In addition to completion of a bachelor's degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited college/university or its foreign equivalent, prerequisite coursework is required preparation for the study of naturopathic medicine. Prior to choosing courses, and to improve the chances of a successful application, prospective students should contact Bastyr University Admissions advisors to discuss details of prerequisite fulfillment. Applicants may apply with coursework still in progress, but must complete prerequisites before beginning the program.
In addition to the prerequisite coursework, applicants to the naturopathic medicine program are considered on the basis of academic performance, maturity, and demonstrated humanitarian qualities. In evaluating applicants, the School of Naturopathic Medicine seeks qualities of motivation, intellect, and character essential to becoming a physician.
With regard to academic performance, while there is no minimum GPA requirement, the historical average GPA for admitted students is 3.3 - 3.4. No specific undergraduate major is advised or required; however, a broad background in the humanities and liberal arts is encouraged.
Concrete exposure to the business environment in which naturopathic doctors (NDs) practice, through job-shadowing or interviews with practicing NDs, is also required. Work or volunteer experience in other types of health care is a plus. (Please check with a Bastyr admissions advisor if you have questions about these activities.)
Bastyr University librarians have compiled volumes of useful reading material for NDs and other health care practitioners. The guide lists core books and journals that naturopathic doctors and other health practioners interested in natural medicine will find clinically useful.
Read more here.
The following coursework is the minimum required preparation for the study of naturopathic medicine. Applicants may apply with coursework still in progress, but prerequisites must be completed prior to matriculation.
*Required chemistry and biology courses not taken within seven years of matriculation into the program are subject to review by the admissions committee. Additional coursework may be (but is not always) required. Please contact Admissions with any questions about older courses.
The following course(s) are generally available to fill prerequisites during the summer quarter for the ND program. Summer registration information is sent to all applicants by the admissions office each spring. For further information, please contact Admissions at (425) 602-3332.
Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine
Please see the Bastyr University Catalog for course descriptions (pdf). Many of these courses have their own prerequisites; please plan accordingly.
Though not required for admission, faculty recommend students complete biochemistry, anatomy and physiology, and microbiology coursework in addition to the prerequisite requirements. These courses will substantially enhance students' ability to master the naturopathic course material.
Biomedical ethics, philosophy of science, public speaking, immunology, medical terminology and English composition.
Applicants may submit AP, IB, and CLEP scores for prerequisite consideration for math and psychology, and AP or IB scores for physics. Students who have had prior AP or IB coursework in chemistry and biology may submit AP or IB scores for biology or chemistry exams. Students must submit the original score received directly from the testing center. Decisions regarding credit are assessed on a case-by-case basis. The admissions committee reviews test scores within the context of an applicant's academic history. All equivalency decisions made by the admissions committee are final.
Bastyr University is committed to providing equal opportunities for differently-abled persons. The following policy has been adapted from the American Association of Medical Colleges guidelines to ensure that prospective students have the physical and mental capacities to perform the required duties of a naturopathic physician.
Candidates for the naturopathic medicine degree must be able to demonstrate appropriate observational and communication skills, motor function, intellectual-conceptual, integrative and quantitative abilities, and behavioral and social maturity. Technology can compensate for some disabilities in certain areas, but candidates should be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner. The use of a trained intermediary means that a candidate's judgment must be mediated by someone else's power of selection and observation.
See the Bastyr University Catalog for more information.