Application Requirements

To be eligible for the PharmD program, you must meet certain academic requirements.

  • Hold a bachelor’s degree or equivalent before matriculation.
  • Have achieved a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 scale) in all college work and pre-pharmacy required courses at an accredited two- or four-year college (biochemistry must be taken at a four-year institution). Pre-pharmacy courses from vocational or technical schools are not accepted. If you did not achieve a minimum 3.0 GPA but demonstrate ability to be successful in the program, you may still be considered for admission.
  • Complete all pre-pharmacy required courses with a grade of C or higher at least one week before you enter our program. 
  • Repeat pre-pharmacy requirements in the following areas if they were taken more than 9 years before your application: biochemistry, human physiology, microbiology and organic chemistry. 

You must complete the following prerequisites as an undergraduate student prior to enrollment in the PharmD program. We recommend that you take the physiology and microbiology prerequisites at a four-year university or college. Biochemistry as an upper-division course must be taken at a four-year institution. For equivalent courses offered at your institutions, please visit our Course Equivalencies list.

Requirements are subject to change.

Biological Sciences

  • Biochemistry: One upper-division course for science majors
  • General biology: One-year course for science majors with labs (excluding courses in human anatomy, human physiology, botany and microbiology); if your university offers less than a one-year course, you must complete the second semester at another institution
  • Human physiology: One course for science majors (if taking a combined anatomy and physiology course for science majors, entire series must be completed)
  • Microbiology: One course in the fundamentals of microbiology for science majors (note that microbiology is offered only in the fall at some institutions)

Mathematics and Physical Sciences

Only courses designed for science majors are accepted. We recommend that math and science courses be completed during the regular academic year rather than during a summer/abbreviated term.

  • Calculus: One semester or two quarters (should include differential and integral calculus for science majors)
  • General chemistry: One-year course with labs for science majors (should include inorganic chemistry and qualitative analysis)
  • Organic chemistry: One-year course with labs for science majors; if your university offers less than a one-year course, you must complete the second semester at another institution
  • Statistics: One course in statistics (not business statistics)

The following recommended courses will strengthen your background and your application’s competitiveness:

  • Microeconomics
  • Molecular biology (upper division)
  • Physics (courses that include thermodynamics and electromagnetism)
  • Psychology and/or sociology

Send one official transcript from each higher education institution you have attended to PharmCAS when you apply to our school. Transcripts should be sent to PharmCAS as soon as you begin your PharmCAS application. When you complete additional coursework, please send updated transcripts to the PharmCAS Academic Update

Three letters of recommendation are required.

  • One letter must be from a science professor with whom you took a class and/or did research.
  • Two remaining letters may be from professors, advisers, researchers, pharmacists or employers.

Letters of recommendation must be submitted online as part of the PharmCAS application.

Any online prerequisites taken prior to spring 2020 can be reviewed by the Admissions Committee: Email a link to the course description to pharmadm@usc.edu with a request for consideration.

Pass/no pass grading of prerequisites is only acceptable acceptable if taken in 2020. Pass/no pass courses taken any other time may be acceptable upon verification by the Admissions Committee: Email a link to the course description to pharmadm@usc.edu with a request for consideration.

We accept PharmD students seeking transfer on a case-by-case basis. If you are enrolled in an accredited PharmD program at another institution and want to seek advanced standing at the USC School of Pharmacy, send your request letter to: pharmadm@usc.edu

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is an American immigration policy that allows certain undocumented immigrants who entered the country before their 16th birthday, and before June 2007, to receive a renewable two-year work permit and exemption from deportation. If you are an undocumented applicant, we welcome your application to the PharmD program.

The Admissions Committee will not accept College Level Examination Program courses. Our Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs may consider Advanced Placement (AP) exam and International Baccalaureate (IB) credit if you have a bachelor’s degree.

An AP score of 3, 4 or 5 or IB scores of 5, 6, or 7 may be used toward the statistics requirement and the first quarter or semester of a one-year series of pre-pharmacy courses, such as general biology or general chemistry. AP calculus BC can be used to satisfy the calculus requirement. Please submit a copy of all AP scores through your PharmCAS application (Program Materials section) if you are using them to satisfy pre-pharmacy required courses.

The Admissions Committee may accept you “conditionally” if you have one or more incomplete pre-pharmacy course(s), if your bachelor’s degree is not yet completed or if your final degree is not yet posted to your transcript.

As you complete the missing course(s), please submit your updated transcript(s) to PharmCAS Academic Update. Please mail new/updated transcript(s) after the end of Academic Update directly to the USC School of Pharmacy Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs, 1985 Zonal Avenue, PSC 206A, Los Angeles CA 90089-9121. If you cannot complete all pre-pharmacy course requirements by August of your enrollment year, contact Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs right away.

How to Apply

Once you confirm you have met the eligibility requirements listed below, your next steps are:

We use PharmCAS so you can complete one application for multiple pharmacy schools. We don’t require a separate USC supplemental application.

  • Create a PharmCAS account to obtain your PharmCAS ID number.
  • Save your work and return to your application as many times as needed until you are ready to submit it.
  • Enter your transcript information from each higher education institution you’ve attended. All data you enter must match your transcripts.
  • Complete the information about your pre-pharmacy courses and arrange for your official transcripts to be sent directly to PharmCAS from each institution.
  • Arrange for three letters of recommendation to be sent directly to PharmCAS. One letter must be from a science professor with whom you took a class and/or did research. The remaining two letters may be from professors, advisers, researchers, pharmacists or employers. If you are reapplying from one year prior you only need to submit one new letter of recommendation.
  • Answer the questions in the Program Materials section, including two USC PharmD Essay Questions.
  • Electronically sign the California State Board of Pharmacy Felony and Misdemeanor Conviction Disclosure Statement, the Essential Characteristics and Abilities form, and the Applicant’s Affidavit.

The regular PharmCAS application deadline for fall entrance is February 1

The Priority Application deadline is November 1

Applicants are encouraged to apply by the priority deadline, which qualifies you for selection for early interview dates and admissions decisions, scholarship considerations, and a reduced deposit fee if admitted.

It is advisable that you submit your PharmCAS application as early as possible. Generally, PharmCAS takes two to five weeks to process your application and send it to the USC School of Pharmacy. You may use PharmCAS Applicant Help Center for further assistance.

After you have submitted your PharmCAS application, we’ll invite qualified and competitive candidates to an admissions interview. You will be notified one to three weeks in advance in order have time to prepare.

Your admissions interview will consist of:

  • Traditional interview with one faculty member or alumnus plus a current student (approximately 20 minutes)
  • Real-life scenario that you must address. The scenario does not test for specific knowledge but offers a holistic view of your reaction skills. We hope to see your proficiency in communication, leadership, interpersonal interactions, critical thinking and ethical decision-making.

Interview Dates

IN-PERSON INTERVIEWS
Fridays (12:45-4:30pm), October 14, November 11, December 2, 2022, January 20, February 17, and April 21, 2023

VIRTUAL (ZOOM) INTERVIEWS
Thursdays (3-5:05pm), December 15, 2022, March 23 and May 25, 2023

*All interview dates are subject to change

Once you are admitted to the USC PharmD program, you must submit:

  • An official transcript showing your prerequisite courses and completed bachelor’s degree, upon request from the Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs. If your final transcript and degree have been verified by PharmCAS, you won’t need to send it to USC.

Mailed the above items directly to:

USC School of Pharmacy
Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs
1985 Zonal Avenue, PSC 206A
Los Angeles CA 90089-9121

Interviews

IN-PERSON INTERVIEWS

Fridays (12:45-4:30pm), October 14, November 11, December 2, 2022, January 20, February 17, and April 21, 2023

VIRTUAL (ZOOM) INTERVIEWS
Thursdays (3-5:05pm), December 15, 2022, March 23 and May 25, 2023

*All interview dates are subject to change