The rapid growth and evolution of the pharmacy profession has created a wide array of opportunities for graduating pharmacists beyond traditional community pharmacy or hospital practice. Management and leadership positions in federal and state healthcare agencies, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, retail pharmacies, academia and managed care organizations increasingly require the pharmaceutical knowledge obtained through a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree combined with financial, organizational, and management skills. In these innovative positions, pharmacists are being called upon to assume responsibilities as executives and administrators in systems providing pharmacist care services to patients.
To endow students with knowledge and skills required to perform the duties required in these decision-making positions, the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy has established 3 joint degree programs: the PharmD/Master of Business Administration (PharmD/MBA), PharmD/Master of Public Administration (PharmD/MPA), and PharmD/Master of Science in Economics (PharmD/MS). This paper describes these joint degree programs.
dual degree; joint degree; education; doctor of pharmacy degree; master of business administration; master of public administration
To evaluate the curricula content of Thai pharmacy schools based on the Thai pharmacy competency standards.
Course syllabi were collected from 11 pharmacy schools. A questionnaire was developed based on the Thai pharmacy competency standards. Course coordinators completed the questionnaire assessing the curricula content.
The curricula for both the bachelor of science in pharmacy degree (BS Pharm) and doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree programs included the minimum content required by the 8 competency domains. The dominant content area in BS Pharm degree programs was product-oriented material. The content ratio of patient to product to social and administrative pharmacy in the BS Pharm degree programs was 2:3:1, respectively. However, the content ratio suggested by the Thai Pharmacy Council was 3:2:1, respectively. For the PharmD programs, the largest content area was patient-oriented material, which was in agreement with the framework suggested by the Thai Pharmacy Council.
The curricula of all Thai pharmacy schools met the competency standards; however, some patient-oriented material should be expanded and some product-oriented content deleted in order to meet the recommended content ratio.
pharmacy education; curriculum; competency; evaluation; Thailand
To compare practice settings and activities of pharmacists with bachelor of science (BS) in pharmacy and doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degrees.
Data from the 2009 National Pharmacist Workforce Survey instrument were analyzed. Multivariate regression was used to examine the association of the PharmD degree with time spent in dispensing and patient care.
The survey response rate by pharmacists was 52%, and 562 usable responses met our inclusion criteria. Sixty-three percent of BS and 39% of PharmD pharmacists were employed in community pharmacies, compared with 21% of BS and 38% of PharmD pharmacists employed in hospital pharmacy settings. Practicing in a community setting had the strongest influence on time spent in dispensing and time spent in patient care. Among respondents with PharmD degrees, a residency was associated with less time in dispensing and more time in patient care.
Time spent in dispensing and patient care were influenced more by practice setting than by educational degree and residency training.
degrees; graduates; pharmacist; workforce
To describe PharmD students' work experiences and activities; examine their attitudes towards their work; examine perceptions of preceptor pharmacists they worked with; and determine important issues associated with career preference.
A written survey was administered to third-year doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students at 8 colleges and schools of pharmacy in the Midwest.
Five hundred thirty-three students (response rate = 70.4%) completed the survey instrument. Nearly 100% of PharmD students reported working in a pharmacy by the time their advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs) began. Seventy-eight percent reported working in a community pharmacy, and 67% had worked in a chain community pharmacy. For all practice settings, students reported spending 69% of their time on activities such as compounding, dispensing, and distribution of drug products.
Most students are working in community pharmacy (mainly chain) positions where their primary function is traditional drug product dispensing and distribution. Having a controllable work schedule was the variable most strongly associated with career choice for all students.
pharmacy student; work experience; work activities; attitudes; career choice
Pharmacy education in China focuses on pharmaceutical sciences, with the bachelor of science (BS) of pharmacy as the entry-level degree. Pharmacy practice curricula in these programs are centered on compounding, dispensing, pharmacy administration, and laboratory experiences, which are the traditional responsibilities for pharmacists. Additional graduate-level training is available at the master of science (MS) and the doctor of philosophy (PhD) levels, most of which concentrate on drug discovery and drug development research. Presently, the emphasis in practice is beginning to shift to clinical pharmacy. With this change, additional degree offerings are being developed to meet the growing demand for clinical pharmacists. There is also interest in developing more clinical skills in practicing pharmacists through additional non-degree training. The Ministry of Education is considering a proposal for an entry-level professional degree of master and/or doctor in clinical pharmacy similar to the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree in the United States.
China; international pharmacy education; clinical pharmacy
To determine the net present value (NPV) and internal rate of return (IRR) for earning a doctor of philosophy (PhD) degree and pursuing careers commonly associated with that degree after completion of a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree compared to entering pharmacy practice directly upon completion of the PharmD degree.
Income profiles were constructed based on 2008 annual salary data. NPV and IRR were calculated for careers resulting from the PhD degree and compared to those of the practicing community pharmacist. Trends in IRR also were examined across career paths from 1982 to 2008. A priori assumptions were developed and sensitivity analyses were conducted.
The NPVs for all careers associated with the PhD degree were negative compared to that of the practicing community pharmacist. IRRs ranged from -1.4% to 1.3% for PhD careers. Longitudinal examination of IRRs indicated a negative trend from 1982 to 2008.
Economic financial incentives for PharmD graduates to pursue graduate school are lacking. The study illustrates the need to consider financial incentives when developing recruitment methods for PharmD graduates to pharmacy graduate programs.
salary; internal rate of return; graduate education; economic analysis; career
Objective. To determine the extent of pharmacoeconomics education in US colleges and schools of pharmacy provided to doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students in 2011.
Methods. E-mails requesting syllabi and information about courses covering pharmacoeconomic topics were sent to all US colleges and schools of pharmacy from which PharmD students had graduated in 2011 (n=103).
Results. Of 87 responding pharmacy colleges and schools, 85 provided pharmacoeconomics education in 2011. The number of hours dedicated to pharmacoeconomic-related topics varied from 2 to 60 per year (mean=20).
Conclusions. Pharmacoeconomics education is provided at almost all US colleges and schools of pharmacy; however, variation in the number of teaching hours and topics covered demonstrates a lack of standardization in the PharmD curriculum. Pharmacy administrators and educators should invest more resources and tools to standardize training in this area.
pharmacoeconomics; pharmacy education; curriculum
Objective. To determine the extent to which pediatrics is taught at US doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) programs and to characterize what is being taught and how.
Methods. A 40-question online survey instrument was sent to accredited and candidate-status US PharmD programs.
Results. Of 86 participating programs (67.2% response rate), 81 (94.2%) indicated that pediatric topics were included in their required classroom curricula (mean, 21.9 contact hours). A pediatric elective course was offered by 61.0% of programs (mean, 25.9 contact hours). Advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs) in pediatrics were offered by 97.4% of programs, with an average of 27 students per program completing this practice experience annually.
Conclusions. Almost all responding programs incorporated pediatrics in their required curricula. Pediatric elective courses provided an adequate mean number of contact hours, but 39.0% of programs did not offer an elective course. One-fifth of students completed a pediatric APPE prior to graduation. Continued expansion of pediatric-focused classroom and experiential curricula across US PharmD programs is recommended.
pharmacy education; pediatrics; curriculum
Pharmacy education in India traditionally has been industry and product oriented. In contrast to the situation in developed nations, graduate pharmacists prefer placements in the pharmaceutical industry. To practice as a pharmacist in India, one needs at least a diploma in pharmacy, which is awarded after only 2 years and 3 months of pharmacy studies. These diploma-trained pharmacists are the mainstay of pharmacy practice. The pharmacy practice curriculum has not received much attention. In India, there has been a surge in the number of institutions offering pharmacy degrees at various levels and a practice-based doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program was started in some private institutions in 2008. However, relatively little information has been published describing the current status of complex pharmacy education of India. In this paper we describe pharmacy education in India and highlight major issues in pharmacy practice including deficiencies in curriculum. The changing face of the profession is discussed, including the establishment of the PharmD program. The information presented in this paper may stimulate discussion and critical analysis and planning, and will be of value in further adaptation of the pharmacy education to desired educational outcomes.
pharmacy education; pharmacy practice; India
Objectives. To examine changes in preprofessional pharmacy curricular requirements and trends, and determine rationales for and implications of modifications.
Methods. Prerequisite curricular requirements compiled between 2006 and 2011 from all doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) programs approved by the Accreditation Council of Pharmacy Education were reviewed to ascertain trends over the past 5 years. An online survey was conducted of 20 programs that required either 3 years of prerequisite courses or a bachelor’s degree, and a random sample of 20 programs that required 2 years of prerequisites. Standardized telephone interviews were then conducted with representatives of 9 programs.
Results. In 2006, 4 programs required 3 years of prerequisite courses and none required a bachelor’s degree; by 2011, these increased to 18 programs and 7 programs, respectively. Of 40 programs surveyed, responses were received from 28 (70%), 9 (32%) of which reported having increased the number of prerequisite courses since 2006. Reasons given for changes included desire to raise the level of academic achievement of students entering the PharmD program, desire to increase incoming student maturity, and desire to add clinical sciences and experiential coursework to the pharmacy curriculum. Some colleges and schools experienced a temporary decrease in applicants.
Conclusions. The preprofessional curriculum continues to evolve, with many programs increasing the number of course prerequisites. The implications of increasing prerequisites were variable and included a perceived increase in maturity and quality of applicants and, for some schools, a temporary decrease in the number of applicants.
prepharmacy curriculum; prerequisites; admissions
Objective. To determine if defined subgroups of pharmacists’ have variability in their expectations for competency of entry-level practitioners.
Methods. Rating scale data collected from the 2009 National Pharmacy Practice Survey were analyzed to determine to what extent pharmacists' degree, practice setting, and experience as a preceptor were associated with the ratings they assigned to 43 competency statements for entry-level practitioners. The competency statements determine the content on the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX).
Results. Pharmacists with a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree rated the co mpetency statements higher in terms of criticality to entry-level practice than did those with a bachelor of science (BS) degree (p< 0.05). Pharmacists working in inpatient settings gave slightly higher ratings to the competency statements than did pharmacists working in outpatient settings, pharmacists without direct patient care responsibilities, and those in academia. However, there were no significant differences among practitioner subgroups' criticality ratings with regard to practice setting. Preceptor pharmacists' criticality ratings of the competency statements were not significantly different from those of non-preceptor practitioners.
Conclusion. Pharmacists exhibited a fair amount of agreement in their expectations for the competence of entry-level practitioners independent of their practice sites and professional roles. As the pharmacy profession embraces patient-centered clinical practice, evaluating practicing pharmacists’ expectations for entry-level practitioners will provide useful information to the practitioners and academicians involved in training future pharmacists. Stakeholders in pharmacy education and regulation have vested interests in the alignment of the education of future practitioners with the needs of the profession.
pharmacist; NAPLEX; competency; performance standards
To assess differences in the practice of pharmacy and in job satisfaction between graduates of a nontraditional doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program and a bachelor of science (BS) in pharmacy program.
Two separate survey instruments were mailed to 293 PharmD graduates and 293 BS graduates.
Two hundred fourteen (73.0%) of the 293 nontraditional PharmD graduates and 189 (64.5%) of the 293 BS graduates completed the survey instruments. Nontraditional PharmD graduates expressed greater satisfaction, both in their current position and with pharmacy as a career, compared to BS graduates. Nontraditional PharmD graduates were more likely than BS graduates to practice in a hospital and have more clinical responsibilities.
Nontraditional PharmD graduates are more likely to have greater satisfaction with their job and with pharmacy as a career compared to BS-trained pharmacists.
nontraditional PharmD degree; job responsibilities; job satisfaction
The trends in the quality of biomedical education in pharmacy schools have witnessed significant changes in the 21st century. With the advent of continuous revision and standardization processes of medical curricula throughout the world, the focus has been on imparting quality education. This pedagogic paradigm has shifted to pharmacy schools. In Saudi Arabia, the concept of “medical and pharmacy education” is relatively new as mainstream pharmacy curriculum and universities were established only half a century ago. This period has seen major changes in the dimension of “pharmacy education” to keep pace with the education systems in the United States and Europe. As our knowledge and perceptions about pharmaceuticals change with time, this motivates educators to search for better teaching alternatives to the ever increasing number of enthusiastic and budding pharmacists. Recently, the academic system in Saudi Arabian Pharmacy has adopted a more clinically-oriented Pharm. D. curriculum. This paper deals with the major changes from the inception of a small pharmacy faculty in 1959, the College of Pharmacy at the King Saud University, Riyadh, to the model of progress and a prototype of pharmacy colleges in Saudi Arabia. The fifty year chronological array can be regarded as an epitome of progress in pharmacy education in Saudi Arabia from its traditional curriculum to the modern day Pharm. D. curriculum with a high population growth and expanding health care sector, the demand for qualified pharmacists is growing and is projected to grow considerably in the future. The number of pharmacy graduates is increasing each year by many folds and to meet the needs the system lays stress upon a constant revising and updating of the current curriculum from a global perspective.
Pharmacy education; Pharmacy curriculum; Pharm. D.; King Saud University; Saudi Arabia
Objective. To evaluate the advanced clinical track, a curricular track designed to prepare doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students for residency training and institutional practice.
Design. The advanced clinical track required completion of elective coursework, an additional advanced practice experience, 8 clinical experiences, and a skills checklist, and participation in a clinical skills competition.
Assessment. Thirty-two graduates of the advanced clinical track were surveyed. Of the 23 respondents, 95% of those who pursued residency training were successfully matched with a residency program. Ninety-one percent of respondents felt that the advanced clinical track increased their confidence and 74% felt it was definitely an advantage when applying to a residency program. All participants agreed that the advanced clinical track met their expectations or goals and would recommend it to other students.
Conclusion. Completion of an advanced clinical track was viewed by PharmD graduates as valuable preparation for residency training and institutional practice and would be recommended to other students.
students; curricular track; curriculum; residency; training; survey
Objective. To determine the perceptions of junior pharmacy faculty members with US doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degrees regarding their exposure to residency, fellowship, and graduate school training options in pharmacy school. Perceptions of exposure to career options and research were also sought.
Methods. A mixed-mode survey instrument was developed and sent to assistant professors at US colleges and schools of pharmacy.
Results. Usable responses were received from 735 pharmacy faculty members. Faculty members perceived decreased exposure to and awareness of fellowship and graduate education training as compared to residency training. Awareness of and exposure to academic careers and research-related fields was low from a faculty recruitment perspective.
Conclusions. Ensuring adequate exposure of pharmacy students to career paths and postgraduate training opportunities could increase the number of PharmD graduates who choose academic careers or other pharmacy careers resulting from postgraduate training.
pharmacy faculty members; residency programs; fellowships; graduate education; careers
To describe the University of Tennessee PharmD/PhD program and assess the prevalence and characteristics of PharmD/PhD programs in the United States.
Survey instruments were mailed in May 2004 to UT dual-degree program participants and deans of US colleges and schools of pharmacy.
University of Tennessee PharmD/PhD students completed more than 30 hours of graduate credit before obtaining their PharmD and 72.2% agreed or strongly agreed that the program met their professional goals. More than 40% of US pharmacy colleges and schools have or plan to have PharmD/PhD programs. A wide variation exists in the level of integration, PhD concentrations offered, entrance requirements, and student benefits. Most schools with PharmD/PhD programs had few students enrolled in the program, but attrition rates were low (<20%) for 69% of the schools.
Dual-degree programs attract and retain pharmacy students in research programs and 47.6% of graduates entered academia and industry.
dual-degree programs; faculty shortage; pharmacy education; PharmD/PhD; graduate education
Historically, academic success has been a major outcome for evaluating the effectiveness of pharmacy education programs and admission criteria. In other words, students’ overall grades and/or specific course grades have determined academic success. However, there is a disconnection between students’ grades and their performance during practicums or in practice. It was postulated that professionalism might be an alternative outcome for measuring graduates’ abilities.
To construct an objective measure of professional attitudes and behaviours for recently graduated pharmacists.
A self-report instrument was developed using the American Board of Internal Medicine’s 6-tenet definition of professionalism. Four months after completing the doctor of pharmacy degree (PharmD), pharmacists were asked to complete an online version of the professionalism instrument. The Rasch Measurement Model (Winsteps, Chicago, Illinois) was used to construct a measure from the responses. Using data that fit the model, the Rasch Measurement Model can build the interval-level measurements needed for future inferential statistical interpretations of ordinal-level data gathered with this instrument.
Twenty-seven PharmD graduates completed the 15-item instrument. The Rasch Measurement Model was used to construct continuous, linear measures of pharmacist professionalism from these instrument rating scale data. Most of the scales functioned without modification, but 2 of the scales functioned only after being collapsed. One person and one item “misfit” the Rasch Measurement Model and were omitted from the analysis. After these adjustments, the data fit the model well. As a measurement tool, this instrument was overwhelmingly unidimensional; the linear model explained 99.9% of the variation in the data using principal contrast analysis. Item separation was 3.64 logits, person separation was 2.31 logits, and reliability was 0.93 by Cronbach’s α.
The Rasch Measurement Model was used to construct an objective measure of pharmacists’ professionalism. The results of this pilot project suggest a promising outcome measure for evaluating pharmacy graduates soon after completion of university.
Rasch Measurement Model; measurement; professionalism; pharmacist; outcome; modèle de Rasch; mesure; professionnalisme; pharmaciens; résultat
Pharmacy compounding involves the preparation of customized medications that are not commercially available for individual patients with specialized medical needs. Traditional pharmacy compounding is appropriate when done on a small scale by pharmacists who prepare the medication based on an individual prescription. However, the regulatory oversight of pharmacy compounding is significantly less rigorous than that required for Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drugs; as such, compounded drugs may pose additional risks to patients. FDA-approved drugs are made and tested in accordance with good manufacturing practice regulations (GMPs), which are federal statutes that govern the production and testing of pharmaceutical products. In contrast, compounded drugs are exempt from GMPs, and testing to assess product quality is inconsistent. Unlike FDA-approved drugs, pharmacy-compounded products are not clinically evaluated for safety or efficacy. In addition, compounded preparations do not have standard product labeling or prescribing information with instructions for safe use. Compounding pharmacies are not required to report adverse events to the FDA, which is mandatory for manufacturers of FDA-regulated medications. Some pharmacies engage in activities that extend beyond the boundaries of traditional pharmacy compounding, such as large-scale production of compounded medications without individual patient prescriptions, compounding drugs that have not been approved for use in the US, and creating copies of FDA-approved drugs. Compounding drugs in the absence of GMPs increases the potential for preparation errors. When compounding is performed on a large scale, such errors may adversely affect many patients. Published reports of independent testing by the FDA, state agencies, and others consistently show that compounded drugs fail to meet specifications at a considerably higher rate than FDA-approved drugs. Compounded sterile preparations pose the additional risk of microbial contamination to patients. In the last 11 years, three separate meningitis outbreaks have been traced to purportedly ‘sterile’ steroid injections contaminated with fungus or bacteria, which were made by compounding pharmacies. The most recent 2012 outbreak has resulted in intense scrutiny of pharmacy compounding practices and increased recognition of the need to ensure that compounding is limited to appropriate circumstances. Patients and healthcare practitioners need to be aware that compounded drugs are not the same as generic drugs, which are approved by the FDA. The risk-benefit ratio of using traditionally compounded medicines is favorable for patients who require specialized medications that are not commercially available, as they would otherwise not have access to suitable treatment. However, if an FDA-approved drug is commercially available, the use of an unapproved compounded drug confers additional risk with no commensurate benefit.
Objective. To implement and assess a pharmacy dermatology and cosmeceutical compounding elective course and its impact on graduates’ careers.
Design. A 3-credit elective course that incorporated classroom lectures on ambulatory dermatologic diseases and cosmeceutical products with case studies, weekly quizzes, and a comprehensive business plan project was implemented in a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program in 2010.
Assessment. Assessment instruments including weekly quizzes, a business plan project, and pre- and post-course tests were used to evaluate course content. Across 3 offerings of the course (2010, 2011, 2012), pre- and post-course test scores improved. Results of a postgraduate survey showed that 54% of respondents worked at a pharmacy offering compounding services, and 57% felt that the course played a significant or very significant role in their counseling on dermatologic conditions.
Conclusions. Assessment methods revealed student learning of course content and the course appeared moderately beneficial to graduates’ early careers. A more longitudinal analysis is needed to assess the course’s impact on long-term career choices, particularly those dealing with compounding of cosmeceutical products.
dermatology; elective course; cosmetics; compounding
To create a self-sufficient, innovative method for providing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) education within a college of pharmacy using a student-driven committee, and disseminating CPR education into the community through a service learning experience.
A CPR committee comprised of doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students at the University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy provided CPR certification to all pharmacy students. The committee developed a service learning project by providing CPR training courses in the community. Participants in the course were required to complete an evaluation form at the conclusion of each training course.
The CPR committee successfully certified more than 1,950 PharmD students and 240 community members from 1996 to 2009. Evaluations completed by participants were favorable, with 99% of all respondents (n = 351) rating the training course as either “excellent” or “good” in each of the categories evaluated.
A PharmD student-directed committee successfully provided CPR training to other students and community members as a service learning experience.
cardiopulmonary resuscitation; basic life support; service learning; doctor of pharmacy student
The practice of pharmacy, as well as pharmacy education, varies significantly throughout the world. In Jordan, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia, the profession of pharmacy appears to be on the ascendance. This is demonstrated by an increase in the number of pharmacy schools and the number of pharmacy graduates from pharmacy programs. One of the reasons pharmacy is on the ascendance in these countries is government commitment to fund and support competitive, well-run pharmacy programs.
In this report we describe pharmacy education in 3 Middle East countries: Jordan, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia. All 3 countries offer bachelor of pharmacy (BPharm) degrees. In addition, 2 universities in Jordan and 1 in Saudi Arabia offer PharmD degree programs. The teaching methods in all 3 countries combine traditional didactic lecturing and problem-based learning.
Faculties of pharmacy in all 3 countries are well staffed and offer competitive remuneration. All 3 countries have a policy of providing scholarships to local students for postgraduate training abroad. The majority of students in Jordan and Kuwait are female, while the ratio of male to female students in Saudi Arabia is even. Students’ attitudes towards learning are generally positive in all 3 countries. In Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, most pharmacy graduates work in the public sector, while in Jordan, the majority work in the private sector.
pharmacy education; Jordan; Saudi Arabia; Kuwait
To determine the extent of experience or exposure pharmacy residency candidates had in various areas of hospital pharmacy practice and to identify any candidate-specific variables that correlated with a larger extent of experience.
Over a 3-year period, a self-assessment survey instrument was administered to 116 postgraduate first-year (PGY1) pharmacy practice residency candidates to evaluate their extent of experience within various areas of hospital pharmacy practice such as patient care activities, drug information, and drug distribution/control.
The residency candidates reported the greatest amount of experience in patient counseling, working with pharmacy databases, taking medication histories, pharmacokinetics, and outpatient dispensing procedures. They had less experience with medical emergencies, parenteral nutrition, and intravenous admixture techniques. Overall, there was no correlation between class rank, advanced pharmacy practice experiences, geographic region, or year of interview and the extent of candidates' experience in any specific area of pharmacy.
PGY1 residency candidates in this sample reported minimal experience in areas necessary for hospital pharmacy practice and this suggests possible deficiencies in the PharmD curriculum. PGY1 residency programs in acute care settings should recognize these educational deficits and assure that residents have exposure to and develop proficiency in critical areas such as medical emergencies, parenteral nutrition, and intravenous admixture techniques.
pharmacy practice; residency; assessment; survey
Objective. To assess the prevalence and characteristics of curriculum in dual doctor of pharmacy (PharmD)/master of public health (MPH) degree programs offered by US pharmacy programs.
Methods. An 18-item survey instrument was developed and distributed online to faculty members at US colleges and schools of pharmacy.
Results. Of the 110 colleges and schools that responded, 23 (21%) offered a PharmD/MPH degree. Common characteristics of these 23 programs included current PharmD program structure (3 + 1 year), early curricular recruitment, small enrollment, and interdisciplinary coursework occurring online and in the classroom. The impact of the dual degree on the curriculum and longevity of the dual-degree programs varied. About 55% of responding programs without a formal dual-degree program reported that additional public health training was available.
Conclusion. Twenty-one percent of colleges and schools of pharmacy offer a combined PharmD/MPH dual degree. Most programs required an additional 1 or 2 semesters to complete both degrees.
pharmacy education; public health; masters of public health; dual degree
Objective. To evaluate the impact of an innovative team-taught elective course on second-year (P2) students’ knowledge and skills relating to the relationship between aromatherapy and pharmacy.
Design. An Aromatherapy Science elective course was offered to P2 students in an accelerated doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program and was designed to provide an elective course experience while focusing on active-learning skills such as group work, student-led presentations, and in-class activities. Lectures were designed to reinforce core curricular threads from the basic sciences within the pharmaceutical sciences department while highlighting key aromatherapy principles.
Assessment. Course evaluations, grades, and student self-assessments were used to evaluate student fulfillment and knowledge gained. Students agreed this hands-on course integrated pharmaceutical science experiences, enriched their pharmacy education, and provided knowledge to enhance their confidence in describing essential oil uses, drug interactions, and key aromatherapy clinical implications.
Conclusion. Students agreed this course prepared them to identify essential oil therapeutic uses and potential essential oil-drug interactions, and interpret literature. The introduction of aromatherapy principles to pharmacy students will prepare a new generation of healthcare professionals on the role of alternative medicines.
elective course; pharmaceutical sciences; aromatherapy; active learning
Objectives. To design, implement, and assess the effectiveness of using a live video teleconferencing system to connect the main campus and a satellite campus during laboratory compounding exercises in a doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program.
Design. A new laboratory facility with identical equipment and supplies to the main campus was built at the satellite campus and teleconferencing equipment was set up. Students on both campuses prepared 20 compounded formulations over a 5-course pharmaceutical care laboratory sequence. Live video teleconferencing was used for students to ask questions and for the lead faculty instructor to observe the students’ technique. Faculty and staff members and teaching assistants facilitated the laboratory sessions on both campuses.
Assessment. The performance of students on assayed products at the main campus was compared with that of students at the satellite campus to ensure program integrity with the compounding laboratory component. The use of video teleconferencing for teaching compounding was successful and no difference in overall student pass rates was seen. The few observed differences in student performance between the 2 campuses were believed to be a result of variations in instructor communication with distant students.
Conclusion. Video teleconferencing can be used successfully to deliver curriculum in laboratory compounding to pharmacy students.
videoconference; distance education; compounding; teleconference