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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges
Once you have decided whether you wish to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacy technician programs to pick from in the Madison AL area and throughout the United States, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably initially look for colleges that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Madison home. If you are willing to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be critical. But there are many other factors that you need to take into consideration so that you may properly compare programs. The following questions will help you in collecting that information and help you to make your final choice.
Is the Pharmacy Tech School Accredited? Most pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to furnish a comprehensive quality education. Online colleges may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online education. Be sure to confirm that the degree or certificate program together with the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a superior education, it might assist in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Madison AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the Program Ready You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but a number of employers prefer that the techs they employ be certified. The pharmacist technician school should prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of work experience. This condition can be met by entering a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA requires a year of professional experience for certification, which may be met by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to obtain hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician degree or certificate programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to fulfill the requirement. Check if the programs have a working relationship with Madison AL area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Finding that initial position in Madison AL after graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a daunting endeavor without some help. Ask if the colleges you are researching have job placement programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the field generating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a substantial network of employer relationships where it can place graduates.
Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the school they choose will have to be within commuting distance of their Madison AL home. Those who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that don't reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist technician college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Madison AL area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.