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What is and How to Become a Naturopath

What is and How to Become a Naturopath

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/ What is and How to Become a Naturopath

Natural Therapies Explained

Natural Therapists treat patients with physical, mental, spiritual and emotional needs by considering the whole person rather than focusing on specific symptoms and by using various therapies, techniques and practices.

Job Outlook Average Salary Work Hours Age Groups
Education Level Skills Trends Courses Interview with a Pro


Naturopath Job Outlook

The graph shows historical and projected (to 2019) employment levels (thousands) for this occupation.

Source: *Job Outlook Government website. ABS Labour Force Survey, DEEWR trend data to November 2014 and DEEWR projections to 2019. Estimates have been rounded.

Complementary Health Therapists have a relatively low proportion of full-time jobs (44.4 per cent). For Complementary Health Therapists working full-time, average weekly hours are 40.5 (compared to 40.9 for all occupations). Unemployment for Complementary Health Therapists is below average.

Naturopath Salaries lists the wage for a Naturopath with five years’ experience as being between an average of $58 000 to a maximum salary of $76 000.

Employment for Complementary Health Therapists to November 2017 is expected to grow very strongly. Employment in this small occupation (8100 in November 2012) remained relatively steady in the past five years, in the long-term (ten years), although with small occupations employment estimates can fluctuate.

Naturopath Weekly Work Hours

The graph shows the average weekly hours (by gender and full-time and part-time) worked for this occupation, compared with all occupations. 

Pay may be lower than the national average but the workplace culture and total number of hours worked per week encourage a healthier work/life balance.

Source: *Job Outlook Government website. ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2014.

Naturopath Age Profile

 Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2014.

Health and Wellness Industries Booming

The health and wellness industry is booming, now estimated to be worth an annual $2.5 billion, providing more opportunities for job-seekers beyond traditional natural and beauty therapy practice and into business management, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

According to industry expert, Janet Olliver, "Therapies such as massage, complementary medicine and aromatherapy, are sought after by an increasing number of people every year. With fewer than 6,000 naturopaths Australia-wide, the demand for skilled practitioners will continue to climb in the next few years."

Naturopath Education Levels

Source: *Job Outlook Government website. ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2014.

What Natural Therapies Qualification Do You Need?

Certificate in Homeopathy

Combining biological science with the art of traditional healing, this open learning course is a popular choice for career-changers and others seeking meaningful and rewarding work in the health and wellness industry.

Advanced Diploma of Naturopathy

This practical course covers a range of natural healing disciplines, including herbal medicine and nutrition. Suitable for those looking to move into their own practice, or for those learning for personal interest, this Diploma demonstrates the very latest in naturopathy practises and science.

Advanced Diploma of Nutritional Medicine

This  Diploma offers current comprehensive study for future nutritional professionals, or for students aspiring to study for their own personal interest. Upon completion, you will be recognised by accredited industry bodies with the opportunity for a pathway towards a bachelor’s degree.

Advanced Diploma of Western Herbal Medicine

Western herbal medicine involves using plants and plant material to create medicines to help prevent or treat various illnesses. Establish a career as a herbal medicine practitioner, either in your own practice or use your qualification as a pathway to further studies.

Natural Therapies

This dynamic sector creates excellent opportunities for those seeking a rewarding career in health and wellness. You will have the opportunity to gain a broad understanding of natural therapies practice, as well as building more specialised skills in specific natural therapy practises.


This massage course will introduce you to the concepts and basic techniques of massage, as well as the fundamentals of anatomy and physiology. You will learn a sequence delivery for a full body massage, as well as how to meet and greet clients and observe clinical etiquette.


This course covers the history of iridology, as well as the landmark iris signs and how they correspond to various conditions. A general introduction to the field of natural therapies is also provided, as well as specialist iridology equipment to allow you to practise what you learn.


Aromatherapy involves the use of aromatic essential oils for therapeutic and preventative purposes. Learn about the history and basic principles and applications of aromatherapy, extraction, blending and application methods as well as discussing treatment regimes for specific health problems.

Sports Nutrition

This comprehensive course covers the essentials of nutrition, food production and the workings of the alimentary system; it could be a starting point if you are considering a career in sports nutrition. Learn about the importance of carbohydrates, hydration and the influence of sports supplements.

Certificate III in Fitness

This course is designed for people who are passionate about health and well-being, who want a career focusing on fitness while instructing others. Learn to conduct fitness appraisals, develop programs, use fitness equipment safely, and advise clients on fitness and nutrition matters.

Certificate IV in Fitness

This Certificate covers fitness planning and programming, legal matters, client screening and motivation, program delivery and business planning. This course would be suitable if you aspire to work as a personal trainer, whether in an established organisation or in your own business.

Exercise Therapy

This general interest course will give you the knowledge to perform and prescribe exercises as an addition to manual therapy (such as massage). Learn about the skeletal system, musculature and body chemistry, and acquire important fundamental knowledge of anatomy and physiology.

Why Study Natural Therapies through Open Colleges?

Our natural therapies courses are delivered online, giving you the flexibility of organising your study around your life. You can enrol anytime of the year and study at your own pace.

Among other things, you'll learn about the history and philosophy of natural therapies and how to develop effective communication skills with your clients.

You’ll also learn about clinical procedures and first aid, business management and ethics as well as professional development.

Your course includes comprehensive student support to help you throughout your study. Some of the diplomas and certificates allow you to graduate with a government-accredited, nationally recognised qualification that can boost your chances of employment.

Interview with a Professional Natural Therapist and Homeopath

Janine McClelland  Managing Director and Classical Homeopath @The Remedy Group

Janine McClelland

Managing Director and Classical Homeopath @The Remedy Group

In two sentences, tell us what a bit about your company and role as a homeopath.

The Remedy Group currently consists of 2 fantastic clinics offering the services of an amazing range of natural therapy practitioners, including Naturopaths, Homeopaths, Kinesiologists, Acupuncture/TCM practitioners, Massage therapists, Bowen therapists, Reflexologists, Ayurvedic consultants, Counsellors, Hypnotherapists, Reiki practitioners and Psychologists.  My role as one of the Homeopaths allows me to consult with clients suffering from a wide range of conditions (mainly chronic complaints) and assist them to restore a state of health and balance to their lives.

What does a typical homeopath do on a day to day basis?

On my practitioner days, my full focus and attention is dedicated to consulting and client management.  New clients can require up to 90 minutes for their initial consultation as cases are often complex and may include a long history.  Client's returning for follow up consultations are assessed in terms of levels of improvement compared to their to prior state of health, with a clear treatment plan outlined in accordance to their response to the prescription given.  Patient records are also thoroughly maintained throughout this process.

What are the best parts of working as a homeopath?

The most satisfying aspect of working as a homeopath, is being of service to others in need of assistance.  Many people have suffered from very chronic conditions and ailments that often affect the freedom and enjoyment of their lives.  To be able to offer a treatment that relieves someone's suffering and gives them back a quality of life that they may have given up hope of attaining is quite remarkable.

What skills/attributes do potential natural therapies practitioners have to have?

The essential attribute for any natural therapy practitioner would be an intrinsic desire to help others.  A dedication and commitment to continued learning will also be invaluable as there is always more to learn.

What’re your favourite things about working in the natural therapies industry?

Some of the appealing aspects of working in the natural therapies industry include working with genuinely warm hearted individuals who are dedicated to being of service.  Working in an industry where most individuals work for themselves is also liberating, as you are able to have the freedom to create a workspace and atmosphere that supports the way you work as well as working the hours and days that fit in with the other parts of your life.

Thanks, Janine, for sharing your story with Open Colleges.

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