This page shows you how to register with us for the Intern Written Examination. Passing this exam is a step in the process to become a fully registered pharmacist in Australia.

Overview

You can register to sit the Intern Written Examination if you:

  • are provisionally registered with the Pharmacy Board of Australia (PharmBA), or you were registered in the past
  • have completed at least 75% of the required supervised practice hours, or will have completed them by the exam date

You can choose to sit either:

You cannot change delivery mode after you've confirmed your appointment. Please see a comparison between test centre and online proctored exams for details.

Duration of exam: 2 hours, 75 questions in total.

Key dates: see Exam dates and centres

Cost: AU$710

You will register through our Candidate Portal.


Documents

This section describes what documents you will need at each step of the process.
 

Registering for the exam

You do not usually need any documents to register for the Australian Intern Written Exam.

However, if you have a disability or health-related needs, you may need extra support or an adjustment on the day of the exam. Examples of special accommodation requests might include:

  • more time to complete the exam
  • being able to leave the exam room for breaks
  • more leg room at your exam desk if you're injured

We call this special accommodation. You'll need to provide documents to show that you need this support or adjustment.

Asking for special accommodation

If you'd like to request special accommodation, you'll need a medical certificate from a recognised healthcare worker. This certificate must include:

  • a date of issue that is no more than 12 months before the exam date
  • your name and date of birth
  • the recognised healthcare worker's name, profession and contact details
  • the specific help you're seeking on the day of the exam

For details on what we require when you apply, see our Special Accommodation policy.

Sitting the exam

Identification (ID) documents

Test centre exam

You'll need to show 2 forms of ID.

For details on what we require as ID, see Exam dates and centres.

Online proctored exam via OnVUE

You'll need to show 1 form of ID.

For details on what we require as ID, see OnVUE information.

If you have an issue with any of your ID documents, email us on exams@pharmacycouncil.org.au now for advice.

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Process

This section describes what you will need to do at each step of the process.

Check that you're eligible to register

To sit the exam, you must:

  • be provisionally registered with the Pharmacy Board of Australia (PharmBA), or have been registered in the past
  • have completed 75% of the required supervised practice hours, or will have completed them by the exam date

PharmBA will verify your registration to confirm you're eligible to sit the exam.

If you're not sure whether you meet the eligibility requirements call PharmBA to check. Do this before you register and pay the fee.

Choose where you'll sit the exam

You can choose to sit either:

You cannot change delivery mode after you've confirmed your appointment. Please see a comparison between test centre and online proctored exams for details.

Test centre exam

If you want to sit your exam in a test centre you can sit in any of the listed cities on the Exams dates and centres page.

OnVUE online proctored exam

If you want to sit the online proctored exam via OnVUE you can sit it anywhere that has:

  • a reliable device with a webcam that meets the system requirements
  • a strong internet connection, AND
  • a private room where you will not be disturbed for the duration of the exam

Candidates sitting the online proctored exam will also need a smart phone to verify their identification and to be contacted by the remote proctor in case of a technical issue.


Sign in to your candidate portal account

If you're a first-time user, create an account in our Candidate Portal.

If you're a returning user, sign in to your account with your username and password.

If you have trouble signing in...

If you created a Candidate Portal account earlier but cannot sign in now, email us on exams@pharmacycouncil.org.au. We'll help you to fix the issue.

Do not try to create another account with a different email address. Our system only allows you to have 1 account.

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Enter your basic information

Once registrations open, sign in to our Candidate Portal.

Use the drop-down menu at the top of the Candidate Portal to go to My Portal.

Click on 'Book an exam' and enter your:

  • contact details
  • university
  • pharmacy qualification level
  • intern training program (ITP) provider
  • number of supervised practice hours completed

Include support for any special accommodation request

If you'd like to ask for special accommodation, you'll need to select the option as part of the registration process. You will be prompted to upload your supporting documents.

For example, if you need to, you can request to have a break. All breaks must be scheduled and pre-approved.

We'll review your request and your documents. We'll  then email you the outcome of your request.

Complete your registration

To register for the exam in a test centre:

  1. Once registrations open, sign in to our Candidate Portal.
  2. Use the drop-down menu at the top of the Candidate Portal to go to My Portal.
  3. Go to Section 2: 'Register and Complete the IWE’, then click on 'Book an exam'.
  4. Select your preferred test centre, date and time.
  5. Click 'Proceed to checkout'.
  6. Confirm your details.
  7. Agree to our policies.
  8. Review the exam booking summary page.
  9. Submit your order.

To register for the online proctored exam:

  1. Check system requirements for the online delivery platform OnVUE
  2. Run the OnVUE system test prior to registering for the exam with the device you intend to use on the exam day
  3. Once registrations open, sign in to our Candidate Portal.
  4. Use the drop-down menu at the top of the Candidate Portal to go to My Portal.
  5. Go to Section 2: 'Register and Complete the IWE’, then click on 'Book an exam'.
  6. Select “At a home or office”.
  7. Select your preferred date and time.
  8. Click 'Proceed to checkout'.
  9. Confirm your details.
  10. Agree to our policies.
  11. Review the exam booking summary page.
  12. Submit your order.

Learn more about the online proctored exam.

Our exam provider, Pearson VUE, will send you an email to confirm that they've temporarily reserved a session for you. Paying your fee in the next step will secure your session.

Pay the registration fee

Paying the fee secures your seat at the exam.

  1. Click on 'Return to APC website'.
  2. Click 'Pay now'.
  3. Pay the registration fee online.
  4. Click 'Confirm payment'.

Please note:

  • We can only accept payment through Visa or Mastercard credit or debit cards.
  • Your credit card must be issued from a bank in your country of residence.

We'll email you a receipt for your payment after we successfully process the order.

Rescheduling your exam

Test centre exam

You can reschedule your exam to another date and time only during the registration period.

Online proctored exam

You can reschedule your exam up until 1 hour before your exam's scheduled time.

You cannot change the delivery mode after you've confirmed your appointment. Please see a comparison between test centre and online proctored exams for details.

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Wait for your exam reminder

We'll send you a reminder email around 3 days before your exam.

Read this email carefully. It will include:

  • your appointment details
  • FAQs
  • identification requirements
  • the check-in process on exam day
  • policies and procedures

Prepare for the exam

We offer several resources that will help you prepare to sit the exam. These include:

We also suggest talking with your professional network about how you're preparing for the exam. Their support and advice might help you to perform better.

Check what to take to the exam centre

The Intern Written Exam is 'open-book'. This means you can bring:

Test centre exam

Bring with you:

For details on what we require as ID, see Exam dates and places.

Pearson VUE will provide you with:

  • an online calculator
  • a whiteboard notebook
  • an erasable marker pen

Do not bring with you:

  • a wristwatch
  • a mobile phone, tablet or any other electronic device
  • pens or pencils

During the pandemic, you must bring and wear your own face mask while you’re at the test center and throughout your exam. Read the latest health & safety requirements at Pearson VUE-owned test centers.

Online proctored exam

Bring with you:

  • Mobile phone
  • ID documents
  • Calculator
  • Any item on the Comfort Aid list
  • A glass of water
  • Reference books

For types of ID documents, see OnVUE information.

Pearson VUE will provide:

You cannot have blank sheets of paper or notebooks at your desk during the exam.

Sit the exam

You'll have 2 hours to answer 75 questions.

Of these, 67 are scored questions, and 8 are (pilot) non-scored questions.

We advise you complete all 75 questions to have the best possible chance of success.

The IWE is a 'Pass' or 'Fail' exam. The pass standard for the exam is set at a level that demonstrates competency. The pass standard also takes into account the performance of candidates in prior sittings. This analysis of results over previous years ensures fairness and equity over a period of time. The level of difficulty remains constant across time.

Each candidate receives a results certificate indicating the pass/fail outcome.

Learn more about what's in the exam in the Intern Written Exam guide.

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Receive your results

We'll email you after your results are available. Expect this to be around 2 weeks after the exam.

You'll be able to view and download your results from the Candidate Portal.

We release all results as 'Pass' or 'Fail' only. We do not release the mark we calculated for your exam.

You can then prepare for the Intern Oral exam, delivered by the Pharmacy Board of Australia, if you haven't done so already. You may sit this exam before sitting the IWE.

If you fail ...

If you did not pass the exam, we’ll send you a breakdown of your results. We’ll also tell you which areas you need to improve on.

In this case, you can register to sit the exam again during the next exam period. You'll need to pay the fee again when you register.

If you fail 3 times, we offer counselling to help you decide your best way forward. Call us on +61 2 6188 4288 or email us on exams@pharmacycouncil.org.au to arrange this.

If you are unhappy with an APC decision, please see our Appeals policy.

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Next steps

As an Australian intern you will also need to:

  • register with the Pharmacy Board of Australia to sit the Intern Oral Exam*
  • apply to the Pharmacy Board of Australia for full registration once you've passed your exams

*Please note, you may sit your Intern Oral Exam either before or after your IWE.

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