Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine

Be the doctor YOU want to be. Experience an excellent medical education -- linking science with nature.

Program Overview

Become a naturopathic doctor at Bastyr University, an accredited naturopathic medical school. This degree program will train you to diagnose and treat disease using a wellness-first, natural model focusing on improving the function of the whole body versus an over-reliance on medications and surgical procedures.   

This full-time, in-person medical school experience has two main components – basic science and clinical practice. The coursework requires strong scholastic ability, full-time attention and is designed to provide you with an integrated view of the structure and function of the human body, as well as diagnostic, management, and treatment skills. You will have a LOT to learn over four to five years. Starting in your first year you will gain access to the Bastyr clinics where you will begin to merge what you learn in the classroom with real-life scenarios with real-life patients. 

Next start date
San Diego
Program Length
  • 4 years for full-time students
  • 5+ years for dual-degree tracks
Credentials Earned

Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (ND) Degree


$598/credit hour (average)

Program Highlights


Student to Teacher Ratio


Hours of Didactic and Clinical Instruction


Residency Sites Located Across 11 States and British Columbia)

Program Details

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.  Bastyr University Admissions advisors can discuss details of prerequisite fulfillment. Applicants may apply with coursework still in progress, but must complete prerequisites before beginning the program. No credit is given for prerequisite coursework earning a C- or lower.   

Students may take individual, science-based prerequisites as a non-matriculated student. If you wish to discuss taking specific prerequisites at Bastyr, please contact Admissions. Here is a list of courses offered. 


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. 

Prerequisite Coursework 

  • College-level Algebra: 1 course 
  • Chemistry* (science-major level): Minimum of 4 courses. Must include a minimum of either two sequential courses in organic chemistry or one course in organic chemistry and one course in biochemistry. (This latter option is highly recommended.) (The standard prerequisite for science-major level organic chemistry is one year of general chemistry.) Appropriate, hands-on lab work required. (Hands-on labs are those taken in person or using home lab kits.)  
  • General Biology* (science-major level): 2 semesters or 3 quarters. Must cover concepts in cellular biology and genetics. Appropriate hands-on lab work required. Individual courses in the biological sciences may count if the above competencies are met, i.e., anatomy, physiology, microbiology, and botany. 
  • Physics: 1 college-level course. It must be algebra-based; calculus-based is also acceptable. A lab is not required. 
  • Psychology: 1 course. Introduction to/ General Psychology or Developmental/ Lifespan Psychology. 

*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. 

Please contact Admissions with any questions about older courses, and to inquire about taking specific science prerequisites at Bastyr.

Summer Prerequisite Course(s) 

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 

  • Organic Chemistry I & II 

Strongly Recommended Courses 

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. 

Other Suggested Courses 

Biomedical ethics, philosophy of science, public speaking, immunology, medical terminology and English composition. 

Credit by Examination 

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 accepts graduate and undergraduate transfer credits earned at accredited colleges and universities. Learn what you need to make this process go smoothly.

A career in naturopathic medicine offers a life’s work helping people thrive.

  • Naturopathic doctor working as a primary natural care physician in private practice or in an integrative medicine clinic
  • Research in natural medicine
  • Naturopathic consultant/advocate in industry, insurance or the political arena
  • Wellness entrepreneur
  • Natural medicine spokesperson/advisor
  • Rural community doctor
  • Dietary supplement entrepreneur or natural products specialist
  • Corporate wellness educator
  • Public health administrator
  • Natural medicine author/public speaker
  • Faculty member in a naturopathic or conventional medical institution