Factors associated with the career preference of 6-year doctor of pharmacy (Pharm.D) students in korea: A national survey

Ah Rahm Han, Mihyun Gil, Seung Jin Bae

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2 Scopus citations


Background: To expand the pharmacist’s role beyond dispensing prescription drugs in community pharmacies, a 6-year doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) programme was introduced in 2011 and replaced the traditional 4-year bachelor pharmacy programme in Korea. This study investigated the career preference of students at newly implemented 6-year PharmD programms in Korea. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was administered to PharmD students enrolled in all pharmacy schools in Korea as of July 2014. Data analyses were mainly descriptive. Results: Of 6,679 total pharmacy students in Korea, 2,490 (37.3%) responded, and after excluding incomplete responses, 2,361 total responses were included for the analysis. The hospital pharmacy was most preferred by respondents (30.5%), followed by the pharmaceutical industry (21.8%), community pharmacy (19.9%), further education (16.1%), and the public sector (11.7%). The gender divergence was significant, with females preferring the hospital pharmacy (38.3% versus 16.1% males; p<0.0001), whereas males preferring the community pharmacy (29.3% versus 14.9% females; p<0.0001). The key factor related to selecting a hospital pharmacy, government sector, and further education was the student’s aptitude (36.4%, 37.7%, and 38.4%, respectively), whereas the key factor for selecting a community pharmacy was a competitive salary (44.4%). Conclusions: The newly implemented 6-year PharmD students chose hospital pharmacy as the most preferred career path, and their aptitude was the key factor related to their career preference.Career preference was evenly distributed across diverse career paths, which shows clear contrasts with their predecessors who have4-year bachelors of pharmacy degrees.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-329
Number of pages8
JournalIndian Journal of Pharmaceutical Education and Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Association of Pharmaceutical Teachers of India All rights reserved.


  • Career
  • Doctor of pharmacy program
  • Korea
  • Pharmacy students


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