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Frequently Asked Questions

General information

Is the WSU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (CPPS) accredited?

Yes, since 1938, by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE).

What is the cost of attendance for 2017-2018?

Resident tuition: $20,561 | Non-resident tuition: $37,215 | Mandatory fees: various

How do I get Washington residency?

The WSU Office of the Registrar Residency Requirements and Questionnaire Instructions explain this. Note that moving to Washington solely for educational purposes is not sufficient to establish residency. However, because of licensing and certification requirements and relocation, a majority of our out-of-state students qualify for residency after the first year.

Does the CPPS participate in the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE)?

Yes, with WICHE‘s Professional Student Exchange Program (PSEP). Alaska and Nevada provide support for their residents to attend WICHE schools for pharmacy.

Admission information

What is the difference between the ‘early decision’ and ‘regular admission’ processes?

The early decision application period begins in June and closes the beginning of September. Early decision applicants are told of admission decisions in mid-October and offers are binding, and offered students must accept the offer of admission. Read more on early decision.

The regular admission decision application period begins in the early summer and closes generally in December or January. Deadlines are posted on our how to apply page. Completed applications are reviewed on an on-going basis, and interviews are offered to qualified students.

What is the Save-A-Seat program?

The Save-A-Seat program is for current WSU and Heritage University (HU) students who are working to complete their pre-pharmacy requirements and plan on applying to the WSU Doctor of Pharmacy program. Read more about this program and the requirements on our webpage.

How many students are accepted every year?

We accept around 140 students for our Spokane campus, and around 30 students for our Yakima campus every fall. Approximately 70% of students are Washington residents, and 30% are current WSU students.

How can I increase my chances of being accepted?

Early submission of complete application materials is strongly recommended and will increase a qualified applicant’s chance of receiving an interview and possible offer. Solid GPA and coursework, no more than seven years old, coupled with strong letters of recommendation and compelling essays will boost competitiveness.

Do I need pharmacy experience?

The CPPS does not require students to have pharmacy experience prior to applying for the Doctor of Pharmacy program. We do recommend that each applicant has a strong understanding of what a career as a pharmacist entails and can articulate why they want to become a pharmacist.

How is GPA calculated and what is the minimum requirement?

GPA is calculated through PharmCAS and includes all previous coursework, including repeated courses. A minimum 2.7 cumulative GPA is required for admission.

Do I need to send my transcripts to the CPPS?

You need to send an official copy of all transcripts to PharmCAS when you apply. You need to send final official transcripts to the CPPS only if you are accepted into the Doctor of Pharmacy program.

Who should I have write my letters of recommendation?

We require one professional letter and one academic letter. Academic sources include: professors or instructors who have directly interacted with the student in a classroom setting or official, university or college-affiliated academic advisors. Professional sources include: employers or volunteer organization personnel with whom the applicant has directly worked. Recommendations are NOT ACCEPTED from family members, friends, politicians, teaching assistants, fraternity or sorority advisors, personal health care providers or high school faculty/advisors.

Where can I find the admission essay questions?

The Professional Goals Statement questions can be found here.

May I apply to the program before completing my associate or bachelor’s degree?

Yes. Applicants do not need a degree to be accepted into the CPPS.

May I transfer into the CPPS from another doctor of pharmacy program?

A student who is currently enrolled in a Doctor of Pharmacy program at another campus in good academic standing is considered a “transfer student.” Students requesting to transfer from their original school/college of pharmacy into the program at the WSU CPPS must follow the instructions detailed here.

Does the CPPS have an alternate list for admissions?

Yes. After the interview process, an applicant may be placed on the alternate list. Applicants can opt-in and remain on the alternate list for future consideration should a space open up. If a space should open up, the college may offer admission to the highest-ranking applicant on the alternate list. Ranking is based on factors such as cumulative GPA, cumulative science GPA, and interview scores. The alternate list is kept active until after the first day of classes in August at which time all alternates not selected for admission will be sent notification via email.

How do I remove my name from the CPPS alternate list?

If you no longer want to be considered for admission please email us at We appreciate your updates.

Does the CPPS require a background check?

Yes. A national background check will be initiated for all students offered admission. The check is done through Certiphi Screening Services, which contracts with the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, and is facilitated through PharmCAS immediately once an offer of admission is made.

Prerequisite coursework

How can I find out if the courses I have taken meet the prerequisites?

We will accept classes from all regionally accredited institutions. We suggest that you meet with an academic advisor from your home institution and provide them with the list of prerequisites so they can assist you with determining the correct equivalencies. See our pharmacy prerequirements page for more information. If you have taken a course which may meet one of these requirements but is not an obvious match, we can review the course for acceptance. Please send an email request which must include: course description from the college’s website, catalog, or class syllabus, name of the institution from which the course is being taught, the number of credits, and what prerequisite you would like the course to satisfy to

When do I need to complete my pre-pharmacy courses?

You must complete all pre-pharmacy courses before entering the Doctor of Pharmacy program. All science based prerequisites must be completed by the end of spring term and all non-science bases prerequisites must be completed by the end of summer, prior to our orientation in mid-August.

Do you accept advanced placement (AP) credit for prerequisite courses?

AP test scores which appear as credit received on a regionally accredited college transcript will be accepted. If scores are not listed on an official transcript then we will request the official AP be sent to us directly.

Do you accept Pass/Fail classes for prerequisites?


Can one course count for more than one prerequisite?

No. The only exception to this rule is for approved combined anatomy and physiology courses.

May I use the same course prefix for two different categories?

Yes, where appropriate.

Will you accept “science courses for non- science majors” to meet prerequisites?

No. You must complete the science courses designed for science majors, with labs.

Are courses taken online acceptable?

We will consider lower division, non-science coursework taken online from a regionally accredited university.

Do my prerequisite courses expire after a certain amount of time?

As a general rule, upper-division science coursework should be no more than seven years old at the time of application. However, each situation is reviewed on an individual basis. Please contact our student services office for more information.

My college does not offer “general biology,” but they offer “botany” and “zoology,” is this acceptable?

We want our applicants to complete the sequence of general biology classes designed for science/biology/pre-health majors at their particular school, with labs, and to meet our requirement for credit hours. General biology courses are sometimes called “botany” and “zoology”, or by other names, so consult with the registration or advising office at your school to make sure you enroll in the right ones.

What if I have taken classes on the quarter system and after conversion I am short?

We do round up.

Will you accept the course work I completed at a university in another country?

Students with international transcripts must have their transcripts analyzed by a foreign transcript service. The foreign transcript evaluation reports are then submitted to PharmCAS and PharmCAS will provide us with this information. WSU will accept evaluations from WES or ECE. Upper division sciences will not be accepted from foreign institutions and must be completed with the United States. Please visit the PharmCAS – International Transcripts page for more information.

Are international students eligible for admission?

At this time we do not accept international students into our Doctor of Pharmacy program.