A Question About Being a Licensed Pharmacy Technician.

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Medical Education

I want to be a pharmacy technician. I have a medical background and training. Do I have to take the pharmacy technician course in order to take the certification examination?

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PTCB Practice Test, Certification Exam, PTCB Study Guides
by: Anonymous

No, you do not have to complete a course in order to take the certification exam. It sounds like you have significant amount of experience in the medical field. Maybe transitioning to a job as a pharmacy technician will be a good fit.

The PTCB disallows certain candidates from taking the PTCE. Eligibility requirements must be met. You must not have had any felony convictions. Pharmacy or drug related convictions, even misdemeanors must be disclosed to the PTCB. You can’t have any registration or state licensing issues; meaning regulation violations or misconduct in your role as a technician will disqualify you from sitting for the exam. Now that we’ve covered the eligibility requirements, the next step is to consider the exam questions.

What types of questions will be on the certification exam? Two-thirds of the questions relate to assisting the pharmacist and helping customers. Pharmacy and medication inventory control questions are on the exam too, along with pharmacy practice questions. Knowing which types of questions you will be asked will help you gauge your readiness for the certification exam. It will actually also help you prepare for another test: a practice test.

Once you feel that you are ready, you should consider taking a practice test.

The PTCB offers an official practice test. The cost of this practice test is $29, and there are a total of 90 questions on it. Test takers get a maximum of 110 minutes to finish the exam. This time limit is the very same limit as the real exam. Taking this practice run may help you to identify any problem areas you might have. It will show you where you need to study more to prepare for the real thing. It will give you a good “feel” for what taking the test will be like. According to the PTCB website, there is the possibility that they will be adding more versions of the practice test in the future.

This new, enhanced practice test from the PTCB allows you 24-hour access to your exam after you have taken it. How is this important and why do they do this? This is important because you are able to view the answers (correct and incorrect) and provide a post-test review. While reviewing your practice test, explanations of each exam question are provided, so you can learn the correct answers.

If you do well on the practice test, then, by all means, schedule your exam. If not, spend some time going over the questions you got wrong. Review the explanations and practice similar problems to prepare you for the real thing. Maybe you could ask someone who is a certified technician (or even a pharmacist) to help you study.

This may be a good time to think about getting a PTCB study guide. There are a number of good guides out there.

Pharmacy math is a big component to your future job as a technician as well as a large part of both types of the Certification exam. (The PTCE and ICPT versions.)

Good luck!

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