PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences: Universities with Best Options

The pharmacy course is one of the major branches of the medical sciences with a wide range of employment opportunities.

A Ph.D. in pharmacy course is the highest degree that you can be conferred in higher education.

The course involves a significant extent of research in the field and enhances expertise in the area.

Also, the duration varies between 2 to 8 years for the completion and submission of the thesis for the award of a degree.

So, it is important to take many things into consideration before you make an application.

Consider the following factors like

  1. Financial support.
  2. The institute or universities offering the Ph.D. course.
  3. Full-time or Part-time Ph.D. program.
  4. The subjects of pharmacy for Ph.D.
  5. The supervisor or guide (quality in terms of work and support).
  6. Timespan is available.

Once you are clear of the above points, then you can apply for a better option.

Ph.D. in Pharmacy course and guidelines for Applying

There are a few general guidelines you need to go through before applying to any top university in the States. Here is brief input into what you would need to ensure.

General Requirements:

To begin with, you need to have a professional degree in pharmaceutical sciences, biology, chemistry, or any other related health science. Do note that you may have a brighter chance of being admitted if you have a Master’s degree in Pharmaceutical or allied sciences. Graduates with experience in the industry stand a better chance as such.

Phd in Pharmacy

Apart from these academic requirements, you also need to have the necessary language skills. You are expected to have a minimum Grade Point Average or GPA of 3.0. For the average GRE score, you would need 1200 out of 1600 for verbal capabilities. You need to have a minimum grade of 3.5 out of 6.0 regarding analytical thinking. You will also need to clear an online TOEFL exam with a minimum score of 80.

The Application Process

Most of the Universities in the US accept international students in Fall (that is, in August) and Spring (or in January). The deadline for admissions starts around 3 to 4 months before the start of the courses.

Aspirants are requested to visit the website of the relevant universities for specific information. Ideally, the application documents will need to include an admission essay, transcript of records, recommendation letters, and language tests. You need to send your application along with the relevant documents through courier.

The Criteria used for shortlisting the Candidates

Almost every university in the US goes through a few predefined criteria for arriving at the shortlist. Some of the requirements observed include

  • The GRE and TOEFL scores
  • The disciple of interest
  • The research area of interest
  • NIH ranking and funds of universities
  • The assistantship

Please note that what we have listed here forms part of a generalized categorization. Individual universities will go through their specific parameters. We recommend visiting the official websites for a clear understanding of the criteria followed by each.

The Best Universities in the US for a Ph.D. in the United States

Having understood the basics of the admission procedure and guidelines for entry into the US universities, let us check out a few universities that can offer you the best guidance in obtaining a Doctorate in pharmaceutical sciences.

1 The University of Maryland, School of Pharmacy

The university provides you with an exceptional and collaborative atmosphere for efficient learning. The emphasis is always on the development and delivery of medications that will be helpful for effective medical therapy.

The university covers the areas of the Chemical and Biological Discovery Program, Transnational Therapeutics Program, and Pharmacometrics. The Chemical and Biological Discovery Program focuses on the study of a combination of biology, chemistry, and computational sciences for an understanding of newer therapeutic techniques. The Translational Therapeutics Program can be the best one for you if you have an interest in optimizing drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics.

Phd in Pharmacy -university of maryland

Why choose them?

The Ph.D. students are considered to be full-time students. Like the students, they will need to be engaged in diverse activities like curricular studies, research, and teaching. This helps them engage in multidimensional and multidirectional research activities.

As students of the university, you gain access to active membership in organizations like the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists and the Pharmacy Graduate Student Association.

For more details, visit the home page of the University of Maryland pharmacy.

2. The University of Washington, School of Pharmacy

The program focuses on the fundamental aspects of drug disposition and drug action.

The best features the university offers include graduate faculty, instructional offerings, world-class research facilities, and library resources.

The university offers you doctoral courses spread across multiple aspects of the pharmacy and allied arena.

A few courses offered are pharmacokinetic principles, advanced pharmacokinetics, Pharmacokinetics of Drug Metabolism, Drug Transport and Delivery, General Pharmacology, Medical Biometry I, Medical Biometry II, and Writing the scientific article. 

One also has the option of choosing between Biotransformation/Biochemistry, Biologics/Drug Delivery, Pharmacology/Cell Biology, and Physiological Modelling/Biostatistics as an elective course of study.

PhD Program in Pharmacy

If you think it is worth attempting, you can check them out at department-of-pharmaceutics-application page.

3. University of Buffalo, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

The University of Buffalo offers you Ph.D. options in pharmacy. The prerequisites for entry into the program include the following

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in pharmacy, biochemistry, chemistry, biology, engineering, or other science
  • A Minimum GPA score of 30. Out of 4.0
  • A minimum GRE score of 300
  • Two letters of recommendation from the faculty.

Any prior research experience will provide additional benefits regarding gaining entry into the program.

Phd in Pharmacy -university of buffalo

The course content includes the following

  • Basic Drug Development
  • Pharmacogenomics for Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Pharmaceutical Chemistry
  • Sem Sel Pharmaceutics Top
  • Computational Basis of Pharmacometrics
  • Drug Delivery: Principles and Applications
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis

The course emphasizes pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, dosage form design, physiochemical and biological aspects of drug action, drug metabolism, and drug toxicity.

You can get more information by visiting the university of buffalo pharmacy’s Ph.D. page.

4. South Dakota State University

South Dakota University offers research options and courses for pharmacy and other biomedical sciences. The courses offered under the Ph.D. program need to have the following prerequisites  – Two semesters of general chemistry, Two semesters of organic chemistry, and one semester of biochemistry.

The academic requirements for admission include

  • The completed application
  • Official transcripts
  • Contact information for two references
  • Documentation of your ACT, SAT, or PCAT scores
  • A short essay on the topic of “Why I want to obtain a Doctor of Pharmacy Degree at SDSU.”
  • A completed shadowing form

The course curriculum focuses on mobile technology in the classroom, laboratory, and experiential education environments. Some of the salient features that would make it an excellent option can be summed up as

♣ Dedicated faculty and staff

♣ Quality new facilities

♣ Outstanding student leadership

♣ Shared governance

♣ Partnerships with the local community

♣ The robust and Integrated assessment program

♣ Successful transition to NCAA Division I Athletics

For more information, visit the pharmaceutical sciences department page.

5. The University of Utah, College of Pharmacy

The curriculum lays importance on making beginning with the right basics and then expanding further into the advanced experimental presentations. This focus on the empirical knowledge of clinical sciences goes a long way in promoting the student’s ability to imbibe more sophisticated and scientific knowledge.

Phd in Pharmacy

The prerequisites for enrolment include

♦ Completed application of PharmCAS

♦ A Statement of Purpose through PharmCAS in an essay format with not more than 4500 characters.

♦ Pharmacy experience is recommended but not required.

♦ Post-high school volunteer experience is a must.

♦ Two Letters of Recommendation

♦ All applicants must take the PCAT exam

The programs you can undertake include Ph.D. in Pharmaceutics & Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Ph.D.. in Pharmacology & Toxicology, and a Ph.D. in Pharmacotherapy.

For more details about the course and other information, visit the official site, the graduate-students-page

6. The University of Vermont, Larner College of Pharmacy

The University of Vermont indeed offers you an opportunity for research in areas that are quite diverse and cover a wider range of topics or interests. Some of the areas that you can focus on include cardiovascular and cerebrovascular pharmacology, physiology, neurovascular coupling, signal transduction, and medicinal chemistry/cancer chemotherapy.

The course content includes

  • Medical Cannabis
  • Introduction to Pharmacology
  • Molecules & Medicine
  • Topics Molecular & Cell Pharma
  • Special Topics
  • Doctoral Dissertation Research

The campus has researchers dealing with the interaction of chemical substances with biological systems. If you are one of those interested in this range of research, you should ideally find many researchers among the faculty. You can also benefit from the Pharmacology as a Career program sponsored by the American Society for Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics.

You can consult the official website at for a better understanding of their programs.

7. The University of Michigan, College of Pharmacy

The College of Pharmacy offers PH.D. Courses in Medicinal Chemistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Clinical Pharmacy. All the applications are to be sent online mode.

You need to have the following qualifications for admission into the program –

  • A Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. If you are from non-US regions, you may need to qualify for the additional credentials as specified in the guidelines.
  • Clear GRE examination. There is no minimum threshold defined, but you may need to score higher to be able to compete with the other contenders.
  • You need to clear any of the English proficiency examinations among TOEFL, IELTS, and MELAB.

For further information and to apply for the PH.D. programs, you can visit the University site at

8. University of Pittsburgh, PITT Pharmacy

Focused on the aim of preparing the next generation of leaders in the arena of medications and pharmacy. The program is designed to provide a world-class education to highly motivated individuals.

phd in pharmacy in usa pittsburgh

The positive points that would make studying at PITT Pharmacy include

  • A research utility that helps you research your heart’s content.
  • Training options in multiple disciplines.
  • Reliance on cutting-edge technologies.

The programs available if you are interested in carrying out the studies include

  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Pharmaceutical Scientist
  • Medicinal chemistry
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy Research

The training program needs you to study across multiple sequences. It includes core courses, elective courses, mentor-directed research, and an original research project that would finally lead to the final dissertation. You need to go with 72 hours of credit.

Want to know more about the Ph. D. program? You can log on to the University of Pittsburgh Ph.D. program.

Those are a few options you can have if you are looking for the best universities in the United States for a Ph.D. in pharmacy.

The list mentioned here is not exhaustive. Opting for multiple universities simultaneously can be the best strategy so that you will not end up getting frustrated.

If you qualify for more than one university, you always have the liberty to opt for the one that you indeed want.

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