Admission to the PharmD Program

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 four-year Doctor of Pharmacy program. An electronic application must be submitted to PharmCAS. Students applying before our Priority Application Deadline of January 4th, 2023, may be eligible for a Priority Admissions Scholarship, based on their academic standing.

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.

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 or PCAT. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma, GED, or its equivalent. A minimum of 44 semester units (61 quarter units) of prerequisite credit must be completed prior to matriculation into the program. Science and math prerequisite coursework must be designed for science majors. Prospective students are encouraged to carry full course loads (15 units per semester) during their undergraduate studies. AP exam scores of 3 or higher, with 4 preferred 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 be offered interviews 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.

All qualified applicants must interview for admission into the Doctor of Pharmacy program. A modified multiple mini interview (MMIs) approach is used. 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 to complete instruction in the English language since English is the only language of instruction.

All accepted students who matriculate must have all official transcripts for all courses taken since high school on record in the Admissions Office by September 30th. 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 with lab 4 6
Organic Chemistry II with lab 4 6
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 3 4
Public Speaking or Oral Communication 3 4
English Composition I 3 4
English Composition II 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 44 61 (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 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 the World Education Services (WES), Inc. for an evaluation of coursework. WES evaluations should be sent directly to PharmCAS.
  • 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 are required to take the TOEFL IBT or IELTS exam. Exam scores are only valid for a two year period from the date of the exam. The minimum TOEFL IBT and IELTS scores, along with minimum section requirements, are provided below.
  • The minimum total TOEFL IBT score is 88 with minimum section score requirements of:
    • Reading: 20
    • Listening: 20
    • Speaking: 25
    • Writing: 23

    The minimum total IELTS score is 6.5 with minimum section score requirements of:

    • Reading: 6.5
    • Listening: 6.5
    • Speaking: 7.5
    • Writing: 6.0
  • 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. For questions, please contact
  • Qualified applicants will be invited for an interview.
  • All prerequisites, including general education requirements, must be completed prior to Orientation, which is held one week prior to the first day of class; however, applicants may still interview prior to the completion of all prerequisite coursework.

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.