Research programs in Naturopathic Medicine

Researcher using microscope in biology lab

The naturopathic research landscape has significantly evolved over the last few decades, not only by quantity but also in terms of quality and rigour. The research arm of the National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine will continue to assist patients and practitioners to establish evidence-based practice through basic research, clinical research, public health and health services research, educational research and policy and regulation research.

The academic leadership team comprises expert researchers who are not just leaders in naturopathic research, but are also leading health researchers in their own right. With diverse backgrounds and skillsets, the team covers a broad range of health research interest and topic areas, successfully attracting major research funding for their work.

With a combined established and extensive network of colleagues and organisations across the spectrum of complementary medicine disciplines, NCNM researchers are equipped to apply the most appropriate and innovative methodology. This network positions the Centre to engage with a range of national and international researchers, universities, research centres, practitioner associations, health organisations and policy makers.

Backed by Southern Cross University’s high level of research excellence, NCNM offers a unique and innovative research program that will not only define new standards of naturopathic medicine research, but also address current and emerging challenges in conventional as well as complementary health care.

Higher Degrees by Research

Undertake health research training under the supervision of experienced researchers in the National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine at Southern Cross University. Please explore the NCNM academic team for suggested supervisors and find course options below.

students in medical lab

The Honours degree is a separate fourth year of study that may be undertaken following successful completion of an undergraduate degree.

Course details

student sitting at desk with computer screen in background

A Masters by research degree is generally available to students who have a recognised undergraduate degree.

Course details

PhD candidate

Admission to the PhD program is granted to students who possess a Bachelor degree with first- or second-class honours, or a Masters degree where at least half of the assessment was based upon a thesis or dissertation.

Course details

How to apply

If you are interested in undertaking a research degree through NCNM, please contact our team on to discuss your proposed topic. If your topic is suitable and it aligns with the expertise of our supervisory team, we will work with you to develop a Research Proposal. This proposal will be used to determine the suitability of the project for a research degree.

Once your proposal has been approved by NCNM and the School of Health and Human Sciences, you will be able to progress your application.

To apply for a research degree, you will need to go to the Graduate School Website, choose the degree you wish to study and proceed as directed.

Should you have any problems completing the online application form or have questions about the process, please email the Graduate School on

Clinical Trials

The National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine is well suited to carry out contracted research projects. Among other projects, clinical trials on the efficacy and safety of new natural products, nutraceuticals and herbal medicines can be tested.

With our new clinical trial site, we aim to contribute to integrating naturopathic treatments within our health care system. We can conduct phase II-IV clinical studies that are necessary for the TGA claims on nutraceuticals, natural products and herbal medicines. All studies go through the necessary approval procedures in advance and are critically examined by an ethics committee before implementation.

The SCU Health Clinics on-site in Lismore and Gold Coast as well as established partnerships with community healthcare providers offer the necessary infrastructure to successfully implement clinical trials.

Our employees are highly qualified, ICH-GCP-trained, thoroughly experienced professionals who have undergone study-specific training.

Southern Cross Plant Science also has a TGA licensed contract analytical laboratory, providing specialist capabilities in applied phytochemistry and herbal medicine quality control. This includes authentication of herbal raw materials such as extracts as well as qualitative and quantitative analysis of active/market compounds in herbs, nutraceuticals and nutritional supplements.

For more information, or to discuss a potential project, please contact us at or phone 02 6626 9255.

Research Futures Scholarships Program

  10 January – 18 February 2022

Apply now to receive a scholarship to the value of $1800*

  • Build industry connections and develop your research skillset
  • Gain first-hand research experience
  • Develop valuable field and/or laboratory skills during the six-week project
  • Elevate your critical thinking skills and research presentation knowledge

Student in lab coat with microscope

Do you want to learn more about higher degrees by research?

Gain first-hand research experience and develop valuable field and/or laboratory skills during a six-week research project, with the Research Futures Scholarship Program.

With a commitment to expanding knowledge and understanding of traditional, complementary and integrative medicine through rigorous, high quality research, the National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine is offering this unique opportunity to support the next generation of researchers.

This year NCNM are partnering with academics from other faculties to expand the scope of the research projects. All research mentors have extensive experience in conducting and publishing research and will provide ongoing supervisory support to each student. If you are interested in pursuing a higher degree by research (HDR) in the future, this program will provide unique insight and pathways to further your postgraduate research studies. 

The scholarship component will support students through a stipend living allowance of $300 per week over the six-week duration of the project.

Explore the full list of NCNM Research Futures Scholarship Program Project Options. To apply, view eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, download the Research Futures Scholarship Program Application Form here.

*Subject to terms and conditions, applications close 31 October 2021.

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