• Pharmacy Technology

    Demand for skilled pharmacy technicians is expected to grow as the health care industry experiences major changes in the delivery of health care and the role of pharmacists.

Pharmacy Technology

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Pharmacy Technology

M State's Pharmacy Technology program prepares students to work as assistants to registered pharmacists, performing both technical and clinical pharmacy duties. The work done by pharmacy technicians allows pharmacists to spend more time working directly with patients.

Courses are taught online, and required lab hours are performed in M State's state-of-the-art lab in Wadena. Students learn how to access patient profiles, input drug orders, print prescription labels and fill prescriptions.

M State has two Pharmacy Technology options, a 60-credit Associate of Applied Science degree and a 36-credit diploma. Students who begin with the diploma program can opt to continue and earn an AAS degree, which improves the potential for career advances in the pharmacy profession. The AAS degree requires courses in human anatomy and physiology, microbiology, chemistry and computers.

An advisory board comprised of local and regional industry members reviews our program curriculum, ensuring that students learn the skills needed by employers.


Application Process



M State's Pharmacy Technology program is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP).

About ASHP

ASHP represents pharmacists who serve as patient care providers in acute and ambulatory settings. The organization's more than 40,000 members include pharmacists, student pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. For more than 70 years, ASHP has been at the forefront of efforts to improve medication use and enhance patient safety. For more information about the wide array of ASHP activities and the many ways in which pharmacists advance health care, visit ASHP's website or its consumer website.


Program features

This program provides the necessary training and experiential requirements to seek registration as a pharmacy technician in the state of Minnesota. This program also prepares students to take the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam to become a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT).

M State's Pharmacy Technology program has been recognized by BestColleges.com as the No. 3 online pharmacy technician associate degree program in the nation in 2018. Rankings are based on academic outcomes, affordability and the breadth and depth of online learning opportunities, according to the BestColleges.com website.


Here’s what you’ll learn

  • Policies and procedures that govern community, institutional and long-term care pharmacies
  • Role of pharmacy technician in the community, institutional and long-term care environment
  • Accurate preparation and interpretation of pharmacy orders
  • Legal and ethical aspects of a pharmacy technician's job duties
  • Basic science as it relates to pharmacy technology
  • Effective communication with patients, physicians and colleagues


Why M State

  • Blend of on-campus labs and online courses, which offers flexibility for students with family and job commitments
  • Exceptional educational value
  • Personalized, hands-on education
  • State-of-the-art Pharmacy Technology lab
  • Accredited by American Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists


CSPT certification opportunity for Pharmacy Technology graduates

Beginning in 2018, graduates of M State's Pharmacy Technology program can be eligible to earn a specialized certification from the national Pharmacy Technician Certification Board.

After meeting the PTCB's education and training requirements for sterile compounding, M State has been designated as a PTCB-recognized sterile compounding program.

The PTCB designation means that, after qualifying as a PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technician, M State Pharmacy Technology program graduates can take the Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician Exam to demonstrate their knowledge and skill in sterile compounding and earn the professional CSPT designation.

To qualify for the exam, pharmacy technicians must graduate from a recognized program, earn PTCB certification and complete a minimum of one year of work at a site that requires or uses sterile compounding (preparation of custom medications in a sterile environment) and supervisor support.


Background Check Required

State law requires that students having direct contact with individuals in licensed institutions complete an annual background study with the Minnesota Department of Human Services. Students also are required to complete a national background check and may be required to complete a federal background check as directed by clinical facilities. Students will be provided with instructions prior to clinical. The fee for the national background check is incurred by the student at the time the background study is submitted. Students who do not pass required background checks will not be allowed to participate in clinical activities and thus are not eligible for graduation.


Programs & Majors » Pharmacy Technology Back to program list »

Degrees Offered Click on a degree below to view details

Pharmacy Technology Diploma
Locations: Online

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Clinical Partnerships

Through our excellent relationships with industry clinical partners, we provide students with clinical opportunities where they learn and practice pharmacy skills in welcoming and engaging environments.


Meet the faculty

Amanda Thormodson

Pharmacy Technology Program Director/Faculty
Fergus Falls
Contact Amanda

Pharmacy Technician regional wage

Pharmacy Technician regional wage
data source: Career Coach


Career opportunities

Graduates of M State's Pharmacy Technology program will have employment opportunities as Pharmacy Technicians.

Description: Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, count out, label, and record amounts and dosages of medications according to prescription orders.

Typical education level:Vocational Certificate

For more information visit Career Coach.

Data source: Career Coach with current geographical area: up to 100 miles away from Wadena

data source: Career Coach


Pharmacy Technician employment

1,013 Employed in your area

37 Estimated annual job openings

183 Approaching retirement age

The average retirement age in the U.S. is 65 years old. Pharmacy Technicians in the 55-64 and the 65+ categories are 1-10 years away from retirement. When older workers retire, there will likely be a demand for new workers.

Age Group # of Workers % of Workers*
under 25 167 16%
25-34 270 27%
35-44 179 18%
45-54 214 21%
55-64 154 15%
65+ 29 3%

* Based on county-level occupational demographics

data source: Career Coach

Last modified: July 6th, 2018 at 09:51am