Pharmacy Program Experiential Learning
Transform knowledge into action during the professional phase of Saint Joseph’s PharmD program — a fully integrated, four-year, competency-driven curriculum. The unique experiential learning component allows you to apply your classroom and laboratory knowledge across diverse real-world practice settings. These pharmacy practice experiences (also called “rotations”) make up 30% of our innovative PharmD curriculum.
Hands-on learning options are available in more than 400 local, national, and international training sites thanks to strong partnerships developed over the 200-year history of the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. Your opportunities for growth and development are virtually boundless.
Your exposure to real-world practice environments starts immediately — in the first month of your first professional year — with our novel Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) program.
Each IPPE is a 50-hour experience (one half-day per week for one semester) emphasizing interprofessional and team-based care. To assure that you are ready for the live practice environment, you’ll prepare in Saint Joseph's state-of-the-art Continuum of Care Simulation Suite (C2S2.)
Community Pharmacy Practice
Over one academic year, you’ll work alongside pharmacists in community practice studying the medication use system and counseling patients on commonly used medications, devices, and self-care issues.
You’ll also complete 15 to 30 hours of service learning by conducting health-related community events and promoting the pharmacy profession.
Ambulatory Care/Advanced Community Practice
Your second year includes one semester working in an outpatient, appointment-based setting with pharmacists and other members of the healthcare team. Along with patient counseling, you’ll perform:
- Medication histories
- Medication reconciliations
- Comprehensive medication reviews
- Physical assessment activities
Each week you’ll spend half a day in a bustling hospital setting learning the inpatient medication use system, including parenteral medication preparation. You’ll also get to see how pharmacists fit into the health care team and system.
Acute Care Pharmacy Practice
You’ll spend one semester working in a fast-paced, high-stakes acute care hospital setting as part of an interprofessional care team. Your responsibilities will include:
- Performing patient case presentations
- Responding to drug information inquiries
- Assisting with therapy decisions
An elective IPPE allows you to spend more time exploring a care setting of your choice and advancing your understanding of the pharmacist’s role there. Or, broaden your horizons with a rotation in a non-traditional practice setting, such as:
- Managed care
- Long-term care
- Home infusion
Your professional phase culminates with the full-time, 36-week Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) Program. Four core required experiences form the PharmD capstone designed to integrate and expand the knowledge, skills, and attitudes gained up to this point:
- Community pharmacy
- Acute care
- Health system
- Ambulatory care pharmacy
You’ll also complete three elective experiences in areas of your choice. Elective APPE’s might include additional core rotations or experiences in other areas of pharmacy including, but not limited to:
- Drug information
- Global health
- Government (Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control)
- Home infusion
- Long-term care
- Managed Care
- Nuclear pharmacy
- Pharmaceutical industry
- Pharmacy education
- Pharmacy law
- Specialty pharmacy
- Subspecialty areas of pharmacy practice (Infectious disease, oncology, pediatrics, etc.)
Partners and Preceptors Wanted
Our Office of Experiential Programs (OEP) provides high-quality, autonomous learning experiences that produce practice-ready pharmacists. Central to this work is the strong relationships OEP faculty and staff maintain with the pharmacy community and pharmacist preceptors — the individuals who enable students to learn in diverse practice settings.
Pharmacists who want to serve as preceptors should contact Scott Greene, RPh, MS, PhD, Director of Experiential Programs (Griffith Hall 114).