Pharmacy Technician Programs Irvine, CA

Pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of the registered pharmacist, assisting with customer service, the preparation of prescription medication orders, and administrative tasks surrounding the general operation of the pharmacy. The pharmacy technician program in California covers the requirements for obtaining a license to practice in the state. It will also include preparation for success on a national certification exam such as the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam offered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board.

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North Orange County Community College

The pharmacy technician certificate program at North Orange CCC is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) and exceeds the state’s training requirements for pharmacy technicians. Students will learn how to analyze and transcribe prescriber’s orders into a database, perform common medication calculations, conduct inventory and categorize classes of medication, understand specific drug effects on the human body, complete pharmacy insurance bills and resolve rejected items, and participate in the drug distribution process including the preparation of incoming prescriptions and medication orders. Course modules pharmacy operations lab, pharmacy technician introduction, medical terminology, basic keyboarding, pharmacology, pharmaceutical mathematics, human relations for the healthcare worker, and pharmacy technician lab for the in-patient and out-patient. Students will meet in class weekly plus complete 130 hours of externship at an out-patient pharmacy or 160 hours in an in-patient pharmacy.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Must complete a NOCE Admissions Application
  • Complete an online pharmacy technician orientation at least 24 hours before registering
  • Must purchase and wear a Pharmacy Technician Certificate Program lab coat from all lab classes
  • Must have basic English language reading, writing, and speaking skills and/or be at an ESL Intermediate Low level
  • Have basic math skills to perform medication calculations (recommended)
  • Must pass a criminal background check
  • Must provide immunization status

Tuition is free but students must cover the costs of textbooks, lab coat, course supplies, and a parking pass.

  • Website:
  • Address: 1830 W. Romneya Drive Anaheim, CA 92801
  • Phone: (714) 808-4999

Santa Ana College

The pharmacy technician program at Santa Ana College is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). There are three training options available for enrollment. The Basic Certificate can be completed in two semesters and requires participation in an outpatient externship rotation. The Basic Certificate meets the minimum training needed for a Board of Pharmacy license in California. It requires 20 units of coursework that covers preparation for drug store employment. Course topics include introduction to pharmacy technology, body systems, beginning pharmacy calculations, advanced pharmacy calculations, pharmacy operations, and externship (80 hours). The advanced (ASHP accredited) certificate requires a time commitment of two or three semesters to complete 32 units of coursework.  The coursework prepares students for employment at any pharmacy site and covers all the units of the basic certificate plus inpatient pharmacy services, sterile products, externship (120 hours of inpatient and sterile products rotations). The associate degree option covers the coursework in the advanced certificate plus the community college general education requirements. The degree program is also accredited by ASHP.

Admission criteria:

  • Must have a good command of English
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Must have basic math and listening skills
  • Must apply for admission to Santa Ana College
  • Must complete the prerequisite courses including body systems, pharmacy calculations, and introduction to pharmacy technology
  • Must pass a criminal background check

Tuition is $46 per unit for California state residents.  Books and supplies are additional.

Cerritos College

The Pharmacy Technician training program at Cerritos College is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). The school offers a certificate option which meets the requirements for certification through the Board of Pharmacy. Students will complete 31 units in 3 to 4 semesters – full-time. The Associate of Arts degree requires completion of 60 semester units – which includes the courses covered in the certificate program plus the college’s general education requirements. Course topics include medication calculations, pharmaceutical calculations, pharmacy introduction, pharmacy skills lab, pharmacy operations, sterile compounding, non-sterile compounding, over-the-counter products, pharmacology, medical terminology, clinical experience, and introduction to anatomy and physiology. Graduates will be eligible to apply for a Pharmacy Technician License in California.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be a high school graduate or equivalent
  • Must obtain acceptable scores on the college placement test (reading, writing, and mathematics)
  • Must meet the writing proficiency requirements – earn a score on the Writing Proficiency Test sufficient for placement in ENGL 52 or complete ENGL 52 with a grade of C or higher
  • Meet the math proficiency requirements – earn a score on the Basic Math Readiness test sufficient for placement in a course above the level of MATH 40
  • Must have good vision, hearing, and the ability to communicate orally
  • Meet the health requirements including lab, x-ray, and immunization records to meet the standards for the clinical site
  • Must complete a satisfactory criminal background check for the pharmacy externship
  • Must submit verification of TB clearance

Tuition costs $46 per unit for California residents. Students will be expected to purchase uniforms, supplies, and books.

ABC Adult School

The pharmacy technician certificate program at ABC adult school provides students the training and qualification to become a Certified Pharmacy Technician. Students will learn basic concepts of pharmacology, standards and ethics, knowledge of practice settings, pharmacy calculations, customer service, State Board of Pharmacy laws, and labeling. The curriculum covers 874 hours of theory and practical training in keyboarding, data entry, computer essentials, pharmacy practice, introduction to medical operations, pharmacy calculations, electronic health records, pharmacology and medications, and externship. Graduates will be eligible to apply for PTCB certification as well as certification from the California Board of Pharmacy. Day and evening schedules are available. The duration of the program is 12 months.

Admission criteria:

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  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Must have a high school diploma or GED
  • Must register for the class before attending
  • Must have proof of immunity – Tdap, MMR, varicella, influence, and current TB clearance

The estimated program cost of $2,747 includes books, industry certification test fees, and administration fees. Additional fees may apply.

American Career College

The American Career College Pharmacy Technician provides students with the training needed to succeed in various pharmacy settings. The accredited program includes theory and hands-on instruction. Hands-on activities will commence on campus and continue through the pharmacy externships at retail and institutional pharmacies. Course topics include pharmacy law, drug fundamentals, pharmacology, drug distribution, IV preparation, retail pharmacy, and externship. the program covers a total of 800 clock hours or 48 quarter credit hours. Some of the coursework may be delivered online. The program is designed to be completed in 35 weeks.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be 18 years or older upon admission or by the expected graduation date
  • Must provide documentation of completing high school or equivalent – high school diploma, GED or official transcripts
  • Must take and pass the Wonderlic with a score of 12 or above
  • Complete livescan fingerprint
  • Must meet the health requirements including proof of immunity for MMR, varicella, hepatitis B, Tdap, influenza and negative TB test

The program cost of $19,970 includes fees, books, and supplies. Financial aid is available for eligible students.

North-West College – Riverside Campus

The Pharmacy Technician program at North-West College prepares students for a state license to practice as a pharmacy technician. Students will acquire knowledge, skills and confidence to dispense prescription medications and health care products under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist. The training covers the activities in a community drug store as well as pharmacy operations in an institutional setting. education and hands-on training that students need to become a certified pharmacy technician. Course topics include pharmaceutical calculations, sterile and non-sterile compounding, drug labeling, processing prescriptions, and dispensing over-the-counter medications, laws and regulations governing the industry, medical terminology, pharmacy related medicine, and ethical codes of conduct. Students must complete the modules in the specific sequence to graduate from the program.  Course modules are Seminar of Success, Drug Distribution, Admixture I, Admixture II, Pharmacology, Retail Communications, Home Health, Retail Communications, and Career Seminar.  The externship covers 240 hours. The entire program is 940 hours or 25.5 semester credits.

Admission criteria:

  • Must have a high school diploma or its equivalent and provide verifiable documentation
  • Must complete the Wonderlic SLE assessment during the enrollment process and achieve a minimum score
  • Complete an admissions interview and tour of the College
  • Interview with a Financial Aid Advisor
  • Complete the application for admission and Enrollment Agreement
  • Pay the registration fee of $100
  • Must answer any questions related to criminal history on the initial application form
  • Applicants may be subject to a criminal background check and drug screen

The program cost of $18,491 includes tuition, books, supplies, and registration fee.

  • Website:
  • Address: 4550 La Sierra Avenue, Riverside, CA 92505
  • Phone: 951-324-4157

American College of Healthcare

The Pharmacy Technician program at the American College of Healthcare prepares students with the knowledge, skills, and work habits required for entry-level positions in the pharmacy field. The program is delivered in a blended format, which means that students will complete some required classes/modules online synchronously, asynchronously, and in person at school laboratories on campus. Students will complete the externship at local affiliate sites. The curriculum will cover a total of 1010 clock hours or 50 credits. Course topics include communication/professional development, pharmacy law and regulations, computer basics, pharmacology and the nervous system, antibiotics antifungal antivirals and asepsis, OTC brands and generic and motor systems, pharmacology and the vascular systems, vitamins, miners, and alternative medicines, and externship. Graduates will be eligible to apply for a pharmacy technician license in California. The duration of the program is 36 weeks.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be 18 years or older
  • Must have a high school diploma or GED
  • Attend a personal interview with an admissions representative
  • Submit a completed application for admission
  • Take and pass the Wonderlic SLE test
  • A criminal background check and drug screen may be required for the pharmacy externship

The program cost of $16,545 includes books, uniforms, CPR course, and program-specific equipment. Job placement assistance is available for all students.

  • Website:
  • Address: 11801 Pierce St., Ste. 100, Riverside, CA 92505
  • Phone: (951) 729-5320
  • Toll-free: (888) 430-4224

UEI College

Students enrolled in the pharmacy technician program at UEI College will benefit from smaller, comfortable classrooms and labs at are designed to simulate a real-world environment. Students will practice skills and techniques using tools and equipment found in various community and institutional pharmacies. Skills covered include pharmacy calculations, prescription processing, sterile and non-sterile compounding, professionalism n pharmacy setting, handling insurance claims, pharmacy billing, deciphering physician’s orders, hospital and retail pharmacy practice, and hands-on job training via externship. The curriculum covers nine modules including hospital procedures and sterile preparations, internal medicine, pharmacy law, pharmacology and compounding, pharmacology and compounding, hospital pharmacy procedures and sterile preparations, retail pharmacy procedures, additional settings and OTC medications, health insurance and billing, and externship. Each module is 80 clock hours. The externship is 120 hours. The duration of the program is 10 months.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be at least 17 years of age
  • Must have a high school diploma or GED
  • Must have access to a computer and internet
  • Attend an on-campus Gateway to Success class/orientation
  • Submit a completed application and sign the enrollment agreement

The program cost of $19,900 includes tuition, books, supplies, and uniforms. Financial aid is available for eligible students.

  • Website:
  • Address: 1860 University Ave, Riverside, CA 92507
  • Phone: (877) 463-4472




Search Pharmacy Technician Programs

Get information on Pharmacy Technician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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