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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Schools
After you have decided whether you wish to attain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can start to target your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist tech programs to select from in the Saraland AL area and throughout the United States, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and technical schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will most likely initially look for colleges that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Saraland residence. If you are able to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be significant. But there are several other factors that you should consider so that you may effectively compare schools. The following questions will help you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.
Is the Pharmacy Technician School Accredited? Many pharmacy technician colleges and vocational schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to provide a comprehensive quality education. Online schools may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online education. Make sure to check that the degree or certificate program as well as the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with helping guarantee that you get a quality education, it might assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Saraland AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but numerous pharmacies desire that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech school should prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of work experience. This requirement can be met by entering a school sponsored internship program.
Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates a year of professional experience for certification, which may be fulfilled with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require practical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to satisfy the requirement. Find out if the programs have a working relationship with Saraland AL area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the College Offer Job Placement Help? Finding that initial position in Saraland AL upon graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a difficult undertaking without any help. Find out if the schools you are looking at have job placement programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduates.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Saraland AL home. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that don't reside within their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the pharmacy technician college you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Saraland AL area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family obligations.