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What Does “Certification in Aromatherapy” Mean?
Certification in Aromatherapy means that you have taken the necessary steps and have learnt and successfully passed the standards set forth by the various Aromatherapy Associations.
Aromatherapy Associations such as N.A.H.A or C.F.A in Canada do not issue any type of certification licensing because the position of “Certified Aromatherapist” is not recognized in State laws.
By having your Certificate/Diploma in Aromatherapy shows that you have successfully taken and passed the required Levels of Competence set forth by the Aromatherapy Associations and therefore have sufficient knowledge, according the Association standards to practice aromatherapy safely and effectively.
By obtaining a certification in aromatherapy, your clients will feel much more assured that you have taken the steps necessary to become well informed in the practice of aromatherapy. So although to the Government there is no title or certification in Aromatherapy, the fact that you have taken the time to take your courses and passed your exams shows the community and the Aromatherapy Associations that you are a professional and well-educated in your field of study.
This also helps our credibility with the Government in the sense that if they see we are self-regulating ourselves in the aromatherapy community then they will know that we do have a set of standards necessary before we can call ourselves “certified aromatherapists”.
Even though it is not recognized by Government officials, by completing and passing in your course of study you may call yourself a “Certified Aromatherapist” and this will give you and your clients the confidence that you have learned to practice aromatherapy in a safe and effective way in accordance with the standards set by the aromatherapy associations.
I should mention that not just any “Certification” would necessarily be acceptable to the various Aromatherapy Associations. Your course of study MUST be in accordance with association guidelines.
Serene Aromatherapy has made every effort to not only meet the guidelines set forth by the National Association of Holistic Aromatherapist (N.A.H.A.) but also have actually surpassed the requirements in order to be sure that my students are as knowledgeable in the practice of aromatherapy as is possible.
I am telling you this so that you know that although you have become a “certified Aromatherapist” this has no bearing whatsoever with Government bodies and legislature. Please be aware that having a certificate in Aromatherapy is not the same as having a License to Practice.
You must speak with your local authorities and see what you are legally allowed to do in your business as an aromatherapist. As mentioned earlier, you may not be allowed to have any on hands contact with the client so be sure to see what your State/Province allows.
Once you have completed and passed your exam from Level II proving that you have understood all of the material there within, you are in compliance of the standards set forth to call yourself a “Certified Aromatherapist”
Why Do I Need to Know Anatomy & Physiology?
Your Level II course seems more like a pre-med course, are the usual courses that extensive and why is it so extensive?
In our Level I Aromatherapy Course (which is mandatory to take before Level II) you learnt the minimum basics of Anatomy.
According to the standards set forth by the National Association of Holistic Aromatherapist it is compulsory to have an in depth knowledge of both Anatomy and Physiology and have a working knowledge of the potential ailments of each body system.
I realize that it seems quite extensive, but this is a necessary part of the course if you wish to become certified. All Level II courses are required to have this as standard teaching. Some courses may not be using this information, but that means that the particular course without the information is not meeting the Standards set forth by N.A.H.A. so therefore you should not take those courses.
Do you want to learn to become a certified aromatherapist and be knowledgeable enough to make proper assessments?
Then you will need to learn the Anatomy and Physiology whether you have an interest in this subject or not. A true aromatherapy course will teach using the standards set forth.
If you just want a beauty course or you don’t want the hassle of learning about anatomy & physiology, then only take the Level I Course and forget about becoming certified. If you just want to blend essential oils for personal use then of course this information in Level II is not necessary. That is why some people only take the Level I Course.
Why everyone should be taking a Level I Course seems obvious to me, because if you are going to be involved using essential oils then it is best to know the dangers as well as the proper applications which you will not find in a regular aromatherapy book.
Because of the possibility of this happening, we have been sure to make the Level I course very, very comprehensive so that people will be able to use essential oils safely and effectively, but there is not enough knowledge in anatomy & physiology in the Level I course to comply with the standards set forth, as mentioned.
Therefore you could not ethically call yourself a certified aromatherapist by taking only the Level I Aromatherapy Course, because you lack the knowledge that is expected and required for Level II.
After completion of our Level II course you will receive a diploma that you can frame and hang in your office to show clients that you have successfully completed the training necessary to consult them in the proper, safe use of aromatherapy and are knowledgeable in Anatomy and Physiology so that you can base your therapeutic blends based on this knowledge.
What is the “ARC” exam and Do I Need to Take it?
There is an organization that has set up what is known as the “ARC” exam. There has been controversy in the Aromatherapy Community regarding the exam stating that once a person completes and passes their Level II Course requirements that should be enough and another exam is totally unnecessary. Since there is no recognition of the title “Certified Aromatherapist” except by those in the aromatherapy community it does seem rather moot to have to pay for another examination.
By the way, the current cost of the exam alone is $275.00!
Here is an excerpt from their handbook:
“1. Application fee for the ARC Registration Examination in Aromatherapy………………………………………..$275.00
2. Special Testing Center fee (additional)………………..$150.00 NOTE: Pay the Special Testing Center fee ONLY if a Special Testing Center is being requested. See Special Testing Center instructions”
What really surprises me is when people complain about the cost of my whole aromatherapy course saying they think the course is expensive. Hello? If you are going to pay all that money for a little exam, which gives you no better standing in your knowledge than you already get from the Level II Course why complain about paying such a low price for my course which I have put hours and hours of research into to be sure you are all up to date and properly informed and not just following the garbage that is in some of the aromatherapy books on the market?
Also, if you didn’t take my Level II Course or one with the same standards from someone else, you will not pass the ARC exam, because it is based on the same material that is standard for Level II aromatherapy courses.
The choice is up to you. If you feel you would look more professional by taking the ARC exam, then go for it, but realize that it is not a necessary step. Successfully completing the Level II course that has been written according to NAHA’s standards, such as this course is sufficient.
For Your Information, This paragraph below is also taken from the ARC Handbook: The Bold print is added by me to emphasize the fact that you need Level II standards to qualify.
“The ARC Registration Examination in Aromatherapy is open to anyone who has completed a minimum of a one year Level 2 program in aromatherapy from a college or school that is in compliance with the current NAHA Educational Guidelines or anyone who could provide evidence of equivalent training (transcripts must be enclosed with Application). A determination of equivalency shall be made by ARC in its sole reasonable discretion.”
You can see that what is of primary importance is that the Aromatherapy Course you take has meet the standards of the NAHA Educational Guidelines.
I was looking at the contents of Level II and it looks pretty comprehensive. The question I have is this.... After one finishes the course and takes the final exam with a Proctor and passes it, will this qualify a person to become a Certified Aromatherapist? And what credentials will be given for completing these 2 courses if any?
As already mentioned, after completion of our Level I course you will receive a certificate via email stating that you have successfully completed Level I of the Foundations in Aromatherapy Course.
Level I gives you enough information to make using essential oils safely and effectively and there is much, much more information in there than is required because I want to be sure that you know what you are doing properly before venturing out in aromatherapy.
Level II course you will receive a diploma that you can frame and hang in your office to show clients that you have successfully completed the training necessary to consult them in the proper, safe use of aromatherapy and are knowledgeable in Anatomy and Physiology so that you can base your therapeutic blends based on this knowledge.
You can be proud to tell your clients that you have taken a course that is in accordance with the standards set forth by the Aromatherapy Associations such a N.A.H.A.
I read in Valerie’s book that hyssop and clary sage were indicated for hi blood pressure. You say no. So which is it?
You will find that my contra-indications are different by many of the aromatherapy books published. This is because there is no proof what-so-ever that there is any contra-indication for hyssop or clary sage for high blood pressure. Many aromatherapists just copy blindly what is written in many aromatherapy books. I could have done that also but is that the best way to practice? No.
There is a passage in the Bible that states that the Bereans were of more noble character, because they did not take what the Apostle Paul was saying as gospel truth. They themselves took what Paul said and then went and studied the scriptures for themselves to see if what Paul said was true. We have to be like the Bereans and not accept everything that is written down in aromatherapy books as gospel truth. We must investigate by ourselves all that we can. This is a noble character trait and will keep us out of trouble. So it is a very good thing you are asking.
The thing that people forget when writing these aromatherapy books is that much of their misinformation is based on the study of the herb and not the essential oil.
Once an herb is distilled it is no longer the same as the herbal counterpart. Much happens during the essential oil distillation that changes the essential oil very much, so that we are not even talking about the same herb anymore, in a sense, because it has much different attributes and chemistry than the original herb.
So, using a dilution of clary sage in a blend will not affect a person the same way as using the herb internally or even using the same essential oil undiluted. You see we are just using the essential oils externally and diluted well in the blend we make. Therefore it is not enough to be causing a problem for people with High Blood Pressure.
As I state often on my website: Don't believe everything you read in aromatherapy books. Be sure to rely on those who have actually researched the matter rather than those trying to become famous but just copy others who know no better than themselves.
I hope the information given here helps. If you have any further question then get back to me. firstname.lastname@example.org
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