Naturopathy Certification and Classes

Naturopathic medicine takes a holistic approach to preventing disease or illness. Explore the education and training programs available to those seeking a career in naturopathy. Schools offering Complementary & Alternative Health degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Are Accredited Programs in Naturopathy Available?

Accredited doctoral degree programs are available in naturopathic medicine and can prepare you to become a naturopathic doctor. As a Doctor of Naturopathy (N.D.), you'll work to treat the whole patient using natural therapies and preventative methods. An N.D. program takes approximately four years to complete. Due to the in-depth nature of the coursework and the clinical requirements, you'll only find accredited on-campus N.D. programs.

What Classes Will I Take?

To study naturopathy, you must have knowledge of the body's functions and interactions. You can expect to take advanced science courses like biochemistry, neuroscience, anatomy and pathology, as well as courses in the various branches of medicine. There are often lab components to your coursework, as well as clinical portions, where you'll observe patients under the supervision of a licensed professional.

During an N.D. program, you'll take classes on the history of naturopathy, as well as Eastern and Oriental medicine. Naturopathic coursework explores the relationship between the mind and the body, treating humans as a whole rather than just looking at individual symptoms. Because of naturopathy's reliance on nature and holistic remedies, you'll learn how to use herbs and plants as medicine. You'll also examine the relationship between diet and overall health.

In addition to obtaining a degree from an accredited institution, graduates also often choose to complete a residency under the guidance of a faculty member or naturopathic practitioner. The residency can take place at a natural health clinic and usually lasts 1-2 years.

Do I Need to Be Certified to Practice Natural Medicine?

There is no industry standard for certification in naturopathy, so determining the authority of an organization that grants a certification is subjective. Although you don't need certification to work as a naturopathic doctor, you might have to become licensed. There are 16 states in the U.S. that require naturopathic doctors receive licensure to treat patients.

Attending a school that has been accredited by the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education (CNME) can ensure that your program meets the educational requirements needed for you to apply to take the Naturopathic Physicians Licensing Exam (www.cnme.org). If you've graduated from an accredited naturopathic medicine program and pass the exam, you can maintain your license by completing continuing education every year.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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