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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Schools
Once you have determined whether you want to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacist tech colleges to select from in the East Florence AL area and throughout the USA, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and technical schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will most likely initially look for programs that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your East Florence residence. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be significant. But there are a number of other factors that you should consider so that you may properly compare programs. The following questions will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.
Is the Pharmacy Technician Program Accredited? Many pharmacy tech colleges and vocational schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to provide a comprehensive superior education. Online schools may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance learning. Make sure to check that the degree or certificate program as well as the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with helping guarantee that you get a quality education, it can assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the program of training is accredited. And many East Florence AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the Program Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but numerous employers desire that the techs they employ be certified. The pharmacy tech college needs to prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of job experience. This qualification can be satisfied by entering a school sponsored internship program.
Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates one year of job experience for certification, which may be satisfied by means of an internship program. One of the best ways to acquire practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the programs have associations with East Florence AL area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Getting that first position in East Florence AL upon graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a daunting undertaking without some help. Ask if the colleges you are considering have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of employer contacts where it can refer graduates.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they select will have to be within travelling distance of their East Florence AL residence. Individuals who have decided to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacy technician program you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the East Florence AL area, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.