Within the pharmaceuticals industry, a student must choose what type of degree is necessary for the career that they have chosen. This choice is best done on the front end of your educational journey, however, both are obtainable, if so desired. Although both are relevant to the pharmaceutical field, your online doctorate degree in pharmacy provides you two choices which are typically a choice between a PharmD degree or the PhD degree. Students enrolled in either of these programs are provided very different understandings of the pharmacy profession.
PharmD vs. Ph.D.
The PharmD program is primarily used by the student who intends to be a pharmacist whether it be in a community pharmacy or in a large healthcare establishment. This degree is not as research intensive as the PhD program, however, it does focus on the knowledge of biological science and patient care.
If you are interested in a career in research within the pharmaceutical realm or a career in teaching at a higher educational level, then a PhD program is the degree of choice for you. Along with your coursework, you will be responsible for your own research and dissertation, which can take up to five years to complete.
Is there a difference in the coursework?
A pharmacy student enrolled in a PharmD program will study a variety of coursework such as pathology, biostatistics, immunology, drug interactions, physiology, anatomy, medical chemistry, physiology, biopharmaceutics, diagnosis of diseases, healthcare systems, therapeutics, pharmacy law and management, as well as, clinical training.
As a student obtaining an online doctorate degree in pharmacy, the PhD program coursework consists of an emphasis on metabolism and biostatistics, infectious disease, human pharmacology and therapeutics. These courses will prepare you to use advance research skills relating to new drug revelations, medical advancements and the distribution process to the patient.
What’s the end product of each type of degree?
So, perhaps you’re wondering what sort of career you can procure with each type of degree. With an online doctorate degree in pharmacy, your PharmD degree will afford you a career as the obvious, which is a pharmacist, however, there are a few divisions of expertise you may want to consider. You may choose to work in a local pharmacist or box store pharmacy in your community or perhaps, in a hospital/healthcare facility setting is more to your liking. A pharmacist consultant or managed care pharmacist might interest you, as well.
A graduate with a PhD, who would be qualified to educate and do research development in the pharmacy field, may also consider positions as a regulatory affairs officer, a consultant, a science editor or medical writer or a position in clinical trials management.
Ah, the big question, is there a difference in pay between the two choices?
Each degree, the PharmD and the PhD, will yield you different earning potential. The salary of the pharmacist, on average, is more than that of a pharmaceutical researcher. The U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in May of 2019, the median salary of a pharmacist was $128,090 per year, while the medical researcher’s median salary was $88,790 annually.
Although each type of degree seems similar but are very different, they each get you closer to your goal. With each degree type providing you different career experiences, they both provide you the rewarding opportunity of serving your community in a positive way.
There are only a handful of schools offering PharmD programs online….we’ve got your list right here!