Online Herbal Course:
Who is this course for?
This course is for anyone interested in herbs, healing and learning. Anyone with an interest in systems such as: Western Herbalism, Ayurveda, Dreambody and Shamanism. You may be a gardener, a nature lover, a parent, an educator, an artist, a dreamer, a radical, a massage therapist, an energy worker, a healthcare professional, a student, a wild woman, or a natural healer. You are someone who is interested in learning more about deep inner healing through herbs, the dreaming body, and holistic systems such as Ayurveda. You may be someone who loves to grow or wildcraft herbs and make your own medicines. You may be someone with a strong desire to become a professional herbalist. Or perhaps you are someone who is spiritually inclined, who feels a strong connection with plants and Nature and wishes to explore that further.
Can I learn about herbs and healing online?
Yes, definitely. Don Ollsin has an MA in Environmental Education and Communication and the focus of his Master's Thesis was how to translate experiential learning into online learning. He has transitioned the best of his course material taught over the past 45 years into an online format that is accessible, thorough and personal. This includes face-to-face sessions, online forums, and a variety of formats for different learning styles. There is an entire module dedicated to learning online and Don is available to answer any questions that may arise. Feel free to contact him directly to address any concerns you may have regarding online learning.
How does the course work? What will I get exactly?
The course is on Moodle, which is an open-source, online learning platform. It is divided into twelve modules and at the end of each module are assignments, quizzes and readings. The next module opens once you have completed the previous one. On Moodle there is a forum and resources page with many links to articles, websites and current events in the herbal world. Once a week (during the pilot) there is a live Q & A webinar with Don and the other online students. You can upload files and questions to the online forum, and contact Don with any questions regarding the course materials during his office hours. Registration in the course gives you unlimited access to the Moodle site and forum, open participation in weekly Q & A's, and access to Don during office hours.
How much time will I need to devote to the course?
The average amount of time required is 3-5 hours a week. You are more than welcome to work through the material faster if you so choose. There are many additional readings and exercises which may add to the length of time, depending on how deep you want to go with your studies. This time can be credited towards your application with the American Herbalists Guild (AHG) if you decide to apply. The Herbal Mentorship Collective is the next step after this course if you wish to become registered with the AHG. You will build upon everything you learn in this course, with more of an emphasis on client work and wellness consulting. Combining the course hours with hours in the collective you will be eligible to apply when you feel ready. Besides professional development, some students find this course to be a strong personal journey of healing and self-discovery, through exposure to many deep subjects.
How will I connect with other students?
You can connect through the online forum and weekly Q & A's. Many of the students become friends, and may choose to work on assignments and projects together, or even to connect offline.
How do I ask the instructor questions?
Don has office hours Tuesday - Friday 11 am-4 pm PST. You can contact him through email or phone. He will also be available weekly during the Q & A webinars.
What will I gain from this course?
You will gain a practical working knowledge of many herbs and their effects on the body. You will learn about body systems and the extracellular matrix. You will learn how to make your own medicines and about the history and politics of herbalism. You will be introduced to systems theory and systems of healing such as Western Herbalism, Ayurveda, Dreambody and Shamanism. You will begin to develop your own Materia Medica and begin the process of learning to do wellness consulting. You will learn Don's methods for learning, medicine making, consulting as well as his favourite herbs and seasonal practices. You will have access to the wisdom and experience of an herbal elder with over 45 years in the field. You will gain a strong foundation in many areas of healing and perhaps find the ones which interest you the most as a healer. You will connect with other herbalists and become eligible to apply for the Herbal Mentorship Collective. You can take the knowledge you learn and apply it to your own life or you can begin your journey of becoming a professional herbalist registered with the American Herbalists Guild.
What certification will I receive once finished?
You will receive a Certificate of Completion for Don Ollsin's Online Herbal Course. You will also then be eligible to apply for acceptance into the Herbal Mentorship Collective.
What certification is currently available for herbalists?
There is no government recognized certifying body for herbalists. However, there are non-profit guilds, the best of which is The American Herbalists Guild, which Don is a long-standing member of. You can become a registered herbalist with the AHG once you have completed all of the requirements, which Don can guide you through once you have become a part of his Herbal Mentorship Collective.
How much should I budget for materials?
You will need to purchase Don's book, Pathways to Healing: A Guide to Herbs, Ayurveda, Dreambody and Shamanism. As well, there are additional books which are required reading/reference books, so overall you may want to budget about $100.
Can I share my course login information?
This is Don's lifetime of work and dedication to teaching students of Herbalism. We ask that you please respect this by keeping your login information to yourself. However, we would be happy to offer discounts to prospective students who sign up together, or with family members.
Are the modules available individually or do I have to take the whole course?
In order to receive a Certification of Completion you will need to finish all of the modules. For students who have already studied many of the subjects and want to apply to the Herbal Mentorship Collective directly, you may first be required to take individual modules which you are not familiar with. We will also offer additional courses for students and mentees who want to deepen their studies.
What is your refund policy?
We offer a full refund up until you have completed the first two modules, after that you will not be eligible for a refund.
What sets your program apart from other programs?
This program in entirely unique in that it was created by Don over his 45+ years of studying, practicing and teaching herbalism. Don is a recognized elder and pioneer in the grassroots herbalism movement. From a young age he studied with a multitude of teachers from various backgrounds and he is a passionate, life-long learner. He founded, owned and operated Self-Heal Herbs, an herbal dispensary, for eighteen years and has counseled thousands of clients. The incorporation of dynamic healing systems such as Ayurveda, Dreambody and Shamanism gives this course a deeply spiritual element. You will have access to online materials AND face-to-face online learning with the other students and Don. Having an instructor who has studied, deeply cares about, and is an expert on online learning will definitely enrich and enliven your experience. Access to an herbal mentor who wants to pass on his love of learning, his extensive knowledge of herbs and the body, and his unique approach to treating clients is rare. This course could be the beginning of your healing journey.