How to Enroll In the Right Pharmacy Tech College Near Montgomery Alabama
Now that you have made the decision to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near MontgomeryAL, you may be wondering just how to pick the right college to get your education and training. Naturally the first step is to find schools that offer the diploma or degree that you are interested in. A number of prospective students start by looking for schools that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are important concerns when choosing a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation need to be considered as well. And if you are interested in studying in your home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. Let's take a look at the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online courses.
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Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Diplomas
Students wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician college are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are basically 2 options to becoming a technician whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to attain a diploma or a certificate, which normally can be completed in a year or less. These programs provide an introduction to the various facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and normally include classroom and lab training. A number of programs also include an internship at an accepted Montgomery AL pharmacy or similar facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which usually takes about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does provide a more expansive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program should provide the proper amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate decide to become certified.
Pharmacist Technician Certifications
Certification is not required in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech programs elect to get certified so as to be more qualified when seeking employment. Also, many Montgomery AL employers will only employ a tech that is certified. There are two organizations that offer certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requirements are that the candidate be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has completed a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB only requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is called for every 2 years by each program, which can be met by completing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacy Technician Online Colleges
Before selecting a pharmacy tech online school, it's important to realize that the majority of schools do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is commonly satisfied in a local Montgomery pharmacy or health center by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the benefit of working with an experienced pharmacy technician in order to receive some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online in your Montgomery AL home or via any available computer. This option is more practical for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while attaining their certificate or degree. And online colleges are often less expensive than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for commuting and study materials can be reduced significantly. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is essential for securing certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that each online program you are considering is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less structured form of education, then online training might be the ideal option for you.
Find the Best Montgomery Pharmacy Tech Program
Finding the right pharmacist tech training is a crucial first step to launching your career in a rewarding occupation where helping people with their health is your mission. Traditionally, most pharmacist technicians were taught "on the job". These days, most pharmacies can no longer operate this way and place a higher importance on hiring formally trained techs. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacist tech colleges incorporate both clinical and classroom training. As we have addressed in this article, it's important to choose a college that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This holds true both for classes online and for those attended on campus. With the proper training and commitment you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacist tech in Montgomery Alabama.