Master of Science in Clinical Herbal Medicine

Overview


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Enrollment
Part Time
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NUMBER OF CREDITS
36
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Duration
6 trimesters
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Semester of Entry
Fall, Spring
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FORMAT
Hybrid

Consumer use of herbal supplements continues to grow and graduates of the M.S. Clinical Herbalism program will be prepared to serve as clinicians with the knowledge and tools to provide whole person, relationship-centered healthcare. MUIH offers the only M.S. Clinical Herbal Medicine program from a regionally accredited university. Learn about the healing power of herbs from a leading academic institution for natural and integrative health in the nation. The program prepares students to apply the principles, practices, and concepts in herbal medicine to the development and implementation of clinical strategies and real-world solutions. Students integrate scientific evidence with tradition and practical herbal experiences for integration into the contemporary healthcare environment. MUIH’s program empowers students with the critical thinking skills, health information literacy and expertise in herbal medicine to become clinical herbalists and leaders in the integration of herbal medicine into modern healthcare. It provides students with practical experiences in an experiential learning program and offers unique opportunities through MUIH’s herbal dispensary and garden.

This 36-credit hybrid program includes online courses and a required 4-day intensive in-person experience on-campus; students may also choose to take some selected courses on campus.

Audience


The program is designed for clinicians and practitioners that wish to diversify and expand their modalities of care through the application of herbal medicine, and for individuals that wish to become a clinical herbalist as a stand-alone profession. Clinical herbalism combined with a second health and wellness discipline can enhance an individual’s career and professional development. Particular credentialed clinicians are ideally suited for this Master’s program including those who are a credentialed herbalist (e.g. AHG registered) without a graduate clinical herbal degree, Ayurvedic practitioner, nutritionist, pharmacist, nurse, nurse practitioner, health coach, physician’s assistant, medical doctor, naturopathic doctor, osteopathic doctor, chiropractor, acupuncturist, midwife, physical therapist, yoga therapist, massage therapist, occupational therapist, fitness trainer, social worker, health educator, or veterinarian.

Program Description


This scientific and research-based program builds upon and combines with herbal medicine traditions. The program begins with extensive training in materia medica, herbal sciences, medicine making, and clinical theory and provides practical real-world experience in herbal medicine. Students complete an advanced residency in an herbal practice where they design, implement and synthesize learning in a clinical environment. Coursework allows students to deepen their competencies as practicing herbalists through the discussion of cases with peers and faculty. Students are also trained in group therapies in herbalism, writing therapeutic and case study reports, and embodying the core concept of becoming a healing presence. Class groups are personal and rely on the collective experience of a group to inform the learning experience, guided by experienced faculty coupled with the traditional wisdom and the contemporary evidence-based understanding on how to use herbal medicine. Students who are already clinical practitioners will work within their specialty while absorbing peer review from other clinical disciplines to deepen the incorporation of herbal therapeutics into their practice. The curriculum and learning are enhanced through a high-touch program that builds on the diverse experiences of students and their peers to cultivate a professional, engaging and rigorous environment.

While not a prerequisite, the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Herbal Studies can serve as an entry point and advanced standing in the M.S. Clinical Herbal Medicine degree. The four courses of this certificate program are transferrable and make up the first four required courses of this master’s degree.

Learning Outcomes


Upon completion of this program students will be able to:

  • Summarize and synthesize traditional knowledge, pharmacological, and clinical data to make an informed decision about the application of herbal formulas.
  • Evaluate and analyze traditional knowledge to bridge the information gap of evidence-based data to make rational decisions in developing safe and effective herbal products and formulas.
  • Determine safety concerns of herb-herb and herb-drug interactions for herbal product users.
  • Design a comprehensive wellness plan incorporating herbal, dietary, and lifestyle recommendations integrating self-awareness and lessons of nature.
  • Assess clients and develop the tools to evaluate and adjust individualized plans and goals in response to the changing needs of the client.
  • Determine the legal parameters of herbal practice within their field and the strategies to navigate them.

Curriculum


Required Courses

The program consists of 36 credits of the following required courses:

  • HRB600 Fundamentals of Herbal Medicine (3 cr)
  • HRB605 Materia Medica I (3 cr)
  • HRB622 Herbal Pharmacy: Evaluating and Manufacturing Quality Herbal (3 cr)
  • HRB624 Applied Herbalism in Clinical Practice (3 cr)
  • HRB641 Safety of Botanical Medicine (3 cr)
  • HRB705 Materia Medica II (3 cr)
  • HRB731 Clinical Experience I (3 cr)
  • HRB732 Clinical Experience II (3 cr)
  • HRB738 Clinical Theory in Practice (3 cr)
  • HRB759 Applied Therapeutics (3 cr)
  • ISCI547A Physiology I: Healthy Function (3 cr)
  • RSCH601 Research Literacy in Integrative Health (3 cr)
  • MUIH550 Academic Research and Scholarship (3 cr)

Course Descriptions

Course descriptions are available in the Academic Catalog.

Career Opportunities


Consumer use of herbal medicine continues to grow. More than 40 million individuals in the U.S. used non-vitamin, non-mineral supplements in 2012, up from 38 million users in 2007. In 2017, total U.S. retail sales of herbal supplements surpassed $8 billion for the first time, reaching nearly $8.1 billion. In addition, U.S. consumer spending increased 8.5%, from 2016 – the strongest sales growth for herbal supplements in more than 15 years. Total U.S. retail sales have increased every year since 2004, and since that time consumer spending on herbal supplements has nearly doubled. Increasingly, these consumers are reaching out to professional clinicians to help them understand what is safe and effective from the vast array of herbal supplements found in the market.

Increasingly, herbal supplement consumers are reaching out to professionals to help them understand what is safe and effective from the vast array of herbal supplements found in the market. Herbalists and other healthcare practitioners with herbal skills and knowledge will support the continued projected growth of healthcare occupations in the U.S. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics projects healthcare occupations to grow 14% from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. Clinical herbalists work in private practice, integrative health care settings, herbal dispensaries, health education, and in conventional allopathic medical settings. View more about career opportunities.

Program Format & Schedule


Program Format

This program is offered in the hybrid format. Click here to view MUIH’s definition of online, hybrid, and on-campus course and program formats.

The M.S. Clinical Herbal Medicine program requires a single 4-5 day on-campus intensive experience. Students can choose to take the rest of their coursework completely online, or to take selected classes on campus.

Program Schedule

For trimester start and end dates, see the Academic Calendar.

The schedule of courses is shown below:

Trimester 1

  • HRB600 Fundamentals of Herbal Medicine (3 cr)
  • HRB641 Safety of Botanical Medicine (3 cr)
  • MUIH550 Academic Research and Scholarship (3 cr)

Trimester 2

  • HRB605 Materia Medica I (3 cr)
  • HRB622 Herbal Pharmacy: Evaluating and Manufacturing Quality Herbal (3 cr)

Trimester 3

  • HRB738 Clinical Theory in Practice (3 cr)
  • ISCI547A Physiology I: Healthy Function (3 cr)

Trimester 4

  • HRB705 Materia Medica II (3 cr)
  • RSCH601 Research Literacy in Integrative Health (3 cr)

Trimester 5

  • HRB731 Clinical Experience I (3 cr)
  • HRB759 Applied Therapeutics (3 cr)

Trimester 6

  • HRB624 Applied Herbalism in Clinical Practice (3 cr)
  • HRB732 Clinical Experience II (3 cr)

Program Administration


​​Kathleen Warner, Ph.D.
Department Chair

Bevin Clare, M.S.
Program Director, Clinical Herbal Medicine

Rachel Voss, M.P.A.
Department Manager

Matthew Mazick
Academic Advisor

An MUIH education is not just for living, but for life.