Cooperative Admissions Guidelines

Cooperative Admissions Guidelines

Some pharmacy schools voluntarily participate in the AACP Cooperative Admissions Guidelines (CAG), also known as admissions traffic rules. The guidelines are below. Download a list of colleges and schools participating in the CAG during the current application cycle. The list is updated at the beginning of each cycle. If you are accepted to a pharmacy school and decide not to enroll for any reason, you should immediately notify the school of your decision, regardless of the school's CAG participation status.

Colleges and schools of pharmacy must work together with the common goal of ensuring to attract and admit students who are qualified, diverse and well-rounded, and who will meet the demands of a rigorous and challenging education. This goal will help develop practice-ready and team-ready pharmacists for the healthcare environment of today and the future.

AACP recognizes that the admissions processes for schools and colleges of pharmacy are interconnected. Collectively, the colleges and schools of pharmacy support these Guidelines as a means to improve the admissions experience for the applicant. These Guidelines also support the collaboration and professionalism we share in the profession of pharmacy.

Benefits to Both Applicants and Schools and Colleges of Pharmacy

Benefits to Applicants

  • The Guidelines give applicants a better opportunity to interview at all programs they are interested in with reduced financial burden.
  • Lower deposit costs enable applicants to weigh additional options as they identify the best fit for them, and make an informed decision about where to pursue their education.
  • Selecting a single program by March 1 provides sufficient time for applicants to plan for relocation, financial assistance, and other aspects of entering a professional program.

Benefits to Schools and Colleges of Pharmacy

  • Have a better idea of acceptance earlier in the admissions process than under the current system.
  • Have the opportunity to market their programs before March 1 to allow applicants to better investigate schools/opportunities, in an effort to ensure a good fit for the applicant and the school.
  • Experience a less extensive "melt" late in the admissions cycle.
  • Address some challenges that been presented due to the decrease in applicant numbers.
  • Help to harmonize disparate admissions processes being driven by competition for applicants.

Overall Admission Best Practices

Schools and Colleges of Pharmacy will:

  • have a mission statement for their admissions committee;
  • train their admissions committee members;
  • train their interviewers;
  • study their admissions criteria to improve their admissions processes; and
  • publish annually, amend publicly, and adhere to their application, acceptance, and admission procedures.

PharmCAS Participating School and College Responsibilities

Schools and Colleges of Pharmacy will:

  • updated their admissions decisions through WebAdMIT at least weekly throughout the application cycle;
  • send their final decisions by theyearly date determined by PharmCAS (including early decision); and
  • report any applicants who violate the PharmCAS Applicant Code of Conduct.

Applicant Acceptance Protocols 

As an applicant, you should respond promptly to a school or college's invitation for interview. If you cannot appear for a previously scheduled interview, notify them immediately that you need to cancel via the school or college’s preferred method.

Prior to March 1

  • In fairness to other applicants and pharmacy programs, if you have decided before March 1 not to attend a pharmacy school or college that has offered you admission, promptly withdraw your application from that (those) program(s) using the school or college’s preferred method.
  • You may choose to hold multiple acceptances until March 1.
  • When a school or college extends an offer of admission prior to March 1, a maximum $200 holding deposit may be required.
  • Schools and colleges may not require a second deposit prior to March 1. After March 1 they will set the dollar value for the second deposit, if applicable.

After March 1

  • After March 1, you may hold only a single acceptance.
  • If you have accepted an admissions offer from more than one school, you must choose the school at which you will enroll by March 1.
  • By March 1, promptly withdraw your application from all other schools that offered you an acceptance using the school or college’s preferred method.
  • Additional admission offers may continue as needed after March 1.
  • If you receive and choose to accept an offer after March 1, you must rescind your acceptance at the school where you had previously accepted an offer prior to accepting the offer at the new school.

School and College Responsibilities

Rules below are not applicable to PharmCAS Early Decision Admissions Program. Visit the PharmCAS website to determine if a college or school is currently participating in the Cooperative Admissions Guidelines.

On or Before March 1

  • Applicants may choose to accept multiple admission offers.
  • Schools and colleges may require a maximum $200 holding deposit when an applicant accepts an admission offer. This deposit may be non‐refundable in accordance with state and university guidelines.

After March 1

  • Applicants may hold only one acceptance. Schools and colleges may choose to rescind their offers to applicants holding multiple acceptances.
  • Schools and colleges may require a second deposit, and will set the dollar value, if applicable. Applicants may consider additional admission offers after March 1, but may still only hold one acceptance.