Study on our high-quality online MSc courses for practitioners at the Northern College of Acupuncture


Online Masters Courses for practitioners – our next courses start in September 2019.If you would like to find out more we recommend that you book a place on our regular online "Presentation and Q&A" sessions that we run throughout the year.  

ION diploma graduates/students who graduated after 2012 - you can apply for the Advanced Nutrition even if you don't have a degree.

The Teaching Team

One of our greatest assets here at the NCA is undoubtedly our dedicated teaching faculty, all of whom bring to their teaching a huge wealth of knowledge, enthusiasm and passion for their subject. As well as teaching at the College and working in their busy practices, our staff devote time to learning more about education to ensure the highest of teaching standards, and they also find time to conduct research or develop areas of expertise. The course is led by our Course Director Jane Nodder who heads up a team of excellent researcher practitioners.


Richard Blackwell, Northern College of Acupuncture


Richard Blackwell

BMedSci LicAc MSc(Ac) ClinAc(Nanjing) MBAcC FRCHM
College Principal

Richard has a Medical Sciences degree from Nottingham University Medical School, and graduated from the British College of Acupuncture in 1982 before going on to study Chinese herbal medicine. He established busy practices in Birmingham and then in York, and has taught at both undergraduate and postgraduate level for many years. He is a past president of the Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine. He has published widely on Chinese medicine theory, clinical practice, research and education and has a particular interest in the treatment of multiple sclerosis.

Jane Nodder, Northern College of Acupuncture


Jane Nodder

Course Director

Following a career in business, Jane trained as a nutrition practitioner with the Institute for Optimum Nutrition. She then ran a busy clinic in London focusing on nutrition for endurance athletes and approaches to weight management and endocrine modulation, before moving to York in 2016. In 2011, Jane completed the MSc in Nutritional Medicine at the University of Surrey where her research focused on dietary approaches and nutritional knowledge of non-elite marathon runners. Jane holds part 1 of the IOC PGDip in Sports Nutrition, has trained with the Institute for Functional Medicine and is a certified First Line Therapy practitioner. She is currently studying for the award of PhD in Technology Enhanced Learning and E-Research at Lancaster University. At NCA, Jane is Course Director for the on-line MSc programmes in Oriental Medicine, Complementary Medicine and Advanced Nutrition (Research & Practice). She is also a PG Module Leader, CPD Seminar Tutor and MSc Dissertation Supervisor. In 2010, Jane received the CAM Award for Individual Excellence in Nutritional Knowledge, and in 2011 the Yakult prize for Outstanding Student of the Year at the University of Surrey. Jane worked for BANT for nine years on the Professional Practice Committee, as a Director and as Head of Clinical Governance. She has also been an Accreditation Officer for the Nutritional Therapy Education Commission and is currently a Registrant Board Member of the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC).

Karen Charlesworth, Northern College of Acupuncture


Karen Charlesworth

MSc (Acupuncture) MBAcC
Research Director

After many years working as a journalist, Karen retrained as an acupuncturist, qualifying with an MSc from NCA in 2013. She runs a busy community acupuncture clinic in York. Karen’s MSc dissertation ‘invented’ by consensus a new auricular acupuncture protocol (known as APPA) for the attenuation of pain and anxiety in humanitarian aid situations. She is currently studying for her PhD in Acupuncture at the University of York, looking at the effectiveness of acupuncture for atrial fibrillation.


Rebecca O'Cleirigh, Northern College of Acupuncture


Rebecca O'Cleirigh

Module Leader Chinese Classics

Rebecca has PhD in Pharmacology, she conducted in-vitro research into the effects of Chinese Herbs and their potential effects on the endometrium in female fertility. She has an MSc in Herbal medicine and BSc’s in Acupuncture and Neuroscience. Rebecca is the module leader for Chinese Classics on the MSc in Advanced Oriental Medicine and teaches Herbal Medicine in context on the MSc Herbal Medicine at NCA. She has previously acted as project supervisor on the BSc research module at the London College of Traditional Acupuncture as well as managing their herbal dispensary. In China she has undertaken further studies in both herbal medicine and acupuncture.

Paula Seth is part of the teaching team on our new online MSc courses for practitioners


Paula Seth

Module leader Advanced Therapeutic Relationships

After 15 years teaching Drama and English in UK schools and universities, Paula moved to Ireland and retrained in homeopathy. She qualified as a homeopath in 2007 and followed this with an MSc in Homeopathy. Her research was a narrative study of the homeopath’s experience of the therapeutic relationship with clients with disordered eating. Becoming fascinated by the therapeutic relationship, in 2010 she embarked on a doctoral programme in Existential Psychotherapy. Paula’s main research interests are the therapeutic relationship, the role of complementary medicine in supporting mental wellbeing, and health practitioner education. When not teaching and writing up her thesis she divides her time between running a family orientated homeopathic practice in rural Ireland, and working as a psychotherapist and supervisor in a University counselling service.


Maggie Thorpe, Northern College of Acupuncture


Maggie Thorpe

Module Leader Complex Case Studies in Nutrition

Maggie is a registered nutrition practitioner with 15 year’s experience working in a busy multi-disciplinary clinic. Her main area of interest is in the use of nutritional therapy and education to support stress- related conditions and mental health. As an educator, Maggie has held roles in lecturing, clinical and research supervision, module and year leadership and personal tutoring on Diploma, BSc and MSc nutritional therapy programmes. She also works as an education consultant and external assessor. Maggie is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and her MA in Higher Education researched the student experience of blended learning in clinical training.


Sandro Graca, Northern College of Acupuncture


Sandro Graca

Lic. TCM, Cert. Acu, Dip. Medical Qi Gong
Module Leader Innovative Business Development

Sandro is a registered Acupuncturist and TCM practitioner working in Ireland since 2007. He was offered a teaching role after finishing his Licentiate, a position he held until joining a study group to the Beijing University of Chinese Medicine. That training sparked his interest in the areas of gynaecology, fertility and pregnancy, which led him to pursue further education in the field of acupuncture for fertility and IVF support. Sandro has held leadership roles in professional associations in Ireland and he is a member of the board of directors of Evidence Based Acupuncture and the Obstetrical Acupuncture Association. Those roles have established him as an international speaker and he continues to research, write, present and educate the profession and the community about acupuncture.