Pharmacy school

Students who plan to apply to pharmacy school need to show that they can handle rigorous coursework, perform well on standardized tests, have a solid understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the profession, and are committed to giving back to their communities.

Academic Requirements

Many pharmacy programs in the United States do not require that you earn a bachelor degree prior to entering pharmacy school.  Instead, they look for a specific set of science, math and general education classes that many students complete in about 3 years.  They also want to see a strong score on the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT).  The required science and math classes will cover much of the content on the PCAT so strong performance in the academics will frequently lead to a high PCAT score.

There are 3 pharmacy schools within the state of Michigan:  Wayne State, Ferris State, and the University of Michigan.  The list of required classes for each program will be similar, but you need to research the specific requirements of any and all programs you intend to apply to.                   

Course prerequisites for Wayne State's PharmD program

Math & Science Requirements

  • BIO 1510 - Basic Life Mechanisms with lab (LS)
  • BIO 2200 - Microbiology with lab
  • BIO 2870 and 3200 - 6 hours in Anatomy and Physiology with at least 3 credits at the upper level
  • CHM 1220+1230 - General Chemistry 1 (PS)
  • CHM 1240+1250 - Organic Chemistry 1
  • CHM 2220+2230 - Organic Chemistry 2
  • CHM 5600 or BIO 3100 - Biochemistry
  • PHY 2130+2131 - Physics 1
  • MAT 2010 - Calculus 1 (MC)

Other Program Requirements

  • STA 1020 - Elementary Statistics
  • ENG 1020 - Introductory College Writing (BC)
  • COM 1010 – Basic Speech (OC)

General Education Requirements

  • Intermediate Composition (IC)
  • Critical Thinking (CT)
  • Social Science (SS) - ECO 1000 or 2010 recommended
  • Historical Studies (HS)
  • Philosophy & Letters (PL)
  • Foreign Culture (FC)
  • Visual & Performing Arts (VP)
  • American Society & Institutions (AI)

You should work with an academic advisor to develop an appropriate plan of work.  Schedule an appointment with one of our experienced Pre-Health Science advisors to discuss topics such as course scheduling prior to the PCAT, creating a balanced workload, or whether or not you want to earn a bachelor's degree along the way.  Other admission criteria can also be discussed.

Many of these courses may also be taken at the community college or other four year schools. Here is an equivalency table with the appropriate courses available at other schools within the state of Michigan.

Professional Development

 While professional development is not required, it does enhance your application.  It also creates opportunities for things like strong letters of recommendation, leadership, and the ability to perform well in an interview.  Professional development includes but is not limited to job shadows, employment, clinical contact hours, student leadership and research.

Some students choose to become a pharmacy technician as part of their professional development. Get more information.