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Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Schools
After you have determined whether you wish to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacy technician schools to select from in the Talladega 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 probably initially look for programs that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Talladega residence. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be significant. But there are a number of other issues that you need to take into consideration in order to adequately compare colleges. The following questions will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.
Is the Pharmacist Technician College Accredited? Many pharmacy tech colleges and trade schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to offer a comprehensive quality education. Online programs may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with online or distance education. Don't forget to verify that the certificate or degree program as well as the school you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping guarantee that you receive a quality education, it may assist in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Talladega AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but a number of employers prefer that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech school needs to prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of professional experience. This condition may be satisfied by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.
Does the School Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA mandates one year of job experience for certification, which can be met through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to satisfy the requirement. Ask if the schools have associations with Talladega Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Finding that initial job in Talladega 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 so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the college has a good reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a substantial network of employer relationships where it can place graduates.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they pick will have to be within driving distance of their Talladega AL residence. Individuals who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might 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.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician school you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Talladega AL area, make certain that they are offered. 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 have to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.