***California Northstate University College of Pharmacy (CNUCOP) has been granted approval by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) to transition to a three-year accelerated Doctor of Pharmacy program. The Class of 2027, entering in the Fall of 2024, will be the inaugural class of the three-year PharmD program.***

Notice: California Northstate University does NOT accept or otherwise participate in any federal direct student loan program (Title IV) funding, any federal veterans' benefits program (Title 38) funding, or any other government student loan program funding.

How to Apply

California Northstate University College of Pharmacy (CNUCOP) uses the Pharmacy College Application System ((PharmCAS)), a centralized application service for pharmacy programs, for applicants seeking to apply to the accelerated three-year Doctor of Pharmacy program. An electronic application must be submitted to PharmCAS. Admission Scholarships are available to students based on their academic standing at the time of application. The application deadline for entry in the fall of 2024 is June 3, 2024.

General Admission Information

The Admissions Committee of California Northstate University College of Pharmacy uses a holistic review process to evaluate each application, thereby taking into account a variety of factors, in addition to an applicant’s academic standing, including but not limited to work or research experience, socioeconomic status, resilience, extracurricular activities, and other non-academic related activities. California Northstate University College of Pharmacy does not require a Bachelor’s degree for entry into our program. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma, GED, or its equivalent. A minimum of 40 semester units (54 quarter units) of prerequisite credit must be completed prior to matriculation into the program. Prospective students are encouraged to carry full course loads (15 units per semester) during their undergraduate studies. AP exam scores of 3 or higher will be accepted for prerequisite coursework and/or general education requirements. AP credit must be reported by subject and credit and must be mailed directly from your institution or testing services to the College of Pharmacy by using college code: 7306. Additionally, the AP exam must have been taken no greater than ten years from the date of matriculation. Please note, AP exam scores will only count towards the first course in a series of science courses. For instance, an AP exam score of 3 or higher for chemistry would only count towards the General Chemistry I requirement. Please review the General Admission Requirements table for a list of all prerequisite coursework that must be completed prior to matriculation.

The Admissions Committee evaluates applicants for admission on an individual basis. Applicants are required to have completed all prerequisites prior to entering the program; however, applicants may interview with our program before the applicant has completed all prerequisite coursework. Prerequisites may be substituted with courses the Admissions Committee evaluates to be equivalent. One or more members of the Admissions Committee review and evaluate each completed admission packet to determine if an invitation for an interview should be extended.

Interview Information

All qualified applicants must interview for admission into the Doctor of Pharmacy program. A modified multiple mini interview (MMIs) approach is used, which consists of two separate interviews with faculty where the applicant is asked a situational-based question. A writing sample is also a required component of the interview. The interview is designed to assess a variety of factors including interest in the program and profession of pharmacy, oral and written communication skills, maturity, dedication, critical thinking, and an assessment of the applicant’s ability to complete the program successfully and advance in the field of pharmacy. The interview may also be used to determine if the student has the English language proficiency needed to successfully complete the program. Interviews are conducted virtually via Zoom; however, prospective applicants are encouraged to visit our campus and can contact COPadmissions@cnsu.edu to schedule an on-campus appointment.

Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation are required as part of the application and must be written/typed on official letterhead and include contact information for the person writing the letter. Additionally, the letter must be sent directly from the reference to PharmCAS. A letter of reference from a science professor and healthcare professional or supervisor is preferred. If the student has been out of school for over three years, a letter from a recent supervisor and a healthcare professional can be submitted in place of the letter from a science professor. Letters of recommendation from family or friends are not acceptable. A Teacher's Assistant letter is accepted, if approved and signed by the science course professor.


Students who matriculate into the Doctor of Pharmacy program must have all official transcripts for all courses taken since high school on record in the Admissions Office by September 30th.

Financial Assistance and Transportation Information

Please note financial assistance may be limited for non-U.S. applicants. Personal transportation, such as a vehicle, will be necessary to participate in experiential education at clinical sites.

General Admissions Requirements

Course Title Semester Hours Quarter Hours
General Chemistry I with lab 4 6
General Chemistry II with lab 4 6
Organic Chemistry I 3 4
Organic Chemistry II 3 4
Organic Chemistry I or II lab 1 1
General Biology I 3 4
General Biology II 3 4
General Biology I or II lab 1 1
Human Physiology (if taking a combined Anatomy and Physiology course, Anatomy and Physiology I and II both must be taken to fulfill the Physiology course requirement) 3 4
Calculus or Statistics 3 4
Public Speaking, Oral Communication, or Course focused on English Speaking or Presentations 3 4
English Composition I 3 4
General Education Course:
Psychology preferred; other courses in the Humanities or Social and Behavioral Sciences will be accepted
3 4
General Education Course:
Economics preferred; other courses in the Humanities or Social and Behavioral Sciences will be accepted
3 4
Total Semester/Quarter Hours 40 54 (est.)


In addition to the requirements described above, all prerequisite coursework must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be completed at a regionally accredited US institution or its equivalent abroad.
  • Science and math courses, along with any AP credits, must have been completed no greater than ten years from the planned date of matriculation. Exceptions to this requirement may be made based on a case-by-case basis if the applicant has been applying the skills learned in the older course(s) directly to their position or research.
  • Must be completed with a grade of C- or higher.
  • All prerequisite coursework taken from non-US institutions (including Canada) must be submitted to the World Education Services (WES), Inc. for an evaluation of coursework. WES evaluations should be sent directly to PharmCAS.
  • Canadian and other foreign applicants who can obtain a visa are considered for admission and must submit a foreign coursework evaluation (WES) directly to PharmCAS, if the applicant is interested in entering the first year of the pharmacy program. International applicants who have not completed at least two years and at least 48 semester units (61 quarter units) at a US college or university may be required to take the TOEFL IBT or IELTS exam, with a minimum score cut-off of 80 and 6.5, respectively. Additional information pertaining to international applicants is available by visiting: https://pharmacy.cnsu.edu/admissions/international.php.
  • General Education requirements are waived for applicants who have or will be receiving a Bachelor's degree or US equivalent prior to matriculation in the pharmacy program.
  • Qualified applicants will be invited for an interview.
  • All prerequisites, including general education requirements, must be completed before New Student Orientation, which is held one week prior to the first day of class; however, applicants may still interview prior to the completion of all prerequisites.
  • For admission-related questions, please contact COPadmissions@cnsu.edu.
  • Other Degrees Programs Offered at California Northstate University

    California Northstate University College of Pharmacy students are eligible to pursue additional degree programs offered by California Northstate University, based on their academic standing, including a Master of Pharmaceutical Science degree, a Master of Healthcare Administration degree, and a Doctor of Medicine degree. Additionally, an Executive Master of Business Administration program, offered by Sacramento State University, is available to CNUCOP pharmacy students. More information about additional degree programs is available by emailing COPadmissions@cnsu.edu.

    Information for International Applicants

    All international applicants wishing to enter the first year of the Doctor of Pharmacy program must meet the same admission requirements as US applicants and must apply through PharmCAS for consideration. International applicants wishing to transfer into our Doctor of Pharmacy program should contact COPadmissions@cnsu.edu.

    Information for Transfer Students

    Students seeking a transfer into our Doctor of Pharmacy program should review the Transfer Student Policy and complete a Transfer Application, both of which are available at https://pharmacy.cnsu.edu/admissions/transfer.php.

By partnering with PioneerRx Pharmacy Software, our program allows students to learn in a real-world environment using the most installed software for independent pharmacies. Students enhance their clinical and functional skills by training in a pharmacy system that is innovative, robust, and feature-rich.