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Diplomate Requirements

The ICPA Diplomate Program has 9 requirements, each designed to be a huge asset to your practice growth and success. 

  1. Assessment and Application of Family Practice Knowledge: 24 Hours
  2. Clinical Contribution to Research: 32 Hours
  3. Clinical Results: 12 Hours
  4. Critical Thinking: 36 Hours
  5. Effective Writing Skills: 12 Hours
  6. Patient Education: 24 Hours
  7. Effective Communication Skills: 16 Hours
  8. Clinical Skills: 48 Hours
  9. CPR/First Aid Certification

1. Assessment and Application of Family Practice Knowledge: 24 Hours

These hours are accrued by successfully completing the comprehensive CACCP final exam.

2. Clinical Contribution to Research: 32 hours

You must register, participate and complete (2) in-office PBRN data collection projects. Note: These 2 projects are additional to the CACCP PBRN requirement.


3. Clinical Results: 12 hours

Provide (3) children and/or pregnancy written testimonials with narratives from you and your patients/parents about the quality of life improvements under your care. These case write-ups are similar to practice testimonials and may be published in Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine. 

Guidelines for Testimonials

  • 800 words maximum. 
  • High-resolution photo of you with the patient (preferably adjusting) required.
  • DO NOT include patients’ full name. First name and last initial is fine.

Important Forms for Participants to Sign

4. Critical Thinking: 36 hours

ICPA respects a chiropractor’s ability to critically think and to express that thinking in a publishable manner. You may choose between writing:

  • A peer-reviewed research paper with acceptance for publication by a peer-reviewed journal. This paper must be relevant to pediatrics, perinatal care or family wellness.
  • A thesis relating to the science, art or philosophy of chiropractic family care. 

Guidelines to Fulfill Critical Thinking

Case Study

Many chiropractic schools require students to prepare a paper for peer review and publication. For those who have not acquired this skill in college, Dr. Matt McCoy offers an online class on writing a case study.

The total cost is $500 and will include a textbook, case study online form, online course, email support, and one-on-one coaching. The goal at the end of this course is the completion of a case study research paper on a participating patient. At a minimum, the paper must meet the technical requirements of a peer-reviewed research journal as outlined in the class notes and lecture materials. It may be submitted to any chiropractic journal for publication. For more information, visit the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health Chiropractic.


This option is for those preferring to write a thesis and have the experience to do so. Once completed, this thesis is to be submitted to ICPA for review and approval.

5. Effective Writing Skills: 12 hours

ICPA recognizes the necessity for all chiropractors to be able to transfer clinical expertise to the public in an organized, understandable manner. You are required to submit an article for publication to Pathways to Family Wellness magazine. This is a feature article expressing clinical experience and its relevance for public understanding of chiropractic as it relates to the parents and their wellness lifestyle choices. You are required to provide references of the article to support article content.

Guidelines to Fulfill Effective Writing Skills

The goal of Pathways is to empower parents and professionals with informational and inspirational content. It is a publication for creative change, personal growth, health awareness, and informed choice. Articles that challenge and confront, as well as articles that support and nourish, are characteristics of a publishable Pathways article.

Pathways invites readers to move into new perspectives and supports them in areas they wish to know more about. Preferred articles will be both challenging and from the heart. This article should include supportive research, information, and references, presented in a unique way. Articles must also relate back to chiropractic.

  • 2,500 words minimum.
  • References and research to support article content.
  • Relate back to chiropractic. 

Visit Pathways to Family Wellness to browse articles by topic for examples.  

Topics to Consider

Feature: Health information pertinent to the family wellness lifestyle, empowering parents to make informed healthcare choices. Articles on: parenting, pregnancy, birth, infant care and issues of health throughout childhood are welcomed. A wide range of topics and approaches is possible in this section, and we encourage articles presenting options to make informed healthcare choices.

Parenting and Education: Focuses on how we see and relate to our children in the home and in their educational environments. Ideas, philosophies, inspirations and real-life stories that help us to be the best parents we can be.

Pregnancy and Birth: A place of inspiration and also a place to confront the growing "norm" of technology in childbirth. We look for articles to help mothers and fathers to be armed with knowledge and offer them tools to successfully accomplish new modes of natural living for their families. Articles about co-management with birth care providers supportive of natural childbirth are welcomed.

Wellness Lifestyle: This is where we talk about dynamics within families. We encourage articles that challenge readers to see perspectives that offer the possibility for more nurturing relationships in their families.

How to Submit to Pathways

Please include the following information at the top of the document:

  • Your name
  • Date submitted
  • Your address
  • Your email and/or phone number
  • The word count
  • a 50 word personal bio (to be used if we print your article)
  • Please indicate that this article is being submitted for Diplomate credit

Photos to Accompany Article

We welcome and appreciate accompanied photos. Photos should be high-contrast, 5" x 7" black-and-white prints or color prints. If emailed (preferred), please send high-resolution (300 dpi) photos in jpeg or tiff format. If you mail photos for the articles, please adhere to the above specs. Please let us know if you have already submitted elsewhere and advise us of the date you are free to publish elsewhere.

Publishing Your Article

We find that our desire to publish something is only the first part of the publication process. There are lots of other unrelated contingencies that effect which articles go in and when, so it can sometimes seem like a very long time before it is published, especially as we are a quarterly magazine.

Our procedure is to read and consider all articles and to respond within three weeks of receiving them. Certain built-in processes can cause delays, however. It can seem like a long wait to hear from us, especially if you are eager for a reply. Please be patient. If you wish to inquire about your manuscript before hearing from us, please do so by email.

Once an article is received and we retain it, we will usually want to retain it for the next 3 issue deadlines. This way, if it does not fit into the immediate issue, it can be reconsidered for the next one. Final decisions are made only after all articles on hand are evaluated; yet even when an article is selected for an issue, it may be pulled for lack of space at layout time. These uncertainties make it difficult for us to be as specific in our acceptance as we would like, and we appreciate your understanding of this creative process. We try not to keep an article longer than 6 months to a year because, although we may like it, we feel it should have a chance in another market. 

Copyright Protection

The copyright for all Pathways articles is maintained by the author. By submitting an article to Pathways, you are granting permission for its reprint in the magazine, Pathways, and that it will be archived on the ICPA/Pathways websites for viewing. Readers will be able to order previous issues and individual articles of Pathways online and may use them for distribution in their communities or as references on their websites. When used in either way, all credit to author is required with links back to both Pathways and your website.


Our hardest task is returning articles that have not met the Diplomate criteria. We will offer suggestions for direction of article and content. We evaluate all articles in light of the other articles we have on hand, when last we covered the subject, and our readers' interest in the subject matter. We retain only about 1 out of every 50 articles we see and then must select again from this smaller group. Returning a manuscript is not a personal rejection; it is a practical consideration.

We consider all submissions on a speculative basis. That is, even if we have expressed an interest in, or a go-ahead on, a proposed article, we cannot guarantee its publication. Once we have given final acceptance of the article, your Diplomate requirements have been met.

6. Patient Education: 24 hours

The ICPA Board and Instructors are practitioners who have been in practice catering to children and pregnant women between 20-30 years. We recognize the value of patient education and the ability to publicly speak to the community. With this in mind, this criteria is included in Diplomate requirements: submission of a video recorded healthcare class created and presented by you, being given to an audience of patient attendees. 

Guidelines to Fulfill Patient Education 

Providing a healthcare class offers the practitioner numerous benefits, such as improvement of public speaking skills and patient outreach. Several of our certification instructors provide brief overviews or outlines to complete healthcare class. If you already have a healthcare class, you need only to record it and mail it to ICPA. If you are not currently offering a class, you may use the outline provided by Dr. Kevorkian. The other option is to create your own. Either way, filming of the class in front of a live audience is required.

Important Forms for Participants to Sign


7. Effective Communication Skills: 16 hours

Recognizing the need for parents to find pertinent health information to make informed conscious choices for their families, ICPA created monthly “Gathering Groups” called Pathways Connect. The criteria to demonstrate effective communication skills is to establish a Pathways Connect group in your practice. 

ICPA Members host Pathways Connect groups in their offices. Meetings are based on having intelligent discussions relating to family wellness matters. ICPA provides participants with quarterly talking points, guidelines and additional resources so the groups can explore the many topics relevant to family wellness. You will learn group education skills, non-violent group management and will be exposed to research and information at the forefront of family wellness issues. You are required to initiate and maintain a Pathways Connect group, providing evidence of its successful implementation via video or photos.

Guidelines to Fulfill Effective Communication Skills 

  • Place a recurring (quarterly) bulk order for 10 or more copies of Pathways magazine (50 or more for imprinting). Subscribe to Pathways
  • Contact ICPA to enroll in Pathways Connect to receive the "Getting Started" materials.
  • Once enrolled, you will be listed on our Pathways Connect Directory.
  • Prior to each upcoming issue, you will receive via email: an early digital copy of Pathways and a link to questions for discussion at your Pathways Connect Gathering Group.
  • Set a date for the Pathways Gathering Group in your office.
  • Distribute fliers to your practice members, local stores, wellness centers, etc.
  • Have your magazines and questions ready to go for your first meeting. 

Read John “Doc” Edwards’ first-handed account of what Pathways Connect can do for you, your practice, and your wellness community.  

Important Forms for Participants to Sign

8. Clinical Skills: 48 hours

This requirement includes both a pregnancy and infant consultation, exam, report visit and initial adjustment. The candidate will submit a video of these visits with both a pregnant mother and an infant under the age of 6 months and submit it to the Academy Council Of Chiropractic Pediatrics for grading. Grading assessment and criteria include: skills in consultations, evidence of criteria for care in exam, specific indicated adjustment, assessment for correction. Release forms are provided for volunteer patients.

Guidelines to Fulfill Clinical Skills 

Whether you do your initial consultation, exam and adjustment on the first visit or break them down into more than one visit, each interaction must be recorded. The consultation will simply be a recording that is able to capture both you and the pregnant mother and parent in conversation. For the exam and adjustment videos, please proceed with your assessment and adjustment and then in a written format describe what you were assessing, what your findings were, what you adjusted and why and then post check.  Please view the Spinal Evaluation and Adjustment guidelines to see what is required.

Important Forms for Participants to Sign

9. CPR/First Aid Certification

Find your local Red Cross or American Heart Association. Acquire your CPR and First Aid certification with their organization and send a copy of your certification to the ICPA Certifications Coordinator.

CE for Maintenance of Diplomate Status

Every two years, 12 hours of continuing education are required to maintain Diplomate status. We expect our graduates to achieve the role of leadership in the profession by on-going participation in advanced clinical expertise, evidence-based research and public education. 

1. Refresh and Review: All ICPA seminars, even refreshers, are considered eligible for credit. 
2. Connect and Collaborate: Attend the Freedom for Family Wellness Summit to fulfill your requirement.
3. Support Research: Participate in a current ICPA PBRN project. 
4. Establish Evidence-Informed Practice: Peer-review articles in chiropractic journals and research symposiums. This is an excellent opportunity to become involved in the necessary research in our profession and to advance your status in our profession. 





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