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Questions to Ask Pharmacist Technician Colleges
After you have decided whether you want to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online school or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacist technician schools to pick from in the Anniston AL area and throughout the USA, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for programs that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Anniston residence. If you are able to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other factors that you need to consider in order to effectively compare schools. The following questions will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.
Is the Pharmacy Technician School Accredited? Many pharmacy technician programs and vocational schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. One of 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 complete quality education. Online programs may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance education. Don't forget to confirm that the degree or certificate program together with the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it might assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might require that the program of training is accredited. And many Anniston AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.
Does the Program Ready You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but numerous employers prefer that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician college should ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of work experience. This condition may be fulfilled by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates one year of experience for certification, which can be fulfilled with an internship program. One of the best ways to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Ask if the schools have associations with Anniston Alabama area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Securing that first position in Anniston AL after graduation, especially with no experience, can be a daunting endeavor without any help. Ask if the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduating students.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they decide on will need to be within commuting distance of their Anniston AL residence. Students who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the colleges you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the pharmacy technician college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Anniston AL area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family obligations.