Professional Herbalist Studies Course

Classroom First aid
Heather teaching a course at the Academy of Scottish Herbalism classroom in Oregon.

Instructing in the art & science of traditional Scottish herbalism and ethno botany, the Professional Herbal Studies Course is a hands-on learning opportunity, designed to teach you to recognize health conditions, the herbs and foods that address them and how to care for the whole person. You will build and hone your skills in herbal research, plant chemistry, organoleptic testing of herbs, gardening, wildcrafting and harvesting techniques, creating, formulating according to ailments and dispensing of herbal preparations. Weaving both practical and sacred herbalism into your kitchen, garden, laundry and bath, you will also be sent on treasure hunts to libraries, arboretums, conservatories and nurseries, to the mountains, meadows, woodlands and into your community.

Classroom1 (2)
Oregon Classroom, Ready for the the First Day!

As a vocational and technical herb course, this specialized knowledge is taught to prepare you as an herbalist, to care for your own health, your family and community, to build knowledge and confidence, to train and inspire you in the use of herbs and foods for healing, teaching you to empower yourself and others.


Classroom posters
Gaelic Language Wildflower Posters in the Classroom

The curriculum is based on the philosophy of traditional Scottish herbalism and ethno botany. The herbs you will learn to use are mostly considered invasive weeds, now growing most places in the world, so common and rugged, they cannot be deforested. Powerful and yet so safe, they have been in use for hundreds of thousands of years. This style of Gaelic traditional herbalism, a practical yet sacred mind-set of approaches to health concerns and wellness reached its popularity in Scotland in the medieval period, and was sought after worldwide. These largely oral traditions have been collected for the past 400 years and the medical findings of learned-to-common Scottish folk, are now being proven distinct and valuable, by science.

Classroom library & backstock
Academy Research Library and Stock Tinctures

While being a powerful healing system of its own, some parts of Scottish Herbalism are modernly being incorporated into what’s being called ‘western’ Herbalism. Yet the particular perspective of herbalism taught at the Academy is the primal and intact system significant to the culture.

Appropriate for both the beginner and those experienced in other
herbal methods, you will be trained to be proficient in a tradition of Herbalism, that many people over the centuries have lived by with
vigor and vitality.


Classroom teachers chair
Daily Lesson Handouts and Lesson Plan Ready for the Day!

Academic Year Begins in Oregon in January
Classes meet Saturdays & Sundays from 10am to 5pm.

The course is divided into trimesters. Every nine week trimester consists of 126 hours of education and training, each taking the student deeper into herbal knowledge and skills. You may select to take one, two or all three trimesters, and may return in subsequent years that the program is available, to add trimesters to your training. The whole course is comprised of 378 hours of tuition. Certificates of completion are given upon successful completion of each trimester and a diploma is awarded from the Academy upon successful completion of all three trimesters of the course.

As the course is ethno-botanical in nature, there is no placement in later trimesters based on previous study in other herbal programs.

January to March  90% attendance is required
Completion qualifies you to make herbal extracts, to perform self-care and family herbalism and to propagate and grow herb starts. This trimester is
a prerequisite to the Intermediate and Advanced levels.

Foundation trimester of the course includes:

BOTANICAL PHARMACY Training in making tincture extracts and infused vinegars, honeys and oils, medicinal infusions, decoctions, poultices, fomentations and steams. Herbal chemistry, constituents and their actions on the body, selection, handling and care of Herbalist’s kitchen tools, supplies and understanding extracting mediums are all included.

MATERIA MEDICAS In depth discussion of herbal monographs and how to review, understand and utilize herbal research. Seeing, tasting and experience of each herb studied. Developing herbal relationships.

THERAPEUTIC APPLICATIONS Herbal and nutritional care for allergies, colds & flu, digestive and heart health, stress, men’s & women’s health, blood sugar disorders, urinary tract issues, pain, injuries and first aid.

HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY Foundation level for the Herbalist.

HERBAL BOTANY Technical terms, structure of botanical nomenclature, herbal identification walks, wildcrafting ethics and techniques.

GARDENING Technical gardening terms and propagation methods, soil amendments and techniques, soil and growing requirements, herbalist garden tool selection and care, harvesting, drying and storing herbs.

HISTORY & PHILOSOPHY; Traditional Scottish Herbalism and history. Traditional and scientific understanding of wellness and disease. Legalities of herbal consulting and the village herbalist role in community.

March – May  90% attendance is required

Completion qualifies a student to additionally dispense, perform light manufacturing and to plan and care for medicinal gardens, This is a prerequisite to the advanced level. A score of 85% or better in testing on the Foundation Level course work is required to enter this level of study.

The Intermediate trimester of the course includes:

BOTANICAL PHARMACY Training in making therapeutic use oils, glycerites, respiratory syrups, medicinal bath salts, body and tooth powders, lip balms, ointments and creams. Formulating methods, ingredient measurement and measurement conversion are all included.

MATERIA MEDICAS In depth discussion of herbal monographs. Seeing, tasting and experience of each herb studied. Developing more herbal relationships. Monographs on pressed plant oils and their use in herbalism & healing. Herbal chemical constituents and their actions.

THERAPEUTIC APPLICATIONS Herbal care for babies, children and during pregnancy. Herbalism to direct reproductive choices, menopause and arthritis. Nutrition and herbs for skin care, dental care and in depth understanding of the roles of vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates and fats in nutrition and dietary structure.

HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY Intermediate level for the Herbalist.

TECHNICAL LANGUAGE of herbalism including medicinal actions and defining terms of herbal preparations.

HERBAL BOTANY Intermediate technical terms, herbal identification walks, keys to plant families and wild plant community observations.

GARDENING Composting structures, components & techniques, medicinal tree care and tools and moon phase harvesting techniques. Guided independent medicinal garden plan and presentations.

HISTORY & PHILOSOPHY; Gaelic physic gardens, monastic sites and hospitals, their structure, contents and philosophy. Cultural ethno-botany, animism and mystical beliefs. Up to date legalities of words used in herbalism and how to legally speak about herbs. Recognizing intellectual property rights and protecting your own. Books and resources review and developing a functional library for herbal research.

June –August  * 95% attendance is required
Completion qualifies a student to additionally assist with plant research projects, perform organoleptic herb testing, purchase for and maintain a clinical pharmacy and serve in apprenticeship or internship with an experienced Herbalist. A score of 90% or better in testing on the intermediate course work is required to enter this level of study.

Advanced trimester of the course includes:

BOTANICAL PHARMACY; Training in making floral waters, trans-dermal creams, ointments, aromatherapy formulas, therapeutic incense, smoking blends and elixirs. Advanced herbal chemistry and formulating techniques. Developing an apothecary including training in organoleptic standards, guidelines and skills for testing and selecting dried herbs, extract tinctures and other herbal preparations.

MATERIA MEDICAS; In depth discussion of herbal monographs. Seeing, tasting and experience of each herb studied. Developing more herbal relationships. Observation of the relationship between plant chemical constituents, plant actions and health conditions. Guided independent Materia medica research and presentations. Monographs on therapeutic use clays

THERAPEUTIC APPLICATIONS Herbal and nutritional care for
adrenal exhaustion, anxiety, emphysema, cancers, high cholesterol, high and low blood pressure, chronic pain, ovarian cysts, post traumatic stress, shingles, tinnitus and gastric ulcers

ESOTERICA Herbalism for the mind, emotions and spiritual life

HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY Advanced level for the Herbalist.

TECHNICAL LANGUAGE Advanced medicinal plant actions.

HERBAL BOTANY Herbal identification walks, keys to plant families and wild plant community observations.

GARDENING Disease diagnostics, treatment and insect control.

PRESENTATION, PACKAGING AND MERCHANDISING Guided independent herbalist promotion and herbal packaging design and presentations.

HISTORY & PHILOSOPHY Gaelic Medicine’s philosophy of disease prevention, immunity and infection. Understanding the tissues of the body and how to care for them, when to use a tonic or effector herb and a methodology for using science and tradition together.


If this course sounds like it’s for you, please send an enrollment email to with an essay of: ‘Why you feel this is a perfect time in your life to begin this course of study, what your dreams and visions are of what you’ll do with this training.’

A further enrollment interview is required before acceptance into the course can be determined.

*A second special session of the third trimester will be offered to select students in the month of September. Weekdays 10am to 5pm, for four weeks, weekends off for travel and exploration. Location: Strathpeffer Scottish Highlands!

Tuition for the whole course of 378 hours is $4000. if all paid up-front. Per trimester option is $1425. for 126 hours.

If you are interested in the Advanced trimester in Scotland and you pass a travel-study interview, there is an additional $1000. cost for tuition for that trimester. Travel, food and lodgings are not included, but group arrangements for lodging and food will be made to minimize costs.

Included with the cost of all tuition options are copies of three Academy text books and all lab supplies . A 50% deposit for which ever tuition payment plan you choose is due by September 1st, to reserve your place in the course and is non-refundable. The balance of tuition is due November 1st, before the course begins.

Tuition payment can be made in person during shop hours at Mrs. Thompson’s, Herbs, by mail, or by phone. Payment can be made by cash, check, money order, Paypal and Mrs. Thompson’s does take most major credit cards, which allows students to pay tuition in small portions to the credit card company.

Additional costs to plan for: Other required text books for the full course about $75. Herbalist and gardening supplies about $300

c/o Mrs. Thompson’s Herbs
347 West Fifth, Eugene, Oregon U.S.A. 97401
PHONE: 541- 686-6136    EMAIL:
Apothecary hours Noon-6 p.m. Tuesday – Saturday

Looking forward to the journey!

To read more about Heather’s qualifications as your instructor go to: Heather’s Biography


Email Newsletter Signup Form