There are several different educational opportunities for adult learners wishing to study herbal remedies. Learn more about the different options, common courses, accreditation and regulation in the field.
Herbalist programs focus on herbs and their uses in promoting nutrition, cleansing, natural healing and disease prevention. Introductory programs teach adult students to identify and select herbs to treat ailments, while advanced programs cover cultivating and preparing herbs in formulas for herbal remedies. Busy adults can find weekend and online courses as well as 1- to 2-day workshops. Most programs provide plenty of hands-on training and experiences in the field.
Programs At a Glance
Herbal Retail Management
- This certificate program consists of 12 credits.
- The program is offered online.
- This is a one-year certificate program.
- This program is available on campus.
Herbalist programs that are geared toward adult students often cover practical uses and applications for herbs. A few common courses include nutritional herbology, herb identification and selection, herbal horticulture, preparation and use of herbal formulas, and edible and medicinal plants. Students may also learn how to prepare teas, cosmetics and other infusions.
Creating herbal remedies is a hands-on activity and so many herbalist courses include herb identification walks, hands-on herbal formulation labs and outdoor gardening activities. These activities are often a few hours long. Students enrolled in online programs are often required to purchase home lab kits that include herbs and instructions for making herbal remedies. This helps provide the necessary hands-on training.
Although herbalist courses and programs are widespread, many schools that offer these programs are not regionally accredited. Students who attend schools accredited by federally recognized accrediting bodies are typically eligible for federal financial aid, and the credits earned in these programs may transfer to other schools. The American Herbalists Guild (AHG) does not place much emphasis on accreditation for herbalist programs, and attending an accredited program is not required to obtain the AHG registered herbalist credential.
Adults who are planning to work as herbalists should also note that there is no licensing or regulatory body for herbalists, but they can still face legal action for treatments that might prove harmful in any way. It is also illegal for herbalists to represent themselves as 'doctors' unless they have earned a medical degree.
Herbal remedies can be studied in individual courses and workshops, as well as through certificate programs. These programs are often available online and still provide learners with hands-on experience.