Students looking to earn a pharmacy degree online have plenty of options to choose from. Degree programs are available at both the master's and doctoral levels, with almost all coursework being available online. Due to the nature of the field, programs may require on-campus sessions or clinical rotations. Prospective students will need at least a bachelor's degree, although different programs feature different requirements. Some may require a graduate degree, prior coursework, or work experience. Students typically need a computer with speakers, a microphone, adequate memory, and access to plug-ins such as Java.
University of Florida (UF)
Pharmacy degree programs at UF are available to students with some college experience. The school offers an online Master of Science (M.S.) in Clinical Pharmacy primarily for international students, as well as a Master of Science in Pharmacy in Medication Therapy Management designed for licensed pharmacists. The M.S. in Clinical Pharmacy program doesn't lead to pharmacist licensure. Both programs include online lecture-based coursework and hands-on training opportunities conveniently located in a student's neighborhood or workplace.
The school also offers a professional Doctor of Pharmacy. This unique hybrid program allows licensed pharmacists to pursue the industry-standard doctoral degree in pharmacy. Students may be able to complete this program in three years. Each year, students will need to visit the university to complete on-site clinical requirements.
Information and Requirements
The master's programs combine online study, lectures and research assignments with on-campus laboratory work; discussion groups run both on-campus and at off-campus sites. Students may listen to lectures on CDs and DVDs, then complete and submit lessons and assignments online.
Students in these programs must schedule personal time with their instructors, but may do so on campus or at an at a pre-determined off-campus location. In addition, students can also interact with professors and other students through virtual forums and conference calls.
Common Master's-Level Courses
Courses in the master's-level programs include the following:
- Drug regulations in the U.S.
- Using and abusing statistics
- Research ethics
- Drug production and distribution
- Evidence-based medicine
- Pharmacy health care systems
California State University - East Bay
CSU offers a Pharmacy Technician Certificate. This self-paced online program consists of one course, which can be completed in as little as 180 days. Students complete the clinical course at local clinics and hospitals and through a partnership with Walgreens.
Information & Requirements
Students learn about different drugs and drug combinations, as well as ways to correctly measure the proper amount for a prescription. They also complete clinical rotations, where they gain job experience assisting licensed pharmacists in prescription preparation, stocking medications, and customer service. Students who complete the pharmacy technician program online at California State University (CSU) are eligible for professional certification and can pursue entry-level positions.
Common Course Topics
The single course covers topics such as the following:
- Pharmacy law and ethics
- Pharmaceutical terminology
Started in 2001, Creighton University's online Doctor of Pharmacy Program includes the same material as the traditional campus program, but can be completed from any location.
Information and Requirements
Faculty interactions are conducted through the use of conferencing software, chat rooms, discussion boards, and telephone, among other media sources. The program is fully accredited, and courses occur on a semester basis. Though coursework can be completed online, students must attend on-campus clinical rotations which provide information that simply cannot be taught in an online setting.
Course topics in this program include:
- Patient data collection
- Medication therapy assessment and delivery
- Patient monitoring and compliance
- Patient outcomes evaluation and documentation
Schools that offer an online pharmacy graduate degree program include the University of Florida, California State University, and Creighton University. Students gain knowledge related to drugs, stocking medications, and measuring drugs for prescriptions.