Appendix E: Timeline for Doctor of Pharmacy Program Applicants

Applying in 2 Years (typically fall of Sophomore Year)


  • Look through the Pre-Health Handbook.
  • Choose courses very carefully to meet pharmacy schools' prerequisite requirements but avoid overloading yourself with difficult courses (grades are much more important than they were freshman year).


  • Meet with your advisor once and keep him/her abreast of your progress and problems.
  • Take a look at the PCAT schedule online and plan when you will take the exam in the future.


  • Begin to plan summer experiences. Where will I get my shadowing experience?


  • Meet with your advisor to discuss summer plans such as research, shadowing, and classes.
  • Actively set up summer experiences early in the semester before the mid-term crunch.


  • Register for the PCAT at It is offered in July, September, October, November, and January.
  • Register for a PCAT preparation course or buy PCAT study books.


  • This would be a good time to shadow a pharmacist.

Applying in 1 Year (typically fall of Junior Year)


  • Touch base with your advisor to bring him or her up to date on your plans. If you have any questions regarding course selection, contact your advisor early. Course decisions are very important this year.


  • Look at the current Pre-Health Handbook to check for changes from last year that might affect you.


  • Touch base again with your advisor.
  • Talk to your pre-health advisor about your PCAT scores. Do you need to retake the examination?
  • Begin summer planning; shadowing is a must if you have not done so already.
  • Make good course selections for second semester.


  • Complete a draft of your personal statement.
  • Approach trusted professors for letters of recommendation. One of your letters should come from a pharmacist. Make sure that all of your letter writers have a current copy of your resume and any other information that will assist them in writing their letters.
  • Make a tentative list of pharmacy schools to which to apply.
  • Update your resume.


  • Meet with one of pre-health advisors to outline your personal essay for PharmCAS application.


  • Complete a draft of your PharmCAS personal statement.


  • Ensure that all writers of your recommendation letters know when and where (PharmCAS) to submit their letters.
  • Submit transcript request forms to the CSA office to be sent directly to PharmCAS.
  • Complete your personal statement and have it reviewed by your pre-health advisor.

In the Year of Application


  • Check periodically to see if letters of reference have been submitted.
  • Send polite reminders to recommendation writers if their forms have not been submitted.
  • Draw up a flow grid or neat checklists to chart the progress of each of your applications from initial contact through interviews. Create folders for each school.


  • PharmCAS will begin accepting applications on July 15th.


  • Save money for interview trips.


  • Begin calling schools to ensure that applications are complete.
  • Talk with your advisors about potential questions that will be asked during your interviews, review strengths and weaknesses in your application, and discuss how to deal with your weaknesses.


  • This is interview season.


  • Interviews continue into the spring semester. But if you do not receive any interviews, alternate plans should be considered. Talk to a pre-health advisor before re-applying.


  • Acceptances sent!
  • Things to consider when choosing your school is quality, location, and financial aid package.


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