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Top Pharmacy Schools

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The Doctor of Pharmacy degree (PharmD), is the pharmacist’s professional degree. Although you are not required to complete an undergrad degree in order to obtain a PharmD degree, like a Doctor of Medicine (MD), students must complete pre-requisite undergrad coursework – which takes a minimum of 2 years – in order to gain acceptance into a Pharmacy program.

Pharmacy schools in the United States are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.

1. University of California – San Francisco

ucsf thomas a oliver

UCSF School of Pharmacy – Thomas A. Oliver Informatics Resource Center (Photo credit:

The University of California, San Francisco School of Pharmacy program is home to the top ranked Doctor of Pharmacy program in the U.S. Each year, over 1,500 prospective students apply to UCSF’s world class PharmD program, but only 122 admitted each year.

The PharmD program at UCSF School of Pharmacy is a 4 year program that gives graduates the tools they’ll need for a successful career in pharmacy. Graduates boast a 99% pass rate on their pharmacist license exams. Students in the UCSF Pharmacy program all complete a core curriculum, as well as a focus on 1 of 3 specialties: Pharmaceutical sciences, Pharmaceutical Care, or Health Services & Policy Research.

Annual tuition and fees for California residents is approximately $34,803 per year, and $47,048 for non-residents. The approximate final cost of tuition and fees for the duration of the 4 year degree is $139,212 for California residents and $188,192 for non-residents.

Students interested in applying to the UCSF PharmD program must meet complete the following 4 steps:

  • Meet the minimum eligibility requirements, which includes a minimum undergrad GPA of 2.8, basic computer literacy, and completion of pre-requisite courses that include general chemistry, organic chemistry, biology, physiology, physics, calculus, english, and humanities electives.
  • Submit the PharmCAS and UCSF supplemental application by November 1 for acceptance into the following fall semester.
  • Participate in interviews (by invitation)
  • Submit transcripts

2. University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

genetic medicine building

Genetic Medicine Building (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Eshelman School of Pharmacy at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, is one of the very best pharmacy schools in the country. The pharmacy education here is world-class, both at the PharmD and at the PhD level. In addition to being ranked as the 2nd best pharmacy program in the nation by U.S. News, the program is also one of the top 8 schools in terms of NIH funding.

In 2012, the program received approximately 700 applications and accepted 175 students. The average grade point average (GPA) of students accepted into the UNC PharmD program is 3.5. Tuition is $8,523.00 per year, plus $928.99 in fees for residents of North Carolina. The total estimated cost of tuition for the 4 year program is $82,666.67. For out-of-state students, the total tuition costs for the 4 year program is $175,308.59.

Students interested in applying to the UNC PharmD program can apply online at Pharm CAS, as well as a supplemental application sent directly to the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. The admissions community will invite select candidates to interview at the school.

3. University of Minnesota

UMN Pharmacy (Photo credit:

UMN Pharmacy (Photo credit:

The College of Pharmacy at the University of Minnesota is one of the top pharmacy programs in the country. The school features campuses in Twin Cities as well as Duluth, and offers a Pharm.D degree, as well as Masters and Ph.D. programs in Pharmacy.

According to the University of Minnesota website, the average graduate of the Pharm.D. program accumulates $107,000 in student loans over the course of the 4 year program. Tuition per year for Minnesota residents is $23,096 for the first 3 years of the program, and around $34,644 for the 4th year, bringing total tuition costs for the 4 year program at around $103,932.

For out-of-state students, annual tuition for the first 3 years of the program is $34,482, and around $51,723 for the final year. The total approximate tuition cost for the 4 year program is $155,169.

List Of The 10 Top Pharmacy Schools In The U.S.

School Address Phone $/Year (R) $/Year (NR)
University of California, San Francisco – School of Pharmacy 513 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94143-0775 (415) 476-2732 $34,803 $47,048
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill – Eshelman School of Pharmacy 301 Pharmacy Lane, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7355 (919) 966-9429 $9452 $43,827
University of Minnesota – College of Pharmacy 308 Harvard Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612) 624-1900 $23,096 $34,482
University of Texas, Austin – College of Pharmacy 1 University Station A1900, Austin, TX 78751 (512) 471-1737 $15,830 $40,920
University of Kentucky – College of Pharmacy 725 Rose Street, Lexington, KY 40536-0082 (859) 323-6163 $25,672 $46,614
University of Wisconsin, Madison – School of Pharmacy 777 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53705-2222 (608) 263-6234 $12,836 $23,307
Ohio State University, Columbus College of Pharmacy 500 West 12th Ave., Columbus, OH 43210 (614) 292-2266 $10,044 $19,160
Purdue University, West Lafayette – School of Pharmacy 575 Stadium Mall Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2091 (765) 494-6885 $10,678.00 $19,808.00
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor – College of Pharmacy 428 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1065 (734) 764-5550 $19,652 $36,134
University of Arizona – College of Pharmacy 1295 N. Martin, Tucson, AZ 85721 (520) 626-1427 $22,929 $38,341

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One comment on “Top Pharmacy Schools
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