What Are Some Well-Known Natural Health Schools in the U.S.?
Natural health schools are becoming more common in the U.S. as interest in alternative and complementary medicine grows. The most well-known naturopathic medicine schools in the U.S. are those accredited and authorized by the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education (CNME) to award Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (N.D.) degrees. Learn more about them here.
Students interested in natural health issues can find programs at the schools listed below at the undergraduate or graduate level. These educational institutions offer instruction in a range of fields including naturopathic medicine, acupuncture, and nutrition.
Important Facts About This Field of Study
|Common Courses||Anatomy, naturopathic theory and history, botanical medicine|
|Degree/Certificate Levels||Non-degree training; certificates; bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees|
|Prerequisites||N.D.: Bachelor's degree; minimum GPA and prior relevant coursework and experience in the field may be required|
|Possible Careers||Research scientist, wellness educator, natural care health practitioner, consultant|
|Median Salary (2019)||$72,009 (for naturopathic physicians)*|
|Job Outlook (2016-2026)||13% (for health diagnosing and treating practitioners, all other)**|
Sources: *PayScale.com, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
National College of Natural Medicine
The National College of Natural Medicine in Portland, Oregon, was established in 1956, and it offers one of the first naturopathic medicine programs to be accredited by the CNME. This well-known U.S. natural health school combines both Eastern and Western natural health education with research and patient care. The school currently offers several graduate-level professional degree programs. It also provides a residency program and operates two teaching clinics. Degrees you can pursue include:
- Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine
- Master of Science in Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture
- Master of Science in Integrative Medicine Research
Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine
Located in Tempe, Arizona, Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine was founded in 1993. Its naturopathic medicine program was accredited by CNME in 1999. This school of natural health has an enrollment of approximately 400 students, and it offers a 4-year Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (N.D.) degree program. Through an agreement with the Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture, students at Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine can enroll in a joint N.D./Master of Acupuncture program.
As one of the largest natural health schools in the United States, Bastyr University has enrollment of just over 1,200 students. This well-known university opened its doors in 1978, and its naturopathic medicine program was accredited by CNME ten years later. Bastyr University houses a teaching and research clinic. In 2002, it received a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that was the first of its kind to be awarded to a natural health research institution.
In addition to opportunities to conduct clinical research, Bastyr University offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in various science-based specializations. Students could earn bachelor's degrees in areas such as acupuncture and oriental medicine, nutrition and health psychology. Graduate degrees or certificates are available in many natural health disciplines, including the following:
- Naturopathic Medicine (4- or 5-year N.D. Degree)
- Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (M.S.)
- Midwifery (M.S. Degree)
- Nutrition (B.S. or M.S. Degree)