How to Enroll In the Best Pharmacy Technician College Near El Mirage Arizona
Having decided to earn your pharmacy tech degree or certificate near El MirageAZ, you may be wondering just how to choose the ideal college to receive your education and training. Naturally the initial step is to find schools that offer the diploma or degree that you would like to earn. A number of prospective students begin by looking for schools that are within driving distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are significant factors when selecting a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation should be considered as well. And if you are interested in attending classes at home in front of your computer rather than in a classroom, then finding an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. Let's take a look at the certificate and degree options available, and the advantages of online courses.
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Pharmacy Technician Degree and Certificate Programs
Students wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are generally 2 options to becoming a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which usually can be finished in a year or less. These programs provide an overview to the different facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include classroom and lab training. Numerous programs also require an internship at an approved El Mirage AZ pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which usually requires about two years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does offer a more extensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program should provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate choose to become certified.
Pharmacist Tech Available Certifications
Certification is not required in all states, but many graduates of pharmacy tech colleges choose to become certified so as to be more competitive in the job market. Additionally, many El Mirage AZ employers will only employ a tech that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that provide certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requires that the applicant be 18 years or older, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has at least one year of professional experience. The PTCB just requires that the candidate has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is mandated every two years by each program, which can be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacy Tech Online Colleges
Prior to selecting a pharmacist tech online program, it's important to understand that most programs do require a portion of the training be completed in a clinical setting. This is commonly satisfied in a local El Mirage pharmacy or health center by means of an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work with an experienced pharmacy technician in order to acquire some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed over the internet in your El Mirage AZ home or via any available computer. This alternative is more accommodating for most students, notably for those who continue to work while earning their degree or certificate. And online programs are often less expensive than classroom options. Tuition and costs for driving and study materials can be decreased substantially. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is offered. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is critical for securing certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So check that any online program you are reviewing is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less supervised form of education, then online classes may be the ideal option for you.
Enroll in the Best El Mirage Pharmacy Tech Program
Receiving the best pharmacy tech training is a critical first step to launching your career in a fulfilling profession where helping people with their health is your mission. Traditionally, most pharmacist techs were trained "on the job". Nowadays, the majority of employers can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally educated technicians. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. The majority of pharmacist tech schools include both classroom and clinical work. As we have covered in this article, it's important to choose a college that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This applies both for online classes and for those attended on campus. With the right training and commitment you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacy tech in El Mirage Arizona.