Admissions

Technical Standards Policy

One of the primary missions of the College of Pharmacy is to prepare outstanding pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists to meet the health care needs of the state and society and to enhance the delivery of essential pharmacy services for all citizens. The faculty of the College of Pharmacy strive to deliver an education that will, through the graduates of the Doctor of Pharmacy Program, attain the highest levels of this goal. The professional program leading to the Doctor of Pharmacy degree and eligibility for pharmacist licensure requires a certain level of cognitive, behavioral, and technical skill and ability inherent in a professional education. These principles and standards hold for admission, progression, retention and completion of the program. The primary role of the pharmacist is to provide safe and effective health care to the patients served. Patient safety must be considered in the selection and education of student pharmacists. In order to foster patient safety, the College of Pharmacy requires all student pharmacists to demonstrate the ability to meet the minimum standards set forth herein. Standards are developed as criteria to achieve the Doctor of Pharmacy degree in preparation for licensure as a practicing pharmacist and for postgraduate professional training and education in any of the varied fields of pharmacy. Student pharmacists must reasonably contribute to a safe environment through their personal physical and mental health and social behavior. Students must complete the academic program in a reasonable length of time, must be able to acquire a pharmacist intern license by their first semester in the College and maintain the pharmacist intern license during their educational program, and must be eligible for a pharmacist license after they complete the Doctor of Pharmacy program. All students are expected to successfully fulfill the same core educational requirements. Reasonable education-related accommodations will be provided, where possible and within the guidelines of the College of Pharmacy. The five standards listed below describe the essential functions students must demonstrate in order to fulfill the requirements of a general pharmacy education, and thus are prerequisites for entrance to, continuation in, and graduation from the College of Pharmacy. A student must meet or exceed the required aptitude, abilities, and skills outlined below. Certain chronic or recurrent illnesses and problems may interfere with didactic studies, delivering or providing patient care, or compromising patient safety and may be incompatible with pharmacy training or practice.

Technical Standards

Observation: Observation necessitates the functional use of visual, auditory and somatic senses. Students must have the ability to observe and evaluate, in classrooms and patient care areas, demonstrations, experiments and patients, including performing physical assessments. Observation of the technical quality of pre-manufactured as well as compounded medications is essential.

Communication Skills: As appropriate for each stage of their education, student pharmacists must be able to communicate effectively and efficiently in oral and written English, to hear, and to listen to patients in order to elicit information; describe changes in mood, activity, and posture, and perceive verbal as well as non-verbal communications. Students must also communicate effectively and efficiently in oral and written English, to hear, and to listen to faculty, staff, other health care professionals, and preceptors. Communication includes not only speech, but also reading, writing, hearing, and computer literacy. They must be capable of completing professional communication activities in a timely manner.

Motor: Student pharmacists must have the coordination of muscular movement with accommodation if necessary, to undertake the preparation of all routine forms of medication orders, the use of diagnostic equipment for patient assessment, and the direct delivery of patient therapies. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movement, equilibrium, and functional use of the senses of touch and vision.

Intellectual, Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities: As appropriate for each stage of their education, student pharmacists must demonstrate a fundamental and continuing ability to use analytical reasoning to independently and in collaboration with a health care team synthesize knowledge, solve problems and explain health care situations. Information must be obtained, retrieved, evaluated and delivered in an efficient and timely manner. Students must be able to demonstrate good judgment in patient care and assessment and have the ability to incorporate new and changing information obtained from the practice environment.

Behavioral and Social Attributes: Student pharmacists must demonstrate professional and ethical demeanor appropriate to their educational level. Students must be able to function within the regulatory and institutional limits of the educational environment and modify behaviors based on criticism. Students must demonstrate compassion and integrity and a concern for others. This requires responsibility for personal action and emotional stability under the stressful conditions that may come from their professional education. Individuals with questions or concerns about their ability to meet these standards are encouraged to contact the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Diversity. 

Pharm.D. Program Prerequisite Course Requirements

Subject Requirements
General Chemistry I & II (2 labs included) 8 Semester Hours/12 Quarter Hours
Organic Chemistry I & II (2 labs included) 8 Semester Hours/12 Quarter Hours
General Biology I & II (2 labs included) 8 Semester Hours/12 Quarter Hours
Human Anatomy/Physiology I & II* 6 Semester Hours/9 Quarter Hours
Physics 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Microbiology 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Calculus 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Statistics 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
English Composition 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
English Literature/Composition 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Public Speaking/Speech 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Economics 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Psychology 3 Semester Hours/4.5 Quarter Hours
Liberal Arts Electives 9 Semester Hours/13.5 Quarter Hours

Note: All pharmacy prerequisites must be successfully completed with a “C” or better by the start of P1 Orientation, which occurs directly prior to the Fall semester of professional year one.

Entrance Requirements 

Traditional Admissions Pathway

Traditional admission to the College of Pharmacy Pharm.D. program is competitive and based on the applicant’s completion of Pharmacy prerequisite courses, GPA, academic record, letters of recommendation, interview evaluations, PCAT scores, honors/awards, extracurricular activities, pharmacy exposure, student personal statement concerning their goals for a career in pharmacy, (optional) diversity statement, and application(s). Applicants must complete the PCAT and have official scores reported to PharmCAS prior to the end of the application period, on or before the application deadline published on the UofSC College of Pharmacy website in the year of anticipated admission. Applicants will apply via the national PharmCAS system and UofSC College of Pharmacy Supplemental Application.

Applicants must provide an official copy of all college transcripts to PharmCAS at the time of application submission. A second transcript is required to be submitted to PharmCAS upon receipt of final fall semester grades. Subsequent transcripts are required to be submitted directly to the College of Pharmacy as indicated in the supplemental application upon receipt of final spring and summer grades. As a state-supported institution, preference will be given to in-state applicants. In-state students are defined as S.C. residents and any non-S.C. resident attending a S.C. college or university. In-state status as defined here only applies to the admission process. Residency for the purpose of tuition will be determined by the University of South Carolina Legal Residency Office. All accepted students will be required to submit to a criminal background review and drug screen prior to matriculation into the program.

Early Assurance Program Admissions Pathway

Admission to the Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance (GPA) program is competitive and based on the applicant’s admittance into the B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Pre-Pharmacy) major at the Columbia campus of the University of South Carolina, ACT/SAT scores, high school weighted core grade point average, letters of recommendation, interview evaluations, honors/awards, extracurricular activities, pharmacy exposure, student personal statement concerning their goals for a career in pharmacy, (optional) diversity statement, and application(s).

Candidates admitted into this program that successfully complete the maintenance requirements are expected to complete progression applications and matriculate into the UofSC College of Pharmacy Pharm.D. program at the beginning of their third collegiate year. All accepted students will be required to submit to a criminal background review and drug screen prior to matriculation into the Pharm.D. program.

International Admissions to the Pharm.D. Program Policy

The College of Pharmacy is welcoming to international students within the policy described below. Individual Doctor of Pharmacy program applicants who meet these requirements may apply. The College of Pharmacy also considers a limited number of international applicants to the doctor of pharmacy program who have completed at least a 5-year bachelor of science in pharmacy degree and when there is a prior written agreement between the College of Pharmacy and an international sponsoring university, government, or agency (International Partnership Program).

Individual International Applicant Requirements

  • At least 42 hours of Pharm.D. program prerequisite courses must have been completed at a college or university accredited in the United States excluding courses delivered via electronic media, including English language prerequisites.
  • An international student admitted to the College must be proficient in English with a score of at least 550 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) paperbased exam, 77 on the internet-based TOEFL, or 210 on the computer-based TOEFL.
  • Applicants must be eligible to receive a Pharmacy Intern Certificate based on the South Carolina Board of Pharmacy requirements. The Pharmacy Intern Certificate is a requirement for students to complete Introductory and Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences portions of the Pharm.D. curriculum.
  • Applicants who have attended post-secondary educational institutions, colleges or universities outside of the United States are required to submit a professional credential evaluation of all work completed. This is generally referred to as a course-by-course transcript evaluation. A course-by-course transcript evaluation should be sent directly to the College of Pharmacy Admissions Office from the evaluation service, which must be a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES). The web address is www.naces.org. A fee from the applicant is required for the evaluation of credentials. The payment and all contact regarding this process is done directly with the evaluation service of your choice.
  • Applicants currently enrolled in a term or semester should contact the evaluation service for a partial evaluation. A final evaluation will be required prior to enrollment. A fee from the applicant is required for the evaluation of credentials. The payment and all contact regarding this process is done directly with the evaluation service of your choice. Below is the contact information of two companies that frequently provide us with evaluations:

Josef Silny & Associates, Inc. 
International Educational Consultants 
7101 SW 102 Avenue Miami, FL 33173 
Web: www.jsilny.com 
Phone: 305-273-1616 305-273-1616 

World Education Services, Inc. 
P.O. Box 5087 
Bowling Green Station New York, NY 10274-5087 Web: www.wes.org 
Phone: 212-966-6311 212-966-6311 

  • Official documents (photocopies are acceptable) certifying that the student will have sufficient funding to attend the College of Pharmacy for one academic year are required. This evidence will be used to issue the student an immigration document (I-20 or DS-2019) which will be required to obtain the F-1 or J-1 student visa at a US embassy or consulate. Applicants who are permanent residents do not need to provide this information. International students may not be eligible for student loans through the FAFSA process. All international students will be considered out-of-state during the admissions processes and for tuition purposes.
  • The applicant is responsible for obtaining a proper visa, if accepted.
  • Applicants admitted to the Doctor of Pharmacy program must comply with all student policies and requirements as detailed in the College of Pharmacy Academic Bulletin & Student Handbook and all admission procedure requirements, including a background check and heath/immunization policies and University requirements.

International Partnership Program Applicant Requirements

International Partnership Applicants to the College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy program may apply only after a written agreement between the UofSC and the international sponsoring university, government, or agency has been completed. The number of international partnership applicants admitted each year will be determined by the College of Pharmacy, and a signed partnership agreement does not guarantee admission of individual applicants. For admission of international BS degree pharmacists, applicants must meet admission criteria shown below. The College of Pharmacy may grant advanced status, depending on the individual’s academic record or practice experience. International applicants must have graduated within 10 years of the date of application. 

  • An international partnership program student admitted to the College must be proficient in English with a score of at least 550 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) paper-based exam, 77 on the internet-based TOEFL, or 210 on the computerbased TOEFL.
  • Applicants must be eligible to receive a Pharmacy Intern Certificate based on the South Carolina Board of Pharmacy requirements. The Pharmacy Intern Certificate is a requirement for students to complete Introductory and Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences portions of the Pharm.D. curriculum.
  • Applicants who have attended post-secondary educational institutions, colleges or universities outside of the United States are required to submit a professional credential evaluation of all work completed. This is generally referred to as a course-by-course transcript evaluation. A course-by-course transcript evaluation should be sent directly to the College of Pharmacy Admissions Office from the evaluation service, which must be a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES). The web address is www.naces.org. A fee from the applicant is required for the evaluation of credentials. The payment and all contact regarding this process is done directly with the evaluation service of your choice.
  • Official documents (photocopies are acceptable) which certify that the applicant will have sufficient funding to attend the College of Pharmacy for one academic year is required. This evidence will be used to issue the student an immigration document (I-20 or DS-2019) which will be required to obtain the F-1 or J-1 student visa at a US embassy or consulate. Applicants who are permanent residents do not need to provide this information. International students may not be eligible for student loans through the FAFSA process. All international students will be considered out-of-state during the admissions processes and for tuition purposes.
  • The applicant is responsible for obtaining a proper visa, if accepted.
  • Applicants admitted to the Doctor of Pharmacy program must comply with all student policies and requirements as detailed in the College of Pharmacy Academic Bulletin & Student Handbook and all admission procedure requirements, including a background check and heath/immunization policies and University requirements.  

Transfer Policies 

Admission to the Doctor of Pharmacy Program from another College of Pharmacy

Applications for transfer students from an accredited professional pharmacy program into the UofSC College of Pharmacy professional Pharm.D. program will be evaluated on an individual basis. The student applying for transfer must be in good standing in their current Pharm.D. program, the student must complete at least two years of study at the UofSC College of Pharmacy and space must be available in the Pharm.D. program for any application to be considered.

Process to Request Transfer:

Step 1: The following information is required to be submitted to the UofSC College of Pharmacy Director of Admission to begin the transfer evaluation process: 

  • Letter outlining the reason for the transfer request and desired entrance level into the program (i.e., 2nd year, 3rd year, etc.)
  • Unofficial college transcripts from all institutions attended for all college coursework completed including Pharm.D. program prerequisite courses and Pharm.D. courses Official PCAT scores (must include writing score)
  • Resume/CV
  • Three letters of recommendation 
  • UofSC College of Pharmacy Supplemental Application
  • Interview with the Director of Admissions to discuss transfer intent

The Admissions Committee may require a face-to-face interview as part of the transfer student application.

Step 2: Upon approval by the Admissions Committee to move forward with the transfer request after receipt of initial documentation, the following information is required to be submitted to the UofSC College of Pharmacy Director of Admission to determine potential professional year placement:

  • Current program’s Pharm.D. curriculum
  • Course descriptions and syllabi for all completed Pharm.D. courses

Step 3: If the student chooses to continue with a transfer request after notification of professional year placement that would result from a transfer acceptance, the following information must be submitted to the UofSC College of Pharmacy Director of Admissions:

  • Letter from current pharmacy school Dean’s Office stating the student is in good academic and professional standing 
  • Seat Fee
  • Submission of a criminal background review and drug screen

Step 4: The Admissions Committee will evaluate all submitted documentation to determine whether a transfer acceptance will be extended. 

Transfer to Greenville (Prisma Health - Upstate) Campus

A campus located in Greenville, South Carolina is available for student transfer for the third and fourth professional years.  Beginning with Fall 2017 entering students, Greenville campus transfer approval is designated upon acceptance to the Pharm.D. program.  This transfer is binding and documented in a second acceptance letter from the UofSC College of Pharmacy.  Students transferring to the Greenville campus are still considered UofSC students for the purposes of tuition, curriculum, and other academic and professional policies.  Extracurricular and co-curricular opportunities are available on the Greenville campus, but may differ from those available on the Columbia campus.  Not all opportunities on the respective campuses are available to students residing on the distant campus.  Students electing to transfer to the Greenville campus should seek guidance from the Associate Dean of Student Affairs and Diversity regarding these opportunities prior to committing to a Columbia campus-based academic, co-curricular, or extracurricular opportunity.  A required campus-specific orientation will occur prior to each Fall semester.