Inside the classroom

The College of Pharmacy provides diverse learning environments that enhance and go beyond a traditional lecture-based education. In tutorials and multi-skills labs, you’ll approach course materials through a problem-based learning (PBL) methodology—designed to encourage you to develop self-learning skills that are vital to a successful career in pharmacy.

In tutorials, you’ll be part of a group of nine pharmacy students. In these tutorials, facilitated by experienced tutors, you’ll be presented with various situations related to a disease state or patient counselling. You’ll be required to set specific learning objectives and apply your prior knowledge to work through the problem with your group. In between tutorials, you’ll use your time for self-directed learning.

Each PBL module also includes a multi-skills laboratory designed to complement the material you’re learning in lectures and tutorials. These labs help you develop skills such as compounding, sterilization techniques, and how to use ostomy aids. Computer skills, written and verbal communication, and responding to drug information requests are integral components of the multi-skills laboratory.

Lectures are part of the curriculum—but they’re kept to a minimum. Our Pharmacy professors use lecture periods to explain difficult concepts and summarize materials presented in the PBL modules. Throughout the curriculum, you’ll attend no more than three 50-minute lectures per week.

You’ll also participate in field experience as part of the PBL curriculum. During the four-year program, you’ll complete rotations at various sites, including a health-oriented community service agency, a hospital pharmacy, and a community pharmacy.

In the classroom with a student

Courses that build on each other
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Kellie Duggan, going into her second year in Dal's Pharmacy program, found the problem-based learning (PBL) modules challenging at first, but ultimately helpful. And in multi-skills labs, she found additional opportunities to think on her feet and problem solve. Read more about Kellie's experiences in first-year skills labs.

"There's a really great support system in the College of Pharmacy. You can always find the answers."