Embalmer School and Training Program

Embalmers learn their trade through a mortuary science training program. Continue reading for information about classes you may take in associate and bachelor's degree programs in mortuary science as well as licensing information. Schools offering Mortuary Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Embalmers clean, preserve and restore the deceased to prepare them for funeral services and internment. Embalmers receive their training through mortuary science degree programs.

Degrees Most commonly offered at the associate degree level; however, some bachelor's degree programs can be found
Courses Anatomy, ethics, pathology
Online Programs usually available in a hybrid format

Where Can I Enroll in These Training Programs?

Embalmer training programs can be found at a variety of learning institutions. Some schools have departments that are designed especially for mortuary science. You can find training programs at two- and -four-year colleges as well. Take a look at some of the following schools to get started in your search:

  • Cypress College (Cypress, CA)
  • Piedmont Technical College (Greenwood, SC)
  • University of Minnesota (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Service (Houston, TX)
  • Northampton Community College (Bethlehem, PA)
  • Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science (Cincinnati, OH)
  • Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science (Pittsburgh, PA)

What Courses Will I Take?

Most programs develop curricula under the approval of the American Board of Funeral Service Education. Associate degree programs provide academic and clinical instruction for the funeral services industry. You'll receive hands-on instruction in the skills required to become a funeral director and embalmer. Your coursework could include:

  • Restorative art
  • Mortuary regulations
  • Physiology
  • History of the funeral service
  • Funeral home operations

What About Courses in a Bachelor's Degree?

Bachelor's degree programs also teach you fundamental mortuary sciences and embalming practices and offer more advanced courses. Some schools provide degree completion options if you already have sufficient general education or an associate degree in the field. Since most embalmers are also funeral directors. You'll be studying these course topics:

  • Legal issues
  • Funeral service regulations
  • Restorative art
  • Types of services
  • Bereavement psychology
  • Sales
  • Counseling
  • Funeral procedures

Can I Earn My Degree Online?

You'll be able to complete your theory coursework over the Internet; however, you could be required to complete hands-on practicums and laboratory exercises on-campus. Like traditional programs, your online classes usually have deadlines, homework, research assignments and exams. You'll interact with other students and your instructors through chat rooms and e-mail. Some programs require you to have access to a fax machine and a DVD player.

Do I Need To Be Licensed?

You will need to be licensed to work as an embalmer or funeral director. You'll usually need to have earned an associate or bachelor's degree and pass a state-issued exam. Some states require you to participate in an apprenticeship from 1-3 years in addition to formal education prior to licensure. You might also need to complete continuing education requirements to renew a license. Each state mandates their own licensing guidelines, so you should check with your state for necessary educational or experience requirements.

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:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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