Choosing a pharmacy school that is right for you can be a very big decision to ensure the right fit. There are many different programs that you can choose from when deciding on a pharmacy education that vary from state to state.
GPA And Pharmacy School
Pharmacy schools often consider many aspects when deciding on candidates. The GPA is an important part of the transcript that is submitted to an admissions committee, but it is not the only thing that will be considered. The GPA is often broken down as an overall GPA and a Science GPA. For example, my alma mater accepted students with an overall GPA above 3.0 and a Science GPA above a 3.4. Some schools will have lower GPA requirements for in state residents as compared to out of state residents.
You will also notice that some PharmD programs require a bachelor degree while others have only pre-requisite class requirements. Most often the pre-requisite requirements will be science based.
The Pharmacy College Admissions Test
The Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT) is an important aspect of your transcript that will be considered by the admissions committee.
This is an exam that is used to examine the abilities and skills that would be required for pharmacy school. Some schools do not require a PCAT score, but it is becoming a more common requirement. This exam is about a four hours that tests basic scientific knowledge, math, reading comprehension, and writing skills.
Many schools will be focusing on the percentile score, which is a comparison to how you scored compared to others taking the PCAT. For example, if your percentile was 40 then you have scored better than 40 percent of other PCAT scores.
Applying To Pharmacy School
To apply to a majority of pharmacy schools submit an application through PharmCAS. This website is great because you can apply to multiple schools all in one place. It is also a great resource to research different pharmacy programs in your area and the requirements, application fees, and deadlines for each. This website has many tools to help you stay organized during the application process.
Once the schools that you have applied to review your application the last step will be the interview. This is when both you and the school determine if it is a good fit.
Every pharmacy program that you apply to will have different standards and requirements.
Lastly, another option that many students decide to take would be an international program. Many international schools will partner with a hospital or pharmacy in the United States. This allows these programs to have classes take place in the international country and the hands-on rotational experiences will be completed in the United States. These programs will often have lower application requirements.
So in summary, yes you can find pharmacy programs that will accept a 3.4 GPA. Start by looking in your home state as requirements are not as strict for in state residents and tuition is not as expensive. The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) has great information about admission requirements for schools all over the country.