How to become a Pharmacist in Malaysia – Studying the Accredited Pharmacy Degree

Best Pharmacy Degree Programmes at Top Private Universities that’s Accredited by Malaysian Pharmacy Board

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The 4-year Pharmacy degree programme at Malaysian private universities equips students with scientific, clinical and professional knowledge as well as strong communication skills, giving them the ability to positively impact the healthcare system. The degrees should be accredited by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) and Malaysian Pharmacy Board.

Pharmacy is about using medications safely and effectively. After a patient visits their doctor and receives a prescription for medicine or another approved remedy, pharmacists are tasked with filling those prescriptions. Although it may seem like a straight-forward exchange, pharmacists must use their extensive knowledge of drug dosage, regulation, allergens and chemical reactions for each and every individual who comes to them with a prescription. A Pharmacist is a professional who manages this process. While Doctors diagnose the disease or illness, it is the Pharmacist who are experts in drugs and medications. Their service is very important to both patients and the health care community.

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Study Pharmacy in Malaysia

Pharmacy at UCSI University

EduSpiral explained the courses in detail and took us around the campus to view the Pharmacy facilities to help me make a good decision about my future career.
Ka Jun, Pharmacy at UCSI University

Pharmacy is the study of medicine, looking at how drugs are created, their chemistry and interactions, and everything else a qualified pharmacist is required to know. For students who are interested in medicine but for whom becoming a doctor does not appeal for whatever reason, Pharmacy can be an excellent alternative.

Furthermore, the job also has the advantage of more regular hours than many alternative healthcare careers, which may be a source of appeal for those who want to contribute to helping people medically but who also want a more structured lifestyle than medicine or nursing can offer.

To become a Pharmacist in Malaysia, one needs to study the 4-year Pharmacy degree that’s accredited by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) as well as the Malaysian Pharmacy Board. Then, graduates will be required to pass the registration exam before registering as a pharmacist.

What kind of things can I expect to study?

Pharmacy Graduate from UCSI University

EduSpiral provided us with in-depth information about UCSI University and also took us around for a campus tour and helped us to make a good decision about our future.
En Qi, Pharmacy Graduate from UCSI University

Pharmacy students will gain knowledge across areas like biology and chemistry.

The start of a Pharmacy degree, which is usually four years, leading to a BPharm degree, is focused on giving students a solid foundation in the fundamentals of pharmaceutical sciences, covering medicine, chemistry, biology, ethics and training in professionalism. As Pharmacy is a patient-facing profession, you will start to model patient scenarios early on.

In later years, the focus of the degree shifts from its theoretical foundations to practical, patient-orientated study, including looking at specific diseases and medicines. You will look closely at good practice in real-life Pharmacy situations to develop your professional skills and maximise patient benefit. You will address the law and ethics of Pharmacy, and you may look at Pharmacy from a business perspective. You will spend a lot of time on placements of different kinds. You may also have the opportunity to carry out a research project of your own.

The assessment methods include various assignments, practical & visitation reports, oral presentations, research project viva, patient counselling, tutorials, problem based sessions and finally the examinations.

Sample of Pharmacy subjects

Simulated Community Pharmacy Lab at UCSI University

Simulated Community Pharmacy Lab at UCSI University

It is important to note that the subjects offered at the universities would vary and students should look through the brochures and talk to the lecturers. Some universities may be focussed on practical while others on research. Ask about the focus and goals of the pharmacy programme and then decide whether they fit your career goals.

  • Introductory Physiology
  • Microbiology for Pharmacy
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Basic Pharmacology & Immunopharmacology
  • Basic Medicinal Chemistry
  • Biostatistics for Pharmacy
  • Biochemistry for Pharmacy
  • Physical Pharmacy
  • Dispensing & Compounding
  • Antimicrobial Therapy
  • Nervous System & Pharmacotherapy
  • Aseptic Dispensing
  • Pulmonary, Renal & Pharmacotherapy
  • Endocrine System & Pharmacotherapy
  • Nonprescription Drugs
  • Marketing for Pharmacy
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Dosage Form Design
  • Cardiovascular System, Blood & Pharmacotherapy
  • Gastrointestinal System & Pharmacotherapy
  • Evidence Based Medicine
  • Basic Pharmacokinetics

  • Pharmacognosy
  • Clinical Pharmacokinetics
  • Biotechnology & Pharmacogenomics
  • Drug of Abuse & Society
  • Hospital Pharmacy Practice
  • Pharmacy Management
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Pharmacy Clerkship
  • Research Project
  • Geriatric Pharmacy
  • Cancer Chemotherapy
  • Pharmacy Law & Ethics
  • Pharmacoeconomics
  • Pharmacoepidemiology
  • Communication in Healthcare
  • Pharmaceutical Microbiology
  • Basic Chemical Properties of Drugs & Action
  • Basic & Peripheral Nervous System Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Compounding & Dispensing
  • Antimicrobials, Anti-Neoplastic Agents & Immunomodulators
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Central Nervous System Pharmacotherapeutics
  • Biochemistry
  • Physical Pharmaceutics
  • Pharmacy Legislation
  • Pharmacognosy & Phytochemistry
  • Renal & Gastrointestinal System Pharmacotherapeutics
  • Clinical Pharmacokinetics
  • Pharmaceutical Processing
  • Pharmaceutical Biotechnology & Immunology

What are the entry requirements for a Pharmacy degree?

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor's University

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor’s University

Generally, in the actual A-Level or STPM results, a Minimum of 3 principals ‘B’ in Chemistry, Maths, and Biology or Physics. In addition, academically qualified candidates will be required to attend an interview for admission and a Chemistry quiz. Top universities would require higher entry requirements.

The outcome of the interview will determine a candidate’s successful admission into the programme. Furthermore, students must have a Minimum of 5B’s in Maths, Additional Maths, Chemistry, Biology and Physics in their SPM or O-Levels as well.

Students after SPM or O-Levels can enter into a Foundation in Science at the best private universities in Malaysia for 1 year before continuing on to the 4-year Pharmacy degree.

Pre-University graduates in Malaysia from programmes such as UEC, STPM, A-Levels, SAM, CPU, AUSMAT and others may enter directly into the degree providing they meet the minimum entry requirements.

What skills will I acquire?

Graduates will acquire extensive knowledge of medicines, including their design, manufacture and effects, as well as knowing how to operate pharmaceutical instrumentation. Moreover, you will develop very strong professional skills such as interacting with patients  and effective communication.

Pharmacy graduates will also acquire highly transferable skills such as a high level of organisation and ability to work carefully, accurately and methodically. You will also gain problem-solving skills. The research project that you are likely to carry out in your final year will equip you with the ability to carry out independent research and present your findings.

Compulsory Training for Pharmacy in Malaysia Shortened to 1 year

Furthermore, Pharmacy graduates can now go through their training outside of government hospitals and facilities. This was announced recently by the Health Ministry to help increase the pharmacist-people ratio for the next three years.Pharmacy graduates can undergo their Provisionally Registered Pharmacists (PRP) training at private pharmacy facilities, such as private hospitals, R&D industries and community pharmacies that are accredited by the Malaysian Pharmacy Board. In September 2011, PRP was shortened from a three-year period to only one year.

Qualifying Examination to Practice Pharmacy

The Pharmacy Board of Malaysia (PBM) has set the requirement to pass in the Qualifying Examination as a pre requisite for registration.
The following groups of applicants are eligible and required to pass this examination before they can be registered as a pharmacist in Malaysia:

  1. Provisionally Registered Pharmacists (PRP) who are undergoing provisional training in Malaysia or
  2. Malaysian applicants with pharmacy degree recognized by the PBM and have been registered in a foreign country and intend to get registered in Malaysia.
  3. Foreign registered pharmacists with pharmacy degree recognized by the PBM and intend to apply for Temporary Registration in Malaysia.
  4. Third year (3rd year), fourth year (4thyear) and graduated pharmacy students (who are awaiting for PRP posting) from a recognized pharmacy program.

EXAMINATION FORMAT

  1. 100 Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) in open book format.
  2. All questions shall be answered within 3 hours and 30 minutes.
  3. Each question has four (4) options with a single correct response only.
  4. The passing mark is 50%.
  5. This exam contains negative marking. Right answer carries one mark and 0.25 negative mark for each wrong answer will be deducted. No marks will be deducted for questions not attempted.
  6. Candidates are allowed to refer to the relevant acts/regulations, Code of Conduct for Pharmacista and Bodies Corporate, references regarding Malaysian National Medicines Policy and Good Governance for Medicine.

What careers are possible with a Pharmacy degree?

Most Pharmacy graduates are employed as pharmacists. These divide into two main groups: hospital pharmacists and community or retail pharmacists. Graduates may find work in research as well.

Top Universities offering the Pharmacy Degree in Malaysia

  1. University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus
  2. Monash University
  3. UCSI University
  4. MAHSA University
  5. IMU
  6. Taylor’s University

An Accredited 2+2 Pharmacy Degree Pathway at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

Students can get the best of British education at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus supported by excellent facilities

Students can get the best of British education at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus supported by excellent facilities

Malaysian students can obtain a UK Top Ranked Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus. The MPharm is a four-year programme that allows students to study the first 2 years in Malaysia and then the final 2 years in the UK. After finishing your degree, you must spend a salaried year in pharmacy practice and this could potentially take place in the UK, Malaysia or other countries. You will then be required to pass the relevant accrediting body’s registration exam before registering as a pharmacist.

Their pharmacy degree was the first programme in Malaysia to hold full accreditation by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain/General Pharmaceutical Council (UK). Obtaining a pharmacy degree from a top ranked university will definitely be a boost to your career. or students after SPM or O-Levels who are interested in this course, they can enter into the Foundation in Science also offered at the top ranked University of Nottingham Malaysia.

Established in 1925, the School of Pharmacy is at the forefront of academic development and progress. Our teaching staff are at the leading edge of scientific and healthcare developments and we have a long and distinguished research history.

University of Nottingham was rated as top in the UK for research in the latest Research Assessment Exercise and are consistently ranked as the UK’s top pharmacy school. The quality of our teaching was graded excellent during the last UK Quality Assurance Agency audit and in 2007 we received The Queen’s Award for Industry in Innovation – one of the UK’s highest corporate honours – for significantly enhancing the development of new medicines. Our pharmacy degree was the first programme in Malaysia to hold full accreditation by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain/General Pharmaceutical Council (UK).

EduSpiral advised & helped me choose the best college for A-Levels. And now I have graduated from a top ranked UK University in Malaysia Dexter Leong, A-Levels at HELP Academy & Degree from University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

EduSpiral advised & helped me choose the best college for A-Levels. And now I have graduated from a top ranked UK University in Malaysia
Dexter Leong, A-Levels at HELP Academy & Degree from University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

Our research-active staff include academics from Nottingham’s UK Campus and institutions and governmental organisations from within the UK, Malaysia and across the globe. Their collective expertise spans areas such as natural product chemistry, computational chemistry, drug delivery and pharmacy practice. This strongly informs our teaching and enables lecture materials to be drawn from the forefront of science.

All students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of one of the many vacation work experience placements we secure each year. Practising community, hospital and industrial pharmacists contribute to teaching at both campuses and visiting pharmacy and biomedical sciences academics from the UK Campus also deliver lectures, workshops and practical classes. This will provide you with an invaluable insight into the profession of pharmacy.

How you are taught

You will experience an integrated range of teaching and learning styles – from traditional lectures and tutorials to practical classes and workshops. Our courses develop a range of transferable skills, with the ability to work to the highest professional and ethical standards. A supportive environment is essential for your development and you will be allocated a personal tutor to help with personal and academic issues. We also have a Learning Community Forum that provides an opportunity for you to discuss course-related issues with academic staff.

Master of Pharmacy (MPharm)

The Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) is a four-year programme that provides you with a unique opportunity to study in Malaysia and the UK. After finishing your degree, you must spend a salaried year in pharmacy practice and this could potentially take place in the UK, Malaysia or other countries. You will then be required to pass the relevant accrediting body’s registration exam before registering as a pharmacist.

The first two years of the modular pharmacy course will be taught at the Malaysia Campus and will involve the development of core pharmacy skills and knowledge. You will then transfer to the UK for the final two years of study and learn more about the clinical and legal aspects of the pharmacy profession. In your third year, you will have the opportunity to be involved in pharmaceutical research by working under the supervision of a member of academic staff.

Recognised Pharmacy Degree & Diploma Programmes in Malaysia at MAHSA University

MAHSA University’s pharmacy programmes are built on a foundation of experience, taught by highly skilled practitioners, constantly updated and includes creative virtual and real world experiences to equip you for modern practice.

The Best Diploma in Pharmacy Course in Malaysia at MAHSA University

MAHSA University is best known in Malaysia for their medical, dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, physiotherapy, biomedical and health science courses.

MAHSA University is best known in Malaysia for their medical, dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, physiotherapy, biomedical and health science courses.

Diploma in Pharmacy is a 3-year programme in which students will gain a strong foundation in biological, chemical and pharmaceutical sciences in the first year, before proceeding onto more advanced topics and 2 semesters in hospital pharmacy training.

Graduates will be able to gain employment as Pharmacy Assistants in public and private hospitals, health clinics, pharmaceutical laboratories and manufacturing facilities. The graduates may also continue their educational pursuit of a professional degree in pharmacy.

The Diploma in Pharmacy programme received its full MQA accreditation in March 2009.

Advantages of Studying MAHSA University’s Diploma in Pharmacy

  • The Diploma in Pharmacy is designed in consultation with Pharmacy Board Malaysia and a panel of local and international experts, resulting in a highly sought after curriculum that combines theoretical learning and practical sessions in hospitals.
  • Clinical Exposure Students of the Diploma in Pharmacy gain experience in our rather exhaustive list of panel of hospitals throughout Malaysia.
  • Tuition fees for the Diploma in Pharmacy at MAHSA University are kept at an affordable level, to ensure there are little barriers to a good quality education.
  • The Diploma in Pharmacy is approved and accredited by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency and Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia and recognized by the Pharmacy Board Malaysia and Ministry of Health, Malaysia.
  • The Diploma in Pharmacy is awarded by MAHSA University, a leader in Medical and Health Science Education in Malaysia.

Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) Programme in Malaysia at MAHSA University

MAHSA University’s Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) is a 4-year undergraduate programme for individuals who want to devote themselves to the advancement of health through the dispensation of medicines.
Graduates can then take the professional examinations and be qualified as pharmacists in hospitals and medical centres, or choose to go into production, marketing and distribution, research and development, or education.

The subjects that will be explored during the course of this programme include anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, microbiology, pharmaceutical research, microbiology, quality use of medicines, cellular physiology, genetics, cytology and histology, chemistry, pharmacy, and integrated patient care.

At the end of the programme, students will have procured for themselves the ability to know and differentiate among the myriad medicines and pharmaceutical products in the market, prepare medicines and medications by correctly interpreting physician’s prescriptions, detect therapeutic incompatibilities, monitor and manage the distribution of controlled drugs, and other important duties for which they have to be held accountable.

Advantages of Studying MAHSA University’s Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons)

  • The Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) at MAHSA University is designed in consultation with the Pharmacy Board Malaysia and a panel of local and international experts, resulting in a highly sought after curriculum that combines theoretical learning and practical sessions in hospitals and pharmaceutical laboratories.
  • Clinical Exposure. Students of the Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) gain experience in our rather exhaustive list of panel of hospitals throughout Malaysia
  • Tuition fees for the Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) at MAHSA University are kept at an affordable level, to ensure there are little barriers to a good quality education.
  • The Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) at MAHSA University is approved by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency and Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia and recognized by the Pharmacy Board Malaysia and Ministry of Health, Malaysia.
  • The Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) is awarded by MAHSA University, a leader in Medical and Health Science Education in Malaysia

Pharmacy Degree Programme at Top Rank UCSI University

Simulated Community Pharmacy Lab at UCSI University

Simulated Community Pharmacy Lab at UCSI University

Established in 1986, UCSI University has offered the Pharmacy programme since 2000 as a 2+2 with Curtin University, Australia. In 2005, the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UCSI University offered its own Pharmacy degree programme. To accommodate its rapid growth and expansion, the School has since moved twice before its current five fully-equipped laboratories that are dedicated to learning, teaching and research.

The Pharmacy degree at UCSI University is accredited by MQA and is recognised by the Malaysian Pharmacy Board. Graduates have been able to find work overseas as well. Together with its cutting-edge facilities, the 4-year Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons.) degree offers quality learning experience under the tutelage of dedicated teaching staff using innovative teaching methods, and who, being actively involved in research, provide students with opportunities to participate in various research projects.

At the Faculty, student are provided early exposure to various pharmacy-linked experiences such as industrial training, public health campaigns, community clerkship, hospital pharmacy clerkship and also to Problem-based Learning(PBL). Besides the formal lecture mode, student also receive invaluable practical guidance from our external partners, experienced industrial speakers, appointed pharmacists and doctors incorporated under the various Faculty departments.

Assessments

Pharmacy at UCSI University

EduSpiral explained the courses in detail and took us around the campus to view the Pharmacy facilities to help me make a good decision about my future career.
Ka Jun, Pharmacy at UCSI University

UCSI University School of Pharmacy assesses its students based on the main objective of training competent pharmacists. The ethics, communication, knowledge, analytical and critical thinking skills are incorporated into its assessments. The assessment methods include various assignments, practical & visitation reports, oral presentations, research project viva, patient counseling, tutorials, problem based sessions and finally the examinations.

UCSI Pharmacy students have the unique experience in organising and executing the Public Health Campaign each year giving them valuable leadership experience and enhancing their communication skills. As you know, if graduates work in retail pharmacy, they will need to be able to communicate to the public about the nature and effects of the drugs prescribed to the patients. This public health campaign will definitely help them to add value to their future career as a pharmacist.

To go into the Pharmacy degree after SPM or O-Levels, students need to go for either a Pre-U course like A-Levels or AUSMAT, or the Foundation in Science at UCSI University. For UCSI University, students can either go for the Foundation in Science or their internationally recognised A-Levels. Upon completion, these students are given preference into UCSI’s medical or pharmacy programmes where the seats are limited.

Premier Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) Course at Taylor’s University

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor's University

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor’s University

The Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) programme at top ranked Taylor’s University is recognised by the Malaysian Pharmacy Board. Taylor’s University is one of the best universities in Malaysia for you to study the pharmacy programme.

Students after SPM or O-Levels  may enter Taylor’s Foundation in Science for 1 year before continuing on to the Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) degree programme at Taylor’s University.

The 4-year Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons) degree programme at Taylor’s Universityequips students with scientific, clinical and professional knowledge as well as strong communication skills, giving them the ability to positively impact the healthcare system.

The curriculum is designed to encourage students to become independent learners who are capable of undertaking and understanding challenges in the use of medicine and in healthcare. Ultimately, our pharmacy degree students will gain the ability to integrate fundamental scientific principles into healthcare practice.

The pharmacy programme at Taylor’s University is geared towards the patient as the major focus for the application of knowledge of the pharmaceutical sciences. There are four main areas within the pharmacy programme at Taylor’s: Pharmacology, Medicinal Chemistry, Drug Delivery and Pharmacy Practice.

360° Learning Experience

  • Early exposure to real world experience through field visits, study trips, and campaigns, as well as internship and research opportunities, prepares students for their future careers.

Highly-qualified Faculty

  • Classroom teaching is influenced and informed by faculty members who are experienced in the field of pharmacy (public or private sectors) and continuously undertake research in their respective fields.
  • Students obtain a broad understanding and perspective of the subject matter, due to the good mix of local and international lecturers.
  • Over 70% of the lecturers are Ph.D. holders and many undertake research in their respective areas of interest, contributing to the enhancement of knowledge delivered in the classroom.

In-depth Knowledge

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor's University

Pharmacy facilities at Taylor’s University

  • The curriculum provides an in-depth insight in pharmaceutical sciences, physiology and pharmacy practice. Emphasis is placed on clinical skills, specifically with response to symptoms and differential diagnosis built on the application of scientific principles.

Comprehensive Placement

  • Exposure to the three major healthcare areas in pharmacy, via 5-week placement in Community Pharmacy, 15-week of Hospital Pharmacy and 3-week placement in Industrial Pharmacy.

34 replies »

  1. Hi..currently I’m doing DipPharm and I’m in final year…I’m planning to pursue degree and I’m looking for scholarships for the degree program…could u advice on this..tq

  2. hi cn i have foundation in one school and then study maybe for 2 years in the same school but later transfer to another school to continue my studies? I hope you know what i’m tryin’ to say

  3. Hi , just want to ask , is is hard to study pharmacy with stpm ? I’m quite insecure about pre-u now because i don’t have any other choice besides form6 now . I’m taking bio , chem , maths T and general studies . So if i scored well in my stpm , can i study pharmacy with that ?

  4. I heard that nowadays pharmacy is over demand, i have some fresh graduates in pharmacy are waiting the government since last year august, I quite interested in pharmacy but I scare it will jobless when I graduate after 4 years of degree. Should I continue study pharmacy or I should choose another health care degree??

  5. Can I take one year foundation of science, then go through degree of pharmacy? I mean that if I don’t want to take diploma of pharmacy.

  6. i did not take any physic in my O’level, following the school’s rule, but my A’level chem is very good (A*), bio (B) and maths (B). Any chance to get in ucsi without any physic? my other science subject in O’level are all B’s

  7. i did not take physic in my O’level but i did take bio, math and chem in both O’level and A’level. any chance i can get in ucsi with no physic background?

  8. Hi,
    matriculation , a-level, foundation and diploma) in bachelor in pharmacy .. Which is better??
    And Which is the best place to continue my studies in pharmacy. Tq 😊

  9. I TOOK ARTS STREAM DURING MY SPM LAST YEAR.. MY RESULT WAS 4A FOR MY ENGLISH,SEJARAH,SCIENCE,EKONOMI RUMAH TANGGA, B+ FOR BAHASA MELAYU,ARTS,MORAL AND C FOR MY MATHS AND D FOR MY PERDAGANGAN.. CAN I CONTINUE MY STUDIES FOR PHARMACY?? THANK YOU SIR/MRS/MR/MDM

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