Becoming a Pharmacist

Pharmacists play an important role in the safe dispensing and use of medicines, in providing healthcare services, professional advice, information and counselling to patients. Therefore it is essential that pharmacists undergo extensive education and training in order to provide safe and effective patient care.

To qualify as a pharmacist in Ireland, a person must undertake five years of education and training. There are three pharmacy degree programmes in Ireland which are accredited by the PSI:

Applications for places on these programmes should be made through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Prospectus can be viewed on the relevant university website.


Since September 2015, students commencing a pharmacist qualification in Ireland are undertaking a Master’s degree programme in pharmacy. This is an integrated education and training programme with a range of practical placements dispersed over the course of the programme.

Prior to September 2015, the qualification to become a pharmacist was the successful completion of a four-year degree programme leading to the award of the degree of Bachelor of Science (Pharmacy) [RCSI, TCD] or Bachelor of Pharmacy [UCC]. Students who successfully complete a PSI-accredited 4 year Bachelor degree programme in pharmacy are then eligible to apply to complete the National Pharmacy Internship Programme (NPIP). The NPIP comprises of 12 months in-service practical training and the Professional Registration Exam. Upon successful completion of this programme students are awarded a Masters qualification. 

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