Diploma in Trichology

A detailed overview of this prestigious trichology course


As revised 17-06-2017

This course is expected to take three years, but may of necessity be extended if topics are added to the syllabus, or if essays are not presented as required or need re-presenting.

Are you a prospective student wishing to undertake a trichology course set at a high academic level?  Do you possess the determination and tenacity to see the course through to its completion?

We have been offering this academic course (the science of Human Scalp & Hair in health, disease and distress) for 19 years to students worldwide who possess a command of the English language.

Our Open University style course provides the vehicle to qualification as a Trichologist within the parameters of TTS (The Trichological Society). Graduands will be elected to Licentiateship and be entitled to use the post-nominal letters LTTS.   Graduates of this course pay reasonable annual subscriptions to TTS (a not-for-profit professional association) and receive a listing on its celebrated Portal, and an ongoing advice service.

This course  can commence on the first day of any month (except August and December – which are vacation months).

The course is based on 3 academic years of 10 months each, however this cannot be guaranteed as additional topics and other factors may extend the academic period. The Society may be  willing to consider a limited extension request.

The current  annual  fee is £2400.00. (see Course fees).  This may be paid in full prior to the commencement of each year, or, by 12 monthly Bankers Standing Order instalments of £200.00,  each to be received by the College on the 16th day of the month in advance.
During each year of study the student will be expected to research, write-up and submit 20 essays from the given syllabus (see below) at the steady rate of 2 per month –  one each to received by the College before 6pm on the 7th and 21st days.  All essays will be sent for marking/correcting by independent examiners (Dermatologists and other Orthodox Scientists as appropriate).

Students are admitted on the understanding that backfilling is not permitted,  therefore every shortfall in the delivery of an essay or re-presentation of an unsatisfactory essay will extend the overall period of study by 2 weeks which will be charged out at the rate at that time (currently £100 per essay).


It must be stated at the onset that this diploma course is demanding for every student. Gaining the TTS Diploma (LTTS) which is set at the highest academic standard within this discipline – worldwide, will require determination and tenacity.

We accept students who demonstrate the determination to gain this coveted qualification. Each will be assigned a College appointed Mentor to whom any problems, difficulties or other questions may be addressed.
The following is a detailed expose of the curriculum and current syllabus, but because hair science is an area of continuing research, updates, additions and changes may occur at any time. The student is therefore urged to visit these pages regularly.

This course is extensively academic but also possesses a practical element (which is explained later in this document).

The  academic part of this course is conducted from the student’s own home by distance learning. All correspondence (including essays etc) should be transmitted to a College appointed Mentor via email, therefore an efficient computer equipped for internet and email is essential.

Each of the topics within the syllabus should be researched using carefully chosen Internet resources and the recommended textbooks (see bottom of this page), written up as  ‘academic standard essays’ in the student’s own words and submitted via e-mail to his/her Mentor. All medical or scientific words / phrases / abbreviations must be explained as the work progresses in order to convince the examiner that the content is fully understood. Plagiarism is unacceptable and if discovered (via routine testing) will lead to the immediate termination of a studentship without refunding.

Opinions, graphics, photographs or any material sourced from texts or internet pages must be referenced in the obligatory bibliography. Too much well presented information is never criticised. ‘A diagram or picture can paint a thousand words.’

Appraisal of essays:

The College undertakes to mark and return up to 20 essays per annum, essentially at the rate of two per month during its 10 month academic year (August and December are vacational months). The usual return time is 10 days, however delays may occur for reasons outside the control of the College.
It is to be made absolutely clear that all essays must be received by the College for dispatch to its independent examiners by 6pm on the 7th and 21st days of each academic month.  Essays submitted late will not be sent for marking until the next due date (no exceptions can be made) – therefore the student will lose one of the two paid for essay markings that month –  Each ‘lost’ essay will effectively extend the period of studentship by a unit of two weeks and incur the appropriate additional charge (£100 for each). Students seeking a long term break from course work  must confirm this in writing and stop the monthly payments to the College during such an interlude. No reimbursements or catchup facilities exist where students pay monthly fees but fail to present essays / or present each on time.

If an examiner’s comment (in red type) indicates that an essay should be supplemented or re-written, it should be expedited as a matter of priority and the essay submitted at the next appropriate date. A revised essay will take an examiner’s time for which the College will be charged the full marking/correcting fee. Students must therefore understand that as the College only accepts two essays (be they new or represented) each month and that every topic in the syllabus must be presented  marked and accepted by the independent examiners, any missed or represented essays will create the need for extra time to complete the full course for which additional monthly costs will apply. No exceptions will be made.

Starred (*) topics in the syllabus generally attract short answers, therefore two or three starred (*) topics may be submitted as one of the two permitted essays in any month.  All essays must include a comprehensive bibliography.

The course work is programmed to take 3 years. Where a student fails to complete the course within that time-frame for any reason he/she may be permitted to extend the academic period accordingly (additional time is currently charged at £200 per month).

Work is always examined for plagiarism which is illegal and therefore regarded seriously by examiners.  Repeated offenders will be dismissed from the course without refund.

Words guides are not generally given because written material will vary in length according to the individual student’s vocabulary and composition style. However the importance of including all relevant data and points of interest cannot be overstated.  Omissions may result in the examiner requesting additional work.

If after the initial essays have been received it is felt that individual guidance would be advantageous, the College may send a limited number of sample essays.

The course requires that an essay for every topic listed in the syllabus be submitted and accepted by the College.  These will collectively create the student’s own personal ‘textbook’which should be constantly reviewed as it will be used as a basis for the Viva/Voce part of the examination (held at the conclusion of the final year’s study – usually in early May prior to the Graduation Day). During the Viva / Voce examinees will be questioned on a wide variety of subjects contained within their own catalogue of essays.  The examination will also include a practical demonstration by each student of his/her ability with consultation, diagnosis, prognosis and treatments (where applicable).

Your future success as a professional in this discipline will depend on a thorough understanding of the subject gained by dedicated tenacious study now.  Please remember that researching and writing an essay is just the first step,  memorising and understanding the content sufficiently to answer an examiner’s questions on it with accuracy and confidence must remain the principle objective as it will dictate success or failure.


Clinical observation / practical experience is obtained at clinical centres (currently in UK) either by a number of one-day attendances or by less-frequent multi-day visits.  Consultant Practitioners offering such opportunities will be charging students £100 per day, which will include observing their practice layouts, techniques and some conference time with the Consultant.  It is to be hoped that additional centres will become available in the years ahead.  Students should however take special note of the paragraph on Clinical Experience Etiquette (below).

Each visit will provide the opportunity for assessing the student’s progress and provide the opportunity for one-to one conversations with TTS educationalists: At all times the following principles are considered vital:  Punctuality, Appearance, Attitude, Knowledge, Patient Care, Hygiene, Communication, Professionalism, Team work etc.  UK Students should attend as many of these clinical experience days as possible.

Overseas students are required to visit the UK for at least one week’s practical experience plus other tutorials each year of their course. The Registrar is usually available to advise and where possible assist.


A prospective student seeking enrolment should email The Registrar for an Application for Enrolment Form which will be sent by email. On completion this should be returned to The Registrar by email. The College will review the application and inform the applicant accordingly.

Successful applicants will be offered a place on the course to commence on a mutually agreed month of the year (not August or December).

Having accepted the place, the student is required to pay a non-returnable registration fee of £200 within 5 days to secure it and guarantee that he/she will honour the reservation. This sum will be deducted from the first course fee paid.

The Course fees are to be received by The College not less than 14 days prior to the commencement date.


It is to be understood that no refunds of academic fees will be considered where a student pays for and thereafter drops-out of or otherwise fails to complete any intended aspect / part of the course.



Fee – £7200 (£200 per month) – 2 essays required per month throughout (not August or December)
Every essay must be marked and accepted by the independent examiners employed by the College. Essays may occasionally require representing.


Usually 5 months duration


1 The Heart – the physiology and function of the heart together with a convincing overview of the cardiovascular system.

2  The Skeletal system – a detailed overview of the skeletal structure.

3  A detailed description of the bones and muscles of the face and cranium. Mention the numerous fontanelle and their origins.

4  The Muscular system – a description of muscle types with detailed description of the muscles of the face and head.

5  The Renal System.

6  The Endocrine system. This will be an extensive work detailing the numerous hormones their function and effect. Mention any known affect on hair.

7  The Lymphatic System.  This work will include a detailed explanation of the location, physiology and function of the respective organs.

8  The Skin. This work will include a detailed explanation of its structure and function but will exclude any detailed description of the pilo-sebaceous follicle, nails and hair/skin diseases/deformities, which will each    be the focus of future individual assignments.

9  The Hair. This extensive work will include a detailed morphology from conception, in-depth accounts of hair type (Afroid, Caucasoid Mongoloid) physical/ chemical structure, development, growth cycles (anagen, catagen, telogen and exogen) and follicular re-genesis, post puberty development, pigmentation, genetic factors, natural curl, density and other specific characteristics but exclude diseases which will each be the focus of future individual assignments.

10  The Nails include a detailed account of physical structure, growth cycles. Mention pigmentation and diseases (with photographs were possible).



Expected duration 24 months
(this may of necessity be extended)

Many topics in this section will constitute major essays, which will take time to research effectively to satisfy TTS academic standards. Each must be researched appropriately, written up in the students’s own words and include a bibliography. Each must then be submitted (email) to his/her assigned Mentor for marking by highly qualified independent examiners and return (usually within 10 days – not guaranteed). Plagiarism is forbidden in accordance with academic protocol.
Whereas the major component of this course is academic training, students also require clinical experience days arranged directly with your Mentor. There will be a daily charge of £100 for such attendances which will include  the opportunity of observing consultation procedures and participating in some treatment regimes under the strict control of the presiding Consultant. As stated elsewhere herein a strict code of etiquette must be observed during all such visits.
As many of the conditions listed within the syllabus are rare, it is unlikely that students will see live examples of them during practical sessions. The recommendation is therefore that the student researches and collects an extensive personal photographic library from which to become acquainted with the visual symptoms of all conditions/diseases. Dermatology textbooks which include clear photographs of hair / scalp disease are an investment.

Topics suffixed with a star (*) indicate that short explanations are expected – two or three such topics may be submitted as one of the expected two essays in any month.


11  Acne Necrotica Miliaris & Varioliformis*

12  Acne Keloid

13  Acquired progressive kinking.

14  Alopecia areata, totalis and universalis.

15  Androgenetic alopecia in males –include details and discussion regarding modern drug therapies, surgical hair replacement techniques, and non-surgical hair replacement.

16  Androgenic alopecia in females – include details and opinion on currently used drug therapies and suitability to surgical hair replacement. Discuss non-surgical replacement methods.

17  Bubble Hair Syndrome

18  Canities Leucotrichia Poliosis*

19  Eczema’s – with special reference to scalp and effect on hair.

20  Effluvium’s (anagen, telogen, loose anagen syndrome)

21  Favus

22  Folliculitis Decalvans

23  Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia

24  Hair Pigmentation Chemistry – Mention the chemistry, function and source of melanin, its distribution and the consequences of its absence.

25  Hair fall associated with fever

26  Hair fall associated with eating disorders (bulimia, anorexia nervosa)

27  Herpes (Shingles)

28  Hirsutism (include differential diagnosis with hypertrichosis)

29  Hypertrichosis (include reference to congenital hypertrichosis, congenital syndromes and metabolic disorders, prepubertal and X-linked hypertrichosis).

30  Idiopathic Trichoclasia*

31  Impetigo – with special reference to scalp and effect on hair

32  Lichen Planus (Planopilaris)

33  Lupus Erythematosus (discoid and systemic)

34  Malignant Melanomas – with special reference to scalp

35  Non-Melanoma skin cancers – with special reference to scalp

37  Monilethrix*

38  Neurodermatitis.

39  Nutrition and hair health.

40  Pediculus capitis – mention the body and pubic louse and discuss the treatments available

41  Pemphigus – with special reference to scalp.

42  Pityriasis (‘Seborrhoeic dermatitis’) with special reference to scalp and effect on hair. (Include graphic descriptions of each together with recommendations as to treatment regimes – include photos where 43  possible.

44  Plica Polonica.

45  Porphria (congenital or erythropoietic) and hypertrichosis

46  Post-natal alopecia

47  Pseudo-pelade (Brocq)

48  Psoriasis of the scalp

49  Dermatophytosis Capitis (Ringworm) with special reference to scalp and effect on hair. Include details of anthropophilic and zoophilic fungi, microspora, trichophyta, epidermophyta

50  Serum Ferritin, Serum Iron, Vitamin B12 and hair status

51  Thyroid functions and hair status – mention hair loss and changes in characteristics

52  Traction Alopecia

53  Trichokinesis

54  Trichorrhexis Nodosa

55  Trichomycosis Nodosa*

56  Trichothiodystrophy

57  Trichoptilosis*

58  Trichonodosis*

59  Trichosporosis*

60  Trichotillomania

61  Trichoteiromania*

62  Trichotemnomania*

63  Trichophagy*

64  Uncombable hair syndrome*

65  Urticaria with special reference to scalp and effect on hair

66  Vitiligo with special reference to scalp and hair

67  Woolly Hair Syndrome


Gray’s Anatomy (Barnes & Noble)

SUGGESTED BOOKS (confer with your Mentor)

Diseases of the Hair and Scalp (Ed. R Dawber, Published by Blackwell Science) – If available.


Disorders of Hair Growth Diagnosis and Treatment by Elise A Olsen (2nd Edition)


Blume-Peytavi, U. at all. Hair Growth and Disorders. Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. 2008


Hair and Scalp Disorders (second edition) Ed. J McMichael,  Maria K. Hordinsky – CRC Press


(one to be assigned to each student)
Each will be appropriately qualified and experienced.

 STUDY ASSISTANCE (via e-mail): Any reasonable time with the assigned Mentor – or with TTS Office.



Usually 6 months duration.


Detailed and extensive essays are required on the following topics.

Medicines:   An overview of OTC BTC POM medicines.  Include an in-depth description of the families of drugs (e.g. antibiotics, steroids, homeopathic, chemotherapeutic etc) together with details of any known responses relative or potentially relative to hair / scalp. (2 Credits)

Biochemistry: (explaining briefly the structure and function of cellular components in living organisms). The work should include an overview of the structure of amino-acids, carbohydrates, fungi and other micro-organisms, lipids, monomers, nucleic acids, polymers, proteins, vitamins. (2 Credits)

Bacilli: Demonstrate a clear understanding of staphylococci and streptococci. Mention other members of the Kingdom ‘Bacteria’.  Give examples of disease (especially to scalp follicles) associated with any of these and suggest appropriate action. (2 Credits)

Surfactants Chemistry: Demonstrate a clear understanding of the chemicals used in the manufacture of shampoos the labelling nomenclature describing content and the national laws governing their formulation and manufacture. Mention adverse reactions with hair or scalp (2 Credits)

Hair Processing: Demonstrate a clear understanding of the chemical and physical procedures viz bleaching, dying, permanent waving, hair relaxing, extensions, braiding corn-rowing etc involved in current hairdressing procedures. (2 Credits)

Hairdressing ObservationThe student is required to spend a minimum of 10 certified hours within a reputable hair salon observing chemical procedures (relaxing, straightening, permanent-waving, colouring, blanching, highlighting, corn rowing, plaiting, hair-extensions etc). The follow up essay to provide detailed accounts + a potential damage assessment for each. Please note this must be arranged by the student personally. (2 Credits)

Hair Restoration SurgeryObservation time with a TTS Registered Doctor who specialises in these procedures – followed by a fully descriptive essay. (2 Credits) Overseas students who can only visit UK for the pre-examination week tutorials will not be required to present this essay prior to the examination.

Clinical protocol lectures:  Clinical management, Consultation procedures, Principles of diagnosis, Treatment regimes and other matters applicable to pure-trichologists in professional practice.


This part of the training involves clinical experience with actual patients and assisting with the day to day running of a successful clinical practice under the guidance of a qualified experienced Licentiate or Fellow of The Trichological Society.  Students residing in UK are expected to attend a clinical practice occasionally throughout the course. Practitioners who offer these clinical experience opportunities to students in UK are well qualified and willing to assist the student in their objective.  –  daily charges of £100 apply.

Professor B Stevens offers small group seminar’s at his 19 Balgores Square, Gidea Park RM2 6U practice. The charge of £50 per hour can if desired be split between 2 attendees.

Overseas students will be expected (where possible) to attend a dermatology department in their locality, or attend UK trichology practices for periods of 5 working days per year of study.  Well illustrated dermatology textbooks are very helpful. The Registrar will be happy to discuss any problems you may have (UK 07742 336 337 or email).


Whereas clinical experience is a requirement there are certain matters which must be firmly understood by the student when attending a practice:

The clinic to which the student has been invited will be privately operated and therefore the student must respect the etiquette imposed by the owner who will be a qualified respected practitioner.

Students must reflect the dignity of the practice by adopting a conservative, smartly dressed demeanour (Jeans, unwashed or untidy hair, dirty finger nails or chipped varnish, obvious facial piercings etc are taboo).  The student may be required to bring a smart laundered white lab coat.

Students are there to observe and learn, but are invitees only, the practice is essentially the Consultant’s domain – therefore his / her requirements must be respected absolutely.

Students must not under any circumstances offer advice or opinions to patients.  Speak if spoken to is the motto.

Students must never discuss a patient’s diagnosis, condition or treatment other than in private with the Consultant.

There will be occasions during the day for a one-to-one conferences with the Consultant.  At all other times the student must be unobtrusive and aware that patients generally do not welcome ‘being gazed at’.


Subject to the candidate’s successful progression during the course the College Committee will invite a candidate to attend this examination.

This examination will include:

An extensive Viva / Voce Examination (live verbal questions and answers) based on the individual student’s coursework.

The execution of real-life trichology procedures (consultation, diagnosis, prognosis and discussion regarding treatment options
and the performance of any recommended treatment with new patients in the presence of examiners.

Examinations are usually conducted in London during May, prior to the Graduation Day ceremony, but may be conducted at other times by arrangement with the College Governors.

Examinees are hereby informed that whereas the initial examination is paid for by The Society, any re-examinations are student funded.

THE PRESIDENT’S DAY (annually in May)

This prestigious event offers an opportunity to meet with colleagues and other inspiring academics (old and new) and to attend the lectures presented. The lunch is good too.

All UK students are required to attend these events.


Graduands will have gained credits for all assignments and satisfied the Examiners at the end of course viva / voce  held in London during late April / early May prior to the Graduation Ceremony.


The President’s Day & Graduation Ceremony is held annually at Hunton Park (Hertfordshire) – a delightful Queen Anne Mansion set in parkland.
Graduands wearing academic robes with the TTS Hood (Red, White and Black) receive their well-earned Diplomas from the President in the presence of Family and Friends.

    Robert D Olding  BOOK AWARD (at the Graduation Ceremony)

A volume may be presented where one student has demonstrated an outstanding performance throughout the course.
Such awards are occasional. Where there is more than one contender citations are given instead.

 JOHN A HARWOOD CITATION (at the Graduation Ceremony) 

This Citation is  awarded annually in memory of the illustrious Founder and Past President
to the student who has made outstanding progress during the first year of his/her course.


MENTORS will be appropriately qualified and experienced persons

 STUDY ASSISTANCE (via e-mail): Anytime with the assigned Mentor – or with TTS Office

This overview represents the updated syllabus (as at 17-07-2017)
As the science of pure trichology advances the College reserves the right to implement changes to the curriculum as appropriate
which may inevitably extend the period of study.
Students are therefore required to make regular reference to this page throughout their period of study.



N.B.  The Trichological Society reserves the right to make changes / revisions to any aspect of its published trichology courses and hair transplant technician’s course at any time. For the avoidance of doubt Candidates / Students should  make regular visits to the respective course overviews to acquaint themselves with any changes e.g. the actual number of essays listed on the syllabus being undertaken

London Office:

97 Gray's Inn Road




The Trichological Society

The Registrar:

19 Balgores Square

Gidea Park