Diploma of Phytotherapy

Program Overview

The Diploma of Phytotherapy is a 3-year (6-semester) program that explores the medicinal uses of North American and European herbs. Students study both traditional knowledge of herbal medicine – that which is passed down through various world traditions over the ages – and modern day, scientific-based knowledge. This, the most comprehensive program of western herbal medicine available in either Canada or the United States, is comprised of both theoretical and practical courses, implementing advantages of hands-on study of plants. 

Length: 6 semesters
Intakes: Winter, Summer, Fall semesters

Clinical Training: 510 hours
Total Training: 2130 hours 

Over these forty years of herbal practice and teaching clinical skills across the States, Europe and Canada I consider Pacific Rim College to offer a fully rounded experiential program. Traditional foundational studies are enlivened by harvesting thoughts and practices delving into, and masterfully blending, the deep connection to plants through spirit, history, science, advanced clinical studies with weathered herbalists and hands on practice with patients. Graduates are empowered and fully qualified to serve we humans in clinical practice in their own village or city.  Then practice, practice, practice.

– Margi Flint, Author of The Practicing Herbalist

Why Pacific Rim College?

The Diploma of Phytotherapy at Pacific Rim College is the most comprehensive and recognized program of western herbal medicine in North America.
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Through Pacific Rim College’s Student Clinic, students provide more than 7,000 treatments a year and compound each herbal formula by hand in our extensive herbal dispensary.
All programs at Pacific Rim College are approved by the Canadian Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills & Training (Private Training Institutions Branch) and Canada Student Loans.
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Pacific Rim College is actively engaged in many forms of environmental stewardship including 100% green energy offsets for our campus, the highest eco-certification, and planting of 10 trees in British Columbia for every program graduate.

What You’ll Learn:

Key Learning Outcome #1

Extensive knowledge of traditional herbal medicine practices from various cultures alongside contemporary applications of herbal therapies. 

Key Learning Outcome #2

Thorough background of biomedical understanding of the human body, its structure, physiology, common pathologies, and also western diagnostic skills and pharmacotherapy. 

Key Learning Outcome #3

A deep understanding of the comprehensive materia medica of western herbal medicine and the therapeutic applications of those herbs.

Key Learning Outcome #4

How to make tinctures, salves, compresses, teas, lotions and other products and applications of herbal medicine.

Key Learning Outcome #5

Wide-ranging professional skills from writing and communication to business development experience needed to establish a private herbal medicine practice or to join an integrative health centre.

My proudest achievement is having studied at Pacific Rim College and completing the Diploma of Phytotherapy program. Pacific Rim College attracts the most passionate teachers, students, and healers, and that strong, positive energy is apparent on the PRC campus. I feel honoured to have learned from amazing teachers about the human body, ancient traditions and herbal folklore, modern scientific research, and in depth information on herbs and working with people from all backgrounds and health concerns. Years after graduation, I still find myself on campus often, visiting the herbal dispensary and utilizing the amazing student clinics. I am forever grateful for the knowledge I’ve gained and the amazing community of people I am a part of because of Pacific Rim College.

– Lauren Truscott, Alumnus, Herbalist, Practitioner at Body Blueprint Fitness, Wellness, & Education

Core Program Instructors

 

Curriculum

Below is a list of all courses that must be completed for a student to be eligible for graduation with a Diploma of Phytotherapy. Some course prerequisites do exist, and it is the responsibility of students to ensure that they are eligible to enrol in any particular course. The Course Descriptions page indicates course prerequisites. Please see Study Options below for more information on course selection.

Biomedical/Biological Sciences

BMS101/102
6 credits 6 crds
90 hours 90 hrs
BMS112
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
BMS121
1 credit 1 crd
15 hours 15 hrs
BMS122
1 credit 1 crd
15 hours 15 hrs
BMS201/202
6 credits 6 crds
90 hours 90 hrs
BMS211
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
BMS212
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
BMS231
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
BMS232
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
BMS431
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
Total
 
32 credits 32 crds
480 hours 480 hrs

Elective

Elective
Elective
9 credits 9 crds
135 hours 135 hrs
Total
 
9 credits 9 crds
135 hours 135 hrs

Nutrition

NU
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
Total
 
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs

Phytotherapy Clinical Practice

PCP101
6 credits 6 crds
90 hours 90 hrs
PCP200
3 credits 3 crds
90 hours 90 hrs
PCP300
11 credits 11 crds
330 hours 330 hrs
PCP361
0 credits 0 crds
0 hours 0 hrs
Total
 
20 credits 20 crds
510 hours 510 hrs

Professional Development

PD101
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
PD211
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
PD302
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
PD303
1 credit 1 crd
15 hours 15 hrs
PD304
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
Total
 
13 credits 13 crds
195 hours 195 hrs

Western Herbal Sciences

WHS101
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS102
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS103
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS111
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS151
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS201
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS202
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS203
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS204
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS301
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS302
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS303
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS305
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS306
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
WHS
9 credits 9 crds
135 hours 135 hrs
Total
 
51 credits 51 crds
765 hours 765 hrs

Total Requirements

Biomedical/Biological Sciences
32 credits 32 crds
480 hours 480 hrs
Elective
9 credits 9 crds
135 hours 135 hrs
Nutrition
3 credits 3 crds
45 hours 45 hrs
Phytotherapy Clinical Practice
20 credits 20 crds
510 hours 510 hrs
Professional Development
13 credits 13 crds
195 hours 195 hrs
Western Herbal Sciences
51 credits 51 crds
765 hours 765 hrs
Grand Total
 
128 credits 128 crds
2130 hours 2130 hrs

Clinical Training

Students in the Diploma of Phytotherapy program can complete all clinical training in PRC’s on-campus Student Clinic, or can participate in our Clinical Externship Program. Full-time students generally begin clinical training via observation during the very first week of studies.

Study Options

The School of Western Herbal Medicine offers year-round educational opportunities with an academic calendar based on 3 semesters per year. New students may enrol every January, May and September and students may either choose to pursue year-round studies or to take a semester or more off at their discretion. By choosing their course load each semester, students may complete any semester on a part-time or a full-time basis.

Students who wish not to enrol in any program are also eligible to take individual courses for personal enrichment provided that applicable course prerequisites have been met. Please see Non-Matriculating Students below for more information.

Admissions

Admission into the Diploma of Phytotherapy at Pacific Rim College is on a competitive basis. Entering students must have a high school diploma or equivalent, or satisfactory post-secondary education. We will accept mature students on a case by case basis; eligible mature students must demonstrate they have achieved sufficient post-secondary education credits in lieu of high school credits.

All applicants must demonstrate a mastery of written and spoken English. English proficiency is evaluated on a case by case basis, and applicants may be required to submit an official score report from an English proficiency exam such as TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Test System).

To apply for the Diploma of Phytotherapy Program, please click on the link below. We do not have a set deadline for applications and will continue to accept students up until the start of classes, provided there is space within the program. Typically this program fills prior to the semester start, so we recommend applying 6 months in advance. 

Tuition and Fees

Tuition is based on a per credit system. Although the college provides guidance for the order of course completion within each program, ultimately each student determines personal course load and schedule and thus per semester tuition. Audited credits do not apply towards graduation requirements. All prices listed are in Canadian dollars. For each semester, full tuition payment is due on the first day of the semester.

Please click here for a description of Academic Fees in PDF format.

Please click here for a description of Academic Fees in PDF format.

Financial Aid

This program is approved for Canada Student Loans. British Columbia residents can apply for student loans online through StudentAid BC. For non-British Columbia residents, please visit hrsdc.gc.ca for information about Canada Student Loans.

For a list of all financial aid programs available to PRC students, please visit our Financial Aid page.

Post-Graduation

Graduates of the Diploma of Phytotherapy can use knowledge and experience gained to establish a professional herbal clinic to assist clients with health issues, work in the health and wellness retail sector, grow and maintain herbal gardens, create herbal preparations, provide consultancy services to the herbal industry and work with natural health regulatory bodies.

Graduates are eligible for membership into the Canadian Herbalists Association of British Columbia (CHA of BC), the American Herbalists Guild (AHG), and the Ontario Herbalists Association (OHA).

Licensing Requirements

Practitioner licensing requirements vary based on region of governance. Currently there are no government restrictions to the practice of Western Herbal Medicine in Canada. It is students’ responsibility to ensure they meet eligibility criteria in their chosen region.


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