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Prerequisites

      NOTE: Refer to Santa Ana College's Catalogue for updated information for each academic year.

BEGINNING THE PROGRAM:  Entry-Level Classes

To enroll in the Pharmacy Technology program, students are not required to take any entrance examinations or complete any prerequisite courses. 

To be successful, entering students should have the following:

  • a good command of spoken English
  • good listening skills
  • the ability to follow verbal and written directions
  • good basic math skills
  • the ability to use a basic function calculator
  • good reading and study skills
SAC offers a variety of English as a Second Language classes, including a Pronunciation Skills Lab (N50), for students needing additional language development. Students enrolled in N50 will have the opportunities to improve their verbal communication skills, including practice on job interviews. 

Students who need additional preparation in basic mathematics should enroll in Math N05 or N06.

The SAC Success Center can assist students with listening and other basic skills.  The college also offers many workshops to assist students. 
   

The entry-level classes in the Pharmacy Technology program consist of the following:

 
*Note:  Either Body Systems I or Body Systems II may be taken first.  Body Systems I is offered in the Spring (and sometimes during the summer).  Body Systems II is offered in the Fall only.
 
There are no specific English or math prerequisites for any of the entry-level classes.  However, all of these classes have a strong verbal component.  Quiz and exam questions are often given verbally, even in the Pharmacy Calculations class.
 
 

APPLICATION LEVEL:  Lab Classes

Courses in the middle level of the Pharmacy Technology program allow you to apply information from the entry-level classes to pharmacy situations in a controlled lab setting. This level includes three lab classes:
 
Before enrolling in any of the lab classes, you must have successfully completed the entry-level classes, including PHAR 048, 054, and either 051 or 052.  In addition, you must meet the TYPING prerequisite.
 
Prerequisites for the entry-level classes may be satisfied by earning a score of 75% or higher on the challenge exams. Challenge exams are designed for students who have previous knowledge from coursework or work experience.
 
Contact the department chairperson, Dr. KC Huynh, at (714) 564-6650 to schedule a challenge exam.
 

EXPERIENTIAL TRAINING:  Externship

Experiential training, or externship, allows you to apply the information you have learned and the technical skills you have developed in an actual pharmacy setting. Before beginning the Externship (PHAR 072) portion of your training, you must successfully complete the related lab class: 
  • PHAR 056 prior to the outpatient rotation
  • PHAR 057 and PHAR 056 prior to the outpatient and or inpatient rotation
  • PHAR 060 prior to the sterile products rotation
 
You must also satisfy the SPEECH COMMUNICATIONS prerequisite.
 
Prior to externship placement, every student must demonstrate that he or she is free from tuberculosis (TB).  TB clearance is documented by either a negative skin test or a chest X-ray that shows no active disease. TB clearance must be re-submitted on an annual basis for continuing externs. 
 
Some pharmacy sites may require additional health screenings or background checks prior to externship placement.  TB clearance and any additional screenings are completed at the student's expense.
 
Students must also score a minimum of 95% on the TRADE-GENERIC EQUIVALENTS test before externship placement. The Trade-Generic Equivalents test is a matching test of 200 drugs selected by the Pharmacy Technology Advisory Committee. 
Note: If there is a time-lapsed or gap of 1 year from the semester of the lab’s class completion (for example Spring 2011 to Spring 2012 would be considered 1 year gap), a student must enroll in Skills Lab class prior to externship placement. The number if unit(s) required, and type of skills lab assignments will be determined by the department (instructor and chair). The student must pass competency testings if deemed necessary by the instructor and department chair.  If the student fails the competency testing, the student will NOT be placed on externship, permanently.