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    Saybrook University
  Mar 01, 2021
2016-2017 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum 
2016-2017 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum [Archived Catalog]

Mind-Body Medicine, Healthcare Research Specialization, Ph.D.

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Current research shows that a whole-person approach toward treating chronic health conditions yields improved outcomes, and can also promote optimal wellness. The Healthcare Research specialization prepares students in qualitative research, quantitative research, and mixed research methods so they can effectively develop and examine a variety of integrative care approaches.

Program Learning Outcomes

Students completing the PhD Degree in Mind-Body Medicine will be able to:

1. Evaluate methodologies and/or conduct independent research to investigate contemporary issues in lifestyle and wellness.

2. Explain the influence of biopsychosocial factors on general health and wellbeing and the implications for individuals, organizations, and/or communities.

3. Interpret the values, ethical principles, and practice standards that are paramount for multidisciplinary practitioners and researchers.

4. Assess and synthesize evidence, theories, and informed practices/interventions in integrative medicine.

5. Apply published research and critical thinking skills in academic papers, presentations, and/or communications.

6. Develop reflective practices and/or model adaptive skills in integrative healthcare and wellness.

7. Demonstrate multicultural competencies and diversity awareness, and support health equity and social justice in healthcare systems.


Specialization in Healthcare Research

The PhD in Mind-Body Medicine with a Specialization in Healthcare Research provides an opportunity to broaden and deepen your knowledge of integrative healthcare, as well as the research process, while enhancing your academic and professional development. Current research shows that a whole-person approach toward treating chronic health conditions yields improved outcomes, and can also promote optimal wellness.

Requirements Overview

Students entering the Mind-Body Medicine doctoral program must have completed a master’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university prior to enrollment. Doctoral students must complete a minimum of 83 credits. Credits are earned by completing Mind-Body Medicine courses.

By approval, Saybrook may accept up to nine graduate transfer credits into the PhD degree in Mind-Body Medicine with the Healthcare Research specialization from other regionally-accredited colleges and universities prior to entrance. Transfer credits are applied to the required number of elective credits or required courses for degree completion. Nine transfer credits may be accepted to fulfill three three-credit elective course requirement for the degree program.

These credits must be suitable for transfer to the intended degree as determined by the Dean and Registrar. For further details regarding transfer credit policies, consult the Institutional Transfer Credit Guidelines section of the University Catalog.

Students receiving a master’s degree in Mind-Body Medicine or the master’s degree in Integrative and Functional Nutrition from Saybrook who are admitted into the doctoral degree in Mind‐Body Medicine can generally transfer all MS degree credits that match either a required course or an elective into the PhD program. Past students have transferred up to 38 credits. The exact amount depends on which MS degree the student has completed, and which PhD specialization the student selects. These students must fulfill the doctoral degree requirements not completed at the master’s level, including the remaining required courses and the dissertation or project. Meeting the doctoral requirements will include completing additional credits of doctoral coursework plus the dissertation or project, for a minimum total of 83 credits. Under some circumstances, additional courses required may total more than 83 credits.

For further information on admission into the PhD Mind-Body Medicine program after completion of the M.S. Mind-Body Medicine degree or the M.S. in Integrative and Functional Nutrition degree, contact the Saybrook Admissions Department. Some credits from a master’s degree earned in other programs at Saybrook may also be transferable into the doctoral degree program. Contact an academic advisor to inquire further.

This program is not a clinical psychology program. However, it can offer more flexibility in program planning to those wishing to enhance and further develop their clinical knowledge and expertise, but who do not intend to use the degree to qualify for licensure.

Total Credits: (Years 1-4) 83

* (Note: Students will remain enrolled in this course each term during culminating phase until completion.)

Degree Requirements for 2016-2017 Academic Year approved by CIMHS Degree Program Committee.


  • The degree completion time for a student following the default course sequence will average between 5 ½ to 6 ½ years. Some students may complete degree requirements in fewer terms and some may require more terms to complete the degree.
  • A listing of acceptable CIMHS courses and electives is available in the University Catalog. Students may also choose an elective from the required courses in other specializations.
  • This is a structured cohort program and the sequence of courses is different for students who start in the fall than for students who start in the spring.

Learning and Career Outcomes

What you can do with a PhD in Mind-Body Medicine, with a Healthcare Research Specialization?

All the specializations in Mind-Body Medicine support career and professional goals across a broad spectrum of healthcare occupations for individuals employed in a variety of academic and organizational environments. The learning outcomes and career outcomes for healthcare research are particularly well-suited to those interested in pursuing research and/or academic careers in evidence-based integrative medicine, including healthcare informatics.

Whether you are a mid-career professional seeking to enhance your existing skills or an individual seeking to transition to a new career path, our programs provide a comprehensive overview of the integrative health field combined with core skills training.

If you are currently pursuing a career in one of the occupations below or aspire to do so, our program can help you make a difference and advance along your chosen path.

  • Academic Teaching
  • Healthcare Administrator
  • Healthcare Research
  • Health Educator
  • Health Psychologist
  • Organizational consultant to Healthcare

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