Western Herbal Medicine Courses


Why study Western herbal medicine?

The interest to study herbal medicine is steadily increasing, causing the field to expand. This opens up new job opportunities and new ways of healing specific ailments, or to alleviate side effects of treatments (such as conventional cancer treatment).2 There is a wide body of research into the effectiveness and safety of many herbs used in Western herbal medicine, and this research is ongoing. Studying and working within Western herbal medicine allows practitioners to work alongside conventional therapies, as well as broaden their knowledge of traditional Western herbs. Western herbal medicine can be used for many ailments and illnesses, including:

  • General improvement and support of digestive, respiratory, circulatory, immune, endocrine, and nervous system processes
  • Cold and flu symptoms
  • Anxiety and tension-related stress
  • Rheumatic and arthritic conditions
  • Respiratory conditions
  • Colitis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Sore muscles
  • Skin irritation or problems
  • Joint pain
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Allergies and intolerances
  • Emotional well-being
  • Fertility support

There are many job opportunities for those who want to study herbal medicine—the salary can range from $55,000 to $85,000 or more, depending on whether you are practicing, educating, marketing, or developing.3 Those employed in the Western herbalist education sector, for example, can make anywhere between $60,000 to $75,000 per year, and employment for this role is expected to grow strongly in the coming years.2

How to study herbal medicine

How to become a herbalist in Australia? First, you will need to complete a Bachelor of Health Science (Western Herbal Medicine). You can find a herbalist course provider using our search feature below.


bachelor of health science (western herbal medicine) (Western Herbal Medicine)

a bachelor of health science in western herbal medicine offers a foundational knowled...

Course Provider : Torrens University Australia

Campuses :NSW QLD VIC

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Natural therapy modalities recognised by ANTA

Western herbalist courses and careers

Western herbalist workplaces

There are multiple fields to work in as a qualified Western herbalist. After you complete your Western herbal medicine degree and become qualified, you are likely to work in one of the following places:

Clinic practitioner

As a team member in an established clinic, you would gain the benefit of working with more experienced practitioners and have the chance to learn more about complementary and multi-modality therapies. You would also gain first-hand knowledge on how to manage and run a clinic and team, as well as expand your skillset as a practicing herbalist.

Many who graduate from Western herbal medicine courses go on to open a private practice. As the owner and operator of a small business, you will be able to choose work hours and days, but will also be responsible for implementing marketing strategies, gaining malpractice and other insurance, and managing the day-to-day operations of the clinic. Once successful, you will have the opportunity to expand and hire more practitioners within the Western herbal medicine industry.

Health retreats and day spas

Working within a health retreat/day spa will give you the experience of seeing multiple patients, and expand your face-to-face customer service and interpersonal skills. You will also have the opportunity to continue advancing your learning in a different environment. You would gain a deeper understanding of how complementary therapies such as acupuncture or massage are important to incorporate alongside herbal remedies.


Those who graduate and gain a few years of experience can also go on to work in the education sector. These opportunities include lecturer or professor for those studying the Bachelor of Health Science (WHM) or a private tutor. You could complete post-graduate studies immediately, or work within the academic field of herbal medicine for a few years first. Research and academic work is an extremely important area for herbalist practice, as continuing to gain deeper knowledge about how herbs interact with each other, and different chemical compounds furthers the entire field.

Product development

Western herbal medicine is an expanding field, and more opportunities are being created to formulate tonics, tablets, and creams, among other treatments. All these new products need trials and testing, as well as research, in order to be deemed safe for consumers. Applying your skills in this area not only helps you to grow your own skill set and knowledge about herbs, but also benefits practitioners and consumers, to ensure the herbalist sector continues growing in a safe and ethical way.

Corporate roles in sales and marketing

If you have a business background and enjoy corporate roles, sales and marketing is a great way to put your knowledge of herbal remedies to good use. This is a rewarding field to work in, especially if you have great interpersonal and communication skills. You would be on top of all the latest developments and trials, and have the opportunity to continue to expand your knowledge on up-to-date techniques and practice.

How to become a herbalist in Austtralia

To become a qualified herbal medicine practitioner in Australia, you will need to complete a Bachelor of Health Science.

Bachelor of Health Science (Western Herbal Medicine)

Course duration: 3 years full time (trimesters), 6 years part-time
Study mode: Blend of self-learning, on-campus learning, supervised clinical practice and external clinical practice.
Entry requirements: Year 12 or equivalent
Units of study:

  • Moral, ethical, legal and professional principles and practice
  • Human biology, physiology, structure, and function as it relates to disease manifestation and health maintenance (structure and function of the lymphatic, immune, digestive, nervous, endocrine, urinary, and reproductive systems)
  • Pathophysiology (immunology, toxicology, microbiology, and characteristic diseases, as well as symptomatology, and clinical manifestations for diseases)
  • Introduction to laboratory tests and interpretations
  • Recognising symptoms and diagnosing underlying issues
  • Interpreting and applying complementary and alternative medicine data
  • Contemporary global health issues
  • Complementary medicine foundations
  • Chemistry, human biochemistry, and nutrition (micronutrients, dietary sources, therapeutic doses)
  • Research and digital literacy skills and knowledge and practical application
  • Holistic philosophy and social sciences
  • Botany and herbal manufacturing and pharmacology
  • Clinical studies and clinical practice
  • Health business skills, professionalism and entrepreneurship, including mediation and conflict management
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Clinical experience and basic counselling


  1. 2020, Therapies: Western Herbal Medicine, Therapy Directory.
  2. 2020, Western Herbal Medicine, Cancer Council.
  3. 2020, Job Role: Western Herbal Medicine Educator, Upskilled.