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What to Ask Pharmacist Tech Courses
Once you have decided whether you wish to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can start to target your school options. There are a large number of pharmacy technician colleges to pick from in the Tuscaloosa AL area and throughout the USA, so you should develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for programs that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Tuscaloosa residence. If you are able to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are several other variables that you must take into consideration so that you may effectively compare schools. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.
Is the Pharmacy Tech School Accredited? The majority of pharmacist tech programs and vocational schools have acquired a national or regional accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with online or distance learning. Don't forget to confirm that the certificate or degree program together with the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a superior education, it may help in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Tuscaloosa AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.
Does the College Ready You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but numerous pharmacies desire that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech program should prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB examination. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of job experience. This requirement may be fulfilled by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.
Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA mandates one year of job experience for certification, which can be satisfied 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 practical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Check if the colleges have a working relationship with Tuscaloosa Alabama area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.
Does the School Give Job Placement Help? Securing that initial position in Tuscaloosa AL after graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a challenging task without any assistance. Ask if the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has a good reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a sizable network of employer relationships where it can place graduating students.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the school they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Tuscaloosa AL residence. Those who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the pharmacy technician program you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Tuscaloosa AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.