PTCB Registration and Scheduling
Note: External link(s) below go to page(s) on http://ptcb.org & http://pearsonvue.com
Exam Percent Breakdown (R2)
- Pharmacology for Technicians
13.75% Knowledge Areas 6
- Pharmacy Law and Regulations
12.50% Knowledge Areas 15
- Sterile and Non-sterile Compounding
8.75% Knowledge Areas 7
- Medication Safety
12.50% Knowledge Areas 6
- Pharmacy Quality Assurance
7.50% Knowledge Areas 5
- Medication Order Entry and Fill Process
17.50% Knowledge Areas 7
- Pharmacy Inventory Management
8.75% Knowledge Areas 5
- Pharmacy Billing and Reimbursement
8.75% Knowledge Areas 5
- Pharmacy Information Systems Usage and Application
10.0% Knowledge Areas 2
The most recent format above was updated in the latter part of 2013. You may read the full announcement
Candidates apply for certification online. The cost to apply for certification and take the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) is $129. Candidates and CPhTs who misrepresent their eligibility, or violate PTCB's policies, may be subject to discipline. Candidates who successfully apply will be authorized to schedule an exam appointment.
Authorization to Test (R2)
Once an application is approved, candidates will be authorized to schedule and take the PTCE. The authorization to schedule period for candidates is 90 days. The authorization to schedule period for sponsored candidates may differ, as determined by the sponsor. If the authorization period expires before a candidate takes the exam, they will forfeit all fees and must reapply to take the exam (See Withdrawing an Application). Candidates have 30 days from the application submission date to submit supporting documentation (e.g., conduct disclosure, special accommodations). After 30 days, candidates with incomplete applications will receive a refund of any application fees paid, less an administrative fee of $25.
PTCE Exam (R2)
The PTCE is a computer-based exam administered at Pearson VUE test centers nationwide. The PTCE is a two-hour, multiple-choice, exam that contains 90 questions: 80 scored questions and 10 unscored questions. Each question lists four possible answers, only one of which is the correct or best answer. Unscored questions are not identified and are randomly distributed throughout the exam. A candidate’s exam score is based on the responses to the 80 scored questions. One hour and 50 minutes are allotted for answering the exam questions and 10 minutes for a tutorial and post-exam survey. Over 620,000 individuals have taken the PTCE, and the passing rate is approximately 75%.
Exam Score (R2)
A panel of subject-matter experts established a passing score for the PTCE using industry best practices. The method used by the panel, as directed by a psychometrician, is the modified-Angoff method. This method requires experts (panel members) to evaluate individual test questions and estimate the percentage of qualified pharmacy technicians that would be able to answer correctly. These estimates were analyzed for consistency and averaged to produce the passing score. The passing score and all candidate results are reported as scaled scores. The passing scaled score for the PTCE is 650. The range of possible PTCE scores is 300 to 900.
Exam Appointment (R2)
Candidates authorized to schedule, make appointments directly with Pearson VUE online anytime by visiting www.pearsonvue.com/ptcb. Candidate may also call (866) 902-0593 between 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Central Time, Monday through Friday, to schedule an appointment. Candidates will receive a confirmation email after scheduling an appointment. It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure the time, date, and location listed on the confirmation email accurately reflects their selection. The PTCE is currently available at over 235 Pearson VUE test centers nationwide. To find the closest one, visit the Pearson VUE website and click "Locate a Test Center" or call (866) 902-0593. Most test centers are open Monday through Saturday, during normal business hours.
R1 = ptcb.org - Apply for Certification
R2 = ptcb.org - Certification Guidelines and Requirements: A Candidate Guidebook