The Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Herbal Studies provides the herbal enthusiast with a foundational knowledge of herbal sciences, as well as an understanding of wellness-based models of healthcare. MUIH offers the only graduate certificate in herbal medicine from a regionally accredited university. For thousands of years, people across the world have had a vast knowledge of their local plants, using them as allies to tend to their health through the changing seasons. With the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate (PBC) in Herbal Studies students can recapture that wisdom and create greater health, wellness, and vitality for themselves and others using herbs, food, and an increased awareness of the natural world. This 12-credit program can be completed fully online or in the hybrid format by taking a combination of online and on-campus classes. It can be completed in two trimesters (8 months) when taken fulltime, or in four trimesters (16 months) when taken part-time.
Individuals with a background or interest in horticulture and gardening, culinary arts and nutrition, public health and education, and the environment and sustainability, as well as people who are parents and caregivers, will find the program relevant and valuable.
Combining modern scientific knowledge with traditional wisdom, the coursework uses the cycles of nature to guide the integration of herbs into daily life. The program’s emphasis on practical skills ensures that students are familiar with the identification of local plants and possess the ability to make medicinal food and herbal preparations. The program empowers students with the knowledge and skills needed to support self-care through the safe and effective incorporation of herbs into daily life, using body care products, food preparations, and other herbal supplements. Class groups are personal and rely on the collective experience of a group to inform the learning experiences, guided by experienced faculty. For students that choose to take classes on campus, the program provides unique experiential learning opportunities through MUIH’s herbal dispensary and garden. On-campus projects will be available for students to engage in hands-on learning in medicinal plant harvesting, processing, formulary, medicine making, and quality control analysis.
The PBC Herbal Studies program has recently been redesigned to provide a greater focus on foundational herbal skills and knowledge, and to provide easy to navigate full-time and part-time study options. Click here to view this newly designed program, which debuts in the fall 2019 trimester.
The PBC Herbal Studies program can also serve as an entry point and advanced standing in MUIH’s M.S. Clinical Herbal Medicine degree or M.S. Herbal Product Design and Manufacture degree. The four courses of this PBC program are transferrable and make up the first four required courses of both of these Master’s degrees.
Upon completion of this program, students will be able to:
- Identify the principles of a wellness-based model of health care and apply these principles in a variety of personal and professional settings.
- Identify and harvest local herbs in the field, recognize raw materials, and manufacture herbal and food preparations.
- Describe the safe and appropriate use of a limited number of herbs as dietary supplements within the framework of a wellness-based model of health care.
- Identify how life is intertwined with the surrounding environment, articulate the implications of the changing seasons, and be able to safely and effectively utilize herbs to support self-care throughout the year.
- Incorporate herbs into food preparation as a way to provide daily wellness support.
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 (1, 2). In 2017, total U.S. retail sales of herbal supplements surpassed $8 billion for the first time, reaching nearly $8.1 billion (3). 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, 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 (BLS, 5) projects healthcare occupations to grow 18% from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 2.4 million new jobs. Healthcare occupations are projected to add more jobs than any other occupational groups in the U.S.
- National Center for Health Statistics, “Use of Complementary Health Approaches in the US: 2012 National Health Interview Survey,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, https://nccih.nih.gov/research/statistics/NHIS/2012.
- T.C. Clarke, et al., “Trends in the Use of Complementary Health Approaches Among Adults: United States, 2002–2012,” National Health Statistics Report, Feb 10 (79): 1–16, 2015.
- T. Smith, et al., “Herbal Supplement Sales in US Increased 8.5% in 2017, Topping $8 Billion”, HerbalGram, Issue 119, pg 62-71, 2018, http://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram/issue119/hg119-herbmktrpt.html.
- Bureau of Labor and Statistics, “Occupational Outlook Handbook”, U.S. Department of Labor, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/.