Dr Nat Answering Questions: How to become a Naturopathic Doctor

To become a Naturopathic Doctor you need an undergrad degree along with having taken all of the prerequisits for the school that you choose. There are 7 different schools in North America and they all have slightly different pre-reqs. Here is the web address for the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges its lists the 7 schools and allows you to get more detailed information from each of their web sites. http://www.aanmc.org. These are the only colleges that you can get an actual Naturopathic Medical Degree from so please be careful if you are looking into any other schools that are not 1 of these 7 schools. The 7 schools are:

– Bastyr University (Seattle, WA)
– Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine (New Westminster, BC)
– Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (Toronto, ON)
– National College of Naturopathic Medicine (Portland, OR)
– National University of Health Sciences (Chicago, IL)
– South West College of Naturopathic Medicine (Pheonix, AZ)
– University of Bridgeport (Bridgeport CN)

I went to the Boucher Institue of Naturopathic Medicine in New Westminster and the pre reqs for that school are the following:

Degree requirements

A university bachelor’s degree from a recognized post-secondary institution in any field is required for entry into the program. For credentials earned outside of the USA and Canada, a “comprehensive evaluation” must be completed from ICES or from WES and sent directly to the Admissions Office prior to the admissions deadline.

Potential students may apply for admission in the final year of undergraduate study if they will be able to provide an official transcript showing the degree conferred date as well as proof of successful completion of all prerequisites no later than one month prior to matriculation. Credentials obtained at a foreign institution require further evaluation on a course by course basis.

The following specific courses are required prerequisites and must show a minimum final grade of 60 per cent or ‘C’. Prerequisite courses must be taken at a recognized post-secondary institution, either on-site or on-line. The Boucher Institute does not require the separate lab courses as a prerequisite. Lab courses may not be used to fulfil the number of required prerequisite credit hours or be included in calculating prerequisite grades (for a guide to prerequisites accepted at the Boucher Institute please see the Frequently Asked Questions section).

* Biochemistry: half-year (3 credit hours)

* Biology: one full-year (6 credit hours). This may be fulfilled either by one year of general biology or by one semester of cellular biology plus one semester of an appropriate biology, such as botany, ecology, genetics, microbiology or zoology. Please note: anatomy and physiology courses may not satisfy the biology requirement.

* General Chemistry: one full-year (6 credit hours)

* English/Humanities: one full-year (6 credit hours). This requirement may be fulfilled by courses such as, academic writing, anthropology, history, literature, philosophy, sociology, women’s studies, written communication or similar courses. Coursework must include a significant essay-writing component (typically 40 per cent or greater of the total coursework). Applicants may be required to write a short essay at the time of interview. Second language courses (Spanish, French etc.) and courses taught in a language other than English may not be used to satisfy this requirement.

* Organic Chemistry: half-year (3 credit hours)

* Psychology: half-year (3 credit hours). This requirement must be filled by introductory or general psychology. It is strongly recommended for the 2011 intake that applicants have an additional 3.0 credits of psychology in any discipline. Completion of 6.0 credits of psychology will be a requirement for entrance to the program in 2012 for both the part time and full time programs.

Please note: According to both PCTIA bylaws and Boucher Institute policy, minimum program admission requirements may not be waived.

For information on what type of courses satisfy the Boucher Institute requirements, as well as a limited list of acceptable courses from specific institutions please see the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section under ‘Future Students’.

Note: Credit may or may not be given for courses completed more than 10 years prior to application for admission, at the discretion of the Admissions Committee. Students should be prepared to show that they have kept themselves up-to-date in the sciences.

The Boucher Institute may, at its discretion, accept prerequisite preparatory courses from other CNME-approved institutions. This option is generally reserved for students who apply as transfer students. It is preferable for first year applicants to complete their prerequisite courses through a recognized university or college.

Recommended courses

In addition to the mandatory prerequisites, prospective students would benefit by completing additional courses in some or all of the following areas showing a final grade of at least 73 per cent or ‘B’:

* Business/Marketing
* Calculus
* Community/Cultural/Global or International Studies
* Cell Biology
* Ecology
* Environmental Science/Sustainability
* Genetics
* Leadership
* Management
* Microbiology
* Nutrition
* Philosophy
* Physics
* Religious Studies
* Research
* Sociology
* Statistics

Cumulative grade-point average

The Boucher Institute calculates a cumulative grade-point average for all courses that constitute an undergraduate degree. For a candidate to be competitive for our limited seats, the recommended cumulative grade-point average for an undergraduate degree is 3.0 on a four-point scale (an average ‘B’ letter grade).

Minimum pre-requisite grade-point average

A passing mark of 60 per cent or ‘C’ (2.0 on a four-point scale) is the absolute minimum grade required for all prerequisite courses. A passing mark of 73 per cent or ‘B’ (3.0 on a four-point scale) or greater is required for any recommended courses to be considered. The average prerequisite grade-point average for matriculated students in 2010 was approximately 3.3 and the average for the 2009 intake was 3.1.

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1 comment

  1. wow! As I am reading Walking in the World (another from the author of The Artist’s Way), I was thinking how 11 years into my corporate career, I am interested in exploring a career in naturopathic or homeopathic holistic medicine. This post is so helpful! Do you have other professional roles [other than MD] you can suggest? I don’t have any of these prerequisites…Thanks for the insightful post!

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