Pharmacy Courses (2023): Duration, Fees, Types, Entrance Exam | Virohan

Pharmacy Courses (2024): Eligibility, Jobs and Salary

By Dr. Nidhi on 15 Apr 2024
9 mins read
Pharmacy Courses

Are you curious to discover the secrets behind medicines and how they help treat people?
Do you want to know what lies behind the pharmacy counter?
Are you thinking about a career in pharmacy?

Please read on if your answer to any or all the questions above is YES! 

Pharmacy is a branch of health sciences that deals with the intricacies of medical science involving the preparation, preservation, amalgamation and dispensing of medication. It plays a pivotal role in a patient's healthcare journey. It is a unique field that seamlessly bridges the gap between health sciences and direct patient care. 

This blog post gives you an overview of pharmacy courses. From understanding how drugs interact within the human body, to learning the ethical responsibilities of a pharmacist, we'll break down all the major areas you'll delve into during your pharmacy education. Moreover, we'll talk about the different career paths that open up after the completion of a course in pharmacy. 

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Pharmacy Course Highlights

Course LevelDiploma & Undergraduate
Eligibility Criteria50% marks in 10+2 in Physics, Chemistry, and Biology/Mathematics (may differ depending on the institutions)
Course Duration 2-4 Years
Average Fee INR 15,000 - INR 3,00,000 per annum 
Average SalaryINR 2,00,000 - INR 5,00,000 per annum
Job ProfilesDrug store attendant, Clinical research associate, Pharmacist, Drug safety associate, Drug inspector, Sales representative, Pharmacy business owner, Scientific writer

What is a Pharmacy Course?

Pharmacy courses are specialised academic programs designed to educate students about various aspects of the pharmaceutical industry, research and healthcare sciences. These courses offer an in-depth understanding of medications, their mechanisms and interactions, their uses and dosage forms, and how they are developed and manufactured.

Upon completion of a pharmacy course, students generally pursue a career as a pharmacist. However, the knowledge and skills gained can also lead to various other career prospects, such as working in pharmaceutical research and development, drug regulation, hospital pharmacy, or even pursuing further specialisation through post-graduate studies.

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Why Study a Pharmacy Course?

Studying a pharmacy course opens up a world of opportunities in a diverse and rewarding field. Here are some key reasons why you might consider enrolling in a pharmacy course:

Contribute to Healthcare: Pharmacy is a vital part of the healthcare industry. As a pharmacist, you play a crucial role in improving patients' health outcomes by ensuring they receive the correct medications and understand how to use them effectively.

High Demand: There is a consistent demand for skilled pharmacists in various sectors, including hospitals, retail pharmacies, pharmaceutical companies, and more. This demand translates into a wide range of job opportunities upon graduation and job security.

Diverse Career Paths: A pharmacy degree opens the door to diverse career paths beyond working in a traditional drugstore. You could end up working as a clinical research associate or as a pharmaceutical sales representative, or even start your own pharmacy!

Personal Interaction: If you enjoy working with people and making a difference in their lives, pharmacy is an excellent choice. Pharmacists build strong relationships with patients, guiding them through their healthcare journey.

Global Opportunities: With a pharmacy degree, you can work practically anywhere in the world. The skills and knowledge you gain from a pharmacy course are transferable and highly respected globally.

Financial Rewards: While the satisfaction of helping others is a significant reward, pharmacists also earn substantial salaries, reflecting their level of responsibility and the years of study required to enter the profession.

Pharmacy Courses After 12th

Pharmacy can be studied at two levels after class 12th. Here are the main types of pharmacy courses that are commonly offered:

1. Diploma in Pharmacy (D.Pharm): The D Pharmacy Course usually spans over two years and is designed to familiarise students with the basic concepts of pharmaceutical science. It introduces students to the world of pharmacy and provides an understanding of the industry's practices and relevant knowledge. Graduates of this course often work as medical representatives or pharmacy technicians or can be employed in chemist shops.
2. Bachelor of Pharmacy (B.Pharm): A B.Pharm course is a four-year undergraduate degree that provides comprehensive knowledge about pharmacy. This course equips students with the skills necessary to counsel patients on the use and effects of medication and understand the composition of medicines. Graduates can work in various settings such as retail pharmacies, pharmaceutical companies, and hospitals.


Pharmacy Course Eligibility

The eligibility criteria for pharmacy courses can vary greatly depending on the level of the course and also the institution offering the course. Here are the general requirements for some of the common pharmacy courses:

1. Diploma in Pharmacy (D.Pharm):

  • Completion of secondary school or high school from a recognized Board with minimum 50% marks
  • Science subjects (Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Mathematics) are typically required.
  • Some institutions might require the candidate to appear for an entrance exam and some may take admissions based on merit.

2. Bachelor's Degree in Pharmacy (B.Pharm):

  • Completion of secondary school or high school from a recognized Board with minimum 50% marks
  • Science subjects (Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Mathematics) are typically required.
  • Some institutions might require the candidate to appear for an entrance exam and some may take admissions based on merit.
  • Proficiency in the language of instruction (often English) may also be required.

These are the generic requirements, and each institution may have their own set of eligibility criteria, hence it is recommended that you always check the same on the website of the institution you are interested in.


Pharmacy Course Duration

Course TypeCourse LevelDuration of Course
Diploma in Pharmacy - D.Pharm


2 years 
Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy - B.PharmUndergraduate4 years 

The duration of a pharmacy course can vary significantly depending on the type of the course. Here are some general guidelines:

Diploma in Pharmacy (D.Pharm): This is usually a two-year program, which provides basic information about the pharmacy field. It's a starting point for students interested in a career in pharmacy. It can be joined right after completing class 12.

Bachelor's Degree in Pharmacy (B.Pharm or Pharm.B.): This undergraduate degree typically takes four years to complete. It provides a broad understanding of pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacy practice. Depending on the institution offering the course, it may include an internship.

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Pharmacy Course Fees

In India, the fees of pharmacy courses vary widely depending on the level of study, the institution (whether it's a government or private college), and the state. Here are some average ranges:

Diploma in Pharmacy (D.Pharm): The fee for a D.Pharm course in India can range from INR 10,000 to INR 1,00,000 per annum.

Bachelor's Degree in Pharmacy (B.Pharm): The annual fee for a B.Pharm program in India generally ranges from INR 40,000 to INR 1,00,000 in government colleges, and it can go up to INR 3,00,000 in private colleges.

Please note that these are average ranges, the actual cost may vary based on the institution and the location of the institute. 

Always check the specific fees from the official resources of the institution you are interested in.

Pharmacy Entrance Exams 2024

There are several national and state-level entrance exams for admission into pharmacy courses. These exams evaluate the student's knowledge and understanding of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Mathematics. Here are some of the important pharmacy entrance exams you can expect in 2024:

  • NEET
  • CUET 
  • KCET
  • KEAM


List of Top Colleges for Pharmacy Courses

Here we share a list of some top colleges offering pharmacy courses in India.

Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi
National Institute Of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, SAS Nagar
Lovely Professional University, Jalandhar
Amity University, Noida
Birla Institute of Technology And Science (BITS), Pilani
Manipal College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Manipal
Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore


Pharmacy Course Syllabus

The syllabus of pharmacy courses depends on the level of study. The major areas covered in a pharmacy course after class 12th are given below:

  • Pharmaceutics
  • Pharmaceutical Chemistry
  • Pharmacognosy
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis
  • Biochemistry
  • Pharmacy Practice
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Statistics and Research Methodology

Pharmacy Course Scope

The field of pharmacy offers a broad range of career opportunities. With a qualification in pharmacy, you can find work in a variety of settings and your job role can vary greatly depending on the path you choose. Let’s take a look at the potential career scope after studying pharmacy in India:

  1. Retail Pharmacist: This is the role that most people have in their mind when they consider a career in pharmacy. Retail pharmacists work in pharmacies at drug stores, grocery stores, and healthcare facilities. They dispense medications to patients as per the doctor's prescription and provide advice on their usage.
  2. Hospital Pharmacist: Hospital pharmacists work in a hospital setting and collaborate with physicians and other healthcare professionals to ensure that patients receive the best care possible. They prepare and dispense medicines, advise about the usage and effects of medications and monitor patient health and progress to achieve optimal outcomes.
  3. Industrial Pharmacist: Industrial pharmacists work in the pharmaceutical industry where they are involved in research and development, quality control, and marketing of drugs. Their work can range from packaging and testing medication to researching new drugs.
  4. Regulatory Pharmacist: Regulatory pharmacists work to ensure that the company’s products comply with regulations governing the testing, safety, effectiveness, and production of drugs. 
  5. Academic Trainer: If you're interested in teaching, you might consider becoming an educator or trainer. They work in universities where they teach and guide students in the field of pharmacy.
  6. Research and Development (R&D) Pharmacist: R&D pharmacists are involved in the creation and testing of new drugs. They conduct experiments, document their results, and contribute to scientific papers.
  7. Pharmaceutical Sales Representative: If you have good communication skills and enjoy marketing, you could become a pharmaceutical sales representative. These professionals work for pharmaceutical companies, promoting their drugs to doctors at hospitals and other healthcare facilities.
  8. Drug Inspector or Drug Control Officer: Working as a drug inspector or control officer involves ensuring that drugs, as well as the practices used in manufacturing them and the establishments where these are manufactured, meet all the regulations and standards for safety and quality.

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Pharmacy Course Salary

The salary of a professional can vary significantly based on various factors such as their specific job role, years of experience, location, the sector (public or private), and the reputation of the institution or hospital they are working with.

As a recent graduate in India, you can earn between INR 2,00,000 to INR 5,00,000. With increased experience and skills, the potential for higher remuneration also grows. Experienced pharmacy professionals can earn up to INR 10,00,000 per annum, especially in senior roles or specialised areas.


Pharmacy is an integral part of the healthcare sector. A pharmacist plays a vital role in patient care and healthcare outcomes. It's a dynamic and rewarding field with an array of opportunities in various sectors, including healthcare settings like hospitals and clinics, the pharmaceutical industry, academia, research and development, and government agencies.

Studying pharmacy opens doors to a career that can make a difference in people's lives. Whether it's helping a patient understand their medication, researching and developing new drugs, ensuring the safety and efficacy of medications, or educating future pharmacists, the roles a pharmacy graduate can play are diverse and impactful.

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Pharmacy Course FAQs

How can I get admission to a pharmacy course after Class 12?

Does admission into a pharmacy course require NEET?

Is B.Pharm a 2-year course?

What career opportunities are available after completing a pharmacy course?