How to Select the Best Pharmacy Technician School Near El Mirage Arizona
Having made the decision to attain your pharmacy tech degree or certificate near El MirageAZ, you may be thinking about just how to pick the ideal school to get your education and training. Usually the first step is to locate schools that offer the degree or certificate that you are interested in. A number of future students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While tuition and location are important factors when picking a college, they are not the only ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation should be evaluated as well. And if you prefer attending classes at home by means of your computer rather than in a classroom, then finding an accredited online program will also be included in your vetting process. Let's take a look at the degree and certification options available, and the benefits of online courses.
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Pharmacy Tech Degrees and Certificates
Students desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician college are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically two alternatives to becoming a technician regardless if you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be finished in a year or less. These programs provide an overview to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include classroom and lab training. Numerous programs also include an internship at an accepted El Mirage AZ pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which usually takes about two years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does offer a more in depth education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Either program can provide the proper amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to get certified.
Pharmacy Tech Available Certifications
Certification is not required in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech schools elect to become certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, many El Mirage AZ employers will only hire a tech that has earned certification. There are two organizations that offer certification:
- National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
The NHA requirements are that the applicant be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has finished a training program, and has one or more years of professional experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is mandated every 2 years by each program, which can be satisfied by performing 20 hours of continuing education.
Pharmacist Technician Online Schools
Before selecting a pharmacy tech online college, it's necessary to understand that most programs do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is commonly fulfilled in a local El Mirage pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students often will have the benefit of working with an experienced pharmacy tech in order to get 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 convenient for most students, particularly for those who continue to work while earning their degree or certificate. And online programs are frequently less expensive than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and study materials may be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive 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 program you are looking at is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less structured form of education, then online training may be the ideal option for you.
Find the Right El Mirage Pharmacy Technician School
Finding the right pharmacy tech training is a crucial first step to starting your career in a rewarding profession where helping people with their wellness is your mission. In the past, many pharmacy technicians were taught "on the job". Nowadays, most pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained technicians. Training is furnished by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. The majority of pharmacy technician schools incorporate both classroom and clinical work. As we have addressed in this article, it's important to select a program 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 proper education and determination you can realize your goal of becoming a pharmacy technician in El Mirage Arizona.