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What to Ask Pharmacist Tech Courses
After you have determined whether you want to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacist tech programs to select from in the Florence AL area and throughout the USA, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and technical schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Florence home. If you are willing to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other factors that you must take into consideration so that you may adequately compare colleges. The following questions will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your final decision.
Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Many pharmacist tech colleges and vocational schools have earned a regional or national 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 certified to furnish a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online learning. Make sure to confirm that the certificate or degree program together with the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And many Florence 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 a number of pharmacies desire that the technicians they employ be certified. The pharmacist technician school should prep its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of work experience. This qualification can be fulfilled by participating in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the College Offer Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires one year of job experience for certification, which may be met with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire practical clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician degree or certificate programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Check if the programs have associations with Florence Alabama area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.
Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Getting that initial position in Florence AL after graduation, especially with no prior experience, can be a difficult endeavor without any support. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the college has an excellent reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a sizable network of employer contacts where it can place graduating students.
Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will have to be within commuting distance of their Florence AL residence. Students who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the pharmacy technician school you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Florence AL area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.