Course Title: Chinese Materia Medica and Formulae 1

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Chinese Materia Medica and Formulae 1

Credit Points: 12.00

Important Information:




Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


Bundoora Campus


150H Health Sciences


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


Bundoora Campus


173H School of Health and Biomed


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 1 2021,
Sem 1 2022,
Sem 1 2023,
Sem 1 2024


Bundoora Campus


150H Health Sciences


Sem 2 2006,
Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010,
Sem 2 2011,
Sem 2 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016

Course Coordinator: Dr Jing Cui

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 7759

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 202.04.052

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Required Prior Study

You should have satisfactorily completed following course/s before you commence this course.

Alternatively, you may be able to demonstrate the required skills and knowledge before you start this course.

Contact your course coordinator if you think you may be eligible for recognition of prior learning.

Course Description

Chinese Materia Medica and Formulae 1 is a one-semester course that will cover principles of Chinese Materia Medica. This course will identify a number of individual Chinese herbs that are part of the Chinese Materia Medica and introduce some of the key formulae (prescriptions of combinations of herbs) used in Chinese medicine. You will also be introduced to the botanical classification of plants commonly used in Chinese herbal medicine preparations. Study of the Materia Medica will include actions of individual herbs, meridians entered, dosage range, processing, and contraindications/cautions. Study of medicinal formula will introduce theory related to developing formulae, key formulae including ingredients, modifications, indications, contraindications and cautions. This course will assist you to identify a number of individual Chinese herbs that are part of the Chinese Materia Medica, and introduce some of the key formulae (prescriptions of combinations of herbs) used in Chinese medicine.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Objectives for BP278 Bachelor of Health Science/Bachelor of Applied Science (Chinese Medicine):

  • PLO 1: provide specialised health care within a patient-centred, evidence-based framework
  • PLO 2: Gather clinical information to make accurate differential diagnosis, assessment and management plans and carry out effective treatment.
  • PLO 3: practice as a competent health care professional in a safe, ethical and legally responsible manner
  • PLO 4: demonstrate cultural awareness and sensitivity in the provision of specialized health care;
  • PLO 8: understand the historical development of the profession, its ethos, organisation and philosophical foundations.

On successful completion of this course you will be expected to:

  1. Describe actions, indications, contraindications, dosage range, processing, any known toxicity, and any known potentially toxic interactions with other herbs or western medication
  2. Describe the regulations governing the practice of herbal medicine and demonstrate an understanding of, and an ability to apply, the relevant Chinese Medical Board of Australia Guidelines, with particular emphasis on elements relating to the prescribing of herbs – in particular, S1 herbs
  3. Describe how herbal formulae are built, list the component herbs, describe the clinical indications and contraindications, cautions and describe common modifications for a number of key Chinese medicinal formulae
  4. Identify the major families of plants from which Chinese herbal products
  5. Describe and carry out processing of Chinese herbs

Overview of Learning Activities

Learning activities include a mixture of face-to-face lectures, tutorials and practical sessions. Learning experiences that will foster the development of the capabilities to be developed in this course will include problem-based learning and case-based learning experiences. Learning experiences will also provide you with the opportunity to practice skills and receive feedback about your skills.

You are encouraged to be proactive and self-directed in your learning, asking questions of your lecturer and/or peers and seeking out information as required, especially from the numerous sources available through the RMIT library, and through links and material specific to this course that is available through myRMIT Studies Course.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through myRMIT Studies Course.

There are services available to support your learning through the University Library. The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help as well as a range of study support services. For further information, please visit the Library page on the RMIT University website and the myRMIT student portal.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1: In semester assessments
Weighting 45%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3 & 5

Assessment Task 2:  Practical assessment
Weighting 20%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1 & 4  

Assessment Task 3: Case Study
Weighting 20%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3 & 5

Assessment Task 4: Online Quizzes
Weighting 15%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3 & 5

If you have a long-term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.