Navigating the Pharmacy School Application Process

The PharmCAS application cycle begins in mid-July for each admission cycle. For example, if you hope to begin pharmacy school in Fall 2017, you would begin the application process in the summer of 2016. You may start your PharmCAS application as soon as it is available. The Early Decision deadline is in September of each year. The first regular application deadline date is in early November and the last regular application deadline is in the following March. The PharmCAS application cycle will officially close in April, unless otherwise announced.

Here’s a tutorial on how to complete the online application.

PharmCAS will process your application once you submit your completed application, required fee, and all official transcript(s) to the Service. Also send letters of reference, foreign transcript evaluation reports, and test scores (PCAT and TOEFL) to PharmCAS by the application deadline, if required by your designated pharmacy degree program. PharmCAS processing may take up to four weeks once all required materials are received. PharmCAS will begin forwarding complete applications to pharmacy degree programs in August of each admission cycle.

Your designated pharmacy degree programs may also require you to send additional fees and/or application materials directly to the degree program, such as such as supplemental applications, references, and official transcripts. Failure to submit all required materials as instructed may jeopardize your eligibility for admission consideration.

Pharmacy schools also conduct interviews to further evaluate a candidate’s potential to becoming a professional pharmacist. The primary purpose of the interview is to assess your communication skills, but they are also interested in your problem-solving skills and your ability to think critically. The interview format varies with each school, but may include interviews with faculty, community pharmacists, current students, meetings with student affairs staff, a writing portion with an essay, and tours of the pharmacy school facilities. Some schools are using the Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) format.

Participating degree programs will report admission decisions to applicants and PharmCAS throughout the application cycle. Decisions on early applications are made in mid-October. Whereas, all decisions are made by mid-March.