are figured 5 years after matriculation for online programs masters degrees (2014-15 matriculates) and 7 years after matriculation for doctorate (2012-13 matriculates). Residential program grad rates are figured 3 years after matriculation for residential programs masters degree (2017 matriculates) and 5 years after matriculation for doctorate (2015 matriculates). More detailed outcome data can be found on School and College webpages. Graduation rate calculations on webpages may vary from those below due to discipline accreditation directives regarding timing and formulas.

      School/College

      Average Graduation Rate

      ASDOH

      96%

      ASHS

      93%

      CGHS*

      72%

      KCOM

      95%

      MOSDOH

      98%

      SOMA

      94%


      * All CGHS programs are online.

      Number of Degree Programs (fall 2020)

      Degree

      Total Degree Programs

      Doctoral

      16

      Master's

      12

      Certificates

      15

      Residency-No degree

      2

      Budget (Fiscal Year 2020-21)

      $172 million

    • Alumni Distribution

      National Distribution of ATSU alumni by degree awarded Click the map to enlarge view of A.T. Still University alumni practice locations in U.S.
    • Outcomes: Board and/or licensing exam results (National rates posted when available)

      Physical Therapy first-time pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASHS

      National

      2016

      89.8%

      93.1%

      2017

      82.3%

      92.5%

      2018

      83.1%

      90.9%

      2019

      85%

      90.5%

      2020

      93.4%

      93.1%



      Occupational Therapy (MS) Board Certification exam pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASHS

      National

      2014

      97%

      85%

      2015

      100%

      87%

      2016

      100%

      82%

      2017

      100%

      81%

      2018

      100%

      98%

      2019

      100%

      98%



      Occupational Therapy (OTD) Board Certification exam pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASHS

      National

      2019

      100%

      92.5%



      Physician Assistant Certifying exam first-time exam pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASHS

      National

      2016

      92%

      96%

      2017

      99%

      97%

      2018

      100%

      98%

      2019

      94%

      93%

      2020

      94%

      NA



      Audiology Praxis exam pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASHS

      National

      2015-16

      93.75%

      84.8%

      2016-17

      90%

      86%

      2017-18

      100%

      93.8%

      2018-19

      100%

      92.5%

      2019-20

      100%

      NA



      NBDE Part I first-time pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASDOH

      ATSU-MOSDOH

      Class of 2019

      92%

      93%

      Class of 2020

      82%

      87%

      Class of 2021

      78%

      74%

      Class of 2022

      NA

      89%



      NBDE Part II first-time pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-ASDOH

      ATSU-MOSDOH

      Class of 2016

      91%

      N/A

      Class of 2017

      88%

      92%

      Class of 2018

      92%

      90%

      Class of 2019

      92%

      98%

      Class of 2020

      90%

      95%



      COMLEX Level 1 pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-KCOM

      ATSU-SOMA

      National

      2015-16

      94%

      91%

      92%

      2016-17

      94%

      97%

      93%

      2017-18

      96%

      97%

      96%

      2018-19

      94.05%

      96%

      93%

      2019-20

      98.17%

      97%

      94.34%



      COMLEX Level 2-CE pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-KCOM

      ATSU-SOMA

      National

      2015-16

      91%

      90%

      92%

      2016-17

      93%

      93%

      93%

      2017-18

      90%

      94%

      93%

      2018-19

      96.91%

      95%

      95.6%

      2019-20

      97.09%

      100%

      96.84%



      COMLEX Level 2-PE pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-KCOM

      ATSU-SOMA

      National

      2015-16

      93%

      90%

      93%

      2016-17

      86%

      94%

      93%

      2017-18

      95%

      91%

      93%

      2018-19

      95.4%

      93%

      93.2%

      2019-20

      94%

      95%

      92.1%



      COMLEX Level 3 pass rates

      Year

      ATSU-KCOM

      ATSU-SOMA

      National

      2014-15

      98%

      96%

      96%

      2015-16

      100%

      98%

      96%

      2016-17

      97%

      97%

      97%

      2017-18

      98%

      96%

      95%

      2018-19

      96.7%

      97%

      97.49%

  • What is Osteopathic Medicine? +

    • "To find health should be the object of the doctor; anyone can find disease."
      – Andrew Taylor Still, DO

      Osteopathic medicine is a unique form of American medical care that was developed in 1874 by Andrew Taylor Still, DO, founder and namesake of A.T. Still University (ATSU), the world's first osteopathic medical school. Dissatisfied with 19th century healthcare, Dr. Still founded a philosophy of medicine based on ideas that date back to Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, and which focuses on the unity of the body. Dr. Still pioneered the concept of wellness and identified the musculoskeletal system as a key element of health.

      Osteopathic physicians take a whole person approach to caring for patients. Instead of treating specific symptoms or illnesses, they regard the body as an integrated whole.

      "Over the past few years, osteopathic medicine's traditional principles and practices (especially those focused on patient-centered, preventive care) have been heralded as central features of the kind of health care system that reform efforts aim to implement," states Stephen C. Shannon, DO, MPH, President, American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine. "In other words, osteopathic medical schools are educating the kind of physicians this country needs, and that fact is being increasingly recognized throughout the nation."

      Image of two ATSU medical students treating a young patient. Image of four young ATSU-SOMA medical students Image of ATSU SOMA residency student treating young patient.

      Osteopathic medicine in practice

      Today, osteopathic physicians and allied health professionals are one of the fastest growing segments of healthcare providers. They are on the cutting-edge of modern medicine, able to combine technology with compassion and their holistic approach to treating the body, mind, and spirit that provides thorough care for each patient.

      Osteopathic physicians can choose any specialty, prescribe drugs, perform surgeries, and practice medicine anywhere in the United States. DOs must complete the same amount of schooling and meet the same licensing requirements as MDs, with approximately 200 additional hours of training in osteopathic manipulative medicine.

      DOs are prominent in both primary care and specialty areas of medicine, including family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, neurosurgery, cardiology, radiology, dermatology, and neuromusculoskeletal medicine. At ATSU, they have a passion to give back and meet unmet community healthcare needs in underserved and rural settings. Students become among the most dedicated physicians and allied health professionals, the wisest of mentors, and the most enthusiastic leaders who are inspired to change the future of medicine.

      Osteopathic Medicine facts

      • Andrew Taylor Still, DO, founded the tenets of osteopathic medicine in 1874.
      • Kirksville, Mo., is known as the home of osteopathic medicine and the world's first osteopathic medical school established by Dr. Still in 1892.
      • A.T. Still University is a private, not-for-profit University focused on integrating the tenets of osteopathic medicine with advancing knowledge of today's science.
      • In 1897, Dr. Still's students organized to form the American Association for the Advancement of Osteopathy, or the American Osteopathic Association as it is known today.
      • The U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare recognized the AOA as the accrediting body for osteopathic medical education in 1952. In 1967, the AOA was recognized by the National Commission on Accrediting (now the Council for Higher Education Accreditation) as the accrediting agency for all facets of osteopathic medical education in the United States.
      • Federal recognition had a profound effect on osteopathic medicine, spurring a second generation of schools and a dramatic increase in the number of osteopathic physicians. The big shift came in the move to state-supported schools, starting with Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in East Lansing, which graduated its first class in 1973.
      • Osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM) has been used to treat a variety of problems such as ear infections, sinus problems, colic in infants, and many adult maladies. It has had a success rate high enough to convince many MDs to take classes in OMM.
      • More than 20 percent of U.S. medical students are enrolled in osteopathic medical schools.
      • Approximately 78,000 DOs practice in the United States, handling more than 10 percent of all office visits in rural areas and eight percent in urban areas. DOs have a strong history of serving rural and underserved areas, often providing their unique brand of compassionate, patient-centered care to some of the most economically disadvantaged members of society.
      • By 2020, the number of osteopathic physicians will top 100,000, say expert predictions, according to the American Medical Association. This is good news, as the need for more osteopathic physicians delivering compassionate, comprehensive healthcare continues to rise throughout the nation and around the world.
      • AOA's Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation accredits 29 colleges of osteopathic medicine in 37 locations.

      Learn more about our osteopathic medical schools


      Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine
      School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Whole Person Healthcare +

    • Da Vincis Vitruvian Man

      At ATSU, students and faculty are part of a distinguished heritage of humanistic healthcare based on an integrated approach that includes the body, mind, and spirit of each patient. All three elements work in tandem to provide a more thorough and highly personalized healthcare delivery model that promotes wellness and meets the health needs of each patient. This approach distinguishes ATSU for innovation in post-graduate healthcare education. Graduates become compassionate leaders proposing global health solutions and meeting unmet community health needs.

      Each program, from audiology to dentistry, family practice to public health, integrates the principles of whole person healthcare into its curriculum and emphasizes the important role of health education, health coaching, and well-coordinated treatment plans that foster collaboration with each patient.

      Integrated, experiential learning forms the base of ATSU's educational foundation. Each student is encouraged to participate in a wellness program, to study nutrition, psychology, and problem-based learning, and to join in the many co-curricular activities that bring faculty and students together not only to optimize learning but also to enlighten and inspire.

  • Board of Trustees +

      • Linnette Sells, DO, FAOASM, '82

        Linnette Sells, DO, FAOASM, '82
        Chair
        Alpharetta, Ga.

      • #

        Reid Downey
        Vice Chair
        Atlanta, Ga.

      • Rosie Allen-Herring

        Rosie Allen-Herring, MBA
        Secretary
        Washington, D.C.

      • Danielle Barnett-Trapp, DO, '11

        Danielle Barnett-Trapp, DO, '11
        Anthem, Ariz.

      • Reid W. Butler

        Reid W. Butler, JD
        Phoenix, Ariz.

      • Marco J. Clark, EdD

        Marco J. Clark, EdD
        Austin, TX

      • jonathan cleaver

        Jonathan Cleaver, DO, FAOCD, FAAD, FASMS, '08
        Kirksville, Mo.

      • Linda Eremita

        Linda Eremita
        Pittsburgh, PA

      • Geoffrey Hoffa, DHSc, ATSU Board of Trustees

        Geoffrey Hoffa, DHSc, '14, MS, PA-C, '00, DFAAPA
        Phoenix, Ariz.

      • Herb Kuhn

        Herb Kuhn
        Jefferson City, Mo.

      • Thumbnail image of ASHS Chair, G. Scott Drew, DO, FAOCD

        Michelle Mayo, PhD
        Durham, NC

      • Alan Morgan, MPA

        Alan Morgan, MPA
        Stafford, Va.

      • Photo of Paulina Vazquez Morris, JD, MBA, MHSA

        Paulina Vazquez Morris, JD, MBA, MHSA
        Paradise Valley, Ariz.

      • Isaac Navarro

        Isaac R. Navarro, DMD, MPH, '08
        Visalia, Calif.

      • Floyd R. Simpson III, CFA, CAIA, CFP

        Floyd R. Simpson III, CFA, CAIA, CFP
        Philadelphia, PA

      • Bertha Thomas, BPhil

        Bertha Thomas
        Kirksville, Mo.

      • Thumbnail image of Gary Wiltz, MD, Member of ATSU Board of Trustees, from Franklin, LA

        Gary Wiltz, MD
        Franklin, La.

  • 2021-28 Strategic Plan +

    • Strategic Plan cover

      Beginning in October 2019, a 21-member strategic planning committee initiated development of ATSU’s 2021-2028 Strategic Plan. The final document represents many hours of thoughtful collaboration among faculty, staff, students, trustees, and external stakeholders.

      Five themes guide the strategic plan.

      • Innovative education
      • Mission-focused scholarship
      • Engaged, diverse University community
      • Beneficial partnerships
      • Agile resource management

      Read the complete 2021-28 Strategic Plan (pdf)

  • Annual Report +

    • Annual Report cover

      ATSU’s Annual Report provides a glimpse of the year’s events and achievements. To ensure the university continues on its path to preeminence and stays true to its mission, ATSU chooses three areas to concentrate its efforts each year. For 2019-20, the focus areas were health and wellness; innovation and scholarly activity; and safety and security. Read the complete 2019-20 Annual Report (pdf)

  • Student Complaint Resolution +

    • ATSU offers mechanisms for resolution of complaints arising out of academic, non-academic, administrative, or behavioral concerns. Each process is designed to help ensure the safety, security, and fair treatment of all students. ATSU encourages informal resolution through direct communication with the individuals involved, whenever possible. In instances where informal resolution as described below is unsatisfactory or there is a specific complaint process, concerns are elevated to formal complaints. Students should consult with Student Affairs if they are unsure about where or how to address a concern.

      Informal General Complaint Processes

      Informal complaints (i.e. concerns or expressions of dissatisfaction or disagreement) should be handled through direct communication (i.e. conversation, email, letter) between the student and the individual or office involved.

      1. The majority of student complaints can be addressed through communication with the individuals involved and are issues that are commonly handled by a university support office (i.e. Student Affairs, Human Resources, etc.)
      2. If the issue remains unresolved, the informal complaint should be directed to the appropriate university office, academic unit, or Dean for additional pursuit of resolution.

      Specific Complaint Processes

      There are many types specific complaints directly addressed by policy. Specific complaints and the source for the appropriate processes are listed below.

      General Complaint Processes

       ATSU recognizes students’ rights to express general complaints and seek solutions to problems arising from complaints, disagreements with faculty/administrators, or different interpretations of ATSU policy. Some concerns may involve course grades, promotion, financial concerns, etc. The procedure for expressing a general complaint that does not fall under the Code of Academic Conduct; Code of Behavioral Standards; Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Grievance procedures; or FERPA follows:

      • Academic.  Any concern that is academic in nature should be first discussed with the immediate instructor. If resolution cannot be reached, a student may appeal in writing to the next ranking administrator.
      • Non-academic.  Similarly, if there is a concern in areas other than academic, the student should first direct their complaint in writing to the director of the specific area of concern and then to the appropriate dean or vice president.

      General complaints should include the nature of the complaint, requested outcomes, and a description of previous attempts to resolve the issue informally. Students should expect a preliminary response from the appropriate office/unit within ten (10) business days of receipt of the general complaint. The designated responder will address the general complaint as timely as possible and will provide the student a final written determination including any proposed resolution.

      1. General complaints cannot be anonymous or filed on behalf of another person.
      2. Complaints that are handled through a different university process or procedure will be returned to the student with information on where/who to submit the complaint to for processing. See above for a list of specific complaint resources.

      Students are encouraged to consult with Student Affairs if unsure about where or how to address a concern and/or complaint. Submit a complaint.

      ATSU offers a fraud hotline allowing for anonymous complaints.  Visit the Fraud Hotline or call 1-855-FRAUD-HL, company ID “ATSU”.

  • Professional Licensure Disclosures+

    • In compliance with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education, and its final regulations effective July 1, 2020, ATSU provides the following information pertaining to professional licensure and certification for all programs, both online and residential.

      Licensure and/or certification requirements for all ATSU professional programs are well defined by a set of national standards that are applied on a state-by-state basis. ATSU has determined the curricula for all ATSU academic programs meet the state educational requirements for licensure or certification in the following states and US districts and territories: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, U.S. Virgin Islands, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.

      Students graduating from ATSU programs are eligible to take applicable exams and apply for licensure in each of these locations. Students should check any additional professional licensure requirements for the state, district or territory in which they intend to pursue employment. Dental students should be particularly aware certain states have unique licensure requirements. For example, in order to provide sedation in the dental practice, individual states have a variety of differing educational and/or experiential requirements.