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Changes to Structured Practical Training (SPT) program admission criteria

May 13, 2020
New criteria will create a more consistent learning experience for provisional pharmacists. 

The Alberta College of Pharmacy (ACP) has implemented changes to the criteria for admission to the college’s Structured Practical Training (SPT) program for pharmacists. The changes are now in effect.

The changes will create a consistent learning experience for provisional pharmacists and ensure that all pharmacists who are admitted to the clinical register are equally prepared to practise within Alberta’s health system.

The amended rules require that candidates who wish to enroll in ACP’s SPT program must fulfill one of the following four criteria:

  • The candidate must be enrolled in or graduated from a pharmacy program offered at a Canadian university that is accredited by the Canadian Council for Accreditation of Pharmacy Programs and recognized by ACP.


  • The candidate was previously a pharmacist registered in Alberta.


  • The candidate must successfully complete one of the two bridging programs approved by the Council of ACP. The two approved bridging programs are
    • the International Pharmacy Graduate program at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto and,
    • the University of British Columbia Canadian Pharmacy Practice Program (CP3) – full program for International Pharmacy Graduates.


  • The candidate must secure an SPT preceptor who can demonstrate experience precepting at least two pharmacy students in their final year of an accredited Canadian pharmacy program within the last three years.

The changes to the admission criteria to the SPT program will help ensure that all applicants to ACP’s clinical pharmacist register will

  • receive experiences that provide standardized opportunities to learn, observe, experience, practise, and demonstrate the knowledge, skills, judgement, and attitudes important to pharmacy practice in Alberta;
  • have opportunity to understand and observe professionalism and the need for professionalism, ethics, and the values that are integral to Alberta’s health system; and
  • undergo an evaluation to verify that they are prepared for practice prior to being considered for the clinical pharmacist register.

The amended rules apply to any new applicant to the provisional pharmacist register. If you registered as a provisional pharmacist prior to March 16, 2020, the new rules do not affect you unless the term of your practice permit expires and you elect to re-apply to the provisional pharmacist register.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ACP temporarily stopped accepting and processing applications to the provisional pharmacist register. The college began accepting and processing applications again on May 8, 2020.

For more information, refer to the SPT admission criteria FAQs on the ACP website.