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Tuesday, December 11, 2018

2019 and Beyond: PCAT No Longer Required

(Note: The Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT) was retired on January 10, 2024, NO PCAT testing dates will be offered during the 2024-25 admissions cycle or beyond.)

Over the past couple of years, I've posted a lot of information about the PCAT. It seems to be the topic that generates the most questions from prospective students and applicants.

Three years ago we launched a pilot program that required all UCSF applicants to complete the PCAT as part of their application.  We are ending that program. Beginning with the class applying in 2019 (for entry in summer 2020) the PCAT will not be a required part of the application process.

Yes, you read that correctly, the PCAT is not required -- rather it’s optional. "What's that mean?" you ask.

Well, the PCAT isn't for everyone. Nor is it necessary for everyone. Let me explain.  For some candidates, taking the PCAT can really help bolster an otherwise questionable academic portfolio. We want this to be an option for those applicants. If an applicant believes the PCAT provides evidence of their academic preparedness for the UCSF PharmD program, they are encouraged to take the PCAT and submit their scores to PharmCAS.  Here are two examples:
  1. An applicant who is at or near our minimum 2.80 GPA requirement may consider taking the PCAT as a way to indicate their grasp of material that may not be evident in their academic background.
  2. An applicant who completed science prerequisite coursework more than seven years ago and would like to prove they are still very familiar with the material may opt to take the PCAT.
But every candidate is different -- so even applicants who fall into the two categories above may have unique circumstances that wouldn't necessitate taking the PCAT as part of their application to UCSF.

We know there are likely to be many questions so I encourage you to contact us! 

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