Pharmaceutical Sciences

College of Pharmacy » Academic Programs » Graduate Programs » PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences

Why study Pharmaceutical Sciences?

Unleash your potential in the dynamic field of pharmaceutical sciences through our PhD program. Designed to inspire and challenge, our comprehensive curriculum combines cutting-edge coursework with advanced research, allowing you to delve into captivating areas such as pioneering drug development, unraveling the intricate impact of medications on the body, exploring breakthrough drug delivery techniques, and maximizing the therapeutic potential of medications for optimal patient outcomes. With flexible scheduling options available, including online and in-person formats, you can tailor your learning experience to fit your needs and preferences. 

Become part of our program and unleash your potential to make groundbreaking contributions that will shape the future of pharmaceutical sciences.

Choose Your Specialization

Because the scope of pharmaceutical sciences is so broad, our graduate program has a number of specialty disciplines:

Biomembrane Sciences Track

In the Biomembrane Sciences track, students delve into captivating research projects encompassing drug delivery strategies, cosmetic product safety assessment, mathematical modeling of membrane transport, innovative drug formulations, nanocarrier design, and advancements in skin and hair development.

Experimental Therapeutics Track

Discover a world of possibilities in our Experimental Therapeutics track, where we bridge the gap between innovative therapeutic entities and real-world applications. Explore captivating research opportunities in areas ranging from cancer biomarkers to neuropharmacology, stroke, epilepsy, and more.

Health Outcomes Track

The Health Outcomes track aims to train interdisciplinary scholars in pharmaceutical sciences, economics, business, and quantitative analysis. By conducting research in this emerging field, students develop expertise that can improve patient health. This track offers exciting opportunities to contribute to the pharmaceutical industry's growing demand for scientists skilled in social and administrative aspects of pharmaceutical sciences. Students in the Health Outcomes track explore diverse research projects, ranging from drug safety and pharmacovigilance to pharmacy facility design, operation, and pharmacoeconomics.

Admission Requirements

Applicants with an undergraduate degree in chemistry, biology, engineering, or related fields from an accredited institution are eligible to apply for our full-time, research-intensive MS program in Pharmaceutical Sciences. Similarly, those with a completed professional degree like PharmD, MD, or DVM also meet eligibility requirements. Interested applicants can directly apply without prior completion of an MS degree. Admission to our competitive program, which offers supervised, full-time research training, is based on a selection process. 

Programmatic minimum admission criteria include:

  • A U.S. bachelors degree from a regionally accredited college or university or an equivalent degree from outside of the U.S.
  • A grade-point average (GPA) of at least 3.00 or non-U.S. equivalent
  • A Graduate Record Examination (GRE) score of at least 290/3.0 obtained within the past 5 years
  • International Applicants: qualifying English language profiency score

Supplemental Application Documents

To be considered for admission, please complete the University of Cincinnati Graduate Application and submit the following documents electronically within the application: 

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Statement of Purpose: Explain your motivation for pursuing a research-intensive Ph.D. degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Cincinnati. Include your desired research focus area within the broad field of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Submit all college transcripts, including evidence of high academic achievement (unofficial transcripts are sufficient for initial review).

  • Three letters of recommendation are required for applications, and we strongly recommend that applicants seek letters from individuals who can provide insights into their research experience. Please note that letters of recommendation from family members, friends, current students, politicians, or clergy will not be accepted. 

Non-Matriculated Students

If you are interested in exploring Pharmaceutical Sciences graduate-level courses without formal enrollment in a degree-seeking program, please complete the  basic data form .

Our program opens doors to a wide range of exciting career opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry, clinical research organizations, academia, and government sectors. Upon graduation, you may find yourself in roles such as a scientist, clinical pharmacologist, clinical trial manager, post-doctoral fellow, or regulatory affairs manager.

Furthermore, there are additional career paths available, including positions as a medical science liaison, pharmaceutical consultant, medical writer, or chemist, providing you with diverse avenues to pursue your passions and contribute to the advancement of the field.

Scholarship Opportunities

To explore available scholarship opportunities, please visit our Financial Aid & Scholarships page .

The graduation requirements for this program include: 

Completion of Plan of Study

Successful passing of the PhD qualifier and research proposal

Verification of at least one (1) first-author manuscript related to PhD dissertation research that is accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal

Compliance with degree-required seminar and journal club credit hours per semester

Cumulative grade point average of all didactic courses ≥3.0

Min of 90 credit hrs from track-based curriculum outline

No failing “F” grade in any of the degree-associated graduate courses

Successful upload of a chair-signed dissertation through the Graduate College ETD portal by the specified deadline

  • Guide: Pharmaceutical Sciences- Biomembrane Sciences Track
  • Guide: Pharmaceutical Sciences- Health Outcomes Track
  • Guide: Pharmaceutical Sciences- Experimental Therapeutics Track

Application Deadlines

Early Admission

General Admission

All application documents must be electronically submitted through the online application. When completing the online application, please select the desired degree path carefully, as document switches between different tracks are not permitted. Applications are reviewed with the following timeline:

Fall semester applications are reviewed by the Admissions Committee in May, with submissions accepted until August 1st. 

Spring semester applications are reviewed by the Admissions Committee in October, with submissions accepted until December 1st. 

Typically, the Fall semester provides more opportunities for incoming applicants.

For further inquiries, contact [email protected] .

Contact Information

Find related programs in the following interest areas:.

  • Medicine & Health
  • Natural Science & Math

Program Code: 25DOC-PCEU-PHD

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Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

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Pharmaceutical Sciences students viewing lab sample in Pharmacy Building.

The UB Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences is the foremost destination for PhD student scholars interested in challenging the boundaries of drug discovery, development and evaluation.

We invite you to study with our group of internationally renowned faculty as they advance the biotherapies and technologies of the future to improve human health and society. 

Sponsored through the university, this multi-year program provides enhanced nationally competitive funding packages to ensure the support and continuation of the next generation of scholars and researchers.

Support initiatives include: cost of broad-based fees for doctoral students who are full time and fully funded. Covered fees include the comprehensive fee, academic excellence and success fee, student activity fee, and the international student fee, where applicable.

Find out more: UB PhD Excellence Initiative.

Learn more about the many ways UB can support your career aspirations through innovative assistantships, fellowships, scholarships and other benefits.

Find out more: PhD Level Funding.

Doctoral students receive a full tuition scholarship and stipend. Additional amounts may be received through individual scholarships.

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree or higher in pharmacy, biochemistry, chemistry, biology, engineering or other science
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0/4.0
  • Two letters of recommendation from faculty knowledgeable of the student's ability and capability. Evaluators should comment on laboratory research, communication skills, creativity, and intangibles in the student's academic performance. An email request will be sent directly to your recommenders when you submit your application for formal review.
  • Personal statement: the personal statement is a general statement of purpose describing academic, professional, and research interests and should be no more than 500 words.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in organic and physical chemistry, biochemistry, biology and mathematics
  • Prior research experience and co-authorship in scientific publications are considered favorably.

Application Steps

Applying to graduate, professional and research programs can be overwhelming. Let us help with these tips!

  • Our master’s programs typically take 1 to 2 years to complete, with the end goal being either gaining employment or continuing on to a doctoral or professional program. Note that master’s programs are typically self-funded.
  • Our doctoral program typically takes 5 years to complete, where students take coursework early on, followed by independent research culminating in a dissertation. 
  • When to start planning for graduate school
  • How to apply (includes information on letters of recommendation, personal statement and resume/CV)
  • Writing a personal statement
  • Learn about options for funding your graduate education .

Information for Current BS/MS or MS Students

Current students in our BS/MS or MS programs who are interested in the PhD program are required to submit a new application with new recommendations. MS students may apply either during their first or second year of the program. BS/MS students must complete their entire BS/MS program before joining the PhD program (some exceptions considered).

MS students who are accepted to the PhD program during their first year in the MS program are transferred directly to the PhD program and do not receive their MS degree. MS students who are accepted to the PhD program during their second year in the MS program are encouraged to complete their MS project and confer their MS degree before joining the PhD program.

It is recommended that students interested in the PhD program consider taking the required courses for the PhD program that are offered during their MS studies. If admitted to PhD program, students who have completed all of the required PhD courses will be allowed to take the Preliminary Exams.

Students accepted to the PhD program from our MS program who have elected not to receive their MS degree can apply all of their required PhD courses and graduate course credits towards the 72 credits needed for the PhD. These students should develop an academic plan carefully so that the remaining credit requirements needed for the PhD degree are met without exceeding the 72 credits by a large margin.

Students formerly in our BS/MS or MS programs who are accepted to the PhD and have received their BS/MS or MS degree can apply part or all of their prior graduate credits from the University at Buffalo towards the PhD. The Director of Graduate Studies will waive the required PhD courses taken during the BS/MS and MS program for these students. These students should work closely with the Director of Graduate Studies so that remaining credit requirements needed for the PhD degree are met without exceeding the 72 credits by a large margin.

Review our Frequently Asked Questions

Email us at  [email protected] .


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PHD, Pharmacy

Graduates from the pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences graduate program are in demand throughout the United States and the world in a wide variety of challenging biomedical careers.

Degree Type: Doctoral

Degree Program Code: PHD_PHRM

Degree Program Summary:

The majority of our graduates are employed in the pharmaceutical industry with major multi-national pharmaceutical companies as well as smaller regional companies. Many of our students find opportunities in the rapidly expanding biotechnology industry where they attempt to bring the newest molecular biological techniques into modern therapeutics. In addition to industrial opportunities, many of our graduates find exciting careers with government labs and regulatory agencies. We also have many faculty serving at some of the premiere research and teaching universities in the world.

The Department of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences at The University of Georgia offers M.S. and Ph.D. degree programs in all major disciplines of the pharmaceutical sciences, including pharmaceutics, pharmacology, toxicology, medicinal chemistry and other related biomedical sciences. Faculty within the department conduct highly interdisciplinary research including the design, synthesis and discovery of novel antiviral, antibacterial and anticancer agents, biological mechanisms of action of therapeutic agents, pharmacokinetics, signal transduction and cancer, neuroprotective agents, bioanalytical chemistry, nutraceuticals, nanotechnology and drug delivery, computational chemistry, genomic analysis and viral genes and injury prevention resulting from weapons of mass destruction and bioterrorism.

During the course of study, students will gain experimental and theoretical expertise in their area of concentration and will develop competencies needed for leadership positions in industrial, government or academic settings related to the pharmaceutical sciences or biotechnology.

Since January 2005, the Department of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences has been integrally involved in the development of a world class Center for Drug Discovery. The mission of The University of Georgia Center for Drug Discovery is the discovery and development of new chemical and biological entities for combating a variety of existing and emerging life-threatening diseases.

Locations Offered:

Athens (Main Campus)

College / School:

College of Pharmacy

250 W. Green Street Athens, GA 30602



Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences

Graduate Coordinator(s):

Jason Zastre

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  • PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences

The PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PSC) program is a highly competitive doctoral degree program within the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy.

Members of the first IMSD class

NIH Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD)

Learn about our program that supports biomedical graduate students from historically underrepresented backgrounds.

Training in a highly collaborative atmosphere, our graduates gain the knowledge and skills required for discovering novel biological pathways in human health and disease as well as for the development and delivery of medications for safe and effective therapy.

With state-of-the-art facilities, funding from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Food and Drug Administration, and pharmaceutical industry, students receive mentorship that prepares them for outstanding careers in academia, the federal government, and the pharmaceutical industry.

This three-minute video presents an overview of the PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences program at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy, showcasing how the program prepares students to become leaders in the fields of drug discovery and development.

Current faculty and students are making headlines at the School of Pharmacy and beyond.

  • February 12, 2024 My UMSOP Story: Angie Nguyen, PhD '16, research director
  • November 1, 2023 Grad Gathering Welcomes Alums of PSC, PHSR, and Regulatory Science Programs
  • October 23, 2023 School Names Three New Academic Program Directors

I was drawn to the PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences program by its diverse areas of research and collaborative environment. Knowing that I could tackle my research interest from many angles – including biochemistry, chemistry, and molecular biology – greatly appealed to me. PSC faculty members are very knowledgeable and have a profound understanding of their research areas. All of the professors work together to answer any research questions that students have.

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PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences

At CU Pharmacy, we’re training scientists who make an impact. Our doctoral program in pharmaceutical sciences is focused on solving problems. In particular, the program covers the formulation, synthesis, manufacturing, development, stability, biophysical analysis, characterization, delivery, and biodistribution of small molecules and biopharmaceutical agents.

Our goals are to provide the best training for students interested in pursuing careers in biopharmaceutical drug development; conduct high-quality research relevant to pharmaceutical biotechnology; offer innovative educational programs; and to support the biopharmaceutical industry, especially in Colorado.

Here, you’ll have access to a wide range of researchers and research equipment; cross-training with chemical engineers; essential non-scientific training in regulatory affairs, business topics and pharmacoeconomics; experience with real world compounds and research and development problems; and interaction with industry scientists.

We have a strong track record of setting our students up for success. Graduates of our program have advanced into successful careers as senior scientists in the pharmaceutical industry and academia. We’re here to make sure you have the training you need to pursue a career in drug and biopharmaceutical discovery, development or clinical optimization.

As part of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

All regular full-time departmental faculty in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences are formal members of the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program and can take students into their laboratories if appropriate.

On average, students in this program earn their PhDs in 5.5 years.

Applications for all doctoral programs are submitted electronically through the Graduate School of the University of Colorado Denver. After signing up for an account, select 'PhD' under the 'Academic Interests' menu and scroll down to 'Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences' and select "PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences."

Application requirements are:

  • A completed Graduate School application and $50.00 application fee (Domestic) $75.00 application fee (International)
  • A baccalaureate degree of arts or science from an accredited college or university with a minimum GPA of 3.0.** One (1) official transcript of all academic work completed to date with awarded baccalaureate degree. University transcripts from other countries must include a transcript evaluation from World Education Services ( WES ). Applicants who complete a transcript evaluation with WES will have their application fee waived automatically.
  • All applicants for the program should complete a year of study in the following subjects: general chemistry, organic chemistry, calculus, biology, English and physics. In addition, courses in the following subjects are highly recommended to supplement the student's background: physiology, biochemistry, statistics, cell biology, physical chemistry, and computer science.
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation from professors or research supervisors familiar with your aptitude for graduate study


  • The GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is not required but is optional.
  • The TOEFL is required of applicants for whom English is not their first language, Duolingo and IELTS also accepted (more information on this here )
  • Please use 4875 as the Institution Code so that the test results will be sent directly to our institution
  • Under special circumstances, deficiencies in important areas may be made up within the first year after entrance into the program. Normally, admission to the program will be based on an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better. However, applicants' recommendations, research experience and additional individual accomplishments will also be considered in the admissions process.

Application opens September 1, 2023. Applications will not be reviewed until all required materials have been received. The application deadline for Fall 2024 admission is December 1, 2023 for all students.

Admission to the program includes financial support via a stipend awarded on a 12-month basis. Based on the rules of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

Although a priority of the School of Pharmacy is to provide financial support to our graduate students, payment of stipend, tuition and any fees by the School of Pharmacy or by grants, contracts or gifts to the School of Pharmacy faculty is contingent upon satisfactory academic progress (as defined by the graduate school’s Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook ) and completion of required teaching duties, core courses, research rotations, seminars, and examinations (as listed on the progress report form). We also reserve the right to review and adjust our funding policies at any time. All students are expected to work full-time toward program requirements for 12 months of the year.

Is the GRE required to apply?

What kind of students should pursue a phd degree in pharmaceutical sciences.

We are looking for bright, self-motivated people with degrees in chemistry, physics, biology, engineering, biochemistry, pharmacy and other related areas in biomedical science, who want a satisfying career connected with the pharmaceutical industry. This may involve working for a company, a federal laboratory, or an academic institution.

Just what does 'pharmaceutical sciences' mean?

Pharmaceutical sciences is a multi-disciplinary approach to solving problems associated with improving drug therapy for patients. It includes designing and synthesizing new drugs, developing new analytical methods to determine the purity and quality of therapeutic agents, finding better ways to deliver the drug to a patient, minimizing side effects, and assessing the activity and stability of drug compounds. Classically, pharmaceutical sciences was defined by the sub-disciplines of pharmaceutics, medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, and toxicology, but most modern research problems cross these traditional boundaries. In short, a graduate degree in pharmaceutical sciences is an ideal choice for anyone who wishes to work on developing new drug products and devices.

What makes the Pharmaceutical Sciences PhD program at the University of Colorado different than other PhD programs?

Emphasis on biotechnology.

Different graduate programs have different strengths. While one might come to the University of Colorado to pursue studies in any aspect of the pharmaceutical sciences, the real strength of our Pharmaceutical Sciences program lies in its emphasis on the use of quantitative, biophysical methods to address issues in pharmaceutical biotechnology. Pharmaceutical biotechnology describes a course of study that uses molecular biology, biophysical chemistry, and bioengineering methods to prepare and develop sophisticated therapeutic and diagnostic agents. These materials include recombinant proteins, vaccines, oligonucleotides, and gene therapy approaches. Students who pursue studies in pharmaceutical biotechnology might examine the stabilization of proteins and/or nucleic acids during storage, improved methods of drug delivery, analytical assay development, mutational effects on protein structure and function, molecular biology approaches to drug therapy, novel vaccines, bioprocessing, or formulation development. Students are required to take a core curriculum that reflects these areas of research. This effort has been strengthened by the formation of the Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, which is centered on a partnership between chemical engineering at the University of Colorado at Boulder and the School of Pharmacy.

The Opportunity to Work on 'Real World' Problems

Today's biotechnology products are quite complex. Therefore, it is advantageous for students to have the opportunity to work with therapeutic agents that are in development or on the market. Due to the generosity of industrial collaborators, students in our program have access to recently-discovered drug candidates before these compounds are marketed as commercial pharmaceuticals. Each year, industrial sponsors provide millions of dollars worth of compounds for research purposes.

Partnering with Industry

In order to facilitate interactions, we have established the Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, which promotes graduate education and research opportunities by partnering with the pharmaceutical biotechnology industry. These interactions often result in the student participating in an industrial internship with a scientific mentor from the company.

Training in Financial and Legal Aspects of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Since most of our students ultimately are employed in a highly regulated industry affected by market pressures, all of our graduate students take courses covering regulatory affairs (i.e., the drug approval process), patent law, intellectual property issues, pharmaceutical marketing, and financial analysis. These skills are essential, but rarely found in other PhD programs. For students who wish to focus on these issues, we have established a separate PhD track in pharmaceutical Outcomes within the Pharmaceutical Sciences PhD program. Students interested in pursuing Outcomes research should view the Outcomes Research webpage.

What are the job prospects for a graduate with a PhD degree in the pharmaceutical sciences?

Considering the unique strengths of our program, someone who is successful and productive in our program will find a high demand for their talents. Most of our students find jobs with large pharmaceutical companies or smaller biotechnology enterprises. Typically, our students have multiple job offers awaiting them upon graduation.

Required Pharmaceutical Sciences Program Courses

Representative elective courses.

Through the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program, our goal is to educate pre-doctoral students to develop independent research careers in pharmaceutical sciences with a basic, clinical or pharmaceutical outcomes emphasis. Upon completion of the graduate program, our students use their training to make a difference in academia, industry or government. The learning objectives for the graduate program are:

  • Demonstrate a basic knowledge of central concepts in the biomedical sciences.
  • Understand the current concepts in basic and clinical pharmaceutical sciences.
  • Read and critically evaluate the scientific literature.
  • Formulate hypotheses based on current concepts in the field and design, conduct, and interpret their own research projects.
  • Present research results in peer-reviewed publications and in a dissertation.
  • Communicate research results effectively through oral presentations at scientific seminars, conferences, and other venues.

School of Pharmacy Graduate Degree Requirements

The following are specific rules approved by the graduate faculty of the School of Pharmacy for graduate studies leading to doctor of philosophy degree in toxicology. All other requirements for these degrees will follow the guidelines of the Graduate School, which can be found in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook . The student carries the major responsibility of meeting the rules of the School of Pharmacy and the Graduate School. Failure to meet the following rules and guidelines may result in delay of graduation. ​

Student Progress Reviews

Each student will meet at least every six months with their temporary/thesis committee (starting the week before classes begin in the first year) in order to keep the committee apprised of all aspects of the student’s progress. A progress report form listing the requirements will be maintained in the School of Pharmacy graduate program file for each student.

It is the responsibility of the student to arrange meetings with his/her committee, and ensure that the deadlines listed on the progress report form are fulfilled. After fulfilling each requirement, it is required that the student make certain that the progress report form is updated by the committee chair.

Student Committees

Temporary Committees

The graduate program committee will appoint temporary committees for new students to serve for the first year. Each committee will consist of at least two full-time faculty from the School of Pharmacy. Each student will meet with their temporary committee the week before classes begin, and in March and September of the first year of the graduate program.

Thesis Committees

Students will choose the chair of their thesis committee subsequent to the successful completion of the preliminary examination and selection of a major advisor (at the end of the first year). The student’s major advisor cannot serve as chair of the thesis committee. The student together with the chair and major advisor will choose other members from the faculty of the school and at least one from outside the school who will serve on the thesis committee.

Thesis committees must consist of at least five faculty members, and will meet with the student every six months, starting in September at the beginning of the student’s second year. The graduate program director must approve the make-up of the thesis committee. The graduate program director will fill vacancies as they arise or make replacements when necessary, with consideration given to student/advisor recommendations.

Thesis committees shall evaluate the student’s progress to ensure that she or he has made satisfactory progress since the previous meeting. Upon calling the meeting to order, the Committee Chair will ask the student to leave the room to obtain feedback from the advisor regarding student progress. Upon completion, the student will be asked to return to the room and the thesis advisor will leave the room to obtain private feedback from the student regarding issues that might exist in terms of interactions with the advisor. It is also the responsibility of the committee chair to complete an on-line evaluation form summarizing the student’s progress. In case of a non-satisfactory performance, steps required to rectify the situation should be suggested in the report.

Doctor of Philosophy

In order to graduate, a student must satisfactorily complete the requirements described in A through H below as well as adhering to all requirements of the CU Anschutz Graduate School as defined in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook .

A. Coursework and General Requirements

A program of study with required core courses will be designed by the chair of the temporary/thesis committee to accommodate the student’s long-range goals, possible undergraduate deficiencies, immediate research interests and the requirements of the Graduate School. A minimum of 30 semester hours of courses numbered 5000 or above is required for the degree. In addition to the coursework and requirements described below, students are expected to attend all seminars associated with the graduate program in pharmaceutical sciences. Also, each year the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences hosts a research retreat. Attendance at the retreat is mandatory, unless the program director permits the absence for overriding personal reasons. A presentation (oral or poster) by each student at the retreat is required.

B. Research Rotations

All PhD students must satisfactorily complete one research rotation in each of the fall and spring semesters of their first year. It is expected that the student will meet with his/her temporary committee the week before classes start in the fall semester to determine an appropriate research rotation for the ensuing fall semester. A research rotation is one semester in length, and the student must be housed in the lab in which the rotation is conducted. The student will present his/her research findings from each rotation in seminars (20 mins) to the graduate faculty (date arranged in advance by the director of the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program). In cases where a student opts for a third research rotation in the summer, a third rotation seminar is not required.

C. Seminars

In addition to rotation seminars and semiannual presentations to the thesis committee, all students enrolled in the program must present a thesis seminar to the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences that describes the findings from his/her thesis research. The thesis seminar is normally performed at the end of their PhD program.

D. Preliminary Examination

Each student will be required to undergo a preliminary examination during the summer of their first year in the program. This examination will consist of two half-day written examinations during the summer session. Selected faculty will contribute questions to the exam primarily focusing on the first year’s coursework. Students will be given the general topic areas for the exam questions at least one month prior to the examination date.

The director of the graduate program will be responsible for coordinating and administrating the examination. The preliminary examination is intended to test the student’s assimilation and understanding of material presented in coursework, and assess his/her ability to complete a doctoral–level course of study. It is expected that students will satisfactorily answer each question, but students are permitted to remediate one question if his/her answer is judged to be inadequate by the faculty member providing the question. In these instances, the individual faculty member will decide what constitutes appropriate remediation, and completion of remediation will be reported to the graduate program chair. Students that unsatisfactorily answer two or more preliminary examination questions will be dismissed from the graduate program.

E. Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive examination will be administered by the chair of the student’s thesis committee. This committee must include the major advisor and at least four other members of the graduate faculty. At least one of the five members must be from outside the School. The comprehensive examination will serve as the formal test for admission to candidacy for the PhD degree and can only be taken after completion of 30 semester hours of graduate credit. The comprehensive examination will be completed by September 31 of the third year, after formal coursework is completed.

The examination shall consist of a written examination as well as an oral examination. The suggested format of the examination is for each faculty member to administer a separate written examination that can be completed within one day. The student should meet with members of the thesis committee individually to discuss the topic areas for the comprehensive examination. After the written portion of the comprehensive exam, students should meet with each member of the thesis committee to discuss the student’s performance on the written questions. It is expected that any weaknesses will be addressed in the oral portion of the exam that is to be taken within two weeks after completion of the written portion. Possible outcomes of the comprehensive examination are in accord with the CU Anschutz Graduate School rules and are Pass, Pass with Conditions, and Fail. A failed student may not continue in the program.

F. Thesis Proposal

In order to facilitate the partnership between the student and his/her Thesis Committee, students are required to submit a written thesis proposal that will subsequently be presented orally to the thesis committee. The written proposal is typically approximately 10 pages in length (single-spaced, not including references), and submitted to the thesis committee at least two weeks prior to the oral presentation. The precise format of the written proposal is left to the committee, but it should be a brief, well written document describing the overall research plan for the student’s thesis and include relevant preliminary data. It is expected that the student’s major advisor will have previewed and edited the written proposal prior to its distribution to the rest of the thesis committee. The oral presentation of the thesis proposal to the thesis committee must be completed by March 31 of the student’s third year in the program.

After presentation and approval of the thesis proposal, the student will update the members of his/her thesis committee on the progress toward completion of the thesis research at the semiannual meetings in March and September of each year. It is expected that members of the thesis committee will provide feedback and discuss potential problems at these semiannual meetings.

G. Thesis Research

All PhD candidates will be required to satisfactorily complete a research thesis. This work should be of sufficient scope and quality to result in a significant contribution to the literature. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 30 semester hours of thesis work. See the rules of the Graduate School describing time restrictions for submitting the finished thesis. A copy of the thesis must be submitted to the student’s thesis committee at least two weeks prior to the thesis defense. It is expected that the student’s major advisor will preview and edit the thesis prior to distribution to the rest of the thesis committee.

H. Thesis Defense

After submission of the thesis to the thesis committee, a seminar describing the thesis research will be presented by the student to the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Immediately following the oral presentation and questions from the attendees, the student will be examined separately by his/her thesis committee. Any changes to the thesis must be approved by the Thesis Committee prior to submission of the final thesis to the Graduate School. Although it is fully expected that problems with the thesis research will be addressed prior to the thesis defense, the thesis committee can require further research to be conducted before final approval of the thesis.

Summary schedule of degree requirements:

  • First Year: Research rotations (2), rotation seminars (2), coursework, preliminary exam, selection of major advisor.
  • Second Year: Commence thesis research, selection of thesis committee, coursework.
  • Third Year: Comprehensive examination, thesis proposal.
  • Prior to Completion: Submit written thesis to thesis committee, thesis defense.

Stipend, Insurance, Tuition and Fees

Although a priority of the School of Pharmacy is to provide financial support to its graduate students, stipend, tuition and fees for graduate studies in the School of Pharmacy are the sole responsibility of the student. Payment of stipend, tuition and any fees by the School of Pharmacy or by grants, contracts or gifts to the School of Pharmacy Faculty is contingent upon satisfactory academic progress (as defined by the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook ) and completion of required core courses, seminars, research rotations and examinations.

The School of Pharmacy also reserves the right to review and adjust its funding policies at any time. Stipends are awarded on a 12-month basis. All students are expected to work toward program requirements for 12 months of the year.

Probationary Status and Suspension

Continuation in the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program is dependent upon satisfactory academic progress as defined by:

  • Timely and satisfactory completion of pharmaceutical sciences graduate program requirements (A-H above).
  • Adherence to all policies, rules and regulation of the School of Pharmacy.

Students who do not remain in good graduate standing (3.0 GPA or above) or maintain satisfactory academic progress are placed on academic probation. Probation and suspension policies are described in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook .

Payment of stipend, tuition, insurance and fees for a student while on academic probation is at the discretion of the graduate program committee.


Rajesh Agarwal PhD

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Tom Anchordoquy BS, MA, PhD

Peter Anderson

Peter Anderson PharmD

Christina Aquilante

Christina Aquilante PharmD

David Bain

David Bain PhD

John Carpenter

John Carpenter PhD

Carlos Catalano

Carlos Catalano PharmD, PhD

Shaodong Dai

Shaodong Dai PhD

Melanie Joy

Melanie Joy PharmD, PhD

Uday Kompella

Uday Kompella PhD, FARVO, FAAPS

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Daniel LaBarbera PhD

Krishna Mallela

Krishna Mallela PhD

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Vanessa Phelan PhD

Philip Reigan

Philip Reigan PhD

Nichole Reisdorph

Nichole Reisdorph PhD

Laura Saba

Laura Saba PhD

Robert Scheinman

Robert Scheinman PhD

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Dmitri Simberg PhD

For questions regarding graduate school programs contact:.

Isabella Jaramillo Email:  [email protected]     Phone:  303.724.7263 ​​​​​

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Graduate Pharmacy Programs

With one of the oldest, most respected, and most comprehensive graduate programs in the U.S., Purdue College of Pharmacy prepares students for challenging, top-paying careers in the field of pharmacy. PhD degrees are available from each of the three departments of Purdue College of Pharmacy (see below); the Department of Pharmacy Practice also admits students for MS degrees.

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Students are encouraged to evaluate the College's three graduate program so that they can determine which program best suits their interests and career goals. This is one of the most important decisions a prospective graduate student can make, since transferring between graduate programs usually involves starting one's graduate career over again.

Each graduate program has certain course, examination, and thesis requirements, but the length of time required to complete each graduate degree is tailored to meet the individual goals and interests of the students. The College of Pharmacy has established a maximum limit of 8 years for completion of any graduate program, although some programs in the College may have established shorter time limits for completion of certain degrees.

These research-based degrees typically qualify graduates for work in the following research-related areas:

  • performing research
  • technical writing
  • technical marketing
  • research administration
  • regulatory affairs
  • government regulation

Recipients of the PhD degree are additionally qualified for academic professorships. Students obtaining any graduate degree in pharmacy may simultaneously seek secondary education teaching certification through the School of Education and the appropriate state certification board.

NEXT: Graduate Pharmacy Programs Admissions

phd pharmacy how many years

  • PhD in Pharmacy

What does a PhD in Pharmacy Involve?

A PhD in Pharmacy can involve a wide range of subject areas to specialise in. These may include new drug discovery, clinical pharmacy, pharmaceutics, pharmacology and microbiology (to name a few examples).

How long does it take to get a PhD in Pharmacy?

As a full-time doctoral student in the UK, it should take you 3 years to earn a PhD Pharmacy. If you’re studying for a part-time PhD, expect to need about 6 years to complete your research thesis. As is the norm in postgraduate research, you’re likely to register first as an MPhil student, with an upgrade viva at the half-way point leading you to fully enrolling as a PhD student. Postgraduate research programmes are designed on the basis of independent learning and development. As a doctoral student it’s ultimately your responsibility to maintain a focus on time management (with the support of your university supervisor) to ensure that you complete your postgraduate research in good time.

Browse PhDs in Pharmacy

A next-generation genetic technology to identify biotechnologically-valuable enzymes and transporters, development of fluorescent organic molecules for application in super-resolution imaging techniques, ubiquitin-dependent signalling pathways in ageing, speciation in facultatively sexual species, energy dissipation in human soft tissue during impacts, what are the typical entry requirements for a pharmacy phd programme.

In the UK, you should expect most universities to ask for a minimum of a 2:1 undergraduate degree or the equivalent grade from an institution outside of the UK. The degree will need to have been in a field that’s relevant to Pharmacy. You may still be eligible to apply if you have a grade lower than a 2:1, if you also hold a Master’s degree. If English is not your first language, then the University will ask for evidence of your English language proficiency. Usually this is a minimum IELTS test score of 6.5 for research programmes however this may be higher from one university to another.

How much does a Pharmacy PhD cost?

In a UK university, UK based postgraduate research students should expect to incur annual tuition fees in the region of £4,500/year. With a full-time PhD lasting 3 years, this equates to £13,500 in fees. This is on the basis that you’re studying full time; part time students should expect to pay lower fees, with some variability between institutions about how this is calculated. For international students (including now EU students), the annual tuition fee costs around £23,500/year, equating to £70,500 over the span of 3 years. As with all PhDs, potential students will need to consider living costs and any bench fees that may be expected by their particular project or graduate school.

What can you do with a PhD in Pharmacy?

Two common career paths taken by Pharmacy PhDs are to continue into post-doctoral research roles , followed by lectureships and even professorships. The second route that many take is to develop their careers within the pharmaceutical industry. This may in itself involve further research, such as involvement in clinical trials. PhD graduates may become involved in regulation or perhaps move out of the field into areas such as medical writing and publishing. As a PhD holder you’ll have developed many valuable transferable skills in addition to your academic skills, including excellent communication skills, making you attractive to many recruiters.

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The PBS graduate program will provide the academic, research, and administrative resources necessary to meet the program goals:

  • Give students breadth of knowledge in modern pharmaceutical and biomedical science disciplines and application to drug discovery and development.
  • Give students depth of knowledge and technical training in their area of study.
  • Develop a strong work ethic and time management skills in graduate students.
  • Train students to conduct research with the highest ethical standards.
  • Teach students to think critically and creatively to solve difficult scientific problems.
  • Teach students to speak and write about their research clearly and convincingly and successfully compete for external research funding.
  • Teach students to critically evaluate their own data and results in the scientific literature.
  • Promote a rigorous academic and research environment in which students will add to the current knowledge in their fields.
  • Train students to be independent scholars who will make original and important contributions to their fields.

Admission Requirements

Admission Procedures and Criteria

The primary mechanism for admission to the PhD program in the PBS department is through the UGA  Integrated Life Sciences (ILS) Graduate Admission Portal program .  Students apply to ILS, not directly to the PBS program. Key factors considered for admission to the ILS graduate program are: prior research experience and productivity; evidence of work ethic and commitment to biomedical research; evidence of appropriate educational background; grade point average; English language exam scores (for international applicants); references (particularly from laboratory supervisors); research interests of available faculty mentors; and other requirements of the UGA Graduate School. Admitted students will select a major professor and degree-granting program after the first semester in the program based on laboratory rotations. ILS students may arrange rotations with PBS faculty during their first semester in the ILS program by directly contacting PBS faculty affiliated with the ILS program. If, at the end of the first semester, an ILS student and PBS faculty member mutually agree for a student to join the PBS faculty member’s lab group, a formal request must be submitted to the PBS graduate coordinator and PBS Department Head to review the student’s credentials and confirm availability of financial support for the student. Admission to the PBS graduate program is not official until approval by the Graduate Coordinator and Department Head is obtained.

It is also possible, but less common, for PhD applicants to be admitted directly into the program with a pre-selected and confirmed faculty advisor. Those eligible for direct admission must have the faculty advisor notify the Graduate coordinator, and the student must email [email protected] indicating an intent for direct admission.

Transfer Students

Students wishing to transfer to the PBS PhD program from another graduate program are assessed by the same criteria as other incoming students. UGA does not allow the transfer of credits for PhD students.

Application Procedure

Admissions to the Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences graduate program is managed through the  Integrated Life Sciences program.  Instructions for submitting your application  can be found at their  website . The application deadline is December 1st.

PBS Ph.D. Program Handbook and Student Forms

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PBS Graduate Programs Brochure

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Graduate Student & Professional Organizations

Departmental Student Organizations: Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Student Organization (PBSO)

National Professional Organizations: American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS)

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Pharmacology, PhD

Pharmacological sciences represent an extremely large field of modern science, intertwined with many other biomedical disciplines: cancer and cardiovascular pharmacology, cell signaling, neuropharmacology, pharmacogenetics, pharmacological chemistry, environmental health sciences, and targeted therapeutics. Core courses include Cell Biology, Fundamentals in Pharmacology, Human Physiology, and Medical Pharmacology. Electives are chosen by the student to suit their interests. Pharmacology students may rotate in labs doing very different types of research, to enrich their background and allow unrushed, instructed selection of direction of their future thesis research.

For more information:

View the University’s Academic Rules for PhD Programs .

Required Courses 

Or other statistics course with approval of the Graduate Group.

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.

Sample Plan of Study

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Pharmacology, PhD

School of medicine.

The Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences hosts the Pharmacology Graduate Program, which offers a program of study and research leading to the Ph.D. degree. Research training opportunities within the program cover a broad spectrum of biomedical sciences including chemical biology, immunology, virology, cancer, and neuroscience. The mission of departmental research is to understand the molecular processes underlying physiology and pathology, and to apply this knowledge to discovering new drug targets and developing novel therapeutics. Within the program, students may choose to focus their efforts in any of a large number of specific research areas including signal transduction, structural biology and drug design, NMR spectroscopy, molecular genetics, cancer chemoprevention, viral immunosuppression, cancer immunology, cell-mediated immunity, mechanisms of HIV infection, vaccine development, glycobiology, biomedical mass spectrometry, clinical pharmacology, drug delivery, anti-parasite drug development, histone acetylation and gene regulation, melatonin and circadian rhythm, drug metabolism, Vitamin D pharmacology, natural product biosynthesis, telomerase and chromosome stability, T cell activation and tolerance, DNA repair, DNA topoisomerases, molecular imaging, and the clinical pharmacology of cardiovascular agents. The department is also pleased to host students and award doctoral degrees to M.D./Ph.D. degree candidates and students in other Ph.D. graduate programs in which Pharmacology faculty participate (Biochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology, Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Immunology, Neuroscience, and Pathobiology).

Financial Support

Financial support covering normal living costs, individual medical insurance, and tuition is provided.

Admission Requirements

Applicants should have a B.A. or B.S. degree with a major in any of the biological or physical sciences. Entering students are expected to have completed college-level courses in chemistry (inorganic, organic, and physical), calculus, and physics; a strong background in biochemistry is particularly desirable. A completed application form, at least three letters of recommendation, undergraduate transcripts, and a statement of interest must be received by December 8th.

Program Requirements

Students in the Pharmacology program must successfully complete the following courses:

Students must also take two advanced elective courses selected from those offered by this or other departments. Students are able to select a course of studies uniquely suited to their own career goals.

During their first year of study, students will complete ~10-week research rotations in addition to their coursework. They will initiate dissertation research by the end of their first year and complete elective courses relevant to their developing interests in subsequent years of training.

During the second year of study, students will be required to pass a qualifying examination conducted as prescribed by the Doctor of Philosophy Board of the University. This examination will probe the depth and breadth of the student’s knowledge of the biomedical subjects taught in the core courses.

The candidate is required to present a written dissertation based on original research undertaken while in residence as a graduate student and to present a departmental seminar describing the thesis research.

Combined M.D.-Ph.D. Degrees

Students seeking admission to or who are already participating in the M.D. program in the School of Medicine may participate in a program leading to both the M.D. and the Ph.D. degrees.


Jobs for Pharm.D. vs. Ph.D. — What’s the Difference?

Written by Kelly Jeroski

April 20, 2023

NEOMED Pharmacy rename Soft Opening 4-2-19-87-1-1

Here’s something you might not know about pharmacists — pharmaceutical professionals can choose to focus their career on either patient care or research. In fact, there’s a different degree for each path.

A Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) prepares students to become Pharmacists focused on patient care, while a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) prepares students for careers in academia or research and development.

Both patient-care and research positions within pharmacy are similar in that students receive formal training and education in common subjects such as drug development, drug delivery, and medicine chemistry, but their career paths and opportunities differ in several ways.

Let’s talk about the difference between patient-care and research within the field of pharmacy.

Find out if a career in health care is for you. Download the guide, Getting a  Job as a Medical Professional with Your Health Care Degree.

The Patient-Care Track vs. the Research Track

The Pharm.D. track is a four-year program — ending with Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) rotations and two personal and professional development courses. Once patient-care focused pharmacists enter the workforce, job opportunities after Pharm.D. focus on an individual’s treatment options when it comes to prescription pharmaceuticals. Pharmacists typically work as providers at pharmacies or hospitals throughout their career, and it is possible to advance into management positions.

The research track of pharmacology (Ph.D.) on the other hand, often extends beyond four years and ends in an extensive research project. Pharmacology researchers, generally, work on molecular targeting, drug design, and drug delivery in developing new approaches to treat disease. Research professionals may operate as researchers at universities, hospitals, private corporations, or laboratories. Many choose to work as professors within universities in addition to research work, but they do not serve as health care providers.

How to Become a Pharmacist — Types of Pharmacy Degrees

Doctor of pharmacy.

The Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) includes a mix of classroom instruction and real-world experience to provide students with the skills to excel in pharmacy. The school targets active learning in at least 30 percent of each student's educational track. This cooperative learning model ensures that graduates have the communication skills and practical experiences to pass licensing exams and achieve pharmacist career path.

What Do Pharmacists Learn?

The program works closely with the College of Medicine to foster a team-oriented approach to pharmacy and medicine. The College of Pharmacy has two departments: pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacy practice.

Ph.D. Programs

Students interested in research have a number of opportunities related to biomedical sciences. Graduate students receive a mix of classroom instruction and real-world research experience by working alongside faculty.

Pharmacology is the research side of the Pharm.D. program. Students in this area may develop expertise in molecular targeting, drug design, and drug delivery in specific response to disease. The program uses a combination of classroom instruction, laboratory work, and the opportunity to work alongside faculty at NEOMED and Kent State University. Prior to starting a Ph.D. program, most students will need to earn a master’s degree after their four-year degree. Some programs may integrate the master’s and Ph.D. degrees where one builds upon the other.

Comparing the Job Markets for Pharm.D. vs. Ph.D.


In 2019, the median pharmacist salary was $128,090. For pharmacists, the number of hospital jobs is expected to grow by 4 percent by 2028. Pharmacists take prescriptions from medical doctors and administer medications to patients. They are also qualified to ask questions and provide information regarding the medicines they prescribe. The majority of pharmacists work in pharmacies within retail stores or medical facilities although the field is evolving with more and more recent graduates electing to work in clinical settings. There are even niche sectors of medicine different types of pharmacists can specialize in with a year or two of residency after graduation. 

Working as a pharmacist requires a Doctor of Pharmacy, known as a Pharm.D., which is a four-year degree. They are also required to pass two exams related to licenses.

Medical Researchers

Medical researchers (M.S. and Ph.D.) earned a median annual salary of $88,790 in 2019, and the field is expected to grow by 6 percent, which is a bit faster than the national average. Most researchers work full time in either a laboratory or a general office environment. These positions are responsible for the study of medical conditions and the development of treatments and medicines.

Working in this field usually requires a Ph.D., but many candidates are able to obtain rewarding positions based on experience or other academic accomplishments. For example, some medical researchers also have a medical degree in addition to a medical research background.

Jumpstart Your Health Care Career at NEOMED — Connect With Us!

Take the next step toward an exciting career in the medical field — we can help you get started.

If you need help deciding which of the above career paths is best for you, we invite you to schedule a career consultation with us. In order to do so, contact the College of Pharmacy at [email protected] or schedule a meeting . Best of luck!

Want to learn more about health care careers after NEOMED? Download our resource, "Getting a Job as a Medical Professional with Your Health Care Degree".

Download the Guide

About the author

Kelly jeroski.

Assistant Director of Admission

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What can you do with a pharmacy degree, what do you learn in pharmacy school here are 6 surprising things, 4 tips for your pharmacy school interview.

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Pharm. D. Frequently Asked Questions

General questions, what is the doctor of pharmacy degree.

The Doctor of Pharmacy degree (often abbreviated Pharm.D. or PharmD) is required to sit for the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX).  The NAPLEX is one component of the licensure process required to practice as a pharmacist. The Pharm.D. is a professional degree similar to a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS). As a doctorate, it represents the increasing responsibility pharmacists have in health care systems and the high trust Americans have in pharmacists. After earning a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and passing licensure examinations, College of Pharmacy graduates can practice pharmacy anywhere in the country.

How long does it take to earn a Doctor of Pharmacy degree?

Three to four years of undergraduate pre-professional (prerequisite) coursework, followed by four academic years in the professional program. Most students need four years to complete their prerequisite courses. Thus, it usually takes eight years of college study to earn a Pharm.D. and become a pharmacist.

What if I already have a related graduate or professional degree, such as a M.S. in Biology?

While your previous coursework has likely helped you fulfill many of the program prerequisites, you should still expect to spend a full four years in pharmacy school.

What is the difference between the Pharm.D. program and the Ph.D. program?

The Doctor of Pharmacy program is for people who want to work as pharmacists. The Ph.D. program is intended for people interested in careers in research.

The College of Pharmacy offers a dual Pharm.D./Ph.D. degree program for students with a strong interest in research who also want to practice as pharmacists. Contact us as  [email protected]  for more details!

Does OSU have a pharmacy technician training program?

OSU does not offer a pharmacy technician program. Several Oregon colleges have pharmacy technician programs, including Chemeketa Community College in Salem, Ore.; Southwestern Oregon Community College in Coos Bay, Ore.; and Linn Benton Community College in Albany, Ore.

Can I visit the OSU campus?

Yes. You are welcome to visit OSU’s campus. Information on scheduling a campus visit is available from  OSU’s Visitor Center .


Does osu use pharmcas.

Yes. The OSU College of Pharmacy will review only complete, on-time applications submitted via  PharmCAS . Applicants must also submit a supplemental application.

Does OSU require a supplemental application?

Yes, but instead of a separate application, you will complete the supplemental requirements in PharmCAS.

Does OSU College of Pharmacy require the PCAT?

No. OSU does not require the PCAT.  PCAT scores are not considered in the evaluation of applications.

Can I apply even though I did not major in pre-pharmacy as an undergraduate?

Definitely, as long as you will be able to complete all the prerequisite courses by next June. Pharm.D. students come from a wide range of undergraduate majors.

Does OSU accept out-of-state students?

Do you participate in wiche.

Yes. Residents of Nevada and Alaska may be eligible to participate in the Professional Student Exchange Program (PSEP) coordinated by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE). Please note that the WICHE program has its own application process and deadline. Call 303-541-0214 or go to  for more information.

Is there a minimum GPA to be considered for admission?

It is recommended that applicants have a minimum science GPA of 2.75 to be competitive. Science GPA is calculated by PharmCAS based on applicants' performance in undergraduate science courses and will not be recalculated by the College of Pharmacy.  

What is the average GPA of students admitted to the program?

The average pre-pharmacy science GPA of applicants who have been admitted to the Doctor of Pharmacy program in recent years is approximately a 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale).

When can I apply to the program?

Applications for Fall admission will be available on  PharmCAS  two summers before you would start the program in July.

Can I reapply if I am not admitted?

Yes. There is no limit on the number of times an applicant can apply to Oregon State's Pharm.D. program. Applicants who are denied admission should consider meeting with our Admissions & Recruitment Manager, Melissa Lee ( [email protected] ), to discuss the possibility of reapplying. 

How many people usually apply to the Pharm.D. program?

OSU normally receives 300-400 Pharm.D. applications each year.

How many applicants were invited for interviews?

Approximately 150-200 applicants are invited to interview each year. Interview selection is made based on several factors: prerequisite science GPA, letters of recommendation, personal statement and the OSU supplemental essay.

How many SEATS are available in the Pharm.D. program each year?

About 90 seats are available in each entering class.

Is a bachelor's degree required for admission?

No. A bachelor’s degree is not required for admission to the Pharm.D. program. However, the College of Pharmacy strongly recommends completing a bachelor's degree before beginning the Pharm.D. program. Applicants who have earned bachelor's degrees (or who are about to earn bachelor's degrees) receive preference in our admissions process. Approximately 99% of students admitted in recent years earned their bachelor’s degree before entering the Pharm.D. program.

Is First Aid/CPR certification required at the time of application?

First Aid/CPR certification is not required at the time of application. However, all admitted applicants must have current First Aid and Health Care Provider CPR certification prior to their first day of class in the Pharm.D. program.  Entering Pharm.D. students will have the option of taking First Aid and CPR certification courses during their orientation program in September.

When will I hear back about my application?

This is the tentative timeline for the Doctor of Pharmacy admissions process in 2023-2024:

Does OSU use rolling admission?

Yes, we make offers of admission throughout the application cycle. While our final deadline is June 3, applicants should apply earlier to maximize their chances of admission.

Prerequisite Courses

Do i have to complete all of the prerequisites before i apply to the program.

You must complete all the prerequisites by the start of Fall term of the year in which you would enter the program. Therefore, you can apply while still having some prerequisites in progress. Generally, most students apply during the fall as they complete their final year of prerequisite coursework.

For example, if you are applying for Fall 2024 admission, the final application deadline is June 3, 2024. You will need to complete all the prerequisites by September 2024.  Some prerequisites may be completed during summer.  Please contact our Admissions & Recruitment Manager, Melissa Lee ( [email protected] ), to discuss completing the prerequisites during the summer before you start the program.  

Can I take the prerequisites at another university or community college?

Yes. Prerequisites can be completed at any accredited college or university.

Upper-division level coursework is strongly encouraged for several prerequisites. Whether you are attending Oregon State University or another institution, it is important to plan your program of study with an academic advisor at your institution and our Admissions & Recruitment Manager, Melissa Lee ( [email protected] ).

I took the prerequisites outside the United States. Will they count?

Courses completed outside the U.S. may or may not fulfill OSU’s Pharm.D. prerequisites. The answer varies depending on the course content, the date completed, and the country in which the course was taken. It is extremely rare for foreign credits to fulfill all the Pharm.D. prerequisites, and it is strongly recommended that applicants in this situation plan to complete the upper-division prerequisites (organic chemistry, microbiology, biochemistry, anatomy and physiology) at a U.S. university.

For specific information about foreign credits for Pharm.D. prerequisites, applicants can submit a request for transcript evaluation to [email protected] .

How can I find out if the courses I've taken fulfill the prerequisites?

We encourage prospective students to submit a request for a transcript evaluation to determine how your coursework applies to the Pharm.D. prerequisites.

Instructions for requesting a transcript evaluation:

Submit copies of your transcripts via e-mail to  [email protected] , fax 541-737-3999 attn: Transcript Evaluation or mail (Transcript Evaluation; 203 Pharmacy Building; Corvallis, OR 97331). Unofficial transcript copies are sufficient for the informal evaluation. Include your full name and e-mail address so results can be communicated to you. Make sure your unofficial transcripts include the name of your college or university, the name and number of each course you took, and the grade you received in each cours e. It is also helpful if you include a link to your college or university's course catalog. 

Allow 4-6 weeks to receive the results of your evaluation. Results will be sent by e-mail to the address you provided. Transcripts will not be returned.

Do my prerequisite courses expire after a certain amount of time?

As a general rule, upper-division science coursework should be no more than seven years old at the time of application. However, each situation is reviewed on an individual basis. Please contact the  College of Pharmacy  (541-737-3424) for more information.

Can I take my prerequisite courses pass/no-pass or credit/no-credit?

No, you should take them for a letter grade.

What is the minimum grade required for a PREREQUISITE COURSE?

Prerequisite courses must be completed with a minimum of C- grade on a 4.0 scale. Any prerequisite course that is a D+ or below must be retaken.

Letters of Recommendation

How many letters of recommendation are required when i apply for admission.

You must submit at least two recommendation letters with your Pharm.D. application. A maximum of four letters will be accepted. Letters must be submitted directly to PharmCAS and received by the application deadline. Visit  for details. Letters submitted directly to OSU will not be accepted.

Who should write my letters of recommendation?

People who know you well and can comment on the qualities that will make you a successful pharmacist. Professors, employers, and practicing pharmacists are good sources of recommendations.

Family members or friends should not write letters of recommendation for you .

Is an interview required for admission?

Yes. Interviews are conducted via Zoom.

Who will interview me?

A combination of faculty members, students, and alumni participate in the interview process.

What should I wear?

Professional attire.

What will they ask me?

You can expect to be asked questions designed to gauge your communication abilities, leadership, integrity, intellectual curiosity, and motivation. You will also be asked to produce a writing sample that will be conducted during the interview.

Financial Aid and Costs

What scholarships and financial aid are available for students.

The College of Pharmacy awards more than $150,000 in scholarships each year. These scholarships are usually only available to Pharm.D. students after successful completion of the first year. A limited number of scholarships may be available for incoming Pharm.D. students but an application is not necessary or required.

Many Doctor of Pharmacy students receive federal financial aid through Oregon State University. Information on financial aid (grants, loans and scholarships) available through Oregon State University can be found at /.

Additional information about financial aid opportunities for pharmacy students is available through the  American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy online .

Information about aid available to Doctor of Pharmacy students .

How can I gain Oregon residency?

Information regarding Oregon residency requirements can be obtained from the OSU Office of Admissions at 1-800-291-4192.

Facts about Doctor of Pharmacy Students

How many doctor of pharmacy students are oregon residents.

Approximately 65% to 70% percent are considered Oregon residents for tuition purposes.

What is the gender breakdown in the program?

Recent entering classes have been 35% to 40% male and 60% to 65% female.

What is the average age of students in the program?

The average age of students when they begin the program is 24 to 26. Many begin immediately after their undergraduate studies, but there are also many students who start the program later in their careers and are student parents.

How do OSU graduates do on the NAPLEX and MPJE exams?

Quite well! Our students consistently perform at or above the national average. Read more about the success of our students .

Transfer Students

Can i transfer into the pharm.d. program.

The College of Pharmacy will consider applications from students currently enrolled in another Doctor of Pharmacy program who wish to transfer to OSU. Students may only transfer at the beginning of the fall term and must meet with our Admissions & Recruitment Manager, Melissa Lee ( [email protected] ), prior to applying. 

Transfer applicants must submit the following materials to the Office of Student Services by March 1:

  • Complete official transcripts of all college coursework (pre-professional, professional, and any other programs of study).
  • A formal statement of interest in the OSU College of Pharmacy.
  • A letter of support from the dean or chief academic administrator of their current School or College of Pharmacy indicating that the applicant is in good standing and eligible to continue in their current program.

Applications will not be considered from students who are not in good standing or ineligible to continue in their current program.

Applicants’ materials will be reviewed by the Office of Student Services. If an applicant is deemed to be a potentially acceptable candidate, an interview will be scheduled.  The Office of Student Services will forward a recommendation regarding admission, and professional year of entry, to the College Admissions Committee for consideration, following completion of the interview and review of the applicant's supporting materials. 

Transfer students admitted to the professional program by the Admissions committee will be asked to provide detailed documentation of all coursework and experiences already completed.  The Director of Student Services and Executive Associate Dean will consult with course coordinators and recommend an appropriate program of study to the Academic and Professional Standards (APS) Committee.  The decision of APS committee regarding required coursework will be communicated to the student prior to matriculation and is final.

International Students

Are international students admitted to the doctor of pharmacy program.

Yes. Like all students, international applicants to the Pharm.D. program must complete the Pharm.D. prerequisite courses to be eligible for admission. Our admissions committee strongly encourages international applicants to complete some of their prerequisite coursework in the United States. Contact Melissa Lee ( [email protected] ) for more information.

Will my coursework in another country help me fulfill the Doctor of Pharmacy program prerequisites?

Courses completed outside the U.S. may or may not fulfill OSU’s Pharm.D. prerequisites. The answer varies depending on the course content, the date completed, and the country in which the course was taken. It is extremely rare for foreign credits to fulfill all the Pharm.D. prerequisites, and it is strongly recommended that applicants in this situation plan to complete the upper-division prerequisites (organic chemistry, microbiology, anatomy, biochemistry, and physiology) at a U.S. university.

For specific information about international credits for Pharm.D. prerequisites, applicants can submit a request for transcript evaluation to pharmacy

I have a bachelor of pharmacy degree from another country. Can I apply to the Pharm.D. program?

All applicants to the Pharm.D. program must complete the Pharm.D. prerequisite courses to be eligible for admission. While courses completed in a foreign bachelor of pharmacy program may fulfill some of the Pharm.D. prerequisites, it is extremely uncommon for the previous coursework to fulfill all requirements. It is strongly recommended that applicants in this situation enroll at a U.S. university to complete the upper-division prerequisites (organic chemistry, microbiology, physiology, biochemistry, and anatomy).

How should I handle my international transcripts when applying?

Applicants are instructed not to list individual foreign courses on the PharmCAS application (unless they are credits from a Study Abroad program). Applicants should send transcript evaluation reports (NOT original or copies of their foreign transcripts) to PharmCAS before the application deadline.

An official, translated copy of the transcript will be required by OSU’s Office of Admissions if the applicant is admitted to the Pharm.D. program.

Health Requirements

Do i need any immunizations or certifications before beginning the program.

Because student pharmacists work in health care settings, it's especially important that they complete immunizations to protect themselves and their patients. You can read about the College of Pharmacy's immunization requirements in the Pharm.D.  Student Handbook . These requirements can generally be completed after you are admitted to the Pharm.D. program.

Do I need health insurance as a student?

Yes. Because they work in health care settings, student pharmacists are exposed to more health risks than a typical university student. Furthermore, many experiential education sites require participants to have health insurance. Therefore, all Doctor of Pharmacy students are required to have high-quality health insurance. Students must either participate in OHSU's student health insurance program or request a waiver. Waivers can be requested by students who already have health insurance (such as a parent or partner's group medical insurance plan) and whose coverage meets specific criteria. Students who anticipate requesting a waiver should carefully review the detailed information and waiver criteria on the OHSU student health insurance program website.

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How Long Is Pharmacy School? The Length and Challenges

Featured Expert: Dr. Gurmeet Lall, PhD

How Long Is Pharmacy School?

How long is pharmacy school? You can spend anywhere between 3 to 5 years at pharmacy school, depending on what route you take. The traditional route is doing a four-year bachelor’s and then entering a four-year PharmD degree, but there are many variations. Many pharmacy schools in the US do not require a full bachelor’s degree, so you can enter pharmacy school sooner, as long as you meet the pharmacy school requirements . Another possibility is entering an accelerated, three-year PharmD program that you can even complete at some pharmacy schools online . This article will tell you the many timelines you can follow to become a pharmacist, and tell you what you need to get into pharmacy school. 

>> Want us to help you get accepted? Schedule a free strategy call here . <<

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Article Contents 10 min read

How long is pharmacy school three paths, first path: traditional (ba or bsc + four-year pharmd) ~ 8 years.

The most traditional path to becoming a pharmacist is doing a four-year bachelor’s degree and then a four-year PharmD degree. However, many pharmacy schools do not require you to complete a full bachelor’s degree; only that you complete a certain number of prerequisites before applying. This means you can become a pharmacist in less time than eight years, but not by much.

A lot depends on what your career plans are and whether or not you have a clear idea of the pharmacist you want to be (community; hospital-based; industry), which all have different timelines. If you’re not in a rush and feel like you want to experience the full breadth of a four-year program, then you should follow the traditional path. But if you’ve made a decision on what kind of pharmacist you want to be and want to reach your goal as quickly as possible, then you can take steps to speed up the process.

Want to learn how to answer "Why Do You Want To Be A Pharmacist?" during your pharmacy school interview? Watch this video:

For example, you can choose to complete the prerequisites of your preferred program as quickly as possible to be able to meet the requirements rather than taking a full four-years. The PharmD program at the University of Toronto , requires that you only complete two years of a bachelor’s degree, which will also help shorten the timeline to you graduating and then getting your license to practice pharmacy.

However, the U of T program lasts four-years. You can shorten this timeline by enrolling in an accelerated three-year program in the US, if you feel you’re ready and know what career path you want to take. Unlike medical graduates, pharmacists do not have to complete a residency to get a license, so if your goal is to become a community pharmacist without any additional training, you can take your national and state/provincial licensing exam as soon as your graduate with your PharmD.

However, during your four years of pharmacy school, you may develop a particular research interest or change your career goals, which may require a pharmacy residency that usually lasts for one or two years. A residency program is not the same as being enrolled in a PharmD program, but it should still be included in discussions of how long is pharmacy school, as a residency still forms part of your overall training.

In the US, there are over 30 different, three-year PharmD programs. They are scattered throughout the country and are considered some of the best PharmD programs according to pharmacy schools ranked lists. However, the situation is different in Canada. Out of the 11 pharmacy schools in Canada none of them offer an accelerated program and all of them, except for Memorial University and its five-year program, take four years.

So how long is pharmacy school also depends on which country you want to study in, as the US offers the most opportunities to spend the shortest amount of time in pharmacy school. But in Canada, there are no accelerated options. So, if you’re Canadian, you’ll have to take the traditional route, unless you decide to apply to the accelerated programs in the US, and then take your Pharmacy Examination Board of Canada licensing exam with your US PharmD, which is possible.

Third Path: Non-Traditional (BA or Non-BA + 3 or 4-Year PharmD) ~ 5-6 Years

Non-traditional students can have bachelor’s degrees or not, as not all pharmacy schools require them. If, for example, you do not have a bachelor’s degree and you want to go to pharmacy school, you have to at least complete the prerequisites, which can take varying amounts of time depending on the method you choose.

But another thing to remember is that pharmacy school prerequisites are much longer and varied than even medical school prerequisites . Pharmacy school prerequisites can vary between different schools and programs, but, in general, they require you to complete credits in the following subjects:

  • Chemistry (Organic and Inorganic)
  • Mathematics or Statistics
  • Arts or Humanities

We mentioned pharmacy residencies above, and even though you do not need to do a residency to become a pharmacist, they are still something to consider if you want to get more training in a specific specialty or sub-specialty. Doing a pharmacy residency has its advantages and disadvantages, which we’ll talk about more here. First, pharmacy residencies typically last one year. You can take a second year, if you want, but usually one year is enough.

Some residency programs in the US and Canada require you complete general rotations in your first six months, which are usually internal medicine, ambulatory care, infectious diseases, and critical care. But you’ll also be given time to pursue elective rotations in specialties that interest you as well as performing research. 

In your second year, if you decide to do another year of residency, you can narrow your focus to any of the seven recognized sub-specialties in pharmacology, which are:

  • Ambulatory Care
  • Nuclear Pharmacy
  • Nutritional Support
  • Pharmacotherapy

However, depending on your career goals and where do you see yourself in 5 years , you can choose to complete only one year, rather than pursuing a second.

Should I Do a Pharmacy Residency?

Whether you should do a pharmacy residency after pharmacy school is based solely on what position you see yourself in as a pharmacist. If your goal is to open your own community pharmacy, or join an existing commercial pharmacy chain, then a pharmacy residency is not something you need. While a pharmacy residency is a paid position, you can be making much more as a community pharmacist if you decide to enter the profession right out of pharmacy school.

For example, the pharmacy residency program at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor offers a yearly salary of $50,000 along with health insurance, paid time-off and other benefits. But that figure pales in comparison to the starting salary of community pharmacists who join a nationwide retail chain in the US, which is around $100,000. More experienced pharmacists can earn even higher salaries, as the median salary for pharmacists with more than five years of experience hovers around $123,000.

But if you see yourself in the non-retail side of pharmacology, such as:

  • A clinical researcher with a public or private institute
  • Working at a major pharmaceutical company
  • Joining academia as either a professor, researcher, administrator or all three

doing a pharmacy residency has benefits. Pharmacists in these positions make much more than community or retail pharmacists, and they also have more access to professional development opportunities, so they can advance even further in their respective fields. For example, pharmacists involved in scientific research earn, on average, $155,000 a year, while those who work in hospitals and other healthcare facilities earn between $120,000 and $130,000 annually.

1. Complete Your Bachelor’s Degree

We gave you the various paths and timelines you can follow to become a pharmacist, and while you should choose the path that is best for you, we think it's ideal for you to complete a full bachelor’s degree. Earning a bachelor’s degree is best because it allows you to complete all the prerequisites required by many pharmacy schools, which are much more extensive than other healthcare professions. For example, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill PharmD program has fourteen required prerequisites divided between math, science and other subjects. The MD program at the UNC School of Medicine has only three – biology, chemistry, and mathematics. You can expect to find that disparity between pharmacy school and medical school prerequisites at most schools you apply to, so completing a bachelor’s degree will just make your life easier when it comes time to apply.

2. Get Good Grades

As the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT) is being phased out of the admission process, your GPA is now the biggest indicator of whether you can handle the rigors of pharmacy school, which is why it has to be well above-average to be competitive. Many pharmacy schools are strict about their GPA requirements and will not accept or review your application even if you are one point beneath the minimum. But the minimum is not what you should strive for. If you take a look at the average GPA for most admitted pharmacy school students (3.5 to 3.7), they tend to be well above the minimum, which can be anywhere between 2.7 or 3.0 for some schools. These applicants will be much more attractive to admissions committees, especially if they also have outstanding pharmacy school personal statements and pharmacy school CVs than someone who has a minimum GPA.

3. Get the Right Extracurriculars

Extracurriculars for pharmacy school can range from shadowing a pharmacist to volunteering at a food bank or paid work as a researcher or pharmacy assistant. We mentioned that completing a vocational certificate in a pharmacy-related job will not help you complete pharmacy school prerequisites. But it will help as a demonstration of your commitment for the field of pharmacology and look good on your application. Of course, the type of extracurricular you do, as well as its length and format, is up to you. But remember that you do not always have to have extracurriculars related to pharmacology, medicine or healthcare. What you should do is balance out your extracurricular activities with healthcare-related and non-healthcare related work. Just as pharmacy school prerequisites span a wide range of subjects, the type of extracurriculars you participate in should also be diverse. Pharmacy schools are interested in what you are passionate about and what you enjoy doing as a pastime or hobby, as much as the number of shadowing hours you have. So don’t be afraid to list something unique to you as an extracurricular, while also getting real-world experience in clinical settings or dealing with patients directly.

4. Get Good Letters of Recommendation

All pharmacy schools require you submit at least two or three pharmacy school letters of recommendation , as they are an objective window onto your past achievements as well as your potential. You should pay attention to the requirements your program has about who should write your letters, or what kind of letters they prefer (committee letter; faculty letters; personal letters) and follow them. Many schools prefer a committee letter, or individual letters written by past instructors. If you are unable to secure the former, you should be very selective in who you ask to write your letters.

You want your recommendation letter writer to be unequivocal and unwavering in their support, so if you ask someone and they are unsure or evasive about writing one, they might not be the best person to extoll your readiness for pharmacy school. Your choice of extracurriculars is also crucial for this aspect of your application. Your supervisors or managers, whether they be pharmacists or not, in these extracurricular activities may also be able to provide insight into your preparedness for pharmacy school either through your intellectual abilities or other qualities, such as your problem-solving skills, compassion, and patience.

How long is pharmacy school? Ideally, around eight years. Eight years is ideal because it does not put as much pressure on you to complete your degree, and it also gives you enough time to explore different facets of pharmacology. Three-year pharmacy school students experience more stress than students in four-year programs, which is understandable given how complex and multi-faceted pharmacology is as a subject. So, while there are faster ways to becoming a pharmacist, doing the full eight-years is perhaps the easiest and less-stressful option.

A majority of PharmD programs in Canada and the US last four-years. 

Yes. There are close to 30 different pharmacy schools in the US that offer an accelerated, three-year degree. However, there are no pharmacy schools in Canada that offer an accelerated PharmD program. 

Yes, there are several pharmacy schools online available for remote or distance students. The University of Findlay and the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences are two examples. 

The shortest pharmacy school programs are only three-years in length. There are no shorter options. 

Becoming a licensed, practicing pharmacist can take a total of eight years, if you follow the traditional path. But if you complete your prerequisites, and enroll in a three-year program you can get your license sooner. 

There are several bachelor or graduate level degrees outside of the traditional PharmD. You can take undergraduate degree in pharmaceutical sciences, or pharmacology. At the graduate level, you can take several types of degrees in pharmaceutics, medicinal chemistry. But to be a practicing pharmacist, you must complete a PharmD program. 

No, you cannot become a pharmacist without a PharmD degree from an accredited program either in the US or Canada. 

The fastest way to become a pharmacist is by completing pharmacy school prerequisites in only two years, and then entering a three-year accelerated PharmD program. 

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phd pharmacy how many years

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PharmD Program

Q. How many years does it take to complete the professional PharmD Program? A.  Approximately two years of pre-pharmacy coursework is required prior to admission to the PharmD Program. Once admitted, it takes four years to successfully complete the PharmD Program .

Q. What degree do you earn? A.  You will earn the PharmD degree (Doctor of Pharmacy). This degree is NOT a baccalaureate, masters or PhD degree. It is a clinical, professional degree that prepares students for pharmacy practice.

Q. What is the difference between a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) and a Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacy (PhD)? Is there an opportunity for a joint dual degree in these areas? A.  The Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree plan will guide you toward becoming a clinical pharmacist. The Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacy (PhD) directs students toward research.

Q. Does the UNT System College of Pharmacy accept international applicants?                                                                                    A.   Yes, we are accepting applications from international students.  Please refer to the Admissions Information page.

Q. Where is the UNT System College of Pharmacy located? A.  We are located in Fort Worth, Texas at the UNT Health Science Center. Our address is  3500 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth, TX 76107

Q. What is the average GPA of students applying? A. The average GPA for the accepted students of the Class of 2020 was 3.49.

Q. Is a bachelor’s degree required? A. No, we do not require a bachelor’s degree. The UNT System College of Pharmacy requires students to complete 72 semester credit hours of prerequisites . Completing a bachelor’s degree may help an applicant become a more competitive candidate. Approximately 75-85% of students entering the program each year have completed a bachelor’s degree.

Q. Is there a specific major the UNT System College of Pharmacy wants to see applicants pursuing? A. No, we do not require or prefer students major in a specific bachelor’s degree program. The important factor is completing the correct prerequisites with a strong GPA. You can have the Admissions Office evaluate your transcript by completing the prerequisite worksheet .

Q. Where is the UNT System College of Pharmacy Admissions Office located? A.  We are located on the first floor of the Student Service Center 1051 Haskell Ave in Suite 170. Our mailing address is: UNT System College of Pharmacy, 3500 Camp Bowie Blvd, SSC 170, Fort Worth, TX 76107

Q. Is housing available for students? A.  No, but students may find housing information at the Official Off-Campus Housing Listing Service offered for the UNT Health Science Center. If admitted into the program you will be provided with housing information at Discover myHSC Day in April of your matriculating year.

Q. Will I be permitted to take PharmD courses at the UNT Denton campus? A.  No, all PharmD coursework must be completed at the UNT Health Science Center.

Q. Will all my training take place in Fort Worth, Texas? A.  The first three years of your training will take place in Fort Worth. Your last year will be comprised of clinical rotations which may be located outside of Fort Worth, Texas.

Q. How long will it take to graduate? A.  The PharmD program is a four (4) year program.

Q. Do you have Spring start dates? A. No, all classes begin in the Fall.

Q. What type of work experience should I do? Do I have to be a certified technician? How many hours is the college looking for? A. A student does not have to become a certified pharmacy technician in order to apply to the UNT System College of Pharmacy. However, it is recommended, as certified pharmacy technicians typically have more opportunities to volunteer or work directly with pharmacists.

A student is always encouraged to volunteer or work, when possible, within various pharmacy environments to better assess their decision to become a pharmacist. In addition, a recommendation from a pharmacist is encouraged, and spending time with a pharmacist(s) ensures a valid and hopefully strong recommendation. There is no specified number of hours required.

Technician certification is NOT a requirement for our college admissions.

To learn more about the pharmacy technician program, see the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board website .

Q. Could you describe the curriculum? A.  The specifics of the  Curriculum . In general, the PharmD curriculum is a mix of classroom and laboratory instruction, as well as pharmacy practice experiences, in which students will work in local pharmacies, hospitals, etc. Since the program is delivered on the UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, pharmacy students will have the opportunity to work with students training in other areas of health care, such as medicine, physician assistant, physical therapy, and public health.

Q. How do I make my application competitive? A.  To be competitive, you should have the following:

  • Leave no blanks on your pharmacy applications
  • Math and Science prerequisites GPA >2.50
  • Healthcare experience – does not need to be pharmacy experience, but it is preferred.
  • Volunteer experience – very important
  • Community service experience – very important
  • Pharmacy Shadowing experience
  • Excellent Letters of Recommendation – preferably from professors and supervisors (work or volunteer experience) who can comment on your academic, work or volunteer performance
  • Practice mock interviews and interview well when invited to interview
  • Pharmacy is a professional field and area of study, while Pharmacology is a more specific science that is studied either in its own right or as part of the study of Pharmacy or other fields like Medicine. Pharmacology is the science pertaining to the effect of drugs on the body.

Q. I have a lot of volunteer and extracurricular activities from High School should I include them in my application? A. No, please list only volunteer extracurricular activities post high school in your application.

Q. Do you offer Dual Degrees A.  Yes, Applicants must first be accepted into the PharmD program before applying for a Dual Degree . The UNTHSC School of Biomedical Sciences (SBS), in collaboration with the UNT System College of Pharmacy (SCP), offers PharmD/MS and PharmD/PhD Dual Degree programs to some of our highly motivated and capable PharmD students to pursue a research degree (MS or PhD) in addition to the PharmD degree at UNTHSC.

Dual Degree students gain additional knowledge in biomedical sciences and have the opportunity to conduct cutting-edge research in any field pertaining to the interests of the students and their faculty mentors. Dual degree graduates shall have broader career options in clinical or retail pharmacy, research in academic or government laboratories, as well as in the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industry.

Q. Do you need a bachelor’s degree to be accepted into the Dual Degree program? A.  Yes

Q. How many students will be admitted? A.  We can accept up to 100 students each academic year.

Q. Will I be able to work and go to school? A.  It is not recommended, during the first year, due to the rigor of the curriculum.

Q. Can I be a part-time student? A.  No.

Q. What is your tuition? A.  Please go to our Tuition and Fees link: Cost & Financial Aid

Q. Can I apply for financial aid? A.  Yes, if eligible. Financial Aid

Q. Will scholarships be available? A.  There are a limited number of UNTHSC and College of Pharmacy scholarships available.

This page was last modified on October 13, 2023

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How to Become a Pharmacist

What is a pharmacist, how to become a pharmacist.

  • Responsibilities
  • Salary Info
  • Career Outlook
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How to become a pharmacist

Pharmacists are medication experts who specialize in the safe and effective use of pharmaceuticals. If your doctor has ever prescribed you a medication, there’s a good chance you met a community pharmacist during pick-up at your hospital or local drugstore. But what we really want to dive into is how to become a pharmacist.

Pharmacists’ roles have expanded beyond simply counting and dispensing pills. If you desire to work as part of a healthcare team, are interested in learning about medications, and enjoy educating others about leading a healthier life, becoming a pharmacist might be an excellent career for you.

This article will cover everything you need to know about becoming a pharmacist, including what they do, how to become one, career outlook, salary information, and everything else you need to get started in an exciting career as a pharmacist!

We Found The Following Schools with Online Pharmacy Technician Programs

Pharmacists are highly respected members of the public health community with expertise in preparing, dispensing, storing, and using medications. 

Pharmacists also educate patients on all aspects of their prescriptions, including:

  • Biochemical makeup of medications
  • Drug interactions
  • Drug dosages for safe patient use
  • Potential side effects
  • How to store medicines to maintain efficacy
  • How to properly use medications

>> Related: How to Become a Pharmacy Technician

To become a pharmacist, you need to complete the following steps:

1. Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

Pharmacy students must complete a bachelor’s degree in a science-related field or at least two years of undergraduate pre-pharmacy preparatory classes. 

Check with your desired pharmacy program to see what requirements you will need for entry. Pharmacy schools also usually require a minimum grade point average of 3.0 or higher and an emphasis on biology, physics, and chemistry courses.

2. Take the PCAT

Take the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT) . Most pharmacy schools currently require the PCAT as part of their admissions process.

The PCAT has sections that test verbal ability, chemistry, biology, reading comprehension, quantitative ability, and writing skills.

3. Enroll in a Pharmacy Program

Earn a Doctor of Pharmacy degree, or Pharm.D, from a pharmacy program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) . These programs usually take four years to complete, though some schools offer expedited programs that take three years.

Pharmacy school will include training in a healthcare setting and include coursework in several topics, including:

  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Non-Perscription Therapies
  • Compounding and Calculations
  • Metabolism and Cell Biology
  • Pharmacy Law
  • Community Practice
  • Pharmacology and Body Systems
  • Hospital and Community Practice
  • Oncology Medications
  • Infectious Diseases

How Long Does It Take To Become A Pharmacist?

In general, you will need to obtain your undergraduate degree, which will take two to four years. At this time, you only need to have a two-year degree in order to apply and be accepted to pharmacy school. Then, you'll complete a pharmacist degree, which takes four years.

So, how long does it take to become a pharmacist? It can take anywhere from six to eight years to become a pharmacist.

What Do Pharmacists Do?

Pharmacists are healthcare professionals who safely dispense medications to patients with the help of pharmacy technicians . They perform several tasks regularly, such as:

  • Receiving prescriptions from physicians
  • Dispensing medications and other drug therapies
  • Counseling patients about their prescriptions
  • Ensuring safety by reviewing prescriptions for interactions with other drugs patients and patient allergies
  • Advising patients on over-the-counter medications
  • Conducting health screenings
  • Giving immunizations, such as COVID-19 vaccines, flu shots, or other vaccinations
  • Communicating with physicians and other healthcare professionals
  • Process insurance claims and complete paperwork to ensure payment from insurance providers

Most pharmacists work in hospitals or community pharmacies. But you will also find pharmacists working in a variety of areas that require medication dispensing, including:

  • Outpatient and ambulatory care clinics
  • Drug stores
  • Compounding pharmacies
  • Retail settings
  • Nursing homes
  • Online dispensing pharmacies
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Government agencies

Pharmacists’ specific duties depend on the type of pharmacy practice they perform and their work environment. For example, hospital pharmacists ensure safe medication distribution for inpatient use. Hospital pharmacists will also meet with patients to review medications, interactions, side effects, and correct usage instructions upon discharge.

Some pharmacists work in the pharmaceutical industry or for government agencies. In this role, they assist with developing and improving new medications while ensuring safety and effectiveness.

Pharmacist Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics , the median annual salary for pharmacists is $132,750, or $63.82 per hour.

Highest Paying States for Pharmacists

The top-paying states for pharmacists are:

  • California - $72.73 per hour | $151,280 per year
  • Alaska - $70.39 per hour | $146,400 per year
  • Oregon - $68.00 per hour | $141,440 per year
  • Washington - $66.63 per hour | $138,580 per year
  • Minnesota - $65.84 per hour | $136,950 per year

Pharmacist Salary by Place of Work

Where a pharmacist works also impacts salary potential. The BLS states that in 2022 the top median wages for pharmacists per workplace were:

  • General merchandise retailers: $139,680
  • Ambulatory healthcare: $138,720
  • Hospitals: $137,440
  • Pharmacies and drug stores $129,920

Pharmacist Salary Factors

Many additional factors impact annual income, including years of experience, education level, geographical area, and if a pharmacist works full-time or part-time. Also, some pharmacists own their own pharmacy and work for themselves, while others work as employees.

Many pharmacists also receive paid time off, sick leave, personal days, health insurance, tuition reimbursement, bonuses, and more.

>> Related - How to Become a Nutritionist

4. Pass Your State Pharmacy Licensure Exam

Once the pharmacy school curriculum is complete, students will need to pass the North American Pharmacist Licensure Exam (NAPLEX) and the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam (MPJE) or an exam specific to the state in which they will work.

What is the Career Outlook for Pharmacists?

Though pharmacists are essential workers in the healthcare setting, the BLS anticipates a 3% increase in the need for pharmacists between 2022 and 2032. 

Several reasons for this include a low number of anticipated pharmacist retirements, an 85% increase in pharmacy graduates, and increases in pharmaceutical automation. 

However, until 2032, there will still be a need for 13,400 pharmacists each year to work in hospitals, ambulatory care centers, government agencies, pharmaceutical companies, and other healthcare settings.

What are the Continuing Education Requirements for Pharmacists? 

Every U.S. state requires pharmacists to complete continuing education. However, each state has its own specific requirements for the number of credit hours, the frequency of renewal, and specific course requirements.

Standard continuing education topic requirements include pharmacy and drug law, medication errors, patient safety, HIV/AIDS, and opioid abuse.

Where Can I Learn More About Becoming a Pharmacist?

There are professional resources available, including:

  • American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP)
  • Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE)
  • American Pharmacists Association (APhA)
  • American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP)

Pharmacist FAQs

How many years does it take to become a pharmacist.

  • The road to becoming a pharmacist takes five to eight years, depending on the type of program you choose. While some programs only require two years of pre-pharmacy education, others require a bachelor's degree for admission. Pharmacy school then takes 3-4 years to complete.

Is a pharmacist a doctor?

  • A pharmacist is not a medical doctor. However, they must earn a doctorate in pharmacy degree or Pharm.D.

Is becoming a pharmacist hard?

  • Becoming a pharmacist requires a significant investment of time, and pharmacy school is highly competitive. Candidates will need to demonstrate expertise in chemistry, biology, physics, and other science and math courses.

 Is a pharmacist still a good career?

  • Pharmacists help to make a positive impact on the lives of patients and communities. It is a well-compensated, highly respected career that provides the opportunity to work in many different industry types.

 Do pharmacists go to medical school?

  • Pharmacists do not attend medical school. They go to specialized pharmacy schools to earn a doctorate in pharmacy.

  How many hours do pharmacists work?

  • Most pharmacists work full-time, which is 40 hours a week. Those who own their pharmacies may be required to work many more hours.

What skills do you need to be a pharmacist?

  • In addition to extensive knowledge of medication, pharmacists must have strong science and math skills.  They also must have excellent communication, enjoy educating others, and desire lifelong learning about healthcare trends and innovations in medicine.

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer

Terri Heimann Oppenheimer is a freelance writer and editor who is driven by details. She loves to dive into research, ensuring that the information she provides educates, engages and illuminates. Before starting her own business she spent years working in advertising and raising three kids. Today she lives in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, where her she and her husband enjoy travel, the Jersey Shore, and spoiling their grandchildren.

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School of Pharmacy

How Many Years Is a PharmD Degree? Program Information and Frequently Asked Questions

Want to know how long a PharmD degree is? Learn what you can expect during your time at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

The number of years necessary to earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (or PharmD degree) will depend on several factors, from your desired program to how much flexibility you have in your schedule. In this article, we’ll cover your program options and give you a glimpse into your six years at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS).

How Many Years Is a PharmD Degree?

At MCPHS, the full program is six years total—two years of prerequisite course options followed by a four-year professional phase. 

The PharmD is required to become a licensed pharmacist in the United States, as is the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX)—a main component of gaining your license to be a professional pharmacist. MCPHS prepares future pharmacists for these milestones.

In addition, beginning in the fall of 2024, all new students admitted to MCPHS’ six-year PharmD program will receive a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy and Life Sciences. This additional STEM-designated degree will be awarded upon completion of the fourth year of the PharmD program. Graduates of the program will be prepared to launch careers in sectors outside of pharmacy, including biopharmaceuticals, public health, and life sciences.

Let's break down what you can expect during the PharmD program, one year at a time.

The first year of your PharmD prerequisite course section will introduce you to pharmaceutical sciences, basic medical sciences, and other important foundational topics like biology, medicinal chemistry, and calculus to better prepare you for upcoming program requirements in your pharmacy education. 

The second and final year of prerequisite coursework will build upon the foundational knowledge gained in year one. Professors will dive deeper into pharmaceutical-specific topics and further prepare you for clinical pharmacy practice. Courses cover such topics as intro to pharmacy, microbiology, anatomy, and physiology.

Your third year is the first of the professional study phase. It’s a critical part of the education process, transitioning you from more base-level knowledge to extensive clinical experiences and information. You’ll enroll in courses like healthcare delivery and practices, physiology, medical biochemistry, and pharmaceutical calculations, and explore research methods in pharmacoepidemiology. This will be your first year of hands-on learning in a dosage forms laboratory. 

The program’s fourth year consists of classes like pharmacology, therapeutics, deeper medicinal chemistry, and pharmaceutical biotechnology. This year will cover the doctor-patient relationship and care process as a whole. 

As you continue to build your knowledge of practice management, you’ll study healthcare ethics, clinical pharmacokinetics, pharmacy law, patient self-care, and advanced therapeutics. Learning opportunities will be available to you outside the traditional classroom-style setup, including associated seminars, required labs, and other immersive academic activities. You'll also study and prepare to take the Pharmacy Curriculum Outcomes Assessment Exam, which you’ll need to complete by the end of your fifth year. 

Your sixth and final year of the MCPHS PharmD program is a time to deepen your understanding of the pharmaceutical world and grasp how best to care for patients. You’ll take courses like institutional pharmacy practice, ambulatory care, community pharmacy practice, and two electives in either administration, critical care medicine, gastroenterology, or infectious diseases. 

You’ll work with other students in your year to participate in advanced pharmacy rotations. You'll also focus on reviewing NAPLEX modules. The NAPLEX was created by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy to help individual state boards of pharmacy determine if a student is ready to get their license and begin practicing. 

MCPHS is located in the hub of healthcare and life science  innovation in the Longwood Medical and Academic Area, giving you several job opportunities right off campus. Outside of our location, we offer pharmacy program graduates specialized training within the biopharmaceutical sector through our Biopharmaceutical Industry Fellowship Program. 

Our Fellowship program is the second-largest in the nation, placing over 100 fellows each year. This highly competitive program attracts top talent from across the country and offers hands-on training, professional development, and industry connections to participants. With a proven track record of success, the fellowship can help aspiring biopharmaceutical professionals launch their careers.

What Program Options Are Available?

Undergraduate, pharmacy (pharmd) - direct entry.

This program is the six-year pathway  detailed earlier in this article. Undergraduate pharmacy students will first complete a preprofessional phase before entering a four-year professional phase. 

Our direct entry program allows students who complete their pre-professional requirements, obtain a minimum GPA of 2.8, and finish an oral interview and writing proficiency exam (the Progression Interview) to move directly into the professional phase of the program. Whereas many other traditional PharmD programs require students to take a pharmacy college admission test. 

Pharmacy (PharmD) - Accelerated

The accelerated PharmD program  allows students to earn their pharmacy degree in three years. Learners with a bachelor’s degree or the appropriate amount of college credits and prerequisites may apply. 

Pharmacy (NTDP) - Non-Traditional Pathway

This part-time online program  enables students to earn an NTDP degree in three phases, which include 27 credits, five semesters of learning, and up to 16 credits of experiential education. 

There aren’t specific prerequisite classes for this pathway, but all applicants must have a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy, a license to practice pharmacy in the United States, and be employed in the patient-care setting. 

Where Should You Study To Become a Pharmacist?

MCPHS was the first institution of higher ed founded in Boston and the second university of pharmacy founded in the United States. Rich in history and experience, our university has been preparing students to enter the medical workforce since 1823.

If you’d like to join our group of accomplished alumni upon graduation, start your career journey today by applying to MCPHS  to become a PharmD student. 

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RASP poster presentations capture student research 

phd pharmacy how many years

Third year Pharm.D. students in the Research and Scholarship in Pharmacy (RASP) pathway presented their research findings to peers, faculty and staff members of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy on April 17.  

“The RASP poster session remains a highlight of our academic calendar, showcasing the remarkable achievements of our students within the RASP pathway,” said Kathryn Morbitzer, Pharm.D., RASP program director and associate professor in the Division of Practice Advancement and Clinical Education. “This celebratory event not only highlights the culmination of over a year of dedicated research and innovation, but also marks a pivotal moment for our students as they prepare to present their findings on larger stages and pursue publication opportunities. It’s a joy to witness their growth and success.”  

RASP is a longitudinal, selective pathway within the Doctor of Pharmacy elective curriculum built around a mentored, in-depth, scholarly project. Each student frames an answerable question with a faculty mentor, generates and interprets relevant data and communicates their findings.   

“My time in RASP has tremendously impacted my pharmacy school experience,” said Luke Burton, Pharm.D. candidate, Class of 2025. “I have not only learned the fundamentals of research and what it means to be a pharmacist who participates in research, but I have learned how to collaborate with others and effectively communicate those results to peers, colleagues and patients.”  

Melissa Roverse, Pharm.D. candidate, Class of 2025, examined how the current system of assistance programs for blood cancer patients afford and maintain treatment on newer oral anticancer medications. “These medications have had a really profound impact on improving survival for many of these cancers, but due to their expense, a lot of patients rely on assistance programs to maintain consistent access to their medications,” she said. Her study will pilot methods to be used on a larger scale to answer whether these programs are doing enough and if current access to them is equitable.  

Students in the RASP pathway enroll in three elective courses during their second and third year of pharmacy school where they learn about the research process, gain skills through self-directed learning and conduct research with the School’s world-class faculty.   

“The RASP research experience gave me the opportunity to connect with faculty mentors to a much greater degree than I would have through other courses or extracurricular experiences,” said Emma Smits, Pharm.D. candidate, Class of 2025. Her research identified factors that influence the well-being of postdoctoral fellows in pharmacy programs and the findings will help inform the School’s initiatives to improve well-being among its community members.  

The poster presentations simulate what students would experience at a professional meeting and serve as an opportunity for students to share their project results and develop their presentation skills. Most students continue with their project in their fourth year and, after successfully submitting their research thesis, graduate with honors at commencement.   

“The knowledge and experience I have gained with RASP has truly helped me in all other aspects of my academic life,” said Margaux Meilhac, Pharm.D. candidate, Class of 2025. “I am more confident evaluating literature, writing scientific articles and optimizing experimental design. RASP is a unique opportunity for students, and I think everyone should consider seizing it.”  

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PhD Students Anjali Dixit and Yijun Gu Honored as Vertex Scholars at 2024 Vertex Day

phd pharmacy how many years

On March 28, 2024, the UC Irvine School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences hosted another successful Vertex Day!

Vertex Day, an annual collaboration between Vertex Pharmaceuticals and the UCI School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences going back 15+ years, is a one-day event that features presentations from faculty, Vertex scientists, and the year’s Vertex scholars, as well as a Vertex career panel. Founding Dean Jan Hirsch welcomed everyone to the event, with Dr. Brian Paegel (Associate Dean of Research) providing introductions and Dr. Benita Sjogren serving as UCI faculty speaker. Vertex Pharmaceuticals was represented by Sabine Hadida (Senior Vice President and San Diego Site Head), AJ Roecker (Executive Director, Medicinal Chemistry), Lily Feng (Research Scientist, High Throughput Biology), Anne Phan (Senior Research Scientist, Molecular and Cell Biology) Les Dakin (Senior Director, Medicinal Chemistry), Jamie Arterton (Executive Director Project Management & Strategic Operations), and Britt Davis (Senior Director, Human Resources). Dakin presented “Discovery of Inaxaplin for APOL1-Mediated Kidney Disease (AMKD)” during the event.

Anjali Dixit and Yijun Gu were honored as the 2024 Vertex scholars!

Dixit is a fifth-year student in the PhD in Pharmacological Sciences program, co-advised by Dr. Brian Paegel and Dr. David Mobley . She is a UC Santa Barbara alumna, with a BS in Pharmacology and BA in Psychology. Following her undergraduate research on fMRI imaging, Dixit has centered her studies on finding a closer relationship with current pharmaceutical development and the intricacies of drug design and informatics-based design and synthesis of novel compounds for activity-based screening using DNA-encoded libraries.

“Being chosen as a Vertex scholar is an honor!” said Dixit. “It is so exciting to showcase my work and that of my lab in front of industry professionals, especially the highly innovative minds at Vertex. I’d like to thank Vertex for their continued support of our program, as it facilitates groundbreaking research and fosters the culture of technology development and drug discovery at UCI.”

Gu is a researcher in Dr. Claudia Benavente’s lab who earned her BS in Pharmaceutical Sciences from UCI. Entering the PhD in Pharmacological Sciences program with an interest in cancer biology and biochemistry, Gu’s research focuses primarily on translational study, developing RNA tools, and the mechanisms underlying tumorigenesis. She aims to identify the driver of tumors with Retinoblastoma1(Rb1) gene inactivation, particularly small cell lung cancer (SCLC). In 2023, Gu and Dr. Benavente were awarded a grant from the American Lung Association to support their research into SCLC therapies.

“I am deeply grateful for being chosen as a Vertex scholar,” Gu shared. “It is indeed an honor to have my research in small cell lung cancer supported by Vertex, which is renowned for its significant contributions to the treatment of cystic fibrosis.”

“We are thankful to Vertex Pharmaceuticals for their continued support of our PhD students,” said Sonia Batra, Director of Development for the UCI School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences. “Anjali Dixit and Yijun Gu are stellar students and are very deserving of this honor.”

Check out photos from this year’s Vertex Day here !

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Canada pledges dramatic pay rise for PhDs, postdocs – but many will not benefit

Rebecca Trager

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The Canadian government has pledged a significant investment in its graduate students and postdoctoral scholars after more than two decades of stagnation . Its 2024 budget proposal , announced on 16 April , provides C$825 million (£481 million) over the next five years to support next-generation researchers by increasing both the number and value of stipends. However, the pay rise will only be seen by graduates who win scarce Tri-Council grants, although it is hoped that as these stipends rise others will need to too to compete.

The budget, which the House of Commons must pass before it is finalised, would provide nearly C$200 million per year, increasing annual master’s and PhD scholarships to $27,000 and $40,000, respectively, and postdoctoral fellowships to $70,000. The budget’s passage is not guaranteed – it needs the support of at least one of three political parties other than the ruling Liberal party.

Canada budget

Source: © David Kawai/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Justin Trudeau, Canada’s prime minister, and Chrystia Freeland, Canada’s deputy prime minister and finance minister, presented the budget on 16 April. The package included funding that ended over 20 years of stagnation in PhD and postdoctoral stipends

The planned increases represent a dramatic jump. Currently, the typical annual stipend in Canada is around C$17,500 for master’s students, C$24,000 for PhDs and C$45,000 for postdocs. The government is also proposing C$1.8 billion to the different funding agencies in Canada over five years to increase core research grant funding.

The funding surge is expected to increase the number of research scholarships and fellowships provided by the government, building to approximately 1720 more graduate students or fellows benefiting each year.

Graduate student and postdoc pay in Canada has remained unchanged for over 20 years . A national survey last year by the Ottawa Science Policy Network found that nearly 90% of graduate students in the country reported feeling stressed and anxious about their finances, and almost one-third said they have considered leaving academia due to financial pressures.

‘These fellowships had the same value for many years, which means their ability to support students had, in many cases, fallen below a livable amount,’ explains Bruce Arndtsen , a chemistry professor at McGill University. ‘Many departments and institutions therefore needed to top these fellowships up from research grants simply to get to our normal stipend level.’

Most chemistry graduates ineligible for raise

Such a significant increase to graduate student stipends in Canada will give top students a competitive stipend and enable Canada to to better retain these students, Arndtsen adds. ‘It will also allow the use of grant funds to better support their research activities rather than topping their fellowship up to needed levels.’

However, he notes that these stipend increases will only apply to the select few who win prestigious Tri-Council awards, and the majority of chemistry graduate students in Canada do not receive these top fellowships but are instead paid from research grants. In fact, Arndtsen notes that funding for the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada’s major chemistry funding programme has also remained stagnant for decades, and he expresses hope that these grants will receive a similar increase in the near term.

Anne Labarre , a sixth-year PhD chemistry student at McGill who is involved in computational drug discovery, celebrated the government’s announcement. Labarre says the PhD stipends at her chemistry department are currently fixed at around C$26,000 per year and emphasises that this increase is significant considering the recent inflation and rent increases in Montreal.

Matthew Berg, who received a PhD in biochemistry from Western University in Canada in 2021 and is now a postdoc at the University of Washington in the US, is optimistic. ‘These increases are going to set the bar for where funding should be for trainees in the sciences and in graduate school,’ he states. ‘Right now, a lot of Canadian graduate students struggle,’ Berg continues. ‘We’ve heard stories of students having to rely on food banks and different support systems in order to just make it through their degree.’

Last year there was a nationwide walkout of students and academics in Canada who were demanding more federal funding for graduate students and postdoc researchers. This month, graduate teaching assistants at Western University went on strike to protest what they deemed unfair wages. Meanwhile, a union representing striking academic workers at York University in Toronto, including teaching assistants and graduate workers, appeared to have reached a tentative deal on 14 April after being on strike over pay since late February.

Berg says he was lucky – he received one of one of the elusive federal awards to support him as a PhD candidate in Canada, which he says was worth about C$35,000 annually for three years. As a postdoc in the US, Berg says he currently receives significantly better compensation, with a stipend equivalent to more than C$90,000.

‘My dream after my PhD is to move to back to Canada and be a professor there,’ he says. ‘But it does make me nervous how difficult it is to get funding there and I don’t want to run a lab where my students are struggling to survive.’

Michel Cayouette , the vice president of research and academic affairs at the Montreal Clinical Research Institute, says the C$1.8 billion funding boost is great news but will be insufficient to allow supervisors to increase the value of their trainees’ stipends to the amounts announced for award recipients. ‘This means that the vast majority of students and postdocs will continue to struggle financially,’ Cayouette warns. ‘There is therefore more work to do in coming years to fill the gap in funding and ensure that all trainees receive a liveable wage.’

Rebecca Trager

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    Master's usually lasts 1-2 years and PhD no less than 4 years. In summary, in Spain an entry-level pharmacy degree lasts 5 years and a Hospital Pharmacy Specialist needs 9.5 years of education and/or training. Hospital Pharmacy residents are paid during their residency period.

  4. PHD, Pharmacy

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    The College of Pharmacy has established a maximum limit of 8 years for completion of any graduate program, although some programs in the College may have established shorter time limits for completion of certain degrees. These research-based degrees typically qualify graduates for work in the following research-related areas: performing research.

  10. Frequently Asked Questions · PharmD-PhD Dual Degree

    Frequently Asked Questions. These are the most frequently asked questions about the UCSF PharmD-PhD dual degree program. How many students apply for admission to the UCSF PharmD-PhD each year, and how many of those are accepted? The number of applications varies from year to year, but we generally receive one to two applications per year.

  11. PhD in Pharmacy

    How much does a Pharmacy PhD cost? In a UK university, UK based postgraduate research students should expect to incur annual tuition fees in the region of £4,500/year. With a full-time PhD lasting 3 years, this equates to £13,500 in fees.

  12. PharmD-PhD Timeline · PharmD-PhD Dual Degree · UCSF School of Pharmacy

    Spring: PhD coursework: Complete 245C + Mini-Courses. Year 3 (PharmD) Fall through part of spring: APPEs (six 6-week blocks). Spring: Research rotations for PhD: Research block (6 weeks). Spring: Research rotations for PhD: 3rd Lab Rotation (4 weeks). Year 1 (PhD) Summer and fall: Study for RPh license. Fall and winter: PhD coursework: PSPG 245A.

  13. Pharmaceutical & Biomedical Sciences

    The UGA Department of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in the all the major pharmaceutical sciences, including pharmaceutics, pharmacology, toxicology, medicinal chemistry and other related biomedical sciences. Visit to learn more about our admissions and degree requirements.

  14. Pharmacology, PhD < University of Pennsylvania

    Pharmacology, PhD. Pharmacological sciences represent an extremely large field of modern science, intertwined with many other biomedical disciplines: cancer and cardiovascular pharmacology, cell signaling, neuropharmacology, pharmacogenetics, pharmacological chemistry, environmental health sciences, and targeted therapeutics.

  15. Pharmacology, PhD < Johns Hopkins University

    Pharmacology, PhD. School of Medicine. 2023-24 Edition. Catalogue Home. Explore our Programs; ... During the second year of study, students will be required to pass a qualifying examination conducted as prescribed by the Doctor of Philosophy Board of the University. This examination will probe the depth and breadth of the student's knowledge ...

  16. Jobs for Pharm.D. vs. Ph.D.

    A Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) prepares students to become Pharmacists focused on patient care, while a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) prepares students for careers in academia or research and development. Both patient-care and research positions within pharmacy are similar in that students receive formal training and education in common ...

  17. Pharmacology

    Dana Farber Cancer Institute Longwood Center, Room 3311 450 Brookline Avenue Boston, MA 02115

  18. Pharm. D. Frequently Asked Questions

    We encourage prospective students to submit a request for a transcript evaluation to determine how your coursework applies to the Pharm.D. prerequisites. Instructions for requesting a transcript evaluation: Submit copies of your transcripts via e-mail to [email protected], fax 541-737-3999 attn: Transcript Evaluation or mail (Transcript ...

  19. How Long Is Pharmacy School? The Length and Challenges

    First Path: Traditional (BA or BSC + Four-Year PharmD) ~ 8 Years. The most traditional path to becoming a pharmacist is doing a four-year bachelor's degree and then a four-year PharmD degree. However, many pharmacy schools do not require you to complete a full bachelor's degree; only that you complete a certain number of prerequisites ...

  20. PharmD Program at the College of Pharmacy

    The specifics of the Curriculum . In general, the PharmD curriculum is a mix of classroom and laboratory instruction, as well as pharmacy practice experiences, in which students will work in local pharmacies, hospitals, etc. Since the program is delivered on the UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, pharmacy students will have the ...

  21. PhD Pharmacy: Course, Admission, Entrance Exam, Fees ...

    PhD Pharmacy Syllabus. The PhD program in Pharmacy, typically spanning 3 to 5 years, involves a rigorous investigation into the actions of drugs and their distribution within organisms. Through intensive research endeavors, students analyze the complex pathways and effects of pharmaceutical substances in biological contexts.

  22. Timeline For Earning A PharmD Degree

    Most people associate the term "medical doctor" with physicians. To them, earning a doctorate and working in medicine involves extensive and arduous training, starting with undergraduate and medical school and proceeding to challenging post-graduate and residency requirements. Indeed, earning an MD can take between ten and fourteen years of ...

  23. 4 Steps to Becoming a Pharmacist

    To become a pharmacist, you need to complete the following steps: 1. Earn a Bachelor's Degree. Pharmacy students must complete a bachelor's degree in a science-related field or at least two years of undergraduate pre-pharmacy preparatory classes. Check with your desired pharmacy program to see what requirements you will need for entry.

  24. How Many Years Is a PharmD Degree?

    Academics | 4/17/2024. How Many Years Is a PharmD Degree? Program Information and Frequently Asked Questions. Home. Admission & Aid.

  25. RASP poster presentations capture student research

    Mariava Phillips April 18, 2024 Top: Luke Burton and Melissa Roverse. Bottom: Emma Smits and Margaux Meilhac. Third year Pharm.D. students in the Research and Scholarship in Pharmacy (RASP) pathway presented their research findings to peers, faculty and staff members of the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy on April 17.

  26. Pharmacy students bring home another national championship

    Pharmacy students bring home another national championship Posted on: April 15, 2024; Updated on: April 15, 2024 By Malory Spicer, [email protected] A student team representing the University of South Carolina is bringing home first place from this year's CLARION National Case Competition in Minneapolis.

  27. PhD Students Anjali Dixit and Yijun Gu Honored as Vertex Scholars at

    On March 28, 2024, the UC Irvine School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences hosted another successful Vertex Day! Vertex Day, an annual collaboration between Vertex Pharmaceuticals and the UCI School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences going back 15+ years, is a one-day event that features presentations from faculty, Vertex scientists, and the year's Vertex scholars, as well as a Vertex ...

  28. Gene Therapy Is Halting Cancer. Can It Work Against Brain Tumors?

    For many patients with leukemia and other blood cancers, CAR-T has demonstrated long-term remission, but the approach hasn't worked against brain tumors. Glioblastoma cells are more diverse than blood cancer cells, and they can evade CAR-T. Many of the antigens made by the tumors are also found in healthy tissue, leaving them open to attack.

  29. Canada pledges dramatic pay rise for PhDs, postdocs

    Anne Labarre, a sixth-year PhD chemistry student at McGill who is involved in computational drug discovery, celebrated the government's announcement. Labarre says the PhD stipends ...