How to Find the Right Pharmacist Technician Course Near Anchorage Alaska
Having decided to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near AnchorageAK, you might be thinking about just how to select the ideal program to receive your education and training. Of course the first step is to find schools that offer the degree or certificate that you are interested in. Many future students start by searching for schools that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are critical factors when deciding on a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications including accreditation and reputation should be evaluated as well. And if you are interested in attending classes in your home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online school will also be part of your vetting process. Let's take a look at the diploma and degree options available, and the advantages of online programs.
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Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Certificates
Students desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 alternatives to training to be a technician regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to earn a certificate or a diploma, which typically can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs present an overview to the various elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and generally include classroom and lab training. A number of programs also require an internship at an accepted Anchorage AK pharmacy or other facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which typically requires about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does provide a more extensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program can furnish the proper amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to get certified.
Pharmacy Tech Certifications Offered
Certification is not required in all states, but a large number of graduates of pharmacy technician programs opt to get certified in order to be more qualified in the job market. Also, many Anchorage AK employers will only hire a tech that is certified. There are two organizations that provide certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requires that the candidate be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has a high school diploma and passes their exam. Recertification is required every 2 years by each program, which may be satisfied by completing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacist Tech Online Programs
Prior to choosing a pharmacy technician online school, it's necessary to realize that the majority of programs do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is typically fulfilled in a local Anchorage pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the benefit of working with a seasoned pharmacy technician so as to obtain some real world experience. However the balance or non-clinical training may be taken over the internet in your Anchorage AK home or via any available computer. This alternative is more practical for many students, particularly for those who keep working while earning their degree or certificate. And online colleges are frequently less expensive than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for commuting and study materials may be reduced substantially. With both the clinical and the online training, a comprehensive education is offered. But not all online programs are accredited, which is essential for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that any online college you are considering is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to learn with a less supervised form of education, then online training might be the best solution for you.
Find the Right Anchorage Pharmacy Technician School
Finding the right pharmacy technician training is an important first step to beginning your career in a fulfilling profession where assisting people with their wellness is your purpose. Traditionally, many pharmacy technicians were taught "on the job". These days, most pharmacists can no longer afford to do this and place a higher importance on hiring formally educated techs. Training is furnished by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. Many pharmacist tech colleges incorporate both clinical and classroom work. As we have covered in this article, it's essential to choose a school that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This holds true both for classes online and for those attended on campus. With the appropriate training and commitment you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Anchorage Alaska.