PharmD Undergraduate Student Handbook

Pharmacy building wide angle

The PharmD Undergraduate Student Handbook is a resource containing essential information about the PharmD program. It outlines details about program requirements, the School of Pharmacy itself, academic policies and regulations, professionalism, and other key general information.

All PharmD students are responsible for knowing the content of the handbook and required to complete the PharmD Undergraduate Student Handbook Acknowledgement form.

Questions about the handbook may be directed to

The PharmD program has academic and experiential elements that are all degree requirements.

See below for electronic, academic, and experiential requirements and other information specific to the program.

Electronic requirements for participation in the PharmD program

Laptops and Examplify

  • The School of Pharmacy uses a cloud-based exam software called ExamSoft to administer exams. Within the ExamSoft software, there is a program called Examplify, which will be installed on your personal device in order to take secure electronic exams.

  • Students must have a compatible electronic device in order to participate in exams and mandatory course activities. At a minimum this includes a device with a functioning webcam and microphone to participate in online activities/assessments as required.

  • Laptop recommendations.
  • Questions about electronic exams at the School of Pharmacy should be directed to

Email Responsibilities

  • All official communications from the University and the School of Pharmacy are sent to student’s Waterloo email address accounts. These accounts will be assigned during matriculation in November before you begin pharmacy school and are available for the duration of your enrolment including after graduation.


  • Students may only use non-programmable calculators during tests
  • The recommended models are:
    • TI 30X II (Either the 'S' (solar) or 'B' (battery) version of this model are acceptable)
    • Casio fx-300MS
    • Sharp EL 531X (EL 531XG, 531XH, and 531XT are also acceptable, as they are the same model with different power supplies)
    • Staples BD-107i
  • Students using calculators different than those listed above may have their calculator inspected during exams to ensure they are not programmable and aren't storing any notes
  • Any calculator found in use outside of these parameters will be removed from the student during the exam and replaced with an approved calculator provided by the School. The student can complete the exam, however the calculator in question will be reviewed by the Director of Admissions & Undergraduate Affairs and possibly the Associate Dean of Science, Student Relations for any potential academic integrity violations.

Online Course Material

  • Pharmacy instructors will most often use the Waterloo LEARN system for distribution of course materials, providing additional resources, and communicating with pharmacy students. Students should ensure they have access to LEARN at the start of their first academic term.

Living arrangements and transportation requirements for participation in the PharmD program

The PharmD program is an in-person program which requires students to live in the Waterloo Region or within a reasonable commuting distance. Those travelling via public transit are expected to adequately plan ahead to ensure they are able to arrive on time for mandatory academic activities.

Academic requirements for participation in the PharmD program

The PharmD program has various academic requirements that students must familiarize themselves with prior to beginning the program. Information has been provided to educate students on course sequence and descriptions, important dates, timetables, class schedules, and graduation.

Course Descriptions

Important Dates

  • Last day to add/drop courses, start/end dates of academic terms, exam period dates, and more are listed on the Registrar's Office's Important Dates web page.
  • A calendar of special events is maintained in the LEARN system, where online course material is found. SOPhS maintains a calendar of events that is distributed regularly.


  • Timetables are published three months prior to the beginning of the academic term. Exam schedules are published at the end of the first month of the term.
  • Instructor names and rooms are not published on the website. Please reference course outlines and course schedules (available on LEARN) for this information.

Schedule of Classes

  • The Undergraduate Schedule of Classes outlines class schedule information similar to the Timetables page. The Timetables page includes more detailed information specific to pharmacy students.

Graduation and Convocation

Experiential requirements

The University of Waterloo School of Pharmacy is unique among pharmacy schools in Canada in that we offer a robust experiential learning program which includes: 

Co-operative Education

Three paid co-op work terms are completed throughout the program and allow students to explore a variety of practice settings.

Patient Care Rotations

Take place during the last two terms of the program (4A and 4B) and comprise of direct patient care clinical placements completed in one of 14 regions throughout Ontario. These are academic courses that have associated tuition and fee requirements

Community Service Learning (CSL) milestone

CSL enables students to better understand their role in serving vulnerable populations and in improving community health and wellness. Through this interaction, students add to their own knowledge of various socio-economic factors that impact health and look for ways to improve services, structures and systems to alleviate differences in health outcomes between groups.

Interprofessional Education (IPE)

IPE’s goal is to provide students with opportunities to learn with, from, and about other health care professionals and students in order to prepare them to improve patient outcomes through interprofessional collaboration. 

Post-Admission Requirements

There are a number of non-academic requirements or post-admission requirements that must be completed prior to proceeding to the first co-op term. These requirements are mandated by the Ontario College of Pharmacists (OCP) and/or many co-op employers and clinical placement sites. Students are held individually accountable for submission of required documentation, and should review the current requirements.