Berkeley Herbal Center Clinical Herbalist Certification Program

Our long-term Clinical Herbalist Certification Program is for students that want to train and be certified as Clinical Western Herbalists.

Feel confident in starting a private herbal practice, working in a community clinic, creating an herbal product line, or embarking on herbal education career!

Our coursework is taught by the Berkeley Herbal Center Staff and is built on experiential learning and knowledge handed down over the course of human healing history.

After completing both parts one and two, we offer hands-on, real-time herbal clinical experience through our Clinical Internship program at the low-cost Community Clinic here at the Berkeley Herbal Center.

Students receive a certification after completing each part of the clinical herbal training.

 

Program Options

We offer our students 3 different paths towards their journey to become a Certified Herbalist:

8 month fast track – Herbal Apprentice Program

2 year program- in person – Foundations & Therapeutics Program

2 year program – online – Village Herbalist Program

The Herbal Apprenticeship and Foundations & Therapeutics both take place at our Berkeley, California campus location, so students will need to live close to the Bay Area to attend this program. Here’s a helpful flow chart to find the right program for you!

This robust, 600-hour program runs 10:00 am to 5:00 pm every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from March through October.

Within those 8 Months students will complete the equivalent coursework as the 2 year Foundations & Therapeutics program. Students will make trips to the school’s garden in Pleasant Hill, and take several multi-day field trips. 

This version of our Clinical Herbalist Certification Program covers an entire two year period. Classes fall one day per week, September through July, in the evenings. Classes run for three hours at a time.

There are several multi-day field trips and monthly weekend herb walks.

This version of our Clinical Herbalist Certification Program covers an entire two year period. Classes are twice per week, on Monday and Tuesday evenings, and are entirely online. Classes run for 1.5 to 2 hours at a time. Online classes are held live, and no replays are available.

The Village Herbalist students will have the opportunity to join an optional, but highly recommended, in person Herb Camp Intensive Training. 

The Herbal Apprenticeship is for serious beginner herbalists that can dedicate their lives to the program, full time. 

You want to be fully immersed in the plants and healing and you are certain that you want to build a career in the herbal field.

While this does have the same syllabus as the Foundations & Therapeutics option, this program is much more fast paced.

This option is great if you want to fast-track your education and start your career as soon as possible.

Most apprentices work on homework Monday and Friday, attend classes Tuesday through Thursday. Note: We have found that even part-time work during this intensive program can be difficult to balance.

The Foundation and Therapeutics years are designed for folks that are working during their schooling or that want to add this knowledge to the careers they are already working towards.

While they do have the same syllabus, this program is less demanding than the Apprenticeship and is great for people that want to take a bit more time learning herbal medicine.

This option is split into two different classes over a two year period and was designed to to offer more flexibility for how students want to utilize their education.

Students have the option to only take the Herbal Foundations class if they’d just like to learn more about how they can utilize plants with their friends and families.

The Village Herbalist program is designed for folks that are working during their schooling or that want to add this knowledge to the careers they are already working towards. 

This program is great for people that want to take a bit more time learning herbal medicine, and are not able to attend our in person programs.

This option is split into two different classes over a two year period and was designed to to offer more flexibility for how students want to utilize their education.

Students have the option to only take year 1 if they’d just like to learn more about how they can utilize plants with their friends and families.

Pam & Clinic Students

The clinical internship program is created for students that have completed any of the 3 paths of our Clinical Herbalist Training Program listed above.

The clinical internship is through invitation rather than application and is reserved for those clinical herbalists that want to create a private practice of their own.

If you’re interested in joining our clinical internship but you aren’t currently a part of our Clinical Herbalist Certification Program, please send us an email at info@berkeleyherbalcenter.org.

Clinical Herbalist Certification Program Details

Herbal Foundations

Year one is dedicated to learning about plants and our bodies.

Aside from learning herbal actions within the body, what the body systems do, and common physical ailments, students are responsible for completing more than 80 herbal monographs, detailed plant reports, about the herbs that they will encounter throughout the program and in the wild.

Each week throughout the program, students will be offered an Herb of the Week to experiment with and offered space to talk about the plants.

Students will also be required to attend monthly herb walks, several overnight camping field trips, have a booth at our holiday craft fair, and learn several herbal medicine making techniques throughout the program.

Year two is dedicated to learning how to use herbs therapeutically.

Students will deepen their thinking into becoming holistic herbalists. It begins with a review and an understanding of Michael Moore’s constitutional forms and progresses into advanced therapeutic strategies in assessing an individual, and creating real treatment plans.

We revisit each body system through the lens of a holistic herbalist, studying how each system is interconnected using the body’s endocrine system, and focusing heavily on actual human case studies.

Students will begin to utilize their herbal knowledge and monographs from the first part of the training program, along with their developing understanding of the endocrine system, lifestyle choices, nutrition, and medicine making to create plans for holistic healing. Students will be required to complete action plans for the common ailments for each body system. 

Herb of the Week continues in this part of the program, however, students are responsible for pouring and reporting on each herb. There are also monthly herb walks and several field trips in this part of the program. These teachings offer deeper insight into different healing modalities like tongue and pulse diagnosis as well.

To graduate from our program, students need to write an “herbal dissertation.” They will research a single ailment and write a complete essay about how to treat it using any and all of the healing modalities they have learned throughout the program.

Herbal Therapeutics

Clinical Internship

Year three and four of the Clinical Herbalist Certification Program are dedicated to application of clinical herbalism within the community.

We are one of the only herbal schools in the country that offers hands on clinical experience within the community.

Students that excel in the first and second parts of our program are invited to stay in the program for a third, clinical year and work within our community herbal clinic. They are paired together and work with the supervision of one of our faculty herbalists.

Second year clinicians are students that have been in our program for all three prior years and are dedicated to the school.  While they do see their own clients in our onsite clinical rooms, this group is largely focused on the educational part of our school. They are teachers, head medicine makers, and are on track to become faculty members in the coming years.

Berkeley Herbal Center Student Experiences