The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board oversees the certification program for pharmacy technicians as part of its efforts to improve patient safety. The competency and skills required for working as a pharmacy technician are tested through this exam.

Visit the official website of the certification board to get the latest information about the exam. This site gives detailed information about the skills and functions in which the candidate's knowledge will be tested.

Understand the break up of exam topics based on the percentage of marks allotted for each. The "Assisting the Pharmacist in Serving Patients" topic makes up 66 percent of the test, while the "Maintaining Medication and Inventory Control Systems" topic takes up 22 percent. The "Participating in the Administration and Management of Pharmacy Practice" topic takes up the last 12 percent of the exam.

Each topic is discussed in detail at the certification board's official website. Go through the site to get a clear view of the functional knowledge required for a pharmacy technician.

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Obtain reference material like textbooks and exam preparation guides. Get access to a good library. The board's official site lists some educational books. If you are working under a pharmacist you can get recommendations about the books and guides to use.

Understand the exam pattern. The exam duration is two hours and a total of 90 multiple-choice questions have to be answered. Eighty questions count toward your results. The other 10 are statistical questions used by the board.

Divide your preparation time according to the points allotted for different topics as mentioned in Step 2. Keep to this schedule and finish your preparations.

Take the practice exam. Estimate the time you have to answer one question and try to keep within this time limit. The results will show how well prepared you are for the certification examination.

Tips

  • If you know anyone who has already taken the exam, get her suggestions before buying examination preparation guides.
  • The PTCB examination can be taken online. It is available on demand through Pearson VUE Professional Testing Centers.
  • Only basic computer skills are necessary for taking the exam online.

About the Author

Hailing out of Pittsburgh, Pa., David Stewart has been writing articles since 2004, specializing in consumer-oriented pieces. He holds an associate degree in specialized technology from the Pittsburgh Technical Institute.