updated on 4 Nov 2019
What kind of pharmacy qualification do I need to be eligible for the assessment process? Candidates will need to hold a qualification from a recognised tertiary institution that is considered by Australian Education International and the APC to be comparable to a four year pharmacy degree at an Australian university. If your qualification was obtained prior to 1 January 2006, then you must have completed at least a three year program to be eligible. Overseas trained pharmacists must also be registered or be eligible for registration as a pharmacist in the country in which the qualification was obtained.
How long will it take to process my application?
Eligibility assessments take at least 6 weeks to process from the time all the correct documentation and full payment is received. Applicants should allow for this, and mail delivery times between their country and Australia when seeking an assessment. Delays in processing your application may occur should the APC require further documentation from you and/or should the APC need to complete independent verification of applicant information.
If I am an international student and hold an Australian pharmacy qualification, do I need an eligibility assessment?
If you are applying for a visa, you will be required to obtain a letter from the APC stating that your qualification is suitable for you to apply for provisional registration to pracise as an intern pharmacist in Australia, leading to registration as a hospital or retail pharmacist. To obtain this letter, you need to undergo the APC's eligibility assessment. You will not need to supply any work experience or pharmacist registration documents.
I don't have any work experience as a pharmacist. Can I still apply for an eligibility assessment?
If you do not have work experience as a pharmacist but wish to apply for an assessment, you need to provide a statutory declaration with your application explaining why this is the case. If you are eligible for registration in your country of origin and your qualification is assessed by the APC to be equivalent to an Australian qualification, then you may not need work experience to qualify for the assessment process.
I hold an overseas qualification but am not registered as a pharmacist. Can I still apply for an assessment?
If you have never been registered as a pharmacist but can provide evidence that you are eligible for registration or licensure as a pharmacist in your country of training, then you can apply for an assessment. If you have been registered in the past but are not currently registered, you will need to provide a statutory declaration explaining why you are not currently registered. If your registration has ever been suspended, cancelled or had conditions placed upon it, you will need to declare this on the application form.
Can my agent certify or translate documents for me?
No. Agents are not considered to be authorised persons by the APC, and cannot certify documents. This includes migration agents and legal practitioners acting as agentsPersons who may certify documents in Australia include Justices of the Peace (JP), legal practitioners, admissions officers of all Australian universities, registered pharmacists, police officers and officers of State and Territory Government overseas qualifications units. Persons who may certify documents overseas include Justices of the Peace, official Notary Officers or an authorised staff member of an Australian Embassy or Consulate. The APC does not accept documents translated into English by the candidate or their agent. Documents must be translated by a person who is an approved translator in the candidate’s country of training or in Australia. The APC reserves the right to request that candidates provide translations completed by a translator accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).
How do I apply to sit the examinations?
If your initial eligibility assessment has been completed and you have received a letter from the APC confirming your eligibility to undertake either the Stream A or Stream B process, you can apply to sit the examination for your Stream (KAPS for Stream A or CAOP for Stream B). An application form to sit the examination, including the sitting times, locations and fees, will be included with your letter. Please note: You cannot apply to sit an examination unless you have gone through the initial assessment process and received a letter confirming your eligibility.
When can I sit the KAPS examination?
The KAPS is offered twice a year in March and September. The closing date for applications is 15 December for the March sessions and 1 July for the September sessions. Late applications will not be accepted. Candidates should allow sufficient time for mail delivery, particularly in December when there are a number of public holidays in Australia and offices may be closed for varying periods particularly between Christmas and the New Year.
When can I sit the CAOP examination?
The CAOP is offered four times per year in March, June, September and December. The closing dates for the acceptance of applications are: 1 January for the March session, 1 April for the June examination, 1 July for the September examination, and 1 October for the December examination.
Where can I sit the examinations?
The KAPS and CAOP are conducted in all capital cities in Australia and a number of major cities internationally. Once enrolments close for each session the APC identifies the places where the majority of candidates intend to sit, and arranges venues in those places. This minimises the number of people who have to travel and keeps costs down. Please note that the international venues are subject to change depending on ongoing demand. From time to time, particular venues may be unavailable due to political unrest, natural disasters, hosting of major events (such as the Olympic Games) or availability of suitable venues. In extreme circumstances, examination sessions may be cancelled. For this reason candidates are asked to provide three venue choices (in order of preference) on their application form to sit the KAPS or CAOP. Click here to see a list of locations where the KAPS is offered. Click here to see a list of locations where the CAOP is offered. NOTE: We are unable to offer venues in either the United States of America or Canada because of the high cost of insurance premiums.
Can I resit the examination if I fail?
Candidates can resit either examination. There is no limit to the number of times a candidate can sit the KAPS, however the candidate must have valid English test results at each sitting and the full fee is payable for every attempt. This applies to candidates resitting one or both papers of the KAPS. Stream B candidates may make two attempts at the CAOP. If the candidate does not pass on the second attempt, then they will switch to the Stream A process. They will have to sit the KAPS exam and undertake a full internship year to qualify for registration.
I am having difficulty downloading the forms on the website?
You need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download the forms. Please download Adobe Acrobat Reader if you have not already done so. If you have already downloaded Adobe Acrobat reader, try clicking on the refresh button at the top of your screen. If this does not work, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How do I notify the APC that I have changed my address?
Changes to your contact details must be submitted in writing. This can be done by downloading the Change of Contact Details form from the website and mailing or faxing it to the APC. You can also send an email to email@example.com which includes your APC ID number, full name and date of birth as well as your new contact details. The APC should be notified of the change of contact details as soon as possible.
Are there any exemptions given from the English language requirements?
Stream A candidates who undertook their secondary education and pharmacy tertiary studies in English in South Africa may seek exemption from satisfying the English language requirement. All other Stream A candidates are expected to satisfy the current English language requirement. Stream B candidates are not required to undertake an English language test.
Can my English test results be sent to the APC directly from the testing centre?
Yes. English test results may be sent to the APC directly from the testing centre however it is the candidate's responsibility to ensure that the APC has received the English test results. Evidence of satisfactory English test results must be received before the closing date for the KAPS.
Can I sit the KAPS if my English test results are pending?
No. The APC does not accept applications for enrolment in the KAPS from individuals with English results pending, even if they are due within a short time after the closing date.
Where can I get help to study for the KAPS or CAOP?
Handbooks for the examinations are available on the website. The handbooks provide sample questions and patient profiles of the type used in the examination. They also include a list of suggested references for each subject area. Candidates can also purchase a computer assisted learning package that covers the subject areas of Biopharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Calculations. An order form for this learning pack will be sent with the examination application form.
Where can I buy the books on the recommended reading lists?
In Australia the best starting point would be the University bookshop at your nearest School of Pharmacy. The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) also provides a mail order service for pharmacy texts. The PSA's website has an online bookshop that can be accessed here.
Can you help me with finding a placement to do my supervised practice?
It is the candidate's responsibility to find and secure a placement for their period of supervised practice. Competition for placements in the larger Australian cities is strong, and some candidates have had better success in obtaining a placement when they have been prepared to work in a regional or rural area.