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Upgrade Your Qualification (to an IFA Full Member)

If you have a qualification in aromatherapy that does not meet the requirements of IFA full membership, then you may apply to an IFA approved Centre to undertake an assessment bridging course. Bridging courses are designed to professionally develop your skills and knowledge and effectively 'bridge' the gaps of your current qualifying level to that of the IFA standard. To enrol on a bridging course you must first be eligible for Associate membership. The criteria for Associate membership is to hold a level 3 qualification in aromatherapy or above click here for examples. Please note this prerequisite is necessary, as otherwise the difference in content will be too great to bridge, and the individual will be advised to attend the IFA Professional Aromatherapy Diploma course. Successful completion of the upgrade course and assessment will enable you to be eligible for IFA full membership. 

The assessment bridging procedure is divided into three phases:

Phase 1: Evidence of Prior Learning

The IFA Professional Aromatherapy Diploma is pitched at a HE Level 4 - 5 clinical aromatherapy. To begin the bridging process, the applicant must complete the Accredited Prior Learning (APL) mapping questionnaire, which breaks down the subject content of each module and unit incorporated within the IFA Diploma course. Completion of the questionnaire and supply of supplementary evidence, will enable the tutor to identify areas already covered during prior learning and areas requiring further development.

On completion, you must submit your APL mapping questionnaire directly to an IFA approved Centre of your choice, who will assess your prior learning and evidence. 

Please note, Centres are not always able to accept upgrading applicants due to existing time tables, in which case we recommend that you check with a Centre first before completing the questionnaire. 


Phase 2: Assessment of Evidence

The tutor will assess the evidence you provide as per the IFA Recognition of Prior Learning and Exemption Policy and provide an overview of the areas requiring further study. 

Please note that the process of assessing and comparing qualifications is a time-consuming process and a cost may be incurred to do this (at the discretion of the Centre).

The tutor will then be able to advise on the bridging course duration, cost and schedules. 

Once confirmed, the tutor will then be able to appropriately tailor, create and develop a teaching and learning pathway that will bridge and progress the applicants knowledge, understanding and skills to meet the required standard. Your tutor will then register you with the IFA as a student member. 


Phase 3: IFA Examinations

Once you have completed the required areas of additional study you will then be eligible to enter the IFA external examinations; the benchmark of professionalism. 

Examinations are scheduled as per the information provided in the Learner Handbook.