Online Master's Degree in Natural Health and Medicine
While not widely available, some schools offer hybrid programs in alternative medicine and health practices, which allow you to take some classes online and some on-campus. Find out more about how hybrid programs work, and explore some course topics you'd study as a natural health student. Get info on the employment outlook for the healthcare industry. Schools offering Allied Health degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
What Is Natural Health and Medicine?
Natural healthcare offers a holistic perspective to healthcare, meaning that a patient's whole lifestyle, including mental, emotional and spiritual factors, contributes to his or her health. Natural healing can involve healing the body through natural remedies, such as fasting, herbs, massage and meditation.
What is an Online or Hybrid Program Like?
Online master's degree programs related to natural health and medicine can go by a variety of names including holistic health studies, holistic health education and health studies with a concentration in integrative health.
Online master's degree programs in this field are generally hybrid programs, which require some in-class or clinical requirements. The courses that require classroom time are often hands-on in nature, such as massage, yoga, healing plants or homeopathy.
Many of these degree programs are intended for professionals already working in the field of healthcare who are interested in incorporating holistic healing into their current practices. Some programs also require you to be licensed or certified in some aspect of healthcare; this may vary by state.
What Can I Learn?
You can learn about the identification, treatment and prevention of illnesses and other health issues through a holistic approach. Your curriculum covers both eastern and western philosophies of health and wellness and how to apply this information towards a successful healthcare regimen. You may learn to identify patients' specific needs and address them with such treatments as nutrition, exercise and movement, diet and herbal remedies. Some classes you may take include:
- Holistic nutrition
- Medicinal herbs
- Integrative health
- Holistic stress management
- Environmental health
What Career Opportunities Will I Have?
There are many career opportunities available to you depending on your specific degree program. You may choose to apply the techniques of integrated, holistic medicine to your current healthcare profession or work as a nutritionist, dietician or some other type of healthcare consultant. In 2010, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted a 22% increase in healthcare job opportunities from 2008-2018, which is higher than average (www.bls.gov).
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