Are you attracted to the ancient holistic Ayurvedic approach to healing and interested in exploring formal study? Ayurvedic medicine is based on assessing the body's three vital energies (termed doshas) and determining how illness and disease causes imbalance in these. Ayurveda uses a range of treatments including diet, yoga, massage, acupuncture and herbal medicine to effect healing. More recently it has been recognised as a holistic system of healthcare by the World Health Organisation (WHO) - testament to its widespread use and efficacy. ntpages caught up with Dr. Sam Jayawardana, Dean of Studies at the Australian Institute of Holistic Medicine (AIHM), to find out more.
What are the great attractions of Ayurvedic medicine?
“Its great attraction lies in its individual, holistic approach. In fact Ayurveda is a lot broader than a treatment option – it is a lifestyle approach.”
Are people more open to natural therapies now?
“Yes, absolutely. You have around 60% of Australians using and accessing natural therapies, so that in itself says a lot.”
How long is the Advanced Diploma of Ayurveda?
“There are four terms per year at the AIHM which enables you to complete the Advanced Diploma of Ayurveda course in two years studying full time. Alternatively you can study part-time which can take up to four years.”
Tell us a bit about the course…
“During the course, students will cover the theory and practical aspects of Ayurvedic medicine including constitutions, doshas, detoxification, Ayurvedic herbs, Ayurvedic nutrition, Ayurvedic massage, counselling, yoga and meditation. Students who graduate will have the necessary skills and knowledge to practise Ayurvedic medicine, with the opportunity to specialise in Ayurvedic therapies and treatments. Most importantly it also gives you an opportunity to live your passion.”
How practical is the course?
“As a component of the course students are required to complete a minimum of 400 hours of supervised clinical training. This training component takes place at our on-site clinic where students deal with members of the public, case studies and clinical applications. For those studying via our online courses there is the opportunity to get this experience at clinics in other parts of the country.”
Can you give us a snapshot of the course content?
“Introduction to Biomedical Sciences is the core unit of study, and is taken over all four terms. Then there are units of competency which much be completed and areas of specialisation which students can elect to complete.”
What career options does a graduate have?
“Most graduates go onto set up their own practice or join a shared practice.”
Can you upgrade the Advanced Diploma to a degree?
“Yes, students who graduate are able to go on to study at university level as the course satisfies the minimum entry requirements in this respect, with advanced standing status for selected degree programs as well as meeting the Australian National Competency Standards.”