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Herbal Medicine (MSc)

Course Description

Individual modules may be taken as Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and some elements within modules are offered as short courses.

The course develops qualified herbal practitioners. The focus is on furthering your growth as a scholar practitioner, and enabling you to develop as a leader in research, clinical governance and policy and practice within the Herbal Medicine profession, while advancing your own professional practice. The underpinning ethos is to equip you with the knowledge, skills and practical experience to enhance your professional role in the field of Herbal Medicine. This is fostered through the academic and professional experience in both the theoretical concepts and the diagnostic practice within your own specialty.

The course presents appropriate clinical and analytical content in an inter-professional dimension, and engenders an understanding and appreciation of the importance and role of peer mentoring and supervision. It will support your research in a specialist area, enable you to develop a wide variety of transferable skills and critical analytical skills, and provide a forum in which you can engage with contemporary issues and debates within the discipline.

Course content

In-depth exploration of the current nature and context of herbal medicine, relating uses of herbs from different countries and form different herbal traditions to contemporary research and the evidence base for therapeutic applications. Detailed study of selected important herbs and herbal preparation.

This module aims to develop your clinical reasoning as a confident, independent and effective clinician within a community of practice. We will consider how we use deductive and inductive reasoning, intuition or tacit knowledge, narrative reasoning and experience. Knowledge and practice will be challenged through observation and discussion of clinical situations within your own discipline and in inter-disciplinary care. Group and individual supervision and mentoring will help you to develop the reflexive skills of the practitioner. You will need to undertake the equivalent of one day a week in practice to complete this module.

In-depth exploration of a range of medicinal herbs from different countries and from different herbal traditions, and the evidence base for their therapeutic use; critical evaluation of the clinical use of herbal medicine in the context of integrated health care and current legislation; consideration of efficacy and effectiveness for chosen herbs in specific therapeutic application of health conditions.

This module provides a foundation of knowledge and skills needed to undertake ethical work-based research at Masters level. The module covers principles and practice of research with a focus on study design and methods of data collection, analysis and evaluation. It is taught in a supportive and intellectually challenging environment within which students develop their knowledge, understanding and skills as researchers.

You will develop the skills you need to review and critique the evidence relating to contemporary issues in your relevant field, by gaining academic credit for formal learning such as seminars, conference presentations and workshops, and disseminating your findings in a collaborative inter-professional setting.

The purpose of this module is to enable you to undertake a supervised research project relevant to your area of professional practice and/or work setting. The module aims to develop your capacity as an autonomous researcher, applying effective, rigorous, and ethical research skills in the critical in-depth investigation of a chosen topic relevant to practice. You will generate and critically analyse data; present your results and discuss your findings in the context of previously published work.

Associated careers

This course is designed to enhance the skills of professionals already in herbal practice and encourage diversity into other areas of work and in other healthcare environments such as the NHS and GP practices, charitable organisations and private outpatient hospitals. Graduates may continue in private practice or progress on to PhD/ Professional Doctorate study, or find employment in academic or research institutes, as well as management, marketing and development in government and community healthcare provision and related industries.


At Westminster, we have always believed that your University experience should be designed to enhance your professional life. Today’s organisations need graduates with both good degrees and employability skills, and we are committed to enhancing your graduate employability by ensuring that career development skills are embedded in all courses.

Opportunities for part-time work, placements and work-related learning activities are widely available, and can provide you with extra cash and help you to demonstrate that you have the skills employers are looking for. In London there is a plentiful supply of part-time work – most students at the University of Westminster work part time (or full time during vacations) to help support their studies.

We continue to widen and strengthen our links with employers, involving them in curriculum design and encouraging their participation in other aspects of career education and guidance. Staff take into account the latest data on labour market trends and employers’ requirements to continually improve the service delivered to students.

Visit the Herbal Medicine (MSc) page on the University of Westminster website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Kimberley Walker

"After the BSc in Herbal Medicine, I decided to continue on to the MSc to further my research skills. During the summer, I was fortunate enough to gain an internship at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Here I helped reorganise the specimen collections in their beautiful Herbarium. After this, I was offered a research project in the Economic Botany Collection investigating some of the historic herbal medicine specimens donated by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. I hope to use the data for my Masters dissertation and hopefully build a career with the skills I am learning both there and at Westminster.
The MSc in Herbal Medicine at Westminster developed and refined my research skills. The work was hard but rewarding and has opened up new opportunities and pathways for future work and study. As a result, the expertise gained from this qualification enabled me to successfully gain a place as an intern and undertake a research project in the history of Eucalyptus as a medicine at Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew."


Entry Requirements

You will hold a good BSc Honours degree in Herbal Medicine, an equivalent professional qualification and associated work experience, or a qualification deemed suitable by the course team. Where equivalence is accepted, the length, depth and content and orientation of the syllabus, of course followed, will be considered. You will need the higher education skills required for postgraduate - level study, including evidence of research, critiquing and academic writing skills, IT, reflective practice and communication together with a collaborative approaches to working.

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