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College of Pharmacy


Course Descriptions

The balanced professional curriculum in the College of Pharmacy prepares students for both the technical and patient care aspects of pharmacy. As they progress through USC's Pharm.D. program, students’ knowledge is tested in pharmacy settings with oversight by licensed pharmacists.

USC College of Pharmacy course descriptions are updated regularly. Students should consult their adviser for the most current or specific information.


Level 600

The coursework of introductory professional studies includes learning about disease mechanisms, pharmaceutical formulation, immunology, medicinal chemistry and pharmacology along with many topics related to pharmacy practice settings. Clinical application discussions and labs on community pharmacy and compounding integrate classroom instruction into functional practice settings. 

PHMY 602 Foundations of Pathophysiology and Pharmacology I

An introduction to the basic principles and concepts of physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology.

Course Format: Lecture format, 2 credit hours.
Prerequisites: First professional year standing.

PHMY 603 Foundations of Pathophysiology and Pharmacology II

This is the second course in the series addressing the basic principles and concepts of physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 602; first professional year standing.

PHMY 607 Dosage Forms and Drug Delivery Systems

A study of the physiochemical principles of the formulation, preparation, properties, and performance of the pharmaceutical dosage forms. Clinical application of the various dosage forms in patient care will be discussed.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisites: First professional year standing.

PHMY 610 Microbiology & Immunology

Introduction to the role of immunology in human disease and the properties, resistance patterns, diagnostic tools and clinical pearls of common (and not so common) bacterial, viral, fungal and parasitic infectious agents. Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours. Prerequisite: second professional year standing.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisites: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 615 Pharmaceutical Biochemistry

The course covers the molecular and biochemical basis of human biology and physiology. The properties and functions of biological molecules and biochemical pathways are covered. Emphasis is placed on the molecular basis of human physiology, causes of human diseases and how drugs produce biological effects.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 616 Pharmaceutical Biotechnology

The course focuses on nucleic acids as the core theme and examines the pathways used for transmission and expression of genetic information. Topics also include the cell cycle (mitosis) and gametogenesis (meiosis). Recombinant DNA technology is covered as applied to the study of human health such as personalized medicine, genetic testing, stem cell therapy, gene therapy, RNA silencing and production of biopharmaceuticals. Antibodies are discussed from the perspective of their use in diagnostic testing, as well as the utilization of antibodies as therapeutics.

Course Format: Lecture format, 2 credit hours.
Prerequisites: First professional year standing.

PHMY 621 Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Pharmacogenomics I

This course includes an introduction to the basic principles and concepts of pharmaceutical chemistry and pharmacogenomics including the relationships of molecular structure to drug absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion. The chemical rationale for drug therapeutic actions and side effects as well as the pharmacogenomics basis for individualized drug therapy is discussed.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 622 Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Pharmacogenomics II

This is the second of the two course series addressing the pharmaceutical chemistry and pharmacogenomics of drugs. Emphasis is placed on the molecular basis of pharmacotherapeutic actions. The chemical mechanisms of drug therapeutic actions and side effects as well as the pharmacogenomic basis of individualized drug therapy are discussed.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 621; first professional year standing.

PHMY 650 Introduction to Pharmacy Practice

Introduction to the professional issues relevant to the practice of pharmacy.

Course Format: Lecture format, 2 credit hours.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 656 Pharmacy Calculations

This course develops the mathematic skills and knowledge required in various pharmacy practice settings. Problem solving skills will be developed as students become proficient in basic math skills used to solve pharmacy calculations based word problems which are commonly seen in a variety of practice settings, including community, compounding, hospital, and nuclear pharmacy.

Course Format: Lecture and recitation format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 657 Medical Terminology

A thorough knowledge of medical terminology is an essential building block in pharmacy education.  This web-based course will aid the student in learning the language and terminology used in other pharmacy courses and all areas of pharmacy practice.

Course Format: Self-study requirement, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 661 Clinical Applications II

Case-based discussions that integrate and demonstrate applicability of other course material.

Course Format: Recitation format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 670 Pharmacy Skill Lab: Introduction to Community Pharmacy

Interactive laboratory session designed to provide students with a thorough understanding of community pharmacy practice skills, to include the knowledge of prescription and drug order processing necessary to function in community pharmacy practice at a basic level.

Course Format: 1 credit hour. Laboratory format in three-hour session.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 671 Pharmacy Skills Lab: Compounding and Applied Pharmaceutics

The art, science and technology of pharmacy compounding.

Course Format: Laboratory format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 680 Introduction to Drug Information 

Basic principles of access and utilization of drug information resources.

Course Format: Lecture/online format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 690 (IP 710) Transforming Healthcare for the Future

The course goal is to lay the foundations for beginning health professions students to understand the complexities of the health care system and the role of interprofessional collaboration to improve the system. Through an interprofessional context, students will explore the art and science of teamwork and communication skills, cultural competency, ethical issues, healthcare disparities and social determinants of health, as well as develop ways to improve healthcare systems and patient safety.

Course Format: Blended course primarily online with several live sessions to facilitate interactive student engagement, 2 credit hours. Taught as pass/fail.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 699 Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience - Community

Introduction to the practice of the pharmacy in the community pharmacy setting. Forty hours of directed experience per week for four weeks.

Course Format: Practice experience, 4 credit hours. Taught as pass/fail.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

   

Level 700

Intermediate coursework in the College of Pharmacy builds on elemental learning with expanded concepts including how drugs move through the body, targeted therapeutic approaches, how genetics affect drug response plus specialized learning about workplaces including institutional and health system environments. Clinical application discussions and lab work tests learning in varied practice settings.

PHMY 710 Biopharmaceutics and Pharmacokinetics

Study of the pharmacokinetics of drug absorption, distribution, and elimination via metabolism and excretion. Introductory application of pharmacokinetics to drug interactions and dosage regimen design and adjustment, selected disease states and special populations.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 606; second professional year standing.

PHMY 722 Pathophysiology & Pharmacology I

The first course in a series that applies pathophysiology and pharmacology principles introduced in the foundations courses in the first year in an organ-based approach. The course is designed to integrate organ system pathophysiology and pharmacology with pharmacotherapy.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 723 Pathophysiology & Pharmacology II

The second course in a series that applies pathophysiology and pharmacology concepts introduced in the foundations courses in the first year in an organ-based approach. The course is designed to integrate organ system pathophysiology and pharmacology with pharmacotherapy.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 722; second professional year standing.

PHMY 750 Self-Care & Complementary Medicines

A review of indications, contraindications, and cautions involved with the recommendation and dispensing of nonprescription (OTC) drug items and complementary medicines.

Course Format: Team-based format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisite: First professional year standing.

PHMY 760 Clinical Applications III

Case-based discussions that integrate and demonstrate applicability of other course material in patient care.

Course Format: Recitation format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 761 Clinical Applications IV

Case-based discussions that integrate and demonstrate applicability of other course material in patient care.

Course Format: 1 credit hour. Recitation format in 2-hour session.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 771 Pharmacy Skills Lab V: Applied Community Pharmacy

Provide students with an advanced knowledge of prescription and drug order processing, and assist them in the development of appropriate skills necessary for provision of pharmaceutical care to patients in the community setting, through the use of medication profiles, patient counseling, personal interviews, and appropriate prescription and non-prescription drug information.

Course Format: Laboratory, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisites: PHMY 670; third professional year standing.

PHMY 772 Pharmacotherapy I

This course is the first in a 4-semester sequence of courses providing a systems-based approach to pharmaceutical care and disease management. Students will learn about disease prevention and health promotion, as well as the drug and non-drug therapy of acute and chronic diseases seen in both hospitalized and ambulatory patients. Emphasis is placed on preventing, identifying, and solving drug-related problems.  This course is coordinated with Pathophysiology and Pharmacology I.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisite: second professional year standing.

PHMY 773 Pharmacotherapy II

This course is the second in a 4-semester sequence of courses providing a systems-based approach to pharmaceutical care and disease management.  Students will learn about disease prevention and health promotion, as well as the drug and non-drug therapy of acute and chronic diseases seen in both hospitalized and ambulatory patients. Emphasis is placed on preventing, identifying, and solving drug-related problems.  This course is coordinated with Pathophysiology and Pharmacology II.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours. 
Prerequisites: PHMY 772; second professional year standing.

PHMY 780 Outcomes Design & Assessment

Common statistical methods and study designs used in pharmacoepidemiology and outcomes research, as well as to issues related to the measurement, analysis, and interpretation of results of clinical trials and outcomes studies.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 790 Pharmacy Skills Lab III: Introduction to Health-Systems Pharmacy

Exposes students to the practice of pharmacy while also illustrating how theoretical concepts from the basic pharmaceutical sciences relate to daily pharmacy practice, especially in institutional settings. This lab focuses on understanding of medical chart evaluation with emphasis on drug therapy monitoring and developing skills in different aspects of hospital pharmacy (sterile product preparation, unit dose, prepackaging and compounding, order entry and cart-fill).

Course Format: Laboratory format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

PHMY 791 Pharmacy Skills Lab IV: Applied Health-Systems Pharmacy

Exposes students to the practice of pharmacy while also illustrating how theoretical concepts from the basic pharmaceutical sciences relate to daily pharmacy practice, especially in the institutional setting. Students must successfully complete media fill IV preparation.

Course Format: Laboratory format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisites: PHMY 790; second professional year standing.

PHMY 798 Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience - Hospital

Introduction to the practice of the pharmacy in the institutional setting. Forty hours of directed experience per week for four weeks.

Course Format: Practice experience, 4 credit hours. Pass/Fail.
Prerequisite: Second professional year standing.

 

Level 800/900

High-level coursework integrates classroom learning and case discussions with applied patient management and complex patient care. Students learn the nuances of acute and chronic disease therapy and well as the legal and moral applications of the practice of pharmacy. Advanced practice experiences in a variety of rotations ready students for the professional practice of pharmacy.

PHMY 822 Pathophysiology & Pharmacology III

This is the third in a 4-semester sequence of courses aimed at integrating the discussion of specific disease states and the mechanism of action of the pharmacologic agents used to treat those disease states. This knowledge will be integrated, utilized and applied in a parallel sequence of courses in Pharmacotherapy using an organ-system based approach emphasizing pharmaceutical care and disease management.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 722/723; third year professional standing.

PHMY 823 Pathophysiology & Pharmacology IV

This is the fourth in a 4-semester sequence of courses aimed at integrating the discussion of specific disease states and the mechanism of action of the pharmacologic agents used to treat those disease states. This knowledge will be integrated, utilized an applied in a parallel sequence of courses in Pharmacotherapy using an organ-system based approach emphasizing pharmaceutical care and disease management.

Course Format: Lecture format, 2 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 822; third year professional standing.

PHMY 850 Health Care Systems & Management

This course provides insight and understanding of the U.S. health care system and pharmacy's role within that system. Managerial skills and concepts are taught to allow pharmacists to maximize their contribution to this health care system and to the patients it serves.

Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisite: Third professional year standing.

PHMY 860 Clinical Applications V

Case-based discussions that integrate and demonstrate applicability of other course material in patient care.

Course Format: Recitation format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: Third professional year standing.

PHMY 861 Clinical Applications VI

A capstone course, where case studies of complex patients and additional application exercises will bring together concepts learned throughout the previous semesters in the professional program.

Course Format: Recitation format, 1 credit hour.
Prerequisite: Third professional year standing.

PHMY 873 Pharmacotherapy III

This course is the third in a 4-semester sequence of courses providing a systems-based approach to pharmaceutical care and disease management.  Students will learn about disease prevention and health promotion, as well as the drug and non-drug therapy of acute and chronic diseases seen in both hospitalized and ambulatory patients.  Emphasis is placed on preventing, identifying, and solving drug-related problems.  This course is coordinated with PHMY 822, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology III.
Course Format: Lecture format, 4 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 772/773; third professional year standing.

PHMY 874 Pharmacotherapy IV

This course is the fourth in a 4-semester sequence of courses providing a systems-based approach to pharmaceutical care and disease management.  Students will learn about disease prevention and health promotion, as well as the drug and non-drug therapy of acute and chronic diseases seen in both hospitalized and ambulatory patients.  Emphasis is placed on preventing, identifying, and solving drug-related problems.  This course is coordinated with PHMY 823, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology IV.

Course Format: Lecture format, 5 credit hours. 
Prerequisites: PHMY 873; third professional year standing.

PHMY 880 Advanced Drug Information

This course is designed to provide students with advanced drug information practice and critical literature evaluation skills. This course provides students with the requisite skills to facilitate life-long learning.

Course Format: Lecture format, 2 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 680; third professional year standing.

PHMY 885 Pharmacy Law & Ethics

Federal and state laws and regulations governing the practice of pharmacy and introduction to the professional and ethical issues relevant to the practice of pharmacy.

Course Format: Lecture and case study format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: Third professional year standing.

PHMY 890 Clinical Pharmacokinetics

Clinical application of basic pharmacokinetic principles to safe and effective patient management with emphasis on design of dosage regimens, therapeutic monitoring, and adjustment of therapy. Application illustrated and practiced through discussions and case examples.

Course Format: Lecture format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisites: PHMY 710; second professional year standing.

PHMY 895 Clinical Assessment

Development of clinical assessment skills necessary in the provision of pharmaceutical care to patients with a variety of disease states.

Course Format: Lecture and laboratory format, 3 credit hours.
Prerequisite: Third professional year standing.

PHMY 900-998 Advanced Practice Experiences

During summer, fall and spring of the fourth professional year, students will complete a total of nine, one-month duration advanced practice experiences. Each worth 4 credit hours, the experiences earn a cumulative 36 credit hours.

Prerequisite: Fourth professional year standing.

PHMY 999 Clinical Seminar/Grand Rounds

One 1-credit seminar/grand rounds is required during the fourth professional year.

Prerequisite: Fourth professional year standing.