Current university students or university graduates should reference the following information when preparing to apply to the PharmD program.
|Aug 12, 2019||
Applications will be acknowledged by email approximately one week after submission and further information will be provided.
|Aug 20, 2019||Canadian Professional Health Sciences CASPer (Computer Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics) HS2 test dates begin. Specific details are posted on the CASPer website.|
|Sep 5-22, 2019||
Applications are unavailable during this time. All applications that have been started but not submitted prior to September 5, will be deleted. The application system will be available once again on September 23.
Dec 24, 2019 -
Acknowledgement emails will resume the first week of January 2020.
|Jan 2, 2020||Deadline to submit the January 2021 application and pay the application fee (midnight EST).|
|Jan 20, 2020||Deadline to submit Admission Information Form (AIF).|
|Jan 26, 2020||Canadian Professional Health Sciences CASPer HS2 last test date. Specific details are posted on the CASPer website.|
|Feb 6, 2020||
Deadline to submit the following items (details will be provided in the acknowledgement email you will receive after you apply to the program):
|Apr 9, 2020||Invitations for interviews and FSA sent by email. Those not invited will be notified by email.|
|Apr 16, 2020||Deadline to confirm attendance for your interview and FSA. If you fail to respond by this date, your interview time may be assigned to another applicant.|
|May 1-3, 2020||Interviews and FSA.|
|May 29, 2020||Deadline to submit post-secondary transcripts with final winter 2020 grades.|
|Jun 11, 2020||Admission decisions communicated to all interviewed applicants.|
|Jun 18, 2020||Deadline to accept Offer of Admission.|
|Jan 2021||Classes begin.|
The entry-to-practice Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) is a second-entry professional program requiring that students complete a specific set of courses at the post-secondary level prior to entering the PharmD program. In order to complete the required courses you will normally need to have been enrolled in a university-level undergraduate Bachelor of Science (BSc) program.
The courses required for admission provide a foundation of knowledge that the PharmD program builds upon.
Students can complete the course requirements at any accredited post-secondary institution. No preference will be given to Waterloo students. Students planning to apply from another institution are required to ensure that the courses taken are equivalent to those listed below. To obtain a list of course equivalents for other institutions, prospective applicants are strongly advised to email email@example.com.
Due to the rigorous nature of the PharmD program, the Admissions Committee prefers that applicants show evidence of taking a full course load (five lecture courses per term) during their previous or current BSc studies.
The Admissions Committee discourages applicants from opting to have required courses assessed on a credit/no credit (CR/NCR) basis, where this is permitted by their home institution. For further information on how such courses are handled from an admissions perspective, please consult our Frequently asked admissions questions.
Timeline for completing required courses
You are responsible for completing all the required courses and having your final transcripts submitted to the Registrar's Office by the deadline specified, typically early June. However, you may begin the application process before completing all the required courses for admission.
If you will not have completed all of the required courses for admission by the end of the winter term (April/May), you will be at a competitive disadvantage in the admission selection process. Priority consideration will be given to students who will have met the academic requirements by April/May. Students who will be missing a small number of courses by the end of the winter term are still encouraged to apply if they are otherwise qualified, as each year the Admissions Committee typically releases some offers of admission to strong candidates missing just a few courses. This is conditional on completion of the courses by the end of the spring/summer term (August). As the applicant pool changes each cycle, it is impossible for us to predict how many students will be offered admission while missing any courses. The preference, as stated above, is to offer admission to students who are not missing any courses.
A minimum 75% cumulative overall average is a mandatory academic admission requirement. Grades achieved in every post-secondary course you have taken will be included in this calculation. This includes prerequisite and non-prerequisite courses as well as courses you have completed at other institutions, if applicable.
If you are currently taking required courses at an institution other than Waterloo, we strongly encourage you to email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain a list of course equivalents.
The specific course requirements listed below will ordinarily necessitate a minimum of two full years of university-level science. Note: 0.5 credit is granted for a lecture course completed over a four-month term.
- Introductory Cell Biology (BIOL 130)
- Cell Biology Laboratory (BIOL 130L)
- Genetics (BIOL 239)
- Fundamentals of Microbiology (BIOL 240)
- Physical and Chemical Properties of Matter (CHEM 120)
- Chemical Reaction Laboratory 1 (CHEM 120L)
- Chemical Reactions, Equilibria and Kinetics (CHEM 123)
- Chemical Reaction Laboratory 2 (CHEM 123L)
- Introductory Biochemistry (CHEM 237)
- Basic Organic Chemistry 1 (CHEM 266)
- Organic Chemistry Laboratory (CHEM 266L)
- Basic Organic Chemistry 2 (CHEM 267)
- Organic Chemistry Laboratory (CHEM 267L)
- Introductory Statistics for Scientists (STAT 202)
Any ENGL course (0.5 credit) that requires a significant amount of reading, critical thinking, analysis, and writing. The writing assignment(s), exclusive of exams, must comprise a minimum of 30% of the final course grade.
The following are considerations for prospective applicants when choosing a course to fulfil the English academic requirement for admission. The course must:
- be offered by the English Department (with rare exceptions)
- require a significant amount of reading, critical thinking, analysis, and writing
- have writing assignments, exclusive of exams, that comprise a minimum of 30% of the final course grade
Courses that are focused on drama, social media, technical report writing and other such content will not be accepted.
If in doubt about the acceptability of a specific course, applicants are encouraged to email the course outline to us for confirmation.
Courses at the University of Waterloo that would satisfy this admission requirement include:
High school English courses (such as IB, AP or British A-level) cannot be used to satisfy this requirement, but instead may be used to fulfil one of the four half-credit Social Science/Humanities requirements.
- 2.0 full credits (four half credits) from different subject areas in Social Sciences and/or Humanities; no more than 1.0 full credit (two half credits) in any one subject area; no more than one additional 0.5 credit (one half credit) in English may be used to satisfy this Social Sciences and Humanities requirement.
In general terms, social sciences and humanities disciplines do not focus on natural sciences, mathematics, computing or finance. Instead, they focus on society and how humans interact and develop as a culture.
Although not a comprehensive list, the following represents the broad range of courses that can normally be used to fulfil the requirements for Social Science and Humanities courses. Courses within these subject areas that are too heavily focused on science or math will not be acceptable in fulfilling this admission requirement. If in doubt about the acceptability of a specific course, applicants are encouraged to email the course outline to email@example.com for confirmation.
- Fine Arts
- Italian Studies
- Jewish Studies
- Language courses
- Native Studies
- Peace and Conflict Studies
- Political Science
- Religious Studies
- Sexuality, Marriage and Family
- Speech Communications
- Spirituality and Personal Development
- Women’s Studies
Pharmacy Admission Information Form (AIF)
All applicants must complete a Pharmacy Admission Information Form (AIF). In addition to your academic record, the AIF requests information about you and your involvement in activities. The information you provide will be kept confidential and will be used by our Admissions Committee in their decisions. For more information on how to complete the AIF, please go to the Quest Student Information System website.
As part of the Admission Information Form (AIF), you will be asked to provide us with the name and contact information for an individual of your choosing who is prepared to submit a reference on your behalf. This individual should preferentially be a pharmacist, so that they can comment on your suitability for the profession. Alternatively, a physician or nurse may act as your reference. In any case, the individual completing this form cannot be a relative of yours. A link to the online completion of the Reference Letter Form will be sent automatically to the individual providing the reference after the AIF is filled out and submitted by the applicant.
Computer Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics (CASPer) Test
CASPer is an online test which assesses for non-cognitive skills and interpersonal characteristics that we believe are important for successful students and graduates of our pharmacy program, and will complement the other tools that we use for applicant screening. All applicants to the PharmD program at the University of Waterloo are required to complete an online assessment of personal characteristics (CASPer) to assist with our selection process. Successful completion of CASPer is mandatory in order to maintain admission eligibility.
In order to take CASPer, you will be responsible for securing access to a computer with audio capabilities, a webcam, and a reliable Internet connection on your selected test date. CASPer can be taken practically anywhere that you can satisfy the aforementioned requirements. No exceptions will be provided for applicants unable to take CASPer online due to being located at sites where Internet is not dependable due to technical or political factors.
The CASPer test is comprised of 12 sections of video and written scenarios. Following each scenario, you will be required to answer a set of probing questions within a fixed amount of time. Each response is graded by a different rater, giving a very robust and reliable view of personal and professional characteristics important to our program. No studying is required for CASPer, although you may want to familiarize yourself with the test structure at www.takeCASPer.com, and ensure you have a quiet environment to take the test.
To schedule your CASPer test, go to www.takeCASPer.com and register using your 8-digit UW ID number which is assigned by the Registrar’s Office upon receipt of your application. You will be provided with a limited number of testing dates and times, which are posted on the CASPer website under the Canadian Professional Health Sciences category.
When reserving your test date and time, please pay particular attention to the final test dates available for the Canadian Professional Health Sciences CASPer test for the current PharmD admission cycle. There will be no exceptions or additional test slots scheduled. Please use an email address that you check regularly as there may be updates to the test schedule.
CASPer test results are only valid for the current admissions cycle for the specified program(s). Applicants who have taken the test in previous admissions cycles are therefore required to re-take the test that is specific to the current admission cycle for the PharmD program at uWaterloo.
Please direct any inquiries regarding the test to firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you may use the chat bubble in the bottom right hand corner of your screen on the www.takeCASPer.com website.
Based on information available to the Admissions Committee (academic background, Admission Information Form, CASPer test score, and Reference Letter Form), selected individuals will be invited to participate in an interview. During the interview, the applicant will have the opportunity to meet with various members of the School and community of pharmacy professionals. Additionally, applicants will be required to complete a Fundamental Skills Assessment (FSA) as part of the interview process. Details will be provided in the interview invitation.
Fundamental Skills Assessment (FSA)
A pharmacist requires excellent intellectual qualifications along with a proficient ability to communicate with patients and colleagues from various professions. They must also have a strong foundation in math skills. On the interview day, you will be tested for your:
- reading comprehension,
- ability to communicate your views in written form, and
- basic mathematical skills (using the metric system)
This test will be conducted with a time limit. Further information regarding this test will be provided in the interview invitation.
Adequately demonstrating your motivation for and insight into the profession of pharmacy through work or volunteer experience in a pharmacy setting is important. This experience is also expected to yield a positive reference from a practicing pharmacy professional, as described above. In addition to this, volunteer experience in the community and work experience are important considerations, in light of the PharmD program's focus on both community service learning and coop experiential education. Full-time work experience, for some period of time, is ideal.