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Pharmacy Schools in California with Degree Program Options

California has eight universities with pharmacy schools. Learn about the degree programs, tuition info and program options for seven these schools to make an informed education decision.

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Essential Information

The California universities listed in this article offer accredited programs that prepare students to become licensed pharmacists through professional Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) programs, which typically take four years to complete. Some schools also offer master's and doctoral degrees in related areas, such as pharmaceutical sciences or pharmacology. Another option is a dual degree program, which joins a Doctor of Pharmacy with a bachelor's or master's degree in a related field, such as chemistry or public health. Combined PharmD and Ph.D. programs are also available and take about eight years to complete. Before beginning clinical training, pharmacy students may need to obtain an intern license with the state.

Career Requirements

Pharmacists are required to earn licensure. In California, this means having at least a bachelor's degree from a program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), completing at least 1,500 hours of pharmacy intern experience and passing two licensing exams (the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination and the California Practice Standards and Jurisprudence Examination for Pharmacists exam). Below are overviews of the seven public and private-not-for profit colleges with pharmacy schools in California; all of the Doctor of Pharmacy programs at these schools qualify graduates for the state and national licensure exams.


Loma Linda University

Loma Linda University in Loma Linda offers Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Pharmacology programs through its School of Pharmacy. The PharmD program focuses on integrating the mental, physical, spiritual and social aspects of health to conform to the school's Christian philosophy. Applicants for this program are strongly encouraged to obtain pharmacy work or volunteer experience prior to applying. The pharmacology PhD program is intended to nurture the professional and personal development of students in a faith-based environment. PhD students are required to publish research and defend a doctoral dissertation.

  • Programs Offered: Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $24,888 (graduate tuition and fees)**,
    $41,106 (PharmD tuition and fees)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb

Touro University California

Touro University California in Vallejo offers a concentration in pharmaceutical sciences within its master's program in medical health sciences. It also offers a 4-year PharmD program as well as a combined master's degree in public health and PharmD program. The Doctor of Pharmacy program requires a 2-year pharmacy practicum or clerkship. The 10-month master's degree program is designed for students interested in research and academic activities within the field. Students in this program who achieve a GPA of at least 3.0 are guaranteed an interview for the school's PharmD program. The dual-degree pharmacy program prepares students to become advocates for clinical pharmacy services with an emphasis on public health issues, such as health policy and health demographics.

  • Programs Offered: Master of Science in Medical Health Sciences with an emphasis on pharmaceutical sciences,
    Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Master of Public Health/Doctor of Pharmacy
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $28,620 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $40,010 (PharmD tuition)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; rural

University of California - San Diego

The University of California - San Diego in La Jolla offers a 4-year PharmD program that prepares students to work as pharmacists in a variety of settings. Incoming freshmen may consider the university's 7-year combined program that leads to both a bachelor's degree in chemistry and a PharmD. Individuals interested in government, academic or research work in the pharmaceutical industry may pursue the university's PharmD/PhD program, which takes an average of eight years to complete.

  • Programs Offered: Combined Bachelor of Science in Chemistry/Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Doctor of Pharmacy/Doctor of Philosophy
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $13,217 in-state; $27,836 out-of-state (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $34,154 in-state, $46,399 out-of-state (PharmD tuition and fees)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; large city

University of California - San Francisco

The University of California - San Francisco, located in San Francisco, offers a 4-year PharmD program that is highly competitive. Students receive individualized attention from faculty and nearly all pass the licensing exams for pharmacists following graduation. The university also offers a PhD program in pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacogenomics that focuses on developing effective drug therapies for patients. This multidisciplinary program also teaches students how to apply genomics and genetics to drug development.

  • Programs Offered: Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacogenomics
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $12,734 in-state; $27,462 out-of-state (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $34,803 in-state, $47,048 out-of-state (PharmD tuition and fees)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; large city

University of the Pacific

Stockton is home to the University of the Pacific, which offers various graduate programs in the pharmaceutical field. The university's Doctor of Pharmacy program is an 8-semester program that covers the clinical, administrative, behavioral, pharmaceutical and social aspects of this industry. The school also offers a pharmaceutical and chemical sciences program with tracks leading to a master's degree, a PhD or a dual PharmD/PhD. The university also provides freshmen ways to earn guaranteed admission into the Doctor of Pharmacy program through its Pre-Pharmacy Advantage Program.

  • Programs Offered: Master of Science in Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences,
    Doctor of Pharmacy,
    Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences,
    Doctor of Pharmacy/Doctor of Philosophy
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $37,950 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $60,580 (PharmD tuition and fees)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city

University of Southern California

Located at University Park in Los Angeles, the University of Southern California (USC) offers several graduate programs in pharmaceutical studies. USC's 4-year Doctor of Pharmacy is offered as a stand-alone program or as a dual-degree program with other doctoral or master's degree programs. PharmD students must obtain a state intern license in their first year of study and meet state requirements to practice pharmacy. Additionally, there are master's degree and PhD programs in molecular pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences. There's also a pre-pharmacy program for undergraduates who want a chance for priority admission into USC's PharmD program.

  • Programs Offered: Master of Science in Pharmacology and Toxicology,
    Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences,
    Doctor of Pharmacy with options for various dual degrees,
    Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Pharmacology and Toxicology,
    Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $37,500 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $44,930 (PharmD tuition)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city

Western University of Health Sciences

Located in Pomona, Western University of Health Sciences offers a PharmD program as well as a master's degree program in pharmaceutical sciences. The master's program provides students with strong research skills and prepares them for careers in the pharmaceutical industry, academia and other areas. The PharmD program is a 4-year program that requires students to become licensed interns with the state before they can begin their clinical experience. The school also offers an international post-baccalaureate PharmD program that admits American and foreign-trained pharmacists as second-year PharmD students. Students in this program earn the same PharmD degree that students in the traditional program do.

  • Programs Offered: Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences,
    Doctor of Pharmacy
  • Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $21,190 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
    $45,000 (PharmD tuition)**
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; midsize city

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type and Setting Pharmacy Degree Programs Offered Graduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)
Loma Linda University 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb Doctor of Pharmacy,
Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology
$24,888 (graduate tuition and fees)**,
$41,106 (PharmD tuition and fees)**
Touro University California 4-year, private not-for-profit; rural Master of Science in Medical Health Sciences with an emphasis on pharmaceutical sciences,
Doctor of Pharmacy,
Master of Public Health/Doctor of Pharmacy
$28,620 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$40,010 (PharmD tuition)**
University of California - San Diego 4-year, public; large city Combined Bachelor of Science in Chemistry/Doctor of Pharmacy,
Doctor of Pharmacy,
Doctor of Pharmacy/Doctor of Philosophy
$13,217 in-state; $27,836 out-of-state (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$34,154 in-state, $46,399 out-of-state (PharmD tuition and fees)**
University of California - San Francisco 4-year, public; large city Doctor of Pharmacy,
Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacogenomics
$12,734 in-state; $27,462 out-of-state (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$34,803 in-state, $47,048 out-of-state (PharmD tuition and fees)**
University of the Pacific 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city Master of Science in Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences,
Doctor of Pharmacy,
Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical and Chemical Sciences,
Doctor of Pharmacy/Doctor of Philosophy
$37,950 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$60,580 (PharmD tuition and fees)**
University of Southern California 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city Master of Science in Pharmacology and Toxicology,
Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences,
Doctor of Pharmacy with options for various dual degrees,
Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Pharmacology and Toxicology,
Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences
$37,500 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$44,930 (PharmD tuition)**
Western University of Health Sciences 4-year, private not-for-profit; midsize city Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences,
Doctor of Pharmacy
$21,190 (graduate tuition and fees)*,
$45,000 (PharmD tuition)**

Sources: *NCES College Navigator, **School website.

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