How Long Do You Need To Go To School To Become A Pharmacist?

In our latest question and answer, the pharmacist discusses the length of time you need to go to school to become a pharmacist in the United States.


I have a question about the pharmacist profession. I'm currently in school to be a pharmacy technician and I’ll be done with school by this time next year. I was just wondering how long would I have to go to school if i wanted to become a pharmacist?

Asked by dontcallmesid On Jul 29, 2018

Answered by
Medical Content Reviewed By PharmacistAnswers Staff

On Jul 30, 2018

The length of time you go to school to become a pharmacist (in the United States) varies by the type of program you are accepted into. In general, the fastest you can go through school to become a pharmacist is 5 years, but most are 6 year programs. Even after becoming a licensed pharmacist, you have the option to participate in residency training, which can add 1-2 years in educational training.

We wrote an article discussing the various types of pharmacy programs, which can be found here: Can You Complete Pharmacy School in 5 Years? That article discusses the various programs, which include:

  • 0-6 programs
  • 4 year professional programs (completed after undergraduate work) and can include 'Early Assurance' programs
  • 2-3 (Pre-professional) Accelerated Programs

We have also written articles that go into more detail about how to become a pharmacist and the difference between hospital and retail pharmacy.

About the Pharmacist

Dr. Brian Staiger Pharm.D

Dr. Brian Staiger is a licensed pharmacist in New York State and the founder of He graduated from the University At Buffalo with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2010. He has been featured in numerous publications including the Huffington Post as well as a variety of health and pharmacy-related blogs. Please feel free to reach out to him directly if you have any inquiries or want to connect! He's answered thousands of medication and pharmacy-related questions and he's ready to answer yours! Office: 716-389-3076

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