Students of natural medicine (naturopathy, alternative medicine) study many of the same topics as their allopathic (western medicine) counterparts, in addition to the many natural and holistic healing methods which will become their main tools for helping people to become and remain healthy.
The first two years of study are devoted to medical science courses such as anatomy, dissection, pathology, physiology, biochemistry, histology, neuroscience, pharmacology, clinical diagnosis, and embryology, among others.
In addition to these courses, the naturopathic student takes courses in herbal medicine (botanical medicine), homeopathy, philosophy of health and healing, nutritional science, health counseling, and hydrotherapy, as well as physical medicine.
In the second two years of medical school, the students work in various naturopathic clinics throughout the community, as well as in the main clinic. Furthermore, they continue their studies of natural modalities outlined above.
Moreover, like their fellow allopathic medical students, they study otorhinolaryngology (upper respiratory disorders), gastroenterology, neurology, cardiology, respiratory disease, urology, dermatology, obstetrics, natural childbirth, and minor surgery, among others.
Naturopathic students devote many class hours to soft tissue work and manipulation of the joints, as well as ultrasound, cold laser treatments, and other types of physical therapy.
At the end of the four-year course of medical study, the naturopathic student is awarded the title of “Doctor of Naturopathy (N.D.).
For licensure, the newly minted naturopathic doctor passes the naturopathic clinical boards, usually within 6 months of earning the degree.
The naturopathic doctor is well trained not only in the current western medical approach but also in the many ways of natural healing.