Summary

We accredit international pharmacy programs to:

  • assure their quality against Australian and New Zealand program standards
  • offer an independent quality review for improvement

Time frame:

  • Initial accreditation: may take up to 30 months for newly established programs
  • Re-accreditation: process starts 12 months before accreditation expires

Cost:

  • Initial accreditation assessment: AU$15,450 excl. GST per program + variable SET visit charge
  • Annual fee: AU$24,720 excl. GST per program per year
  • Material (major) change fee: $7210 excl. GST per review

On this page:

About international accreditation

We accredit international programs against the accreditation standards we use for pharmacy programs in Australia and New Zealand.

See the current list of international accredited pharmacy degree programs

Accreditation with conditions

An international pharmacy degree program that is 'accredited with conditions' either:

When 'accredited with conditions', the program must report to us as required. Education providers can still deliver these programs, and students can graduate from them with the listed qualification.

We can only ever accredit international programs with conditions. This is because they cannot meet 2 of the criteria from the Australian and New Zealand standards.

Status of graduates

Graduates of the international programs we've accredited are not automatically eligible to register as interns with either

Once registered in their country of training, these graduates will need to apply for a Skills Assessment as internationally trained pharmacists.

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Applying for accreditation

We've provided an overview of the application process here. For details, see the Guidelines for International Accreditation (available soon). 

Applying to accredit a newly established pharmacy program can take up to 30 months. If you have any questions about the process or timelines, email us on accreditation@pharmacycouncil.org.au.

1. Submit an expression of interest

To help us assess whether to consider your application, submit a Pre-Application Expression of Interest (EOI). You'll need to show that your program:

  • is taught entirely in English, with an English curriculum
  • leads to a qualification that compares to an Australian accredited 4-year Bachelor of Pharmacy program

You must also show that your university:

We'll evaluate your EOI, and invite you to apply for accreditation if we'd like you to proceed.

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2. Apply for accreditation

If we invite you to go ahead with your application, you'll need to:

  • provide evidence of how your program meets each criterion in the accreditation standards template that we'll email to you
  • pay the non-refundable application fee

We'll review your application, and treat any information you provide as confidential.

If your application is not complete, we may return it to you and ask you to re-submit it.

Site Evaluation Team (SET)

We'll establish a team of 3 suitably qualified and experienced team members for the Site Evaluation Team (SET) site visit. The SET will undertake the program assessment. A trained quality auditor will support the SET. We'll also provide an APC auditor to support the SET.

For details on the SET members, see the Pharmacy Program Handbook (available soon).

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3. Arrange a site visit

If we accept your application, we will usually arrange for a SET to undertake a full site visit with you.

Please note that we may need to cancel or reschedule a site visit if, while we're considering your application:

  • Smartraveller's travel advice for your country changes to a higher alert level
  • we can no longer guarantee the safety of our evaluators for any reason

If we need to cancel or deny your site visit, we'll email you to explain our reason.

Site visit schedule

We'll consult with senior staff at your university to arrange a site visit schedule. The visit will usually take around 3 to 4 days.

You're responsible for ensuring that all relevant staff and students:

  • know about the site visit
  • are available to speak with the SET members on the day

See the Pharmacy Program Handbook (available soon) for details about:

  • the structure of the visit
  • travel and accommodation fees

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4. Check the SET's report

Before the end of the site visit, the SET will meet with your Head of School to present their initial findings, including:

  • their observations about your program
  • any aspects of accreditation standards that they believe your university does not meet

Within 20 days, the SET will then prepare a draft report, which your Head of School will be able to check for any factual errors.

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5. Wait to hear from us

Our Accreditation Committee will review the report and any comments from your Head of School. The committee may ask for details on any aspect of the report before it decides what to recommend to the APC Board.

The committee may then recommend that the APC Board:

  • accredits your program with conditions for up to 5 years (or less, if they see fit), OR
  • requires you to address any matters of concern, set a time frame for addressing these, and arrange a second site visit

The APC Board will consider the committee's recommendation before deciding on your program's accreditation status. We'll then let you know the results of their decision. If you're accredited, we'll also:

  • update our website to show your university's current accreditation status
  • send you an 'APC Accredited Provider International logo' to use on your website

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Remaining accredited

Reporting

We recognise that many factors can affect whether a program continues to meet the accreditation standards. To help us assess whether your program can remain accredited, you'll need to submit an annual report. This report must contain:

  • student numbers
  • staff demographics
  • any quality assurance activities you've completed

The Accreditation Committee will review your report. In some cases, it may need to impose further reporting requirements on your accreditation, based on the report.

Programs may also require reporting against any conditions or monitoring applied by the committee. The committee will communicate requirements and due dates for this reporting directly to the program provider.

You'll also need to pay the annual fee.

Re-accreditation

We accredit programs against the accreditation standards for up to 5 years. Before the end of this time, we'll contact you to ask you to apply for re-accreditation.

Timing and responsibilities for re-accreditation

Time frame

Action

12 months before accreditation expires

  • We notify you that you need to begin the re-accreditation process.

6-8 months before accreditation expires

3 months before accreditation expires

  • We determine your accreditation status.
  • We notify you of the APC Board's decision.

Your accreditation status after re-accreditation may be either:

  • accredited with conditions, OR
  • accreditation withdrawn

In some situations, we may need to consider revoking accreditation. For details about these situations, see the Pharmacy Program Handbook (available soon).

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Proposing changes to your accredited program

Material (major) changes in a program may affect its ability to meet the accreditation standards. For examples of types of material changes, see the Pharmacy Program Handbook (available soon).

You must tell us as soon as you decide to change anything about your accredited program. Use the Notification of Change to a Pharmacy Program form.

Based on this information, the Accreditation Committee will assess:

  • the likely impact of the change
  • whether the change requires re-assessing your program's accreditation status
  • whether any re-assessment will require a site visit
  • the documentation needed to support re-assessment

If we class your program change as material, you'll need to pay a Material Change fee.

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Contact information

Email us on accreditation@pharmacycouncil.org.au if you:

  • have questions about any of the topics above
  • would like to ask about anything else related to accreditation
  • would like to make a complaint about an accredited program

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