All You Need to Know About the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT)

What is a Pharmacy College Admission test?

The Pharmacy College Admission test (PCAT) is a standardized test that those interested in attending a Pharmacy College take. Areas tested by this test include both general academics and the scientific knowledge relevant to pharmacology.

Pharmacy prerequisites keep on changing from to time which explains why the test is revised from time to time to ensure it covers all the grounds of pharmacology.

Components of the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT)

The Pharmacy College Admissions Test comprises of a total of seven subjects. The subjects include-

  • Verbal ability
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Reading comprehension
  • Quantitative ability
  • Two separate writing sections

Each of these sections takes around 30 minutes and a break is taken after the fourth section. The first five sections have 48 multiple choice questions with eight of these questions being experimental. One of the two writing sections is also experimental. Experimental questions are not stated and the test takers have no idea they are taking experimental questions. Once a section has been tackled, the test takers are not allowed to revisit them.

Registration for the PCAT

Interested persons are advised to make an early registration for this test. This is because sittings are given on the first come first served basis. This basically means that those who register early enough get their preferred testing date, time and even location. They also don’t get to pay an additional fee as compared to those who fail to meet the Register and Schedule By deadlines. It is important to note that getting a seating is quite competitive as the test is only taken at a Pearson VUE Test Center.

The registration fee for the PCAT is $199 for the Register and Schedule By deadline while late registration attracts an additional $49 which is non-refundable. These prices can be however be changed at any time. Registration has to be done at the official PCAT website and a person can only do the test up to 5 times.

If a person wishes to take the test after the 5 times is required to have documents attesting to why they should be allowed to sit for the exam.

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How to pass the PCAT

Though five times are enough for most people, you don’t need to do the exam all those times. You can pass the exam by the first time. People have done it, so can you. Here is a guide to ensure you pass your test the first time-

  • Take a preparation course- prep courses are taught by professors. Get professional advice and tutorage to prepare you for the main test. This will make you confident and well versed with the exam environment. It will also guide on what to expect.
  • Revise your coursework- whatever will be tested you have already learned in your college classes. Go through what you have learned and refresh your mind on the basics. You already know which revision method works best for you. If tutoring is what does the magic for you, look for a credited tutor to take you through the six sections covered by the test. Get a thorough look at all the tested sections and you will be good to go.
  • Read on your own- whether you have been attending a prep course or you have a tutor, reading on your own is very important. Review what the professor or our tutor teaches you during your own free time. This way, what you have learned sticks.

This test is essential as it determines whether you get to join a certain pharmacy college or not. This shouldn’t worry you, though. People have passed the PCAT, so can you.

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