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Aromatherapy

Course CodeVHT104
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

STUDY AROMATHERAPY -ONLINE COURSE

  • Develop a basic understanding of the safe use of Aromatherapy oils; and their production.
  • Discover what herbs are used, and how they are grown for oil production
  • Learn how oils are extracted and mixed with carriers to create aromatherapy product
  • Build your capacity to start a business or working with aromatherapy oils 

One of our Aromatherapy students said about the course:
"This course was very interesting, challenging and very worthwhile" N. Mills

This course is aimed at the foundation level of education in Aromatherapy.

Knowing the botanical names of plants and how they are derived is an important part of Aromatherapy. Most people know essential oils by their common names, such as Lavender, Thyme or Eucalyptus. For instance, there are several different types of plant that are commonly known as Lavender, and more than one of these plants are used to produce lavender oil. Oil distilled from True Lavender, or Lavandula angustifolia, is the highest quality lavender oil. However, lavender can also be distilled from Lavandula x intermedia and Lavandula latifolia. All three smell very similar, and can even be confusing for an experienced aromatherapist, but the chemical composition of Lavandula angustifolia is far superior to the other two species and is a much better therapeutic oil.
All this and much more is explained in detail and with practical tasks in the course.

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Plant Identification
    • Importance of Correct Plant Identification
    • Plant Name Changes
    • Common Names
    • Scientific Names
    • Levels of Classification in Plant Taxonomic System
    • Plant Families
    • Pronunciation of Plant Names
    • Introduction to Chemistry of Herb Plants
    • Parts of a Compound; Biochemical Groups, Chemical Names
    • What is an Acid or Base
    • Alkaloids
    • Tannins
  2. Introduction to Aromatherapy
    • Origins of Aromatherapy
    • Top Notes, Middle Notes
    • Aromatherapy Consultations
    • Natural Chemicals in Plants
    • Saponins; Phenolglycosides; Anthraglycosides; Flavonoids; Mustard Oils; Polysaccharides; Prussic Acid; Glycosides; Coumarin; Essential Minerals, etc
    • Resources
  3. Essential Oils
    • Introduction
    • Benzoin
    • Bergamot
    • Cedar Wood
    • Chamomile
    • Clary Sage
    • Eucalyptus
    • Frankincense
    • Geranium
    • Juniper
    • Lemon
    • Lavender
    • Marjoram
    • Orange
    • Peppermint
    • Rose Otto
    • Rosemary
    • Sandalwood
    • Tea Tree
    • Thyme
    • Ylang Ylang
    • Australian Bush Flower Remedies
  4. Safe Use of Essential Oils
    • How Essential Oils Work
    • Inhalation
    • Absorption
    • Quantities to Use: Recommended rate, oil type, smell
    • Blending Oils
    • Children
    • During Pregnancy
    • For Animals
  5. Carriers
    • Using Carriers
    • Sweet Almond Oil
    • Apricot Kernal Oil
    • Avocado Oil
    • Canola Oil
    • Burners
    • Inhalation
    • Spray, Basin, Hands, Bath
    • Carrier Oils, Creams and Lotions
  6. Growing and Harvesting Herbs for Essential Oil
    • Herb Cultivation
    • Harvesting different plant parts
    • Harvesting different types of Herbs
    • Expected Yeilds for Different Herbs
    • Harvesting for Essential Oils; Tea Tree, Lavender
    • Post Harvest Handling of Herbs; temperature, moisture loss, physical damage ethylene, pathogens
    • Post Harvest Preservation: Fresh, Modified Atmosphere Packaging
  7. Methods of Extraction
    • Introduction
    • Water Distillation
    • Steam Distillation
    • Maceration
    • Effleurage
    • Expression
    • Fixatives
    • Herbal Preparations
    • Preparing Teas, Rinses and Baths
    • Preparations using different herbs
    • Decoction
  8. Hazardous Herbs and Oils
    • Introduction
    • Carcinogens
    • Photosensitisers
    • Allergens
    • Hormone Like Affects
    • Teratogens
    • Cellular Respiratory Inhibitors
    • Cathartics
    • Abortifacients and Irritants
    • Alkaloids; types
    • Toxic Amino Acids
    • Glycocides
    • Terpenes
    • Plant Acids
    • Poly-ynes
    • Furanocoumarins
    • Proteins

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

Aims

  • Undertake brief written report on what you understand about how plants are named
  • Give the scientific names of ten different plants from which essential oils are derived.
  • Give a brief summary of your knowledge of aromatherapy and essential oils.
  • Understand how herbs are promoted to the public in order to sell them.
  • Write an essay on the history of aromatherapy and essential oil use.
  • Suggest different blends that can be used for insomnia and other complaints
  • Suggest different blends that can be used for treating a head cold.
  • Discuss a range of oils that would be suitable for a travel kit
  • Understand the use of aromatherapy for children.- List a range of oils that would be considered safe to use for children.
  • Write a short essay on ways in which essential oils can be used.
  • Understand the use of essential oils on animals.
  • List a range of types of vegetable oils appropriate for use in massage and indicate what types of skin the oils are good for.
  • Explain how oils enter the body and how a carrier will assist with this entry.
  • Submit the bath oil blends from a Set Task along with instructions on how to use them in the bath and what conditions they are good for.
  • Understand why some herbs tend to be collected in the morning, some before flowering, some during flowering, and others at various times of the year. What impact does this have on the essential oil?
  • From catalogues collected, explain why some oils cost more others.
  • Discuss different methods of oil extraction and list their benefits and disadvantages.
  • Comprehend what is the difference between an essential oil and an aromatic oil
  • Compile a detailed costing for processing herb materials to produce essential oils.
  • List a range of essential oils that are not safe for use in aromatherapy.
  • Discuss how essential oils can be used safely and ways in which they should not be used.
  • Understand which essential oils may not be safe for use during pregnancy.

It all Starts with Accurate Plant Knowledge

Knowing the botanical names of plants and how they are derived is an important part of Aromatherapy.  Most people know essential oils by their common names, such as Lavender, Thyme or Eucalyptus.  However, unless you are aware of the botanical names, you cannot be sure of the source of the oil you are using.

For instance, there are several different types of plant that are commonly known as Lavender, and more than one of these plants are used to produce lavender oil.  Oil distilled from True Lavender, or Lavandula angustifolia, is the highest quality lavender oil.  However, lavender can also be distilled from Lavandula x intermedia and Lavandula latifolia. All three smell very similar, and can even be confusing for an experienced aromatherapist, but the chemical composition of Lavandula angustifolia is far superior to that of Lavendula x intermedia and Lavadula latifolia and is a much better therapeutic oil.

A reputable supplier will differentiate between the types in both the common name and the botanical name listed on the bottle, using Lavender for Lavandula angustifolia, Lavandin for Lavandula x intermedia and Spike Lavender for Lavandula latifolia.  Some suppliers, however, will use the label Lavender for all types, and while not exactly dishonest, it is inaccurate.  As a result, unless you are able to identify the oil by the botanical name, which should always be listed on the label, you can't be sure of what you are buying.

Another example is with Thyme. Sweet Thyme, Thymus vulgaris geraniol, is a relatively safe oil that can be used for colds and congestion. Red Thyme, Thymus vulgaris thymol, is a very powerful herb and should only be used under the guidance of a trained aromatherapist.  But, as many suppliers sell the oil as Thyme, it can be difficult to know what you are getting, unless you can identify the botanical name.

 



Meet some of our academics

Miriam ter BorgPsychologist, Youth Worker, Teacher, Author and Natural Therapist. Miriam was previously an Outdoor Pursuits Instructor, Youth Worker, Surfing College Program Coordinator, Massage Therapist, Business Owner/Manager. Miriam's qualifications include B.Sc.(Psych), DipRem.Massage, Cert Ourdoor Rec.
Maggi BrownMaggi is regarded as an expert in organic growing throughout the UK, having worked for two decades as Education Officer at the world renowned Henry Doubleday Research Association. She has been active in education, environmental management and horticulture across the UK for more than three decades. Some of Maggi's qualifications include RHS Cert. Hort. Cert. Ed. Member RHS Life Member Garden Organic (HDRA) .
Diana Cole B.A. (Hons), Dip. Horticulture, BTEC Dip. Garden Design, Diploma Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development, PTLLS (Preparing to Teach in the Life Long Learning Sector), P.D.C. In addition to the qualifications listed above, Diana holds City & Guild construction qualifications and an NPTC pesticide spraying licence (PA1/PA6). Diana runs her own landscape gardening business (Arbella Gardens). Active in many organisations including the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers.
Yvonne SharpeRHS Cert.Hort, Dip.Hort, M.Hort, Cert.Ed., Dip.Mgt. Over 30 years experience in business, education, management and horticulture. Former department head at a UK government vocational college. Yvonne has traveled widely within and beyond Europe, and has worked in many areas of horticulture from garden centres to horticultural therapy. She has served on industry committees and been actively involved with amateur garden clubs for decades.


Check out our eBooks

Organic GardeningCreate a healthy, well-balanced garden. Attract abundant beneficial insects to pollinate your plants. Have healthy, fertile, organic soils teeming with life. Use this book as a guide to establish lush gardens laden with fruit, vegetables, herbs and ornamentals - without the use of chemicals. The ebook covers: soils and nutrition, pest and disease, natural weed control, conservation and recycling. 179 pages, 170 colour photos
HerbsHerbs are fascinating plants, mystical and romantic. They have a rich history dating back centuries. Used by monks, apothecaries and ‘witches’ in the past, herbs are undergoing a revival in interest. They are easy to grow, scented, culinary and medicinal plants. In a formal herb garden or peppered throughout the garden, herbs rarely fail! Find out how they are used as medicines, for cooking, perfumes and more. This book has nine chapters covering the following topics: an introduction to herbs, cultivation, propagation, pest and diseases, herb gardens, an A-Z plant directory, using herbs, features for herb gardens, herbs in pots - 113 colour photos 61 pages
Fruit, Vegetables and HerbsHome grown produce somehow has a special quality. Some say it tastes better, others believe it is just healthier. And there is no doubt it is cheaper! Watching plants grow from seed to harvest and knowing that the armful of vegies and herbs you have just gathered for the evening meal will be on the table within an hour or two of harvest, can be an exciting and satisfying experience.
Plant Pests & DiseasesThis is a great guide to understanding, identifying and treating problems in your garden. Discover how to systematically examine and determine what is wrong with plants. Read about all of the main types of pests, diseases, and other problems that can occur, from frost damage to viruses. 197 pages