Experiential Education

The Experiential Education component of the Doctor of Pharmacy program is the opportunity for students to step out of the classroom and academic laboratory and into a variety of real-world practice settings, putting the knowledge they have gained to use in hands-on pharmacy practice experiences.

These practice experiences, also known as rotations, make up 30% of the pharmacy student’s curriculum. 

Leveraging our more than 130-year history in pharmacy education, we have helped secure practice experiences for students at approximately 600 sites across the Northeast and throughout the world (click the links on this page to learn more about our global practice experiences). 

These experiences not only expand students' knowledge of pharmacy, but often lead to job opportunities after graduation.

Practice sites include community pharmacies, hospitals, ambulatory care clinics, research laboratories, managed care facilities, academia, government agencies and the pharmaceutical industry.

Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experiences (IPPE's)

IPPE's are designed for pharmacy students in their first three professional years of the Pharm.D. program. By the time they enter their final professional year, students will have gained 320 hours of “hands‑on” practice experiences by meeting the IPPE requirements detailed below. 

Each pharmacy student is required to complete four (4) rotations which total eight (8) credits and 320 hours. All IPPE requirements must be met prior to beginning APPE's.

Community Pharmacy (three weeks)

Under the direct supervision of a registered pharmacist, students will demonstrate proficiencies in a skill set that includes: dispensing prescriptions, utilizing patient profiles, monitoring drug interactions, pharmacy operations, and basic communication with patients and physicians. This IPPE is scheduled following the first professional year (P1).

Public Health (one week)

This course will give students the opportunity to promote the availability of preventive and wellness programs within a targeted population, participate in the development of public health policy or provide a community service, communicate effectively and efficiently with policy makers, interdisciplinary health care providers and members of the community, and apply research processes and quality improvement strategies to the provision, development, or analysis of preventive and wellness programs. This IPPE is scheduled following the first professional year (P1).

Institutional (three weeks)

This course is designed to introduce students to the hospital setting. Students will be introduced to distributive and clinical functions in a hospital pharmacy, including review of medication orders, observation of the order entry process and preparation of sterile products, performing patient-specific calculations necessary for dosing medications, and presenting a patient case. This IPPE is scheduled following the second professional year (P2).

Patient Assessment (one week)

This course will expose students to the basic day-to-day operations of a patient-care setting. Students will gather and organize information from patient medical charts, conduct patient interviews to obtain an accurate medication history, identify medication related problems, present a patient case in a structured format (e.g., SOAP note) and prepare responses to drug information inquiries. This IPPE is scheduled during the third professional year (P3).

Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPE's)

APPE's are "hands-on" experiences designed to build upon the academic base obtained in the classrooms, laboratories, and IPPE portions of the Pharm.D. program.

APPEs span an 11-month period (May-April) and are subdivided into modules. One week of an APPE is equal to one semester hour of academic credit.

Each student is required to complete 36 weeks (i.e., 36 credits). APPEs are scheduled by the College and typically require the student to be at the practice site at least eight hours daily.

Each student must successfully complete four (4) required core modules and two (2) elective modules.

Required Core APPEs

Students must complete each of these rotations for a total of 24 credits. All required core rotations must be completed in the United States (in accordance with ACPE Standard 14.5).

  • Community Pharmacy (six weeks)
  • Ambulatory Care (six weeks) *
  • Institutional Pharmacy Operations (six weeks)
  • Inpatient Care (six weeks) *

* Inpatient Care and Ambulatory Care rotations are direct patient care rotations in settings including but not limited to: Anticoagulation; Diabetes Care/Endocrinology; Emergency Medicine/Toxicology; Family Practice; Home Care; Internal Medicine; Nephrology; Neurology; Nutrition; Primary Care; AIDS; Cardiology; Critical Care; Geriatrics; Hematology/Oncology; Infectious Diseases; Pediatrics; Psychiatry; Pain Management

Elective APPE's

Students must complete two of these six (6) week rotations for a total of 12 credits. Elective APPE's may be completed outside of the U.S. (in accordance with ACPE Standard 14.5).

Antimicrobial Management; Clinical Toxicology; Consultant Pharmacy; Drug Programs Management; Drug Discovery and development; Governmental Affairs/Regulatory; Health Information Management; ome Infusion Pharmacotherapy; International Pharmacy; Long-term Care; Medication Safety; Nuclear Pharmacy; Pharmaceutical Industry; Pharmacoepidemiology; Pharmacy Administration; Pharmacy Association Management; Pharmacy Database Management; Pharmacy Education and Research.

Notice of Background Check

Individuals who have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor may be denied certification or licensure as a health professional. Information regarding eligibility for licensing in a particular jurisdiction may be obtained from the appropriate credentialing body of that jurisdiction.

Rotation sites may deny a student's participation in the experiential program because of a felony or misdemeanor conviction, failure of a required drug test, or inability to produce an appropriate health clearance, which would result in delayed graduation or in the inability to graduate from the program.

Because institutions hosting experiential education may require a criminal background check in order to permit students in their facility, the College will conduct background checks on all students entering clerkship, using the Health and Human Services/Office of Inspector General (HHS OIG) database.

The goal of the HHS OIG background check web site is to identify individuals and businesses excluded from Federally funded health care programs. This includes individuals convicted of fraud related to the federal programs, patient abuse, licensing board actions and default on health education assistance loans.

If a student is identified via use of this database, the matter is referred to the Executive Committee of ACPHS for action.

Division of Experiential Education

Laurie L. Briceland (ALB)

Diana Foster (ALB)
Program Administrator

Cindy Jablanski (ALB)

Teresa Lubowski (ALB)
Assistant Director

Sandra Rosa (VT)

Terrence Towers (ALB)