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Pharmacy Technology

About the Program

Program Description

The Pharmacy Technician program is a concentrated nine-month health career program that is interesting, diversified, and demanding.

  • The program is designed to help you develop the knowledge and skills required to perform in a specialized area.
  • Many subtle qualities besides knowledge and skills are required to complete the program successfully.
  • An important personal quality that will be closely evaluated throughout your educational process is your ability to work as part of a team and to interact successfully with department or hospital personnel and pharmacy patrons.

Program Mission

The mission of the Foothill-De Anza Pharmacy Technician program is in accord with the mission of the Foothill-De Anza Community College District:

The Pharmacy Technician Program is dedicated to the integration of clinical, didactic, and laboratory objectives to successfully develop student’s cognitive, psychomotor, and effective domains necessary for the safe and efficient preparation of pharmaceuticals in hospital and retail pharmacy settings.

Program Goals

  1. A primary goal of the program is to graduate competent Pharmacy Technicians.
  2. The clinical competency skills of the graduating student will be at the level of an entry-level technician as defined by the clinical institutions of the community and national standards.
  3. The graduating student will be eligible to apply for registration with the California State Board of Pharmacy.
  4. Students wishing to continue with their education may take the required coursework that would lead to an Associate in Science Degree in Pharmacy Technician.

Program Accreditation

The program is recognized by the California State Board of Pharmacy and accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP).

The Foothill Pharmacy Technician Program is modeled after the ASHP Model Curriculum for Pharmacy Technician Training. The Model Curriculum for Pharmacy Technician Training was developed by the ASHP under the guidance of a steering committee comprised of representatives from the American Pharmacists Association, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, the Pharmacy Technicians Educators Council, and the American Association of Pharmacy Technicians. The program was accredited in 2001 and runs through 2019.

The college is accredited by the Western Association for Schools and Colleges.

Criteria for Successful Program Completion

  1. All students will complete the courses in the curriculum set forth by the program in sequence and with final grades of “C” or better.
  2. All students will complete the courses in the Pharmacy Technician curriculum set forth by the program and will be awarded a Certificate of Completion in Pharmacy Technician by the Program Directors.
  3. When the above criteria (II) are met, the student will be eligible to apply for registration as a pharmacy technician with the California State Board of Pharmacy.
  4. Students have the option of completing the general education requirements set forth by the college and will be awarded the Associate of Science Degree in Pharmacy Technician.
  5. After successful program completion and graduation, the student may choose to take an optional national PCT (Pharmacy Certified Technician) examination.

Program Objectives

To ensure that clinical competencies are met, the student is expected to satisfy the following criteria as terminal objectives before completion of the program.

The graduate shall be able to:
  1. Use oral and written medical and pharmaceutical communication.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of human anatomy, physiology and pharmacology.
  3. Perform basic mathematical functions and dosage calculations utilizing metric, apothecary, household and avoirdupois systems.
  4. Understand the setting, duties and responsibilities of a pharmacy technician.
  5. Exhibit knowledge of pharmaceutical standards, ethics, laws and regulations.
  6. Prepare and label sterile solutions using aseptic technique.
  7. Maintain inventory and stock orders.
  8. Enter data into the computer and generate labels and fill prescriptions and medication orders.


Punctuality and reliability are vital characteristics for individuals entering a health career.

  • Daily attendance and participation are mandatory.
  • Habitual tardiness and absenteeism will be evaluated early and if not corrected during a probationary period a student will be dismissed from the program.

Financial Information

The pharmacy technician program is a 9-month program starting in the fall quarter only.

  • The course work is intense with very detailed information presented over a brief period of time.
  • It is highly recommended that students arrange their finances, work schedules and personal commitments with careful consideration.
  • We suggest that students work no more than 2-3 days per week while enrolled in the program.

See the College Enrollment fees page for standard college costs. In addition to the standard college fees, you will be responsible for additional program fees listed below.

Overall, the cost for California residents is approximately $1,900 (subject to change without prior notification).

Clinical and State Registration Requirements

State registration is required to work as a pharmacy technician in California.

  • A drug or alcohol offense, sexual misconduct, DUI, or felony crime may prohibit registration with the state.
  • The application for registration includes a background check.
  • This will require two completed fingerprint cards and a signed statement as to whether the applicant has ever been convicted of, or pled no contest to, a violation of any law of a foreign country, the United States, any state or any local ordinance.
  • Questions regarding registration and any convictions should be directed to the California State Board of Pharmacy in Sacramento.
  • A social security number is also required by the state for registration and may be required for placement at various hospital and clinical externship sites.

NOTE: This information may be extremely important in identifying potential problems with placement at clinical sites and with state registration.

Registration with the California State Board of Pharmacy is required to work as a pharmacy technician in the state of California.

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