The PCAT stands for Pharmacy College Admission Test. This is a standardized exam required by most pharmacy schools. You must take this exam before applying to pharmacy school. This exam is similar to the SAT or ACT that are required before applying to college. The difficulty level is a step up and it has more focus on the sciences and math. The PCAT has changed over the years and is now a computer based test. When I took this exam back in 2007 it was still a paper based exam. The writing portion of the exam is also a fairly new concept. Here is a breakdown of the exam which can change on a year-to-year basis:
- Writing Portion (30 minutes) – Tests ability to problem solve and conventions of language
- Verbal Ability (25 minutes) – Analogies and Sentence Completion
- Biology (35 minutes) – General Biology / Microbiology / Human Anatomy and Physiology
- Chemistry (35 minutes) – General Chemistry / Organic Chemistry / Basic Biochemistry Processes
- Reading Comprehension (50 minutes) – Comprehension / Analysis / Evaluation
- Quantitative Ability (45 minutes) – Basic Math / Algebra / Probability & Statistics / Precalculus / Calculus
To register for the exam you can visit: www.pcatweb.info
How to Study for the PCAT
The PCAT official website has practice exams and study guides for purchase. I do not recommend these if you are a poor college student. They are expensive and do not provide any additional benefit to other cost effective study guides. Continue reading
Getting research experience before applying to any graduate program will help increase your chances for success. This includes research experience before applying to pharmacy school. Why is research so important?
Research Experience Pharmacy School
Pharmacy Schools, like any other graduate program have professors who do research in a specialized field. They look for students who are interested in research and hope to find candidates to mentor and push forward their studies.
What if I am not interested in research?
Most likely you have not stepped foot in a research lab. It will not hurt to try research to see if it is something you may want to pursue during pharmacy school. However, the main purpose of why I highly recommend doing undergraduate research with a professor is to Continue reading
Do you need pharmacy experience before pharmacy school? Imagine yourself at the pharmacy school interview. You tell the admission committee that being a pharmacist is your dream. You say it is your passion. You explain that you love helping others learn about their medications.
Really? Is this possible? How can you make all these claims without ever stepping foot in a pharmacy? Do you truly understand what a pharmacist goes through on a day-to-day basis? The admission committee knows pharmacy! You cannot make these claims without ever working in a pharmacy. It is possible to come up with reasons of why you want to be a pharmacist, however it is a difficult task to convince an admission committee that pharmacy is your passion without experience. Thus, it is highly recommended that you get pharmacy experience before pharmacy school.
Pharmacy Experience Before Pharmacy School
Getting pharmacy experience is critical for your pharmacy school application. My journey into Continue reading