What is Pharmacy?

Pharmacy is not just about a drugstore. For those who study pharmacy can also choose research and development of medicine as a career option. 

A drug/medicine before being prescribed by a doctor has to undergo tests and approvals. It is tested in a lab, studied for dosage and side effects, only then prescription guidelines are formed. The medicines then undergo clinical trials and only when after studying all the possible effects of the medicine, it is introduced in the market. Pharmacists are a part of the entire process. They are also responsible for introducing a new drug/ medicine to various medical practitioners. 

The role of pharmacist does not end here. They study and keep track of all medicines and products with market surveys by connecting with a medical practitioner and distributors for any side effects, reactions and allergies, etc. Although, before distribution in a market the medicines are tested in labs because of the complexity and diversity of human beings, different outcomes from the same medicine can occur, therefore, a pharmacy practitioner has to research and develop medicines and prescriptions at multitudes. Pharmacy basically includes everything related to your wellness right from the food you consume to the cosmetics, lifestyle products, health and chemical products that you use.

Looking at the scope of Pharmacy in the healthcare industry, a survey report called ‘Pharmacy at a glance 2015-2017 by International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), community pharmacy is the largest contributor with 75.1 per cent registered pharmacists employed followed by hospital pharmacy with 13.2 per cent. The services provided by pharmacy practitioners include:

Improving the use of medicines: Reviewing medicines, medicines for hypertension management, directly observed treatments, short courses based medicines, medication reconciliation and new drug development.

Product-focused services: This includes compounding medicines (based on prescriptions by medical practitioners) and assembling expired medicines from a market. 

Public health services: This includes promoting health initiatives, vaccinations, health camps and other health-related awareness.

World Health Organization (WHO) in India is aiming to strengthen the pharmaceutical sector, including drug regulations, volume and trade, to facilitate the pharmaceuticals in becoming crucial for India’s growth. The WHO in close association with the Government of India controls the strengths and collaborations for improving the pharmaceutical sector.

For making WHO 2030 Sustainable Development agenda a success, access to medicines is a critical factor. Thus, WHO India’s key strategy is to strengthen the Regulatory system that can help access to quality, safe, effective and inexpensive medical products in an unbiased manner.

Moreover, WHO India is also effectively working on establishing pharmacovigilance systems by integrating public health programmes, promoting rational drug use initiatives for a medical product in accordance with National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance as well as strengthening procurement and supply chain management.

Pharmacy Entrance Tests in India

To enrol in any of the pharmacy courses, candidates need to fulfil the eligibility criteria, appear and clear respective admission tests of different pharmacy colleges/institutes. The selection procedure includes academic eligibility, valid scores and rank in entrance tests. Here is a list of Pharmacy entrance exams:

Graduate Pharmacy Aptitude Test (GPAT)

Other Pharmacy Examinations

West Bengal Joint Entrance Exam



Maharashtra State Common Entrance Test

Karnataka Common Entrance Test





NIPER Joint Entrance Exam

Graduate Pharmacy Aptitude Test

Dayananda Sagar University Admission Test

Central Universities Common Entrance Test

BITS Higher Degree Admission Test

West Bengal University of Technology Post Graduate Entrance Test

Andhra Pradesh Post-Graduate Common Entrance Test

GLA University Entrance Test (GLAET)

Uttarakhand State Entrance Exam

OJEE Post Graduate Admission Test

Integral University Entrance Test

Jaipur National University Combined Entrance Test

Bharati Vidyapeeth Common Entrance Test

Goenka Aptitude Test for Admission

DHSG University Post Graduate Entrance Test

Himachal Pradesh Common Entrance Test

Manipal University Online Entrance Test


Required Skillset for Pharmacy:

While a person pursuing a career in this field will be able to develop core skills and knowledge after pursuing a Pharmacy course and gaining experience with years of practising, however, they need to have basic skills set. These include:

Communication skills and tnterpersonal skills

Medicinal and scientific research skills

Curiosity and persuasive skills

Business skills like marketing, organising

Technical skills

Sharp memory and knowledge

Therapeutic and counselling skills 

Medical writing and ethics

Determinant and consistency skills

Adaptation ability to dynamic situations

Pharmacy Eligibility Criteria

Pharmacy is offered at different levels and to get admission in any of the Pharma courses, candidates need to fulfil the required eligibility criteria for the particular course. Check below eligibility criteria for Pharmacy courses:

Diploma in Pharmacy (D. Pharm): Candidates should have completed higher secondary education with science subjects i.e. Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Mathematics.

Bachelor in Pharmacy (B. Pharm): Candidates must have completed their higher education from national- or state-level education board. They must have studied Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics or Biology and English subjects. They must complete 17 years of age on December 31 of year of admission. 

Master of Pharmacy (M. Pharm): Candidates who have completed B. Pharm degree with minimum qualifying marks as required from a pharmacy college as approved by the Pharmacy Council of India (PCI).

For Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm. D): For six-year coursecandidates must have completed higher education from any state/national education board. They must have studied Physics and Chemistry as compulsory subjects with Mathematics or Biology as additional subjects. They must have completed 17 years of age in the year of admission. Or, candidates holding a diploma in pharmacy are also eligible for Pharm. D course provided they fulfil all other conditions as well.

On the other hand, for a three-year course candidates, who have completed Bachelor of Pharmacy course from an institute recognized under the PCI, are eligible for Pharm. D course. They must have completed higher secondary education or equivalent with Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics or Biology subjects.

Course Curriculum for Pharmacy

A student pursuing a Pharmacy course at UG/PG/Diploma/PhD level will be studying the course curriculum including specialised topics, assignments, projects, industrial training, internship, etc. Moreover, the curriculum of Pharmacy courses also includes communication skills develelopment, environmental science studies, ethical practices and regulations of Pharmacy Council of India. Here we have provided Pharmacy course curriculum at different levels:

Pharmacy Courses

Course name


Diploma in Pharmacy


Pharmaceutical Chemistry


Biochemistry & Clinical Pathology

Human Anatomy & Physiology

Human Education and

Community Pharmacy

Pharmacology and Toxicology

Pharmaceutical Jurisprudence

Drugs Store and Business Management

Hospital and Clinical Pharmacy

Pharm. D

Human Anatomy and Physiology


Medicinal Biochemistry

Pharmaceutical Organic Chemistry

Pharmaceutical Inorganic Chemistry

Remedial Mathematics/ Biology


Pharmaceutical Microbiology

Pharmacognosy & Phyto-pharmaceuticals


Community Pharmacy


Pharmaceutical Analysis

Pharmaceutical Jurisprudence

Medicinal Chemistry

Pharmaceutical Formulations

Hospital Pharmacy

Clinical Pharmacy

Biostatistics & Research Methodology

Biopharmaceutics & Pharmacokinetics

Clinical Toxicology

Clinical Research

Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics

Clinical Pharmacokinetics & Pharmacotherapeutic Drug Monitoring

B. Pharm

Human Anatomy and Physiology

Pharmaceutical Analysis


Pharmaceutical Inorganic Chemistry

Communication skills

Remedial Biology/Remedial Mathematics

Pharmaceutical Organic Chemistry



Computer Applications in Pharmacy

Environmental sciences

Physical Pharmaceutics

Pharmaceutical Microbiology

Pharmaceutical Engineering

Medicinal Chemistry


Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry

Industrial Pharmacy

Pharmaceutical Jurisprudence

Herbal Drug Technology

Biopharmaceutics and Pharmacokinetics

Pharmaceutical Biotechnology

Quality Assurance

Herbal Drug Technology

Instrumental Methods of Analysis

Pharmacy Practice

Novel Drug Delivery System

Biostatistics and Research Methodology

Social and Preventive Pharmacy

Pharma Marketing Management

Pharmaceutical Regulatory Science


Quality Control and Standardization of Herbals

Computer Aided Drug Design

Cell and Molecular Biology

Cosmetic Science

Experimental Pharmacology

Advanced Instrumentation Techniques

Dietary Supplements and Nutraceuticals

Master of Pharmacy in Pharmaceutics


Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Drug Delivery System

Modern Pharmaceutics

Regulatory Affair

Molecular Pharmaceutics (NanoTech and Targeted DDS)

Advanced Biopharmaceutics & Pharmacokinetics

Computer Aided Drug Delivery System

Cosmetic and Cosmeceuticals

MPharm in Industrial Pharmacy

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques


Formulation Development

Novel drug delivery systems

Intellectual Property Rights

Advanced Biopharmaceutics and Pharmacokinetics

Scale up and Technology Transfer

Pharmaceutical Production Technology

Entrepreneurship Management

MPharm in Pharmaceutical Chemistry

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Advanced Organic Chemistry

Advanced Medicinal chemistry

Chemistry of Natural Products

Advanced Spectral Analysis

Computer Aided Drug Design

Pharmaceutical Process Chemistry

MPharm in Pharmaceutical Analysis

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Advanced Pharmaceutical Analysis

Pharmaceutical Validation

Food Analysis

Advanced Instrumental Analysis

Modern Bio-Analytical Techniques

Quality Control and Quality Assurance

Herbal and Cosmetic Analysis

MPharm in Pharmaceutical Quality Assurance

Analytical Techniques

Quality Management System

Quality Control and Quality Assurance

Product Development and Technology Transfer

Hazards and Safety Management

Pharmaceutical Validation

Audits and Regulatory Compliance

Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Technology

MPharm in Regulatory Affairs

Good Regulatory Practices

Documentation and Regulatory Writing

Clinical Research Regulations

Regulations and Legislation for Drugs & Cosmetics, Medical Devices, Biologicals & Herbals, and Food & Nutraceuticals In India and Intellectual Property Rights

Regulatory Aspects of Drugs & Cosmetics

Regulatory Aspects of Herbal & Biologicals

Regulatory Aspects of Medical Devices

Regulatory Aspects of Food & Nutraceuticals

MPharm in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Microbial and Cellular Biology

Bioprocess Engineering and Technology

Advanced Pharmaceutical Biotechnology

Proteins and protein Formulation


Bioinformatics and Computer Technology

Biological Evaluation of Drug Therapy

MPharm in Pharmacy Practice

Clinical Pharmacy Practice


Hospital & Community Pharmacy

Clinical Research

Principles of Quality Use of Medicines

Clinical Pharmacokinetics and Therapeutic Drug Monitoring

Pharmaco-epidemiology & Pharmaco-economics

MPharm in Pharmacology

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Advanced Pharmacology

Pharmacological and Toxicological Screening Methods

Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology

Principles of Drug Discovery

Experimental Pharmacology practical

MPharm in Pharmacognosy

Modern Pharmaceutical Analytical Techniques

Advanced Pharmacognosy


Industrial Pharmacognostical Technology

Medicinal Plant biotechnology

Indian system of medicine

Herbal cosmetics

Pharmacy Job Profiles and Top Recruiters

Pharmacist: As a pharmacist usually is associated with healthcare centres, individual medical practitioners, hospitals, and every medical association. Their responsibilities include advising medical practitioners in healthcare industry i.e. doctors, nurses, medical technicians about drugs and its uses, dosage as well as side effects. They also check for safety standards of new medicines developed, advice on medicines with suitable diets, dosages, prescription or no prescription drugs as well as to suggest the most appropriate form of medications such as tablet, vaccination, drops, ointments, liquid syrups, inhalers etc. The sales, marketing and distribution of medicines is also managed by pharmacists.

Pharmacologist: A person holding a degree in Pharmacology specialisation works in research and development of Drugs for Pharmacy Industry. A Pharmacologist studies, observes and alters the drugs developed as per the standards of Pharmacy Regulations. They majorly work in cardiovascular pharmacology, Neuropharmacology, psychopharmacology, Clinical Pharmacology, safety pharmacology, Toxicology and more.

Food and cosmetic products development scientist: A pharmacy degree holder is not just restricted to preparing drugs but also, they are involved in researching and developing products beyond medicines such as for cosmetics and food. There are people who are allergic to certain food such as gluten allergy, lactose intolerance etc. and on the consumption of such foods, they develop serious allergies, therefore, a pharmacy scientist researches to develop food free from these allergic elements. In a similar way, they help develop harmless and non-allergic cosmetic products. For a scientist, a laboratory is the workplace, most of the time is invested in writing about research carried out by them along with right instructions. All the how-to-use instructions, best before/expiry dates, ingredients and any specific note you find on medicines, cosmetics and food products is a scientists’ work. They send the guidelines/instructions after lab testing as per the standards set by the regulatory authorities to the manufacturing units.

Clinical Trial Research Associate – This role is relatively crucial because as an associate in Clinical Trial Research, the collection of data in research studies, interpret it as well as document the research. Moreover, the CTR Associate is responsible to verify the vaccinations, medicines, medical devices and other clinical monitoring tools. They are involved in ensuring that protocols are followed, regulations are considered as well as authenticating the CRT data and information. The CRT associates manage the clinical studies for diseases, diagnostics and monitoring the clinical study labs as well as risk management in clinical trials.

Pharmacy Top Recruiters

Indian Recruiters

International Recruiters

  • Lupin
  • Cipla
  • Piramal
  • Sun Pharmaceuticals
  • Aurobindo Pharma
  • Dr, Reddy’s Laboratories
  • Serum Institute of India Ltd
  • Biocon


  • Pfizer
  • AbbVie
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Amgen
  • Merck
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