How to Pick the Best Pharmacy Tech School Near College Alaska
Having decided to earn your pharmacy technician certificate or degree near CollegeAK, you may be wondering just how to pick the ideal college to receive your education and training. Usually the initial step is to find schools that offer the diploma or degree that you would like to earn. Many future students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the tuitions. While cost and location are significant factors when deciding on a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation should be considered also. And if you are interested in studying at home by means of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online program will also be part of your vetting process. Let's take a look at the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online classes.
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Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Certificates
Students wishing to enroll in a pharmacy tech program are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically two alternatives to becoming a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a diploma or a certificate, which normally can be finished in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include lab and classroom training. A number of programs also require an internship at an approved College AK pharmacy or similar facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which normally takes about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does offer a more comprehensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program can provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to become certified.
Pharmacy Technician Certifications
Certification is not required in all states, but a large number of graduates of pharmacy tech schools elect to become certified so as to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, many College AK pharmacies will only employ 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 18 years or older, has graduated from high school, has finished a training program, and has at least one year of professional experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has a high school diploma and passes their examination. Recertification is required every two years by both programs, which may be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacist Technician Online Colleges
Prior to choosing a pharmacist tech online training program, it's important to realize that most programs do require a portion of the training be carried out in a clinical environment. This is usually fulfilled in a local College pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work with an experienced pharmacy technician so as to acquire some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training can be taken online in your College AK home or via any available computer. This alternative is more convenient for many students, especially for those who continue to work while earning their certificate or degree. And online programs are sometimes less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and course materials may be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is provided. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is critical for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So verify that each online college you are reviewing is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less supervised form of education, then online classes might be the right choice for you.
Enroll in the Best College Pharmacy Technician Program
Receiving the ideal pharmacy technician training is a critical first step to launching your career in a gratifying occupation where helping people with their health is your purpose. In the past, most pharmacy technicians were taught "on the job". Nowadays, most employers can no longer operate this way and much prefer to hire formally trained techs. Training is provided by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacist technician programs include both classroom and clinical work. As we have covered in this article, it's important to choose a school that is accredited and will ready you for certification. This is true both for classes online as well as for those attended on campus. With the appropriate education and commitment you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacist technician in College Alaska.