The PCAT is the Pharmacy College Admissions Test used by most pharmacy schools as one of the admission criteria. Luckily, not all pharmacy schools require the PCAT. In fact, there are many students every year who do not have to study nor pay for the PCAT and only apply to schools that do not require it. For these Pharm.D. programs that do not require the PCAT, other factors such as your grade point average (GPA), work experience (not mandatory but strengthens your application), interview performance, letter of recommendations, ECs, and other factors (which I discuss in my other article) determine your eligibility for acceptance.
Pharmacy Schools in the U.S. that do not require the PCAT:
1. California Northstate
2. University of California – San Diego
3. University of California – San Francisco
4. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Boston MA
5. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Manchester NH
6. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences – Worcester MA
7. Oregon State University
8. University of the Pacific
9. Pacific University Oregon
10. University of Southern California
11. Purdue University
12. Touro University – California
13. Washington State University
14. Western University
(Currently all California Pharmacy Schools do not require the PCAT).
Some application tips:
-Find out if the schools you are applying for are on a rolling admission system. If they are, it is imperative that you turn in your application as soon as possible as it will increase your chances of gaining an interview and in turn, a nice envelope with your acceptance.
-Prepare for the interview by going over previous interview questions. These can be found on Student Doctor’s interview feedback section. I have also listed the most common interview pharmacy school questions in another article. During your preparation, do not make your answers sound rehearsed but natural and well-thought out.
-Gain Pharmacy Work Experience. Although not mandatory, what better way to show an admission committee that you are serious about pursuing this career path than working in a pharmacy. You may want to consider obtaining a pharmacy technician license to have more responsibilities at a pharmacy. Without a license, you can still volunteer or work as a pharmacy clerk in most states.
-If you are an international student, you may also want to check to see if the school require the TOEFL by checking the required tests chart on the PharmCAS website.