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University of Colorado Denver

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North American-Trained PharmD Program

Didactic Curriculum


The didactic curriculum for the NTPD Program is composed of 35 credit hours. Students fulfill the credit hours through five foundation courses and pharmacotherapy courses. Each didactic course is delivered in a format which will require about one to two hours of “class time” per credit hour each week, plus one to two hours to complete assignments. Additional study time is student specific.

Foundation Courses: Five foundation courses support the pharmacotherapy courses and develop skills that are important to the effective functioning of clinical pharmacy practitioners:

  • Clinical Skills Foundation
  • Immunology
  • Evidence-Based Pharmacy Practice
  • Advanced Drug Literature Evaluation with Clinical Applications
  • Instructional Methods with Seminars in Pharmaceutical Care

Pharmacotherapy Courses:  Pharmacotherapy courses form the core of the didactic curriculum and each course addresses the pathophysiology, advanced pharmacotherapeutics, pharmacokinetics and professional skills development for two to three body systems. For example, the cardiovascular course includes:

  • The pathophysiology of common cardiovascular disorders, such as hypertension, myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure and dysrhythmias;
  • Pharmacotherapeutic management of patients with these disorders, including design of patient-specific individualized drug therapy treatment plans;
  • Pharmacokinetics of drugs used to treat cardiovascular disorders;
  • Basic cardiovascular physical assessment skills, such as blood pressure monitoring;
  • Problem-based case discussions of patients with cardiovascular disorders;
  • Other appropriate clinical skills development activities.