Pharmacy Technician (AAS)

Degree: Associate of Applied Science
Major: Pharmacy Technician
Program Code: 1399

About This Major . . .

The Pharmacy Technician Program is designed to cover both the academic and clinical skills necessary to perform as a pharmacy technician. The program begins fall semester of each year. The Certificate in Pharmacy Technician Program is designed to be completed in one year. For the Associate of Applied Science in Pharmacy Technician Degree, prerequisite courses, including Essential Learning courses, are completed in year two of the program. The application process occurs in the second semester of the first year. Once accepted to the program, the second year prepares students to work as advanced pharmacy technicians and assist in pharmacy operations.  

A pharmacy technician is someone who works beside licensed pharmacists to process prescriptions, dispense medication, perform pharmacy-related functions, and provide information to customers. One of the most challenging aspects of being a pharmacy technician is maintaining knowledge on changes that occur within the field, since pharmacy practice changes on a weekly basis with new generics and new drugs.  

Job duties include dispensing prescription drugs and other medical devices to patients, instructing on their use, performing administrative duties in pharmaceutical practice, and reviewing prescription requests with doctor's offices and insurance companies to ensure correct medications are provided and payment is received. Pharmacy technicians may be employed in retail settings, hospitals, mail-order pharmacies, long-term care pharmacies, specialty compounding pharmacies, nuclear pharmacies, oncology clinics, and insurance companies.   

Pharmacy Technicians who take and pass the certifying examination offered by the PTCB (Pharmacy Technician Certification Board) are certified and authorized to use the initials CPhT to designate their status as Nationally Certified Pharmacy Technicians, which further allows them to apply for licensure in their individual states.   

For more information on what you can do with this major, visit WCCC's Programs of Study page. 

All CMU/WCCC associate graduates are expected to demonstrate proficiency in specialized knowledge/applied learning, quantitative fluency, communication fluency, critical thinking, personal and social responsibility, and information literacy. In addition to these campus‐wide student learning outcomes, graduates of this major will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate familiarity with brand and generic drug names, appearance, manufacturer, dosage forms(s), and route of administration for at least the top 200 drugs.\ (Information Literacy)\
  2. Demonstrate the ability to process a medication order completely, accurately, and efficiently (interpretation, drug product selection, computer warnings, packaging, and labeling, filling a prescription in an outpatient setting, and preparing IV medication using aseptic technique), while working under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist.\ (Specialized Knowledge and Applied Learning)\
  3. Perform accurate pharmacy calculations and proficiently apply computer skills, record keeping and billing in adherence to applicable industry regulations. (Quantitative Fluency)
  4. Uphold legal and ethical standards and adhere to principles of patient confidentiality within the health care and community environment as defined by HIPAA. (Personal and Social Responsibility)

Each section below contains details about the requirements for this program. Select a header to expand the information/requirements for that particular section of the program's requirements. 

To print or save an overview of this program's information, including the program description, learning outcomes, requirements, suggested course sequencing (if applicable), and advising and graduation information, scroll to the bottom of the left-hand navigation menu and select "Print Options." This will give you the options to either "Send Page to Printer" or "Download PDF of This Page." The "Download PDF of This Page" option prepares a much more concise presentation of all program information. The PDF is also printable and may be preferable due to its brevity. 

Institutional Degree Requirements

The following institutional degree requirements apply to all CMU and WCCC Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees. Specific programs may have different requirements that must be met in addition to institutional requirements.

  • 60 semester hours minimum.
  • Students must complete a minimum of 15 of the final 30 semester hours of credit at CMU/WCCC.
  • 2.00 cumulative GPA or higher in all CMU/WCCC coursework.
  • A course may only be used to fulfill one requirement for each degree/certificate.
  • No more than six semester hours of independent study courses can be used toward the degree.
  • Non-traditional credit, such as advanced placement, credit by examination, credit for prior learning, cooperative education and internships, cannot exceed 20 semester credit hours for an AAS degree.
  • Pre-collegiate courses (usually numbered below 100) cannot be used for graduation.
  • Capstone exit assessment/projects (e.g., Major Field Achievement Test) requirements are identified under Program-Specific Degree Requirements.
  • The Catalog Year determines which program sheet and degree requirements a student must fulfill in order to graduate. Visit with your advisor or academic department to determine which catalog year and program requirements you should follow.
  • See “Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees and Certificates” in the catalog for a complete list of graduation requirements.

Specific to this degree:

  • 60 semester hours required for the AAS in Pharmacy Technician degree.

Essential Learning Requirements

(16 semester hours)

See the current catalog for a list of courses that fulfill the requirements below. If a course is an Essential Learning option and a requirement for your major, you must use it to fulfill the major requirement and make a different selection for the Essential Learning requirement.

ENGL 111English Composition I-GTCO13
SPCH 101Interpersonal Communications3
MATH 107Career Math (or higher)3
Other Essential Learning Core Courses
Select one Social and Behavioral Sciences, History, Natural Sciences, Fine Arts, or Humanities course (PHIL 105 strongly suggested)3
BIOL 105
Attributes of Living Systems-GTSC1
and Attributes of Living Systems Laboratory-GTSC1
Total Semester Credit Hours16

Other Lower Division Requirements

Wellness Requirements
KINE 100Health and Wellness1
Select one Activity course1
Total Semester Credit Hours2

Program Specific Degree Requirements

(42 semester hours, must earn a grade of "C" or better in each course.)

PHTE 111Introduction to Pharmacy3
PHTE 112Pharmacy Law and Ethics2
PHTE 114Computer Skills for Pharmacy Technicians1
PHTE 115Pharmacology I3
PHTE 116Institutional Pharmacy3
PHTE 118Pharmacology II3
PHTE 119Community Pharmacy3
PHTE 170Pharmacy Clinical I3
PHTE 171Pharmacy Clinical II2
PHTE 189Review for PTCB National Exam1
PHTE 235Calculations and Compounding Techniques4
PHTE 250Sterile Compounding and Aseptic Technique2
PHTE 255Advanced Practice and Nontraditional Roles2
KINE 203Human Nutrition3
MOAP 147Medical Terminology4
PSYC 233Human Growth and Development-GTSS33
Total Semester Credit Hours42
Plan of Study Grid
First Year
Fall SemesterSemester Credit Hours
PHTE 111 Introduction to Pharmacy 3
PHTE 112 Pharmacy Law and Ethics 2
PHTE 114 Computer Skills for Pharmacy Technicians 1
PHTE 115 Pharmacology I 3
PHTE 116 Institutional Pharmacy 3
PHTE 235 Calculations and Compounding Techniques 4
 Semester Credit Hours16
Spring Semester
PHTE 118 Pharmacology II 3
PHTE 119 Community Pharmacy 3
PHTE 170 Pharmacy Clinical I 3
PHTE 171 Pharmacy Clinical II 2
PHTE 189 Review for PTCB National Exam 1
 Semester Credit Hours12
Second Year
Fall Semester
BIOL 105
Attributes of Living Systems-GTSC1
and Attributes of Living Systems Laboratory-GTSC1
ENGL 111 English Composition I-GTCO1 3
MATH 107 Career Math 3
SPCH 101 Interpersonal Communications 3
Elective Course: Select one Social and Behavioral Sciences, History, Natural Sciences, Fine Arts, or Humanities course (PHIL 105 strongly suggested) 3
 Semester Credit Hours16
Spring Semester
MOAP 147 Medical Terminology 4
PHTE 250 Sterile Compounding and Aseptic Technique 2
PHTE 255 Advanced Practice and Nontraditional Roles 2
PSYC 233 Human Growth and Development-GTSS3 3
KINE 203 Human Nutrition 3
KINE 100 Health and Wellness 1
KINE Activity Course 1
 Semester Credit Hours16
 Total Semester Credit Hours60

Advising Process and DegreeWorks

Documentation on the pages related to this program is intended for informational purposes to help determine what courses and associated requirements are needed to earn a degree. The suggested course sequencing outlines how students could finish degree requirements. Some courses are critical to complete in specific semesters, while others may be moved around. Meeting with an academic advisor is essential in planning courses and altering the suggested course sequencing. It is ultimately the student’s responsibility to understand and fulfill the requirements for her/his intended degree(s).

DegreeWorks is an online degree audit tool available in MAVzone. It is the official record used by the Registrar’s Office to evaluate progress towards a degree and determine eligibility for graduation. Students are responsible for reviewing their DegreeWorks audit on a regular basis and should discuss questions or concerns with their advisor or academic department head. Discrepancies in requirements should be reported to the Registrar’s Office.

Graduation Process

Students must complete the following in the first two months of the semester prior to completing their degree requirements:

  • Review their DegreeWorks audit and create a plan that outlines how unmet requirements will be met in the final semester.
  • Meet with their advisor and modify their plan as needed. The advisor must approve the final plan.
  • Submit the “Intent to Graduate” form to the Registrar’s Office to officially declare the intended graduation date and commencement ceremony plans.
  • Register for all needed courses and complete all requirements for each degree sought.

Submission deadlines and commencement details can be found at

If a student’s petition for graduation is denied, it will be her/his responsibility to consult the Registrar’s Office regarding next steps.