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The HCH operates on a “knowledge-based” approach to learning (see our Commitment to Quality Education for details).

Students are required to complete a number of assessments at various stages of their study. The assessments are normally in written form, but they may be in oral form as well, with the permission of the Dean.

Students may always re-do an exercise if not satisfied with their work when it is returned from the tutor (with comments). The assessment received from the tutor is designed to let our students know whether they have grasped the essential concepts and insights contained in the material studied. These study exercises are required for distance learning students. In-class students may be assigned various exercises by their teacher (and discuss any problems in class or in tutorials), but should use the rest as a guide to self-study.

Rather than exams for each Module students are able to undertake an assessment of competency in a given area through the feedback from their tutors. In addition, there are distinct assessments of competency for various areas consisting of more than one Module. Successful completion of a particular assessment will lead to the award of a Certificate in that area. A given number of certificates entitles a student to the final diploma.

In some cases, where it is not considered possible to accurately assess the capability to make an effective practitioner in the area of philosophy, material medica or any other area (other than clinical), the student may be asked to undertake an interview in person or by phone as a further assessment before being allowed to graduate.

The clinical assessment is the most critical to one’s ability to graduate as a practitioner. Thus, this portion of the program is closely and carefully assessed in the case of each student. Where the clinical work is inadequate or missing essential aspects, extra work or clinical cases will be required before a diploma is granted. There may be an extra fee for any additional casework that may be requested to meet the clinical standards for graduation.

Each formal assessment is open book, but may be time-limited and students may be required to sign that they have met the conditions set. Students are permitted to look up certain facts or terms that they may not have fully remembered, but the writing should still be completed within the given time frame. The Clinical internship is assessed on the casework alone.