Aromatherapy Health Applications

Learn to understand potential applications for aromatherapy to improve wellbeing.

Course Code: BRE215
Fee Code: S2
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment
Get started!

Learn to Apply Aromatherapy to Improve Wellbeing.

  • Aromatherapy is the use of scent – or aroma – for therapeutic purposes.
  • It is sometimes referred to as the use of fragrance, fragrance has a specific meaning tied to concentration of active ingredient.
  • Scent can have both negative and positive affects on the physical body and human psychology.

There are many ways to leverage the therapeutic power of scent, from using candles and incense through to washing with particular hair and body products. Oils are also used in a variety of ways, including massage, or as a complement to alternative health treatments. Understanding the principles of aromatherapy, and the benefits of the most common scents, can be useful in a variety of contexts within and without the health world. 

Lesson Structure

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. Essential Oil Properties A
    • Introduction
    • Chemicals found in plants
    • Primary metabolites
    • Secondary metabolites
    • Properties of essential oils
    • Alternative effect
    • Analgesic effect
    • Anti inflammatory effect
    • Antibacterial, Anti fungal, anti viral effects
    • Astringent effect
    • Calmative effect
    • Diaphoretic effect
    • Diuretic effect
    • Emmenagogue effect
    • Using Aromatherapy
  2. Essential Oil Properties B
    • Expectorant effect
    • Granulation-stimulating effect
    • Nervine effect
    • Rubefacient effect
    • Sedative effect
    • Spasmolytic effect
    • Stimulatory effect
    • Tonic effect
    • Chemistry of Aromatherapy
    • Phenolic compounds
    • Flavonoids
    • Terpenoids
    • Blending
    • Classical blending
    • Balancing
  3. Oil Extraction
    • Introduction
    • Expression
    • Distillation
    • Stem Distillation
    • Effleurage
    • Solvent extraction
    • Super critical carbon dioxide extraction
    • Hydro diffusion
    • Phytonic process
  4. The Physiology and Psychology of Aromatherapy
    • Science of smell – olfaction
    • Mechanism of action
    • Absorption of essential oils into bloodstream
  5. Applications of Aromatherapy
    • Introduction
    • Massage
    • Making massage oils
    • Inhalation
    • Vaporisation/ burners, diffusers
    • Baths
    • Compress
    • Creams and lotions
    • Components - oils, essential oils, emulsifiers, humectants, thickeners, preservatives, optional additives
    • Processes of making cream
    • Internal or Dermal applications
  6. Aromatherapy Safety
    • Introduction
    • General safety notes
    • Recommended amounts – adults, children. Pregnancy
    • Reactions / Irritations
    • General Precautions – allergies, fever, blood pressure, epilepsy, cancer, etc
    • Toxicity – acute, chronic
    • Hazardous oils
    • Quality of oil
    • Storage
  7. Aromatherapy Treatment
    • Client information
    • Counselling and assessment
    • Location
    • Body language
    • Listening skills
    • Open questions
    • The consultation form
    • Treatment plan
    • Clarify goals
    • Suitable essential oils
    • Application method
    • Explain treatment to client
    • Advise of potential adverse reactions
    • Client feedback and follow op
    • Informed consent
    • Referral
    • Confidentiality
    • Record keeping
  8. Body Systems – Part 1
    • Introduction
    • Cardiovascular system
    • Treatments for specific conditions – poor circulation, palpitations, hypertension, hypotension etc
    • Respiratory system
    • Treatments for sinusitis, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, etc
    • Lymphatic system & related treatments
    • Reproductive system & related treatments
    • Endocrine system & related treatments
  9. Body Systems – Part 2
    • Musculoskeletal system & related treatments
    • Nervous system and related treatments
    • Essential oils to consider for other psychological disorders
    • Digestive system and related treatments
    • Integumentary System and related treatments
  10. Running your business
    • Product development
    • Incense making
    • Soap making
    • Aromatherapy Candle making
    • Aromatherapy sprays
    • Scented waters
    • Scents derived from plant volatile oils
    • Business considerations
    • Aromatherapist practitioner
    • Business planning

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Identify the different properties of essential oils and describe their effects on the body.
  • Identify the various methods used in extracting essential oils.
  • Describe how essential oils can enter the bloodstream and the process of olfaction.
  • Learn some of the more common application methods used with essential oils in aromatherapy.
  • Ensure that essential oils are used in a safe and controlled manner and identify situations where aromatherapy might not be appropriate.
  • Develop an aromatherapy treatment plan for a client.
  • Identify which essential oils would be appropriate for use of various conditions relating to specific body systems.
  • Understand the scope and nature of an aromatherapy business.

Essential oils derived from plants consist of unique and complex chemical constituents that react with the body’s own chemistry to promote a variety of responses in specific organs and body systems.  In short: essential oils are a complex mixture of different naturally occurring chemicals extracted from plants.

Physiological effects caused by essential oils occur due to the absorption of molecules into the blood stream via external application, or via inhalation. Essential oils in a carrier oil applied to the skin are absorbed into the body either through hair follicles and sweat glands, or through the stratum corneum (the layer at the surface of the skin). When essential oils are inhaled, molecules will pass through the respiratory system to the alveoli in the lungs, where they will move into the bloodstream. Inhaled molecules can also reach the central nervous system via the nasal mucosa. 

When you examine cosmetic products, toiletries and even mainstream medicines sold by pharmacists, you may find that many of their constituents are essential oils derived from herbs. Any one plant can contain hundreds of different chemicals, including a combination of different essential oils, e.g. many lavenders contain lavender oil, but some cultivars can also contain camphor oil. The smell of lavender oil may be beneficial, but the smell of camphor oil may have a negative effect on the body. Separating these oils during extraction can be challenging unless you are using a cultivar with little or no camphor oil. In short: the proper processing of herbs for aromatherapy purposes can be complex, and success is dependent on several factors.

Note: Medical aromatherapy prescribes oral dosages of essential oils, however this method is not recommended and should only be used by medical aromatherapists (unqualified practitioners can cause serious harm). Training to be a competent medical aromatherapist takes years of study and experience.

This course may be a good starting point; but far more in depth study of chemistry, human biology and other health sciences is recommended before you would call yourself an aromatherapist.



  • Anyone wanting to develop a solid foundation for understanding aromatherapy.
  • People wishing to commercially produce aromatherapy products
  • Massage therapists or other heath industry professionals who wish to extend their knowledge of aromatherapy 
  • Retailers of aromatherapy products including candles, massage oils, etc.


We offer two different aromatherapy courses. The other one is broader based and contains more about growing aromatic plants for their aromatherapy uses; while this course focuses mostly on the human health benefits than this one.

There is a degree of overlap between the two; but if you are keen to learn as much as you can about aromatherapy; you may consider doing both.

Since 1999 ACS has been a recognised member of IARC (International Approval and Registration Centre). A non-profit quality management organisation servicing education.
ACS is a Member of the Complementary Medicine Association.
ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.
ACS is a Preferred Member Training Provider with the Australian Institute of Horticulture. ACS students meeting AIH criteria can join AIH as a Category 2 student member.
Long-term member since 1986.
UK Register of Learning Providers, UK PRN10000112

How can I start this course?

You can enrol at anytime and start the course when you are ready. Enrolments are accepted all year - students can commence study at any time. All study is self paced and ACS does not set assignment deadlines.

Please note that if a student is being assisted by someone else (e.g. an employer or government subsidy), the body offering the assistance may set deadlines. Students in such situations are advised to check with their sponsor prior to enrolling. The nominal duration of a course is approximately how long a course takes to complete. A course with a nominal duration of 100 hours is expected to take roughly 100 hours of study time to complete. However, this will vary from student to student. Short courses (eg. 100 hrs duration) should be completed within 12 months of enrolment. Certificates, Advanced Certificates and Awards (eg. over 500 hours duration) would normally be completed within 3 -5 years of enrolment. Additional fees may apply if a student requires an extended period to complete.
If a student cannot submit their assignments for 6 months to ACS, they should advise the school to avoid cancellation of their student
registration. Recommencement fees may apply.

Simply click on the ENROL OPTIONS button at the top of this screen and follow the prompts.

You can see the course price at the top of this page. Click 'enrolment options' to see any payment options available.

You can pay by Credit Card, PayPal, Afterpay or bank transfer.

Yes! We have payment plans for most courses. Click 'enrolment options' to see the available payment plans.
We also have Afterpay that will allow you to pay for your course or payment plans in four instalments (if you are in Australia).

What do I need to know before I enrol?

There are no entry requirements that you need to meet to enrol in our courses, our courses are for everyone.
If you are under 18, we need written permission from your parent/ guardian for your enrolment to continue, we can arrange that after you have enrolled.

You don’t need to purchase any additional resources to complete our courses.

We aim to teach you the essentials without you having to purchase any specific computer program.
We recommend that you have access to a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs, so that you can easily complete and submit your assignments.

You sure can. We are here to help you learn whatever your abilities.

Yes, if you are enrolling in a Certificate or Advanced Certificate, you might be eligible for credits if you have evidence of your previous studies or relevant experience. More information is here.

We recommend that you are able to browse websites, send emails and conduct online research. You will need to be able to type and submit your assignments.
If you have limited computer skills, we can make special arrangements for you.

This is possible, it depends on the institution. We recommend that if you would like to use our courses that you contact the institution first. Our Course Handbook is a good resource for this.

Our courses are written in English and we only have English speaking academic staff. If you can read and complete your assignments in English, our courses are ideal for you.

Our courses are designed to build knowledge, hands on skills and industry connections to help prepare you to work in the area, running your own business, professional development or as a base for further study.

This course has been designed to cover the fundamentals of the topic. It will take around 100 hours to complete, which includes your course reading, assignment work, research, practical tasks, watching videos and anything else that is contained in the course. Our short courses are a great way to do some professional development or to learn a new skill.

It’s up to you. The study hours listed in the course are a rough guide, however if you were to study a short course (100 hours) at 10 hours per week, you could finish the course in 10 weeks (just an example). Our courses are self-paced, so you can work through the courses in your own time. We recommend that you wait for your tutor to mark and return your assignment before your start your next one, so you get the benefits of their feedback.

The course consists of course notes, videos, set tasks for your practical work, online quizzes, an assignment for each lesson (that you receive feedback from your tutor from) and ends in an exam (which is optional, if would like to receive the formal award at the end), using our custom built Learning Management System - Login.Training.

Our courses are designed for adults to gain professional development and skills to further their careers and start businesses.

Our custom online learning portal allows you to conduct your learning online. There may be practical tasks that you can do offline. You have the option of downloading your course notes or print them to read later.

There is also the option to pay an additional fee for printed course notes and or USB (availability limited to location and deliverability).

Yes, if you don’t have access to the internet, you can receive the course as paper notes or on a USB stick for an additional fee. We can also make alternative arrangements for you to send your assignments to us.

We offer printed notes for an additional fee. Also, you can request your course notes on a USB stick for an additional fee.

Yes, your tutor is here to help you. Simply post any questions you have in your portal or contact the office and we can pass on a message to your tutor.

We are more learning focussed, rather than assessment focussed. You have online quizzes to test your learning, written assignments and can complete an exam at the end of the course (if you want to receive your certificate). You will not receive a pass/ fail on your course work. If you need to add more details on your assignment, we will ask you to resubmit and direct you where you need to focus. If you need help, you can ask your tutor for advice in the student room.

Each module (short course) is completed with one exam.

Exams are optional, however you must sit an exam if you would like to receive a formal award. You will need to find someone who can supervise that you are sitting the exams under exams conditions. There is an additional cost of $60 incl. GST for each exam.
More information is here

There are practical components built into the course that have been designed to be achieved by anyone, anywhere. If you are unable to complete a task for any reason, you can ask your tutor for an alternative.

When you complete the course work and the exam and you will be able receive your course certificate- a Statement of Attainment. Otherwise, you can receive a Letter of Completion.

You can bundle the short courses to create your own customised learning bundle, Certificates or Advanced Certificates. More information is on this page.

Yes, our courses are built to be applicable for people living anywhere in any situation. We provide the fundamentals, and each student can apply their own unique flair for their own interests, region and circumstances with the one-on-one guidance of a tutor. There is also a bit of student directed research involved.

Employers value candidates with industry skills, knowledge, practical skills and formal learning. Our courses arm you with all of these things to help prepare you for a job or start your own business. The longer you study the more you will learn.

ACS has an arrangement with OAMPS (formerly AMP) who can arrange Professional Indemnity from Australian and New Zealand graduates across all disciplines. Ph: 1800 222 012 or email

Who are ACS Distance Education?

ACS Distance Education have been educating people for over 40 years.

We are established and safe- we have been in education for over 40 years.
We are focused on developing innovative courses that are relevant to you now and what you will need to know in the future.
We are focused on helping you learn and make the most of your experience.
You can enrol at any time, you can work on your course when it suits you and at your own pace.
We are connected to many industry bodies and our staff participate in continuous improvement and learning activities to ensure that we are ahead of what learning is needed for the future.

Our courses are not accredited by the Australian Government. However many of our courses are recognised and held in high regard by many industry bodies.

Our courses are written by our staff, who all have many years experience and have qualifications in their speciality area. We have lots of academic staff who write and update our courses regularly.

How do I enrol my staff/ sponsored students?

Yes, you can do a request for a bulk enrolment and request an invoice on our Invoice Request Form

We can prepare an invoice, quote or proforma invoice. Simply complete your details on our Invoice Request form

We can arrange bulk discounts for your course enrolment, please get in touch with us to discuss your needs.

Yes, we have many students who are in locked facilities, such as prisons or hospitals. We can cater by also offering paper notes at an additional cost.

What if I have any more questions or need more information?

We can assist you to find the right course for your needs. Get in touch with us via email ( call on +61 7 5562 1088 or complete our course advice form.

What if I change my mind?

Please get in touch with if you would like to be removed from our mail list.

If you would like ACS Distance Education to delete your information at any time (whether you are a customer or a prospective customer), please contact our privacy officer and we will process this ( ).

Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

Jacinda Cole

Former operations manager for highly reputable Landscape firm, The Chelsea Gardener, before starting her own firm. Jacinda has over 20 years of industry experience in Psychology, Landscaping, Publishing, Writing and Education. Jacinda has a B.Sc., Psych.Cert., M. Psych. Cert.Garden Design, MACA.

Melissa Leistra

B.Ed. M. Human Nutrition

Tracey Jones (Psychologist)

B.Sc. (Psych), M.Soc.Sc., Dip.Social Work, P.G.Dip Learning Disability, Cert Editing, Cert Creative Writing, PGCE.
Member British Psychological Society, Member Assoc. for Coaching, Member British Learning Assoc.
25 years industry experience in writing, editing, education, psychology, and business. Tracey has several books and hundreds of articles published; in both fiction and non fiction.

Need Help?

Take advantage of our personalised, expert course counselling service to ensure you're making the best course choices for your situation.

I agree for ACS Distance Education to contact me and store my information until I revoke my approval. For more info, view our privacy policy.