Licensed naturopathic doctors require a minimum of eight years post-secondary education. The process by which prospective students gain acceptance to an accredited naturopathic medical school is similar to that of conventional programs. Here, students must obtain the prerequisites necessary for application (usually 4 years) and undergo an extensive interview process. The degree, Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine, requires four additional years of graduate level study in the medical sciences. These include anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, immunology, physical and clinical diagnosis, differential diagnosis, laboratory diagnosis, and radiology. Students also receive intensive training in naturopathic modalities such as clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine, homeopathy, hydrotherapy, naturopathic manipulative therapy and lifestyle counseling. Training for a degree in naturopathic medicine also includes over 1500 hours of clinical training in outpatient settings.
There are seven accredited (recognized by naturopathic medical regulatory boards) naturopathic medical schools in North America including two here in Canada. These government-appointed boards require candidates to pass comprehensive examinations before licensing them to practice.