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Aromatherapy Colleges and Universities in the United States

Higher Education Articles April 4, 2013

Aromatherapy colleges and universities in the United States are available as both not-for-profit and for-profit educational institutions. Aromatherapy involves the use of essential oils, when warmed, release scents that are believed to bring spiritual benefits, mood improvement, relaxation, and relief of physical complaints. Small candle-warmed, massages, baths, or other warming containers are typically used to introduce the chemical essences through the skin or diffuse the scents for inhalation.

How to Select an Aromatherapy College or University?

Programs in aromatherapy can be found at two and four year colleges and universities, most commonly as a certificate program. The majority of colleges and universities offer aromatherapy as a concentration in a program like complementary or alternative medicine, integrative health practices, or holistic health.

Aspiring aromatherapy students should figure out whether their state regulates aromatherapists. If so, the state can specify the academic requirements that have to be met in order to pursue this career field. A university or college offering aromatherapy programs are required to meet those requirements, but aspiring students should check carefully to be certain.

Students may look for indicators of legitimacy, such as local or state licensure. There is not an accredited agency for alternative health education besides doctoral-level programs in naturopathy, but all colleges and universities should be licensed to provide education by the state. Aspiring students should seek recommendations from people who are in the profession to help discover a good college or university that they can attend.

A good college or university will provide a full course of education. Aromatherapy training programs will include general biochemistry and chemistry or physiology, if these are not prerequisites for admission. Coursework will focus on regulations and law for the state that the university or college is in, along with ethics of health practice. Students may also look for coursework in allergic reactions, contraindications for aromatherapy use, recommending correct treatments, and diagnosis. Courses will train students in understanding the actions of different essences, blending and choosing quality oils, along with identifying the most effective delivery techniques and methods for reflexology or massage.

Aromatherapy practitioners are required to work with people, deliver treatments in a session and educate clients about healthy living. Practice placement or an internship is invaluable. Several colleges and universities place students in preceptorships, either near students’ homes or the campus.

List of Aromatherapy Colleges and Universities in the United States

College/University School Location
Boulder College of Massage Therapy (BCMT) 6255 Longbow Drive – Boulder, Colorado 80301
Southwest Institute of Healing Arts (SWIHA) 1100 East Apache Boulevard – Tempe, Arizona 85281
American College of Healthcare Sciences 5940 Southwest Hood Avenue – Portland, Oregon 97239
Tai Sophia Institute 7750 Montpelier Road – Laurel, Maryland 20723
Bastyr University 14500 Juanita Drive Northeast – Kenmore, Washington 98028
SUNY College at Brockport 350 New Campus Drive – Brockport, New York 14420
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine 7445 Mission Valley Road – San Diego, California 92108

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