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How Do I Become a Naturopathic Practitioner?

Nicole Madison
Updated May 17, 2024
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To become a naturopathic practitioner, you will typically have to graduate from high school or earn an equivalency diploma. After high school, the next step is usually spending four years in college earning a bachelor's degree. Once your college education is complete, you'll likely need to complete a four-year program at a college of naturopathic medicine. In jurisdictions that license naturopathic practitioners, you may also have to pass a standardized exam to gain licensing.

The first step in becoming a naturopathic practitioner is usually graduating from high school or earning an equivalent diploma or credential. A high school education provides important preparation for future learning and is often required for admission to college. When your goal is to become a naturopathic practitioner, science and health courses may prove particularly beneficial for your future studies.

After high school, you will likely spend about four years in college earning a bachelor's degree as you work to become a naturopathic practitioner. You can select just about any major as you work toward this career, but a science major may provide excellent preparation. For example, you could choose to major in biology or chemistry or opt to major in pre-medicine. If you choose a non-science major, you can still prepare to become a naturopathic practitioner by taking a significant number of science courses during your undergraduate study career; this usually means taking more than the number of science courses your non-science major requires.

Once you've graduated from college, you will usually have to attend medical school as your next step in working toward this career. You will typically have to gain admission to a naturopathic medicine college or a medical school that offers a naturopathic medicine program. In most cases, naturopathic medicine programs last just as long as regular medical school does: four years. During this time you will likely study such subjects as anatomy, botany, and psychology as well as a range of topics important to the application of naturopathic medicine.

Licensing requirements for naturopathic practitioners vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. In fact, there are even some jurisdictions that do not grant licenses to people who practice naturopathic medicine. If your jurisdiction does offer licensing for this type of medicine, you will likely have to demonstrate that you have met your jurisdiction's educational requirements and pass a rigorous standardized exam. If your jurisdiction does not offer such licensing, you may do well to learn the laws regarding the practice of naturopathic medicine in your area to ensure you meet the criteria.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.
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Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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