Shenandoah’s Nontraditional Doctor of Pharmacy (NTDP) pathway provides practicing, U.S.-licensed pharmacists who already hold a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy the opportunity to expand their education.
The online program offers you the flexibility to complete your studies while working full time. Many of the courses are self-paced, and you can complete the experiential components at your existing workplace.
The Nontraditional Doctor of Pharmacy (NTDP) pathway utilizes much of the innovative information technology that is woven throughout the traditional Doctor of Pharmacy program to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the pharmacist as a decision maker. The technology also serves to deliver educational content to you, the learner, when and where you are available to access it. A rich learning environment is achieved by use of a unique learning management system, online educational resources, streaming/downloadable lectures and course content.
Students have the opportunity to interact with pharmacy faculty as well as other members of the cohort throughout the completion of the curriculum. A mixture of recorded lectures, team based learning outcomes and additional lecture content provides an enriching asynchronous learning environment for the student.
Learn More About The Nontraditional Online Pathway
The online NTDP Pathway is for registered and practicing pharmacists and normally requires about 2 ½ years to complete (7 semesters). Pharmacists are admitted as members of a cohort once a year in the fall (August). Cohorts consist of pharmacists who start at the same time and progress through the curriculum at the same pace. Each cohort is then divided into teams of about 8 to 10 students.
These teams are for the purposes of participating in online based learning activities with a pharmacy faculty member as well as to provide a virtual support system.
The NTDP Curriculum consists of 53 credit hours. 38 credit hours of didactic coursework and 15 credit hours of experiential learning.
All students must attend two Executive Weekends during the program.
Estimated Program Costs
(as of Fall 2015)
- Tuition: $35,245
- Experiential Fee: $500
- Estimated books: $600
- Technology fee: $100
- Application fee: $30
- Total Cost: $36,475
Calculations are based on the current tuition rate of $665 per credit hour. Tuition rates are subject to change.
You’ll learn in a cohort-based format, with a flexible online program that requires minimal time on campus. You’ll learn:
- up-to-date knowledge of clinical disease states and their treatment
- the skills to assess and intervene into medication regimens
- course material that reflects the current and future practice of pharmacy
- the application of didactic information into team-based patient cases
What Makes Our Program Unique?
The online Nontraditional Doctor of Pharmacy (NTDP) pathway utilizes much of the innovative information technology that is woven throughout the traditional Doctor of Pharmacy program to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the pharmacist as a decision maker. The technology also serves to deliver educational content to you, the learner, when and where you would like to receive it. In addition to extensive use of the Internet, the pathway provides educational support to create an information rich learning environment. Each pharmacist is assigned a resource team consisting of a full-time pharmacy faculty member with access to a computer support technician. In addition, learners interact weekly with pharmacy faculty and other learners through a creative mix of synchronous (real-time) and asynchronous (threaded) computer conferencing.
The format and delivery allow the pharmacist to work full-time while continuing his or her education. This is accomplished by delivering the curriculum via the Internet and is consistent with distance education by eliminating the barriers of time and place.
While we orient the pharmacists to the technology and the Internet, as they progress through the curriculum they become more technologically confident and literate. A mix of audio, video, and Microsoft Office files are utilized to deliver content to the learner.
In addition to the course material, a significant investment has been made in computer databases which are available and accessible to the non-traditional students 24 hours a day.
NTDP Frequently Asked Questions
Is financial aid available?
For graduate course work there is limited aid available. The most common source is low interest government loans as well as tax credits for interest on educational loans or for education.
We encourage you to check with your employer for tuition reimbursement or assistance. The questions that you should ask your employer are:
- Do you need a course grade before submitting for reimbursement?
- Is there a maximum dollar amount you can submit to your employer in a calendar or budget year?
- Does the reimbursement vary depending upon the grade you achieve in the class?
- What does your getting tuition assistance from your employer obligate you to do? (i.e. Are you required to work 1 hour for every dollar of assistance you receive?)
Will I be considered a full-time student?
Individuals enrolled in the non-traditional pathway at Shenandoah University will be considered part-time graduate students.
How many trips to the school will there be?
There are 2 required visits, which are as follows:
- Visit one is for the first Executive Weekend. It is to orient the student to the technology.
- Visit two is for the second Executive Weekend. It is a review of patient assessment.
There is one optional visit for graduation and commencement exercises in May.
How or do you get credit for prior work or life experience in lieu of the APPE courses?
Credit is given for an individual’s experience based upon his/her ability to fulfill the requirements of a prior-life portfolio. The portfolio is a detailed submission of documentation validating a student’s work experience in relation to the experiential requirements for the degree. Only 2 out of 3 of the required experiences may be completed in this manner.
Students still register and pay for the experiential courses to facilitate grade entry and required curriculum credits.
Can someone transfer to SU and what happens to the credits I have taken?
Yes, you can transfer into the NTDP Pathway at SU. Submit a copy of the transcripts from the school of pharmacy you have been attending for your non-traditional Doctor of Pharmacy degree as these are a requirement for consideration of admission. Your credits from other programs do not count as credit towards any of our classes due to the unique design of our curriculum.
When can I start?
The non-traditional pathway at SU has 1 cohort starting during the fall (August) semester each year.
Is the Non-traditional PharmD Pathway at SU accredited?
The school of pharmacy was first accredited in July 2000 from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and remains accredited. The accreditation of the school of pharmacy signifies that the traditional and nontraditional pathways are both accredited.
How is the experiential phase of the curriculum accomplished?
It is done in your place of employ as much as possible to prevent you from taking time off from work. You will complete either practice or prior-life portfolios to document your achievement of the objectives for the Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) in Ambulatory Care, Acute Care, and Medication Information.
Clinical Experiences that cannot be accomplished within your place of employ should be done on a part-time basis proximal to your location that will allow you to work full-time and fulfill the experiential requirements at the same time. It is your responsibility to identify potential sites and to convey this information to the School of Pharmacy at the appropriate time.
- You will have the opportunity to “opt-out” of up to 2 of the 3 required clinical experiences by successfully completing the prior-life portfolios
- Clinical experiences will occur throughout the program.
How long does it take to complete the curriculum and when will I graduate?
The requirements will take you around 2 ½ years to complete. SU has graduations three times a year in May, December, and August.
Awarding of the degree and eligibility for graduation will be considered for the next available university graduation provided all requirements have been successfully completed.
A schedule of enrollment dates and potential graduation dates are as follows:
- Practitioners enrolling in August will be eligible for August graduation 2 years later
How does my course work translate into continuing pharmacy education credit?
The school of pharmacy is an ACPE-approved provider of continuing pharmacy education. Certain didactic courses are approved for continuing education. If you complete the guidelines for CE credit, you will be eligible to receive CPE certificates, after every term while in the program, through the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy website.
What if I have to drop out indefinitely?
We realize that there are occasionally unforeseen circumstances which may require that a student temporarily take a leave of absence. It is very important that you keep the school informed if you foresee that you may not be able to continue as scheduled.
After one year you must re-apply, which means that you must fill out the required application forms including submitting the application fee. It is not necessary to re-submit a copy of your pharmacy license, official transcripts, or letters of recommendation.
If you fail to re-apply, you will be dropped from the roster and your log-in access will be denied. Any student who must reapply and be readmitted to the University will not receive any financial credit for outstanding credit hours and will be billed for all courses and credit hours at the current tuition rate.
Specifically, if you do not complete the experiential rotations before being dropped as an active student and choose to reapply, you will be re-registered and billed for any remaining rotations at the current tuition rate per hour.
NTDP Technology Requirements Review
This is a review of the technology requirements for the NTDP program.
Be Prepared For The Executive Weekend
- If you’ve purchased a new laptop, make sure you’ve spent time using it so you feel comfortable with the device before you come for the weekend.
- We recommend bringing a cordless mouse if you aren’t familiar with using the track pad on your laptop.
- Also, make sure you have administrator rights on your laptop. This means you will be able to install and update software yourself.
- While you can do the majority of the program on mobile devices be sure to bring your laptop and not just your iPad/other mobile device.
The Minimum Recommended Laptop Configuration
- Computer: PC or Mac laptop
- Internet access: Broadband connection (DSL, cable modem, etc.)
- Processor: Intel or AMD-based CPU
- RAM: 4GB or more
- Hard drive: 320GB hard drive or larger
- Microphone: Sound card with speakers and a microphone (built-in or external)
- Wireless compatibility: 802.11b/g/n card
- Operating System: Windows 7 or later | Mac 10.8 or later
Software You Will Need Installed Before The Executive Weekend
- Microsoft Office 2010 or later (Windows) or Microsoft Office 2011 (Mac)
- Antivirus Software: McAfee, Symantec or another comparable antivirus software package
- If you have anti-virus software that came with your laptop, be sure you have a subscription for updates. Many times you only get a 90-day trial of the software.