How to Choose the Right Pharmacy Technician College Near Decatur Alabama
Having decided to earn your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near DecaturAL, you may be thinking about how to choose the ideal program to get your education and training. Of course the initial step is to find colleges that offer the certificate or degree that you would like to earn. A number of potential students start by searching for colleges that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are critical concerns when deciding on a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation should be evaluated also. And if you prefer studying in your home in front of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be part of your vetting process. Let's take a look at the degree and certification options available, and the benefits of online classes.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Pharmacy Tech Career Below
Pharmacy Tech Degrees
Students desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician program are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are generally 2 options to becoming a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to earn a diploma or a certificate, which normally can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs provide an introduction to the different elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include classroom and lab training. Numerous programs also require an internship at an approved Decatur AL pharmacy or similar facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which typically takes about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does offer a more comprehensive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Either program can furnish the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to become certified.
Pharmacy Tech Certifications
Certification is not required in every state, but numerous graduates of pharmacy technician programs choose to get certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, many Decatur AL pharmacies will only employ a technician that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that offer certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requires that the candidate be 18 years or older, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has one or more years of professional experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is called for every two years by each program, which can be met by performing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacist Tech Online Programs
Prior to deciding on a pharmacist technician online school, it's necessary to understand that most programs do require a portion of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is usually satisfied in a local Decatur pharmacy or health center by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work with a seasoned pharmacy tech so as to get some real world experience. However the balance or non-clinical training may be accessed online in your Decatur AL home or via any available computer. This option is more practical for most students, notably for those who continue to work while earning their degree or certificate. And online schools are sometimes more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and study materials may be reduced significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is provided. But not all online schools are accredited, which is important for obtaining employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So confirm that any online school you are reviewing is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to study with a less supervised form of education, then online classes might be the best solution for you.
Enroll in the Right Decatur Pharmacy Technician School
Finding the ideal pharmacist technician training is a crucial first step to beginning your career in a gratifying profession where helping customers with their wellness is your purpose. In the past, most pharmacy techs were trained "on the job". Nowadays, most pharmacists can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally educated techs. Training is provided by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Many pharmacist technician schools incorporate both clinical and classroom work. As we have discussed in this article, it's essential to select a school that is accredited and will ready you for certification. This holds true both for online classes as well as for those attended on campus. With the right training and dedication you can realize your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Decatur Alabama.