If you’re interested in becoming a pharmacy technician, you may be wondering about costs. Below we take a look at the common question, how much does it cost to become a pharmacy tech?
A Great Career That Doesn’t Require 4 Years of College
College education can be a bit expensive. There are many fees to pay such as tuition and much more for other college/university-related activities. Not all of them are easily affordable for many.
And if one semester is not costly enough for you, there are still the remaining seven. This is because, most of the time, you’ll need at least eight semesters in four years of college to earn your degree.
However, not all jobs require you to finish four or more years of college. And becoming a pharmacy tech is one of them.
You may just need a high school diploma or an equivalent such as a General Education Diploma (GED) and at most two years of training for specific jobs. And that is precisely the basic requirements needed when we are talking about becoming a pharmacy technician.
How Much Does It Cost to Become a Pharmacy Tech?
So, knowing that you don’t need to go to college to become a pharmacy tech, let’s look at how much for pharmacy technician school? Or, put another way, how much does pharmacy tech school or certification cost? Let’s look at the answer below.
There are a lot of factors that affect the overall cost. Whether you get an associate’s degree or a certificate. Where you live. Whether you do your training online or in person. And more.
Here we’ll look at the factors and share some average cost of pharmacy technician school with you.
Factors That Affect The Cost of Pharmacy Tech School
There are no federal training guidelines for pharmacy technicians. This means the requirements for training will vary from state to state.
Essential requirements to enter pharmacy technician training include a high school diploma or the equivalent like a GED.
Additionally, funding for community colleges varies from state to state. And that affects the cost of pharmacy tech programs as well. This means that the costs of a training program will vary from each state.
Another factor that affects cost is whether you get your certificate online or in person. There are a number of online pharmacy tech programs. These tend to be a little less expensive than in person options. They also allow for a more flexible schedule.
Certification vs Associate’s Degree Options
One of the biggest factors that will affect the cost of your overall training is the type of training you do. There are two big options for you here. One is a certification program. The other is an associate’s degree program.
Community colleges and vocational schools offer certification training programs for pharmacy technicians. They usually last at least six months. Though they can take as long as two years at the most. Certification programs include a mix of classroom and lab work plus internship and months of training.
The other option is an associate’s degree training program. These programs usually take longer than certification programs. Usually about two years. It is also the more challenging but rewarding option out of the two.
How Much Does Pharmacy Tech School Cost on Average?
Enrolling in a certification program can range from around $500 to $4,500 on average. Meanwhile, getting an associate’s degree program can average somewhere in the $10,000 to $20,000 range.
There are also additional costs to consider as well besides tuition. These include:
- Application of state license through your state’s Board of Pharmacy
- Training on the job (optional for people who did not complete a training program and not certified)
- National Pharmacy Technician Certification exam, which costs $129
- Recertification every two years and an additional 15-20 hours of mandatory continuing education
- Required books cost $50-$100
- IV certifications (mainly for pharmacy technicians who would work in a hospital) costs $500-$600