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Information for

PharmD Bridging Program PHARM 495 and PHARM 496

Frequently asked questions

Last updated: April 24, 2017


What will I learn in PHARM 495 and PHARM 496?

PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 are advanced courses offered via distance education through the Centre for Extended Learning.

PHARM 495 focuses on advanced therapeutics and clinical decision-making and is coordinated by Professor Laura Beattie and Dr. Jeff Nagge.  The course includes case scenarios and facilitated online tutorials.

PHARM 496 focuses on advanced professional practice skill development and is coordinated by Dr. Rita Dhami.  It includes a workshop component (located at the School of Pharmacy or other location, depending on student demand and feasibility, and conducted on one or more weekends).  The course includes current topics in scope of practice with an emphasis on Ontario and examples from around North America.

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How do I decide which course to take first?

Either PHARM 495 or PHARM 496 can be taken as your first course in the Bridging Program.

PHARM 495

  • Course structure:
    • Problem-based learning (PBL) in an online environment.
    • Class will be divided into groups of 6 to 8 students.
  • Time commitment:
    • 3 hours every 2 weeks to “meet” online with your group, then work independently to meet learning objectives.
    • Approximate time required 7 to 10 hours per week (including synchronous online tutorials).
    • Timing of the online tutorial to be determined by group members and teaching assistant/facilitator.
    • N.B. - during the first week of each term, students may need to be flexible in order to accommodate an introductory "meeting" with their tutor. 
    • In deciding when to enrol in PHARM 495, please keep in mind that you must have flexibility in your work and personal schedules in order to participate in mandatory 3-hour tutorials every second week. Generally, the dates and times of these sessions are determined by group consensus and are typically held in the evening, e.g., 7:00 to 10:00 pm ET. In extreme cases, the timing of the tutorial may need to be decided by a group majority vote. If you have a concern that your schedule will not permit you to be available for these mandatory tutorials, it may be preferable to enrol in PHARM 495 during a semester when you will have more flexibility.

PHARM 496

  • Course structure:
    • Independent weekly study modules which students work though asynchronously.
    • Weekly small-group discussion boards will offer the opportunity to discuss the material and patient case scenarios.
    • In-person clinical skills workshop, offered once per term.
  • Time commitment:
    • 2 to 4 hours per module (per week) + time for independent study and participation on discussion boards.
    • Approximate time required 7 to 10 hours per week (all asynchronous). Participation is required on a weekly basis.

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Will I have to take time off from work to complete these courses?

PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 are provided in a self-study format to be completed on a part-time basis; as such, participants do not have to interrupt their full-time work schedule.

PHARM 496 includes a mandatory practical workshop over one weekend.  Further information about the workshop is available below.

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Do I need to come to Waterloo for these courses?

No, both PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 are offered online.  

PHARM 496 has a workshop that requires you to come to the School of Pharmacy one weekend during the term.  Further information about the workshop is available below.

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Do I need to take both courses?

Yes, you need to complete both PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 before you can enroll in the clinical rotation courses.

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When are these courses available?

These courses are available year-round, subject to sufficient demand. You must take either PHARM 495 or PHARM 496 during your first term in the Bridging Program.  After your first term, you have flexibility in when to take your second didactic course as both courses are available throughout the academic year.  While you can complete the didactic requirements anytime throughout the Bridging program, please note that the maximum allowable time to complete the program will be 3 years from your date of enrollment.  It is strongly recommended that your study plan take into consideration the completion of all five (5) courses within 3 years from when you start the program.

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How long is each course?

PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 are each one full term (16 weeks) in length.

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Can I take PHARM 495 and PHARM 496 at the same time?

No, due to class size restrictions, at this time, students may only take one (1) course at a time, i.e. cannot take two courses in a single term.

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What are the technology requirements for these online courses?

LEARN

Course content for PHARM 495 and PHARM 496, as well as some orientation materials for the overall Bridging Program will be available through the university’s learning management system, LEARN.

The Centre for Extended Learning provides system requirements suggestions for using LEARN.


Adobe Connect

Tutorials in PHARM 495 will occur online using Adobe Connect (using the university’s software license accessed via LEARN).  While no individual software purchase is necessary, there are specific hardware requirements for appropriate use of this software, listed below.

PHARM 495 required equipment:

Windows OS:

  • Windows 7 or higher
  • Minimum dual core processor (Quad Core i5 or i7 recommended)
  • At least 2GB Ram (4GB recommended)
  • 100Mbps or higher wired network port - “A Wired internet connection to the router is highly recommended”
  • Wireless G or higher Wireless card (Wireless “N” or “AC” recommended)
  • High Speed Internet connection at least 10Mbps recommended
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 8, 9, 10, 11; Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome “Microsoft Internet Explorer 11 is recommended”

Mac OS:

  • Mac OS X 10.7.4 (Lion) or higher
  • Minimum dual core processor (Quad Core i5 or i7 recommended)
  • At least 2GB Ram (4GB recommended)
  • 100Mbps or higher wired network port - “A Wired internet connection to the router is highly recommended”
  • Wireless G or higher Wireless card (Wireless “N” or “AC” recommended)
  • High Speed Internet connection at least 10Mbps recommended
  • Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome “Mozilla Firefox is recommended for Mac OS. Safari is NOT recommended”

Note:  the success of any group’s online tutorial session may be limited by the person with the “least suitable” equipment, i.e. inadequate network connection, lack of headset microphone etc.

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When will the workshop be held in PHARM 496?

Spring 2017 workshop:

  • Date: Saturday, June 10, 2017 (ONE DAY ONLY)
  • Location: School of Pharmacy, Kitchener, Ontario

Fall 2017 workshop:

  • Date: Saturday, October 28 OR Sunday, October 29, 2017
  • Location: School of Pharmacy, Kitchener, Ontario

Visit the Directions to the School of Pharmacy page for directions and parking information. 

NOTE: There is currently extensive road construction around the School. Check Ion construction updates for details and detours.

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If you have any questions about our PharmD Bridging Program, please contact us.

General inquiries or admissions:
Rosemary Killeen,
Director, Distance Education and Continuing Professional Development

Clinical rotations:
pharmacybridging@uwaterloo.ca