1st-Year Program


Learn to read the cosmic weather patterns to better understand the self through community, exercise, the senses, mindfulness, meditation, music, journal and art processing, movement and somatic experience, study, lecture, text and teacher support in the 1st-Year Program!

Our Next Session Begins Fall 2018

Embody Astrology in the 1st-Year Program through the 4-Elements: Fire, Earth, Air and Water. Come study with us!

Embody Astrology in the 1st-Year Program through the 4-Elements: Fire, Earth, Air and Water. Come study with us!


Enrollment will remain open until the start of the program or until we have filled the program with 12 students. We will update the website if the program is full. Enrollment to the Portland School of Astrology is contingent on a telephone interview with the administrator to determine if PSA and the potential student are a good fit.

Space for the 1st-Year Program is limited to 12 students. 

Please click the Enroll tab to get started. We'd love to hear from you! Have a simple question you want answered first? Send us an inquiry via our Contact form.


Our 101 Astrology Program is unique because not only is it accessible 101-knowledge offered to the general public, but it is an incredibly holistic approach to the multifaceted study and practice of Astrology, taking into account different learning styles and ways to really understand this information through a variety of activities and experiences, all within a classroom setting. While it's important to understand Astrology intellectually from a head space, we also need to imbibe Astrology. We teach Astrology not only through lecture, powerpoints, reading books, homework and a final exam but we will also experience Astrology through music, video, art, games, meditation, food, writing, reflection, activities, community engagement and somatic experiences to see spectrum of these archetypes all around us, everyday.

In the 1st-Year Program of the Portland School of Astrology, we explore the basics of astrology in standard and unconventional ways to best appeal to a multitude of learning styles and personal experiences. We learn how to delineate (interpret) a chart, learn cycles, phases, retrogrades, movement and transits of planets. We also cover topics of interest to the well-rounded astrologer that include Astronomy, History, Art and Creativity, Ethics, Philosophy and we even get physical with Astro-Drama and Astro-Yoga! We also introduce specific topics in the diverse field of Astrology such as Mythological Astrology, Medical Astrology and a variety of techniques to appeal to a large number of student interests.

1st-Year Students draw out their personal houses in their natal chart.

1st-Year Students draw out their personal houses in their natal chart.

Although this is a grade-free school, we do assign homework and have one final exam, several practice chart synthesis and a student case study. The homework is designed to reinforce what we have learned from the lesson prior, which help to solidify the information and will reference the required texts. Homework and classroom discussions will also involve critical thinking to foster ideas and establish your own understanding of how certain techniques or principles play out in your own chart. The exam is take-home and we have a review periods to prepare students. Students are expected to conduct a personal Case Study to share with the class at the end of the program and participate in a Chart Synthesis, giving a reading to practice clients under the guidance of PSA faculty.

Additional support is given through Study Hall, a once-a-month weekday night with other students and PSA faculty to go over questions, look over charts, apply technique and check for understanding. These are in-formal sessions and are typically student guided. Attendance is not required, but please take advantage of this extra time. One-on-one tutoring option will also be available to students who need additional attention and support.

At the end of the program, given that the student has met the requirement for attendance and had completed homework assignments and exams, students will receive a Certificate of Completion from the Portland School of Astrology with 120 completed hours of training. 

This program is highly interactive and incredibly fun! We strive to not overwhelm with too much detail and check for understanding to not leave anyone behind. Full-Time faculty Rhea, Jaysen and Andrea work to create a safe space to share, grow and learn together.

Don't miss this program! 



Natal Astrology 101: in detail the 12 Zodiacal Signs, 12 Planetary Bodies (includes Chiron, Nodes, Part of Fortune and also major asteroids), Symbols/Glyphs, 12 Houses/Quadrants, Mythology, the Classical Elements, Modes and Polarities, Chart Angles (including the Ascendent, Descendent, Nadir or IC and Mid-Heaven or MC), Major Aspects.

Philosophy 101: What is Astrology? Fate vs. Free Will and Predictions, Introduction to Different Theoretical Orientations.

Delineation 101: Practice Chart Synthesis, House Systems, Sensitive Points, Mutual Reception, Chart Patterns, Sect, Interceptions, Depositors, Aspect Patterns, Ptolemy's Dignities and Debilities, Reading the Ephemeris (Book of Celestial Navigation) 

Cycles 101: Transits, Eclipses and Lunar Phases, Planetary Cycles, Retrograde Motions.

Art and Creativity 101: Class Field Trip to the Portland Art Museum to experience pieces that illustrate archetypes, Astrological Colour Theory, Chart Drawing, Art Processing of the Houses, journaling prompts to better understand ourselves in the context of our charts.

Ethics 101: A discussion on ethics in astrological practice for new students.

History 101: History of Astrology, The Ages of Antiquity.

Astronomy 101: Interactive lecture on the celestial mechanics of the Universe for Astrologers using video, somatic activities and lecture.

One of our guest instructors, Jenna Abernathy will be teaching Astro Movement to better embody the archetypes. 

One of our guest instructors, Jenna Abernathy will be teaching Astro Movement to better embody the archetypes. 

Physical Education 101: Astro Movement and Astro-Drama to help our mind and bodies better imbibe the astrological archetypes.

Mythological Astrology 101: Introduction to the mythology of the planets and signs.

Medical Astrology 101: Topics through the fascinating study of the human physiology and pathology using the celestial bodies as a guide. Classes include An Introduction to Medical Astrology, Health, Wellness and Herbalism Remedies for Signs and Planets, Elemental Constitutions. 

Topics in the Field of Astrology 101: Guest Topic by a guest speaker, voted by the class.

Astro Potluck: sharing food together of all 12 signs.

Study Hall: 12 hours of open time for discussion, community and workshop

Student Case Study: Students will develop their own student case studies to present at the end of the year. Support will be given.

Chart Synthesis Practicum: We will have several practice sessions to build our clinician skills, under the guidance of PSA faculty. We will practice throughout the year to lead up to the Chart Synthesis Practicum.


1st-Year Instructors

1st-Year Program Faculty include full-time instructors Jaysen Paulson, Rhea Wolf, Andrea L. Gehrz and Adjunct Instructors Takahiro Yamamoto, Renee Sills, Aubrie De Clerck, and a Guest Instructor as voted by the class. To learn more, read biographies and see the adjunct faculty of the 1st-Year Program, click on the Faculty tab.


Required Text

  • The Inner Sky – Steven Forrest (students receive a 25% discount on this text when purchased from PSA)
  • Understanding the Birth Chart – Kevin Burk
  • Making the Gods Work for You - Caroline Casey
  • The Astrology Bible - Judy Hall or comparable 101 quick-reference style text.

Recommended, but not required:


2018/2019 School Year Dates

The Portland School of Astrology conducts it’s 8-session 1st-Year Program once a month from 10 – 5:30pm. We may hold both a weekend cohort (Saturday, Sunday) and a weekday cohort (Monday, Tuesday) to fit all scheduling needs. You'll need to commit to either the weekend or the weekday cohort, which ever works best for you. As a condition of creating safe space, there is no switching once the program begins and students cannot join a different cohort if they miss a class.

We also have Study Hall, a once a month student-lead time that is optional for students to attend. PSA does have an attendance policy. If you have to miss more than 3 program days, this program might not be right for you at this time. 2018/2019 school year dates have not yet been decided. Check back in Spring 2018.

Weekend Cohort

"Astarte" Group

(Saturday, Sunday)

Weekday Cohort 1

"Bulls" Group

(Monday, Tuesday)


Weekday Cohort 2

"Cedar" Group

(Monday, Tuesday)


PSA does have an attendance policy and students must be able to attend the first and last weekend of the program. Study Hall and Field Trip attendance is optional. Dates for Study Hall and Field Trip will be posted at a later time.



The 1st-Year Program will be held at our school location in Hollywood at 3939 NE Hancock #212 in the Hollywood Professional Center Building. We even made sure that the school was across the street from a French bakery. You're welcome. :) See more information about the building.


Tuition Cost

The Portland School of Astrology understands that cost is an issue for many folks, that's why we offer payment plans for 1st-Year Program for those who need it.

1. $1,625: If you pay in-full before the start of the program. This breaks down to about $13.00 per instruction hour for the entire 125-hour program.

  • A $200 non-refundable, non-transferrable deposit is required to hold your spot due 14-days after the interview. This deposit does apply toward your total tuition.
  • Please note: If the program start date is one month or less from when the student enrolls, the deposit is due as soon as possible to hold the spot.
  • Payment Plan: full payment is encouraged, however the payment plans consists of 7 payments of $204 starting from October 1st until April 1st.

Scholarship Information:

Public government-sourced funding is not available at PSA. We offer a payment plan as a way to help off-set the cost for those who need assistance. There are also scholarship opportunities in the community as well.  

Possible Opportunities: 

We do need help supporting students! If you are interested in donating to support a student for PSA 1st-Year Program through the Jen Gouvea Memorial Scholarship Fund, please click here. 

If you want to be notified of upcoming scholarship opportunities, join our mailing list!


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do I need a computer? A computer is an excellent way to learn astrology now-a-days, with so many helpful resources online. Access to a computer is very strongly recommended, access to the internet is required. We will be communicating through email, and through a social media network to help each other learn and foster a community with the group. Additional links and information sent from PSA may require a computer or internet access to review.


  • Is there an option for web-based conferencing? Our mission at PSA is to provide education that is holistic in nature, meaning that we strive to learn astrology in more ways than online slideshows. We are exploring options on how to make that happen in the future, however unfortunately, there is not an option for web-based conferencing at this time.


  • How often do you offer this course? We usually offer this course beginning each Fall. We have always offered a weekend cohort and will add a weekday cohort if there is enough interest. Enrollment opens each Spring.


  • I've had some astrological education in the past, should I apply? We have had students in our 1st-Year Program with as much as ten years of prior education who report being blown away by what they've gained from the program. Our program is incredibly holistic in nature and students learn about more than the basics of astrology, yet the basics are taught in many different and unique ways, it has kept even the most advance student engaged and continuing to learn. Also, the community aspect of the program is an important part of the experience. 


  • Are there any prerequisites to the 1st-Year Program? No. Students from many experience levels come and study with us. We do not require you to have an educational background in astrology.


  • Is the 1st-Year Program taught with an anti-oppression framework? Yes! PSA full-time teachers are passionately involved with the Queer Astrology movement, asking questions to the field of astrology that are helpful and inclusive to people of colour, those who are disabled, gender queer folks, and we examine and discuss binary thinking in astrological-oriented materials and theory. We create awareness of oppressive and limiting language in mainstream Astrology and in the consultation setting. We discuss ethics and make recommendations for students when working personally with others.


  • What have former students done with their education from the Astro-Empowerment program? Some ways that former students have used their education include combining what they learned to their existing interest or professional practice of energy medicine, herbal medicine or farming, psychotherapy, life coaching, influence on their art practice, influence fictional story-telling/writing, influence their musical pursuits, blogging, shamanic practice, public health (or mundane astrology), astrology with other forms of divination, hermeticism, and more advanced students even begin astrological consulting.



Community is a focus for PSA and due to the sensitive nature of self-discovery and discussion of personal experiences based on student charts, we've noticed that the group begins to bond quickly. The 1st-Year Program continues to facilitate this with our Student Study Halls and the Student Case Studies. PSA also introduces 1st-Year Students to the community we are building with the events we have (ZEDTalks, conferences, annual community dinner, annual community picnic, quarterly term classes, special projects and events), also with the local astrological community (partnerships with the OAA and Symposium Astrologica, pairing with local astrologers who are not teachers at PSA, partnership with AstrologyUniversity.com) as well as the larger Portland community (marching at Pride, star-viewing parties with OMSI, astrological art tours with Portland Art Museum and the annual NW Magic Conference) to name a few. With the program, you'll be welcomed into opportunities to join a larger supportive community that shares your interests.


Student Perks

There are several perks to being a student at PSA. As a 1st-Year Program student, you will receive…

  • Jim Maynard pocket ephemeris calendar for 2018.
  • A complimentary year-long membership to the Oregon Astrological Association in Portland, to further your astrological study outside of the school with monthly events and network with other astrologers in the area. Please take advantage of this, as it offers an opportunity to meet and work with other astrologers!
  • Free PSA swag item of your choice: t-shirt, tote bag or coffee mug, and everyone is welcomed to buttons and stickers.
  • Community exposure and networking possibilities within the group of students and the faculty of PSA.
  • Discounts on other PSA Quarterly Term classes (click Quarterly Schedule tab).
  • Discounts on non-PSA teacher events.
  • Discounts in the School Store (online and in-house).
  • Discounts to AstrologyUniversity.com lecture library from internationally recognized astrologers.
  • First opportunities to work trade positions at a deeper discount.
  • Access to our in-house Jen Gouvea Memorial Library.
  • A color copy of your personal chart to be used in class.
  • Complimentary organic tea at class.



What are former students saying about the 1st-Year Program?

  • “I can’t adequately express the impact you have made on my life. I began the year feeling wrecked and broken. I am now ending the year on one of the most amazing personal highs possible. My dreams are manifesting, my world is opening up, opportunities are abounding and I owe it all the the deep healing that your classes offered me. You saved my life and I will never forget that.”

  • "I have really appreciated the community feel and that it is a safe place to learn and no one judges you for not knowing something."

  • "I enjoy the variety of experience and the personalities the teachers bring to the program. It helps me to learn from different viewpoints and perspectives."

  • "I have enjoyed the small class size and the instructors are very knowledgeable. I appreciate the diversity of instruction/instructors. Classes have been both super informative, and fun."

  • Read a blog post by our former student Melina Donalson about her experience in Astro-Empowerment