Aromatherapy Education
An invaluable investment in your life, health, and career.

Approved Standards for Professional Aromatherapy Education

NAHA Level One – Foundations Aromatherapy 30 hours


  • Introduction to the history of Aromatherapy
  • Profiles of 20 Essential Oils
  • Production and Quality of Essential Oils
  • Basic Physiology— to include: methods of absorption, general overview of olfaction, the limbic system, the lymphatic system, the immune system, and the skin
  • How essential oils interact on physical and emotional levels
  • Basic essential oil chemistry with contraindications of certain essential oils
  • How to create/design an effective blend
  • Coverage of various carrier oils,
  • Methods of application
  • Safety issues (including dermal, respiratory, internal)

Required Essential Oils for Level One

  • Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea)
  • Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus)
  • Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens)
  • Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
  • Lemon (Citrus limon)
  • Peppermint (Mentha x piperita)
  • Roman Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis)
  • Rose (Rosa damascena)
  • Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
  • Sweet Orange (Citrus sinensis)
  • Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)
  • Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata)

In addition to the above 12 essential oils listed, 8 more may be chosen by the teacher/instructor. Students should be made aware of the endangered or threatened status of such essential oils; such as Agarwood (Aquilaria sp.), Frankincense (Boswellia carteri), Rosewood (Aniba rosaeodora) and Sandalwood (Santalum album).

NAHA Level Two: Professional Aromatherapy Certification

1. Required Standards of Education/Training
1.1 Schools and Educators wishing to comply with NAHA’s Standards of Aromatherapy Training must provide a minimum of two hundred (200) hours of training and practical tuition in the fields of aromatherapy and essential oil studies and anatomy and physiology.
1.2 According to the standards approved and adopted by the Council, Aromatherapy and Essential oil studies should comprise of the following core curriculum requirements:

  • History and Modern Development
  • The basics of botany (specifically taxonomy)
  • Properties of essential oils within a holistic and clinical framework
  • Methods of extraction
  • Organic chemistry
  • Carrier oils
  • Blending techniques
  • Methods of application
  • Safety and Aromatherapy (including dermal, respiratory and internal use)
  • Consultation and client education program design
  • The basics of business development
  • Legal and ethical issues (include a copy of the NAHA Code of Ethics for students)

The following systems to be covered in depth:

  • The Respiratory System
  • The Olfactory System
  • The Integumentary System
  • The Circulatory System
  • The Reproductive System
  • The Musculoskeletal System
  • The Lymphatic/Immune System
  • The Endocrine and Nervous System
  • The Urinary System
  • The Digestive System

Graduating students should be knowledgeable in the structure and function of all the major systems of the human body, together with the clinical science of at least five (5) common ailments of each system. Students entering an aromatherapy program with a degree in health related fields (E.g. nurses, massage therapists, doctors) may test out or be exempt from the anatomy and physiology section only in relation to that part of the training which goes over the structure and function of each system. Pre-existing health professionals are still required to complete training in the application of essential oils to each system and the effect of essential oils on a variety of common ailments.

Any exemption of the anatomy and physiology portion of training should only be allowed when the request for exemption is fully supported by relevant documentation.

2. Required elements for student graduation based upon approved standards in aromatherapy education
2.1.1 Student must complete a 5-10 page research paper.
2.1.2 Student must complete a minimum of 10 case histories.
2.1.3 Student must sit and pass examination offered by school.
2.1.4 Student must study a minimum of 25-30 essential oil profiles in addition to required Level I essential oils

NAHA Level Three: Clinical Aromatherapy Certification

Level 3 Standards have yet to be implemented and many educators and schools have asked about them. We are stepping back at this time to have a look at standards and to open up discussions on their merit and necessity as well as to gain valuable feedback from schools and educators.

Shanti Dechen has agreed to lead the Council for Aromatherapy Schools and Educators in this discussion and she will be connecting with NAHA schools and educators on this matter in the next few months. This is an opportunity for NAHA approved schools and educators to provide valuable insights and feedback! Please take time to support our efforts to raise educational standards!

NAHA's goals are to be progressive with our education standards. As aromatherapy continues to evolve, we hope to set standards that are supportive to this growth and evolution of aromatherapy.


Anatomy and Physiology training programs include:

University of Phoenix Online
NSCI 280 – Anatomy & Physiology I Credits: 4.00
NSCI 280 – Anatomy & Physiology II Credits: 4.00

BIO201L– Anatomy & Physiology I with Lab Credits: 4.00
BIO202L– Anatomy & Physiology II with Lab Credits: 4.00

SH330 – Anatomy & Physiology I with Lab Credits: 4.00
SH331 – Anatomy & Physiology II with Lab Credits: 4.00

Other Resources:

Penn Foster Career School - Anatomy & Physiology Certificate Course

Corexcel – Online Anatomy & Physiology Course

The Teaching Company DVD - Understanding the Human Body: An Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology Course No. 160, Taught by: Anthony A Goodman


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