Students in an herbology program learn how to prevent and treat illness through the use of plants and plant extracts. Educational prerequisites vary greatly for herbology certificate programs, depending upon the goals of each particular school. Certificate programs are commonly available online. Introductory herbology certificate programs have no prerequisites. Other certificate programs are designed only for licensed acupuncturists or students already enrolled in an acupuncture degree program. Many herbology programs include a clinical component or supervised internship, where students put their training to practical use treating patients.
Certificate in Herbology
Many of the courses included in a typical herbology certificate program build upon a previous understanding of alternative medicine theory. Students enrolled in such courses cover topics specifically related to plants, herbs and related treatments. Some examples include:
- Introduction to herbology
- Individual herbs
- Herbal formula
- Therapeutic strategies
- Herbal toxicity and safety
- Herbal clinical observation
Popular Career Options
A certificate of completion in herbology can provide a credential to individuals in several positions in alternative health. Some of these include:
- Herbal manufacturer
- Holistic practitioner
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), health diagnosing and treating practitioners in general could expect job growth of 17%, faster than the average for all occupations, from 2014-2024. PayScale.com reported a median annual salary of $48,735 for acupuncturists as of January 2016.
Certification and Continuing Education
Just as some institutions of higher learning offer herbology certificate programs, others offer herbology certification programs. No real difference exists between the courses and program outcomes of certificate and certification programs.
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine offers a national certification credential in Chinese Herbology. Three exams are required for certification. To be eligible to sit for the exams, applicants must have completed more than 2,000 hours of an accredited educational program, including 410 clinical hours. Alternatively, a certification applicant can study through a 2-year apprenticeship.
Students interested in alternative therapies may wish to pursue a certificate in herbology and seek professional certification. These programs incorporate courses in therapeutic strategies, herbal toxicity, and clinical observation with hands-on internships.