You may have some other questions.

Some of the answers give the short version first, followed by more detail.

What are the entry criteria?

The simple answer to that is none! Some homeopathy training courses have academic entry criteria. At The Homeopathy College we believe that other qualities are more important. Many years of experience training homeopaths has shown us that the best homeopaths evolve from people who have a passion for homeopathy.

You have to be capable of some academic study of course. There is home study, writing up notes and reading about the remedies etc and, yes, sometimes it can be hard work but what will motivate you is your enthusiasm and passion for homeopathy. Do you have that passion or can you develop it? The real problem comes when you do develop it because you get addicted to homeopathy! You had better warn your partner / spouse / family etc before you start.

How is prior learning managed?

We assess everyone on their individual merits. For instance if you have done a lot of anatomy and physiology on other courses you have attended you will be exempted from this part of the course.

In general our view is that there is no point repeating stuff you are already sufficiently familiar with. So if you have already completed part of your homeopathic training, we will sit down with you and see how best we can slot you into the course. Sometimes this means catching up on specific areas so that you can be fitted into a particular year group. We will discuss how best to do this - catch up days with us, home study, tutorials, personal tutoring etc are some of the options.

How long is the course?

The course is 4 years part time. This involves 11 weekends spaced out each year roughly every 4 weeks. There are longer breaks in the summer and around Christmas.

In the second, third and fourth years you need to allow one more day a month for the student practitioner clinics which are held on the Friday before each teaching weekend.

How much study time is needed?

The approximate answer is around 6 to 10 hours a week. It varies with immensely from one student to another. We aim to stimulate your enthusiasm for the subject so that you want to do even more. Partners, spouses and family - BEWARE; you could become a homeopathic widow(er)!

What are the options for payment of student fees?

Full details of our fees are on the 'Joining' page. We have two standard systems for the payment of fees. As a lump sum at the beginning of each year or by monthly installments usually as a standing order which you arrange with your bank. We have the forms to make this easy. Please note that paying by installment adds an administration fee of £100 to the cost of the course. Other systems for paying may be negotiated so please ask if you have some special requirements here.

Will fees vary each year?

Yes. Fees will go up each year roughly in line with inflation.

Do fees include the clinical training?

Yes. Many courses charge separately for this. We do not. The cost of the student group clinics, video clinics and all teaching on weekends is included in the fees.

What additional expenses are there?

A full break down of additional expenses is given on the 'Joining' page.

You will need to buy books. This is the largest additional expense.

You may need a small amount for external tutorials between college weekends. Some tutors however, make no charge for this service.

Obviously travel and refreshments are down to you too.

What resources are available to students on the course within the college?

We have superb teaching facilities at our centre with clinical training in our own Quinton Natural Therapies Clinic - see the 'Joining' page titled 'Contact us'.

We also have a very large collection of books, tapes and video tapes.

Computer analysis programs are demonstrated during teaching weekends.

The Homeopathic Book Ccompany visits the college on several of the teaching weekends with hundreds of titles to satisfy your insatiable thirst for homeopathic knowledge. On weekends when they are not visiting the college, books can be ordered for collection or posted out to you.

How is the course taught? What variety of learning methods are there to suit different styles of learning? How is learning supported by the college?

We use video presentation, overhead projectors, slides projectors, computer linked projection for powerpoint etc.

We explore different learning styles at the beginning of the course (Auditory, Visual, Read-Write, Kineasthetic).

We do paper cases, live cases and video cases. We have regular teaching, group discussions, small groups, large groups and experiential group work.

Lecturers will often act out the remedies they are teaching. What more can I say - we just generally have a lot of fun in the classes. We welcome questions, challenge, debate and discussion - in fact anything to get the energy up and make it interesting and alive. Well, almost anything!

Does the college cover all aspects as outlined in the National Occupational Standards for homeopathy?

NOS's are the professionally recognised description of the set of skills necessary to practice as a homeopath.

The simple answer to the question is, yes we do.

How are assessments of students carried out on the course?

We have a variety of assessment methods. The most important of which is self assessment. Our aim is to help you get to the point where you are aware of the skills at which you are good, what skills you still need to develop and how you can develop them. All our assessments are about helping you and us to understand these points. Most of our written assessments are based on cases. This is where you can demonstrate your knowledge of the remedies, homeopathic philosophy and theory, your understanding of what is going on in a case and how to approach it i.e. what to do. Your own cases demonstrate your skill as a case taker too.

We do have some simple tests on your knowledge of remedy pictures but they are all designed to help the learning process.

All work is returned with a pass or needs practice on it and lots of specific feedback about what you did well, what you need to work on and suggestions to help your progress, even if the piece of work is a good, clear pass.

Self reflection is a big part of this. It helps you to realise your own thought and emotional processes so that you become more conscious of them. Once you are aware of them you can then begin to refine them in whatever way is most approriate for you and we can offer help with this when needed.

We do personal interviews twice a year. They are a chance for us to get to know each other better and for us to check that you are aware of what you are doing well with and on what you need to focus. We also look at how you are doing with you own cases and find out if you have enough appropriate support outside the college with them. The aim of the college's support system is to ensure that everyone has access to enough expert help, no matter where they live, to feel confident with their use of homeopathy. To date this system is working really well.

How do students know what they need to focus on in order to progress on the course?

I have really covered this one in the question above.

How is feedback to students on their progress on the course handled?

This has also been covered in the assessments question above.

How are students assessed as fit to graduate?

This you demonstrate to us mainly through your contributions in the student practitioner clinics, your graduation cases and our knowledge and experience of you throughout the four years of the course. We get to know each other pretty well during this time. We hold meetings of all the key teachers and clinicians from the clinic and they each outline their assessment of each student. It is remarkable how much agreement there is from people teaching different aspects of the course about where each student is doing well and where they need some more practice. 99 times out of 100 the students themsleves also know the same thing, which is a good indication that we are getting the self reflection bit right! Because you receive regular feedback throughout the course, there are rarely any surprises when it comes to graduation. The only surprises tend to be how some students we never thought were going to get it, come good towards the end!

Trust works. It works both ways and builds on itself. We trust you to be responsable towards yourself and others and you get to know us and trust our experience and judgement with regards your progress and what you need to do to help it along. Without trust the whole thing would fall apart.

How does the course develop and change with time?

We are constantly refining the course and how we teach it. There are always new and exciting developments taking place; new remedies, new ways of using remedies, new ways of understanding disease etc. Many of these so called new was are often rediscoveries of ancient wisdoms that are being updated for the 21st century.

How is support given and managed in the course for: a) Personal growth and development? b) Academic learning outside of college, home study etc? c) Cases you treat outside the college environment?

I have covered a lot of this in the above questions and there is more on the main pages of the site. The right support at the right time and a nurturing, trusting environment are key here. We put a lot of time and energy into creating this for us all.

How do students give feedback to the college and what happens next?

We welcome any feedback from individual students and many will come and chat with us on an informal basis. Personal interviews are another opportunity to give feedback.

We also have a system of class feedback from the group using a 'Suggestions' folder in each teaching room for anyone to give feedback, make suggestions for improvement etc. on every teaching weekend.

We do have forms that individual students can fill in to feedback to us about classes, lecturers and the course in general that can be posted or emailed in.

Will I be able to be a registered homeopath - especially in the light of any new professional regulations?

The Homeopathy College is recognised as having attained Quality Assured Status by the Homeopathy Course Providers Forum under the HCPF Quality Assurance Scheme. This means that our graduates do not have to go through a lengthy assessment of fitness to practice in order to go onto several of the professional registers.

Having been personally involved in the evolution of course accreditation/validation via CORH, BHAB and most recently the HCPF, I have ensured that the college stays up to date in this area. Need I say more than that I have been involved in the development of the course accreditation process since before 1999 and am still in it!

I sat on CORH council representing the UK colleges and have been very actively involved in the process of re-organising the profession for the future. CORH was the body that was formulating the new regulations for the profession. When CORH dissolved in disaray, BHAB (The British Homeopathy Accreditation Board) continued until lack of finances to ensure its future, forced it to suspend. I was a member of that board representing the colleges. The most exciting and appropriate developments have come from the HCPF - this is where the energy and creativity and co-operation is.

No matter what the future holds, we will be one of the colleges to get accreditation/validation etc. whatever new body comes into being and takes over this professional regulatory function. This will mean that students graduating from our course will be eligible to go through a simple application process in order to become registered with whatever form of new single register for the whole profession may emerge.