PCAT Syllabus

Currently, over 65% of AACP institutions require the PCAT for pharmacy degree programs.

You will have to compose a medical essay and answer about 300 multiple-choice questions covering the following areas:

  • Verbal Section -- The vocabulary used in this subtest will not be specific to the sciences. This section is composed of 48 questions, and must be completed within 30 minutes. The questions in this section will be multiple-choice, with four possible correct answers. Analogies will make up 60% of the subtest, while sentence completion exercises will make up the remaining 40%. In the analogy exercises, candidates will be given one complete analogy and then will be required to select the word that best completes the second analogy.
  • Quantitative -- This test is designed to assess basic mathematical skills as well as the ability to analyze and evaluate quantitative concepts and relationships. The subjects covered on this subtest include basic mathematics, algebra, probability, statistics, precalculus, and calculus. The Quantitative Ability subtest is composed of 48 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within 40 minutes. The content breakdown is as follows: basic math (15%); algebra (20%); probability and statistics (20%); precalculus (22%); and calculus (22%).
  • Biology -- The Biology subtest is composed of 48 multiple-choice questions, and must be completed within 30 minutes. The content breakdown is as follows: general biology (60%); microbiology (20%); and human anatomy and physiology (20%). Each question in this subtest will have four possible answers.
  • Chemistry -- The Chemistry subtest consists of 48 multiple-choice questions, and must be completed within 30 minutes. The content breakdown is as follows: general chemistry (60%) and organic chemistry (40%).
  • Reading -- The Reading Comprehension subtest consists of 48 multiple-choice questions on six different passages; it must be completed within 50 minutes. The questions can be broken down as follows: 30% have to do with reading comprehension; 40% are to do with analysis of a given passage, and 30% require evaluation of the text. The passages will be written at the level of a scientific journal article. In order to succeed on this part of the exam, the candidate will need to be well versed in scientific terminology and in the common structure of scientific writing.

Last modified: Friday, 3 March 2017, 4:31 AM