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The FPGEC Certification Program
All 50 states, District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico require graduates of pharmacy schools that are not based in the US to achieve Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Examination CommitteeTM (FPGEC®) Certification before applying for a license from a state board of pharmacy. Contact the state board of pharmacy for specific licensure requirements. Each state has different requirements, and you will be required to pass additional examinations as part of the state’s license application process. Some states, for example, exempt graduates of Canadian pharmacy schools from this requirement.
The FPGEC reviews:
- Your education
- Your licensure and/or registration
As part of the program, you must pass the following examinations:
- Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Equivalency Examination (FPGEE)
- You may not take the FPGEE until your application, which includes your education and licensure and/or registration, have been reviewed and approved.
- TOEFL iBT
- You may take the TOEFL iBT at any time in the process
Certification ensures that a foreign pharmacist’s education meets acceptable requirements as compared to the education that US-educated pharmacists are expected to have before they practice as licensed pharmacists. The FPGEC Certificate is not a license to practice pharmacy.
The FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin details all requirements of the certification process. Reviewing the Bulletin is the first, and most important, step in the application process.
Am I Qualified for FPGEC Certification?
To apply for FPGEC Certification you must be a graduate of a recognized or accredited school of pharmacy and provide documentation that you are licensed and/or registered for unrestricted practice of pharmacy in a foreign country or jurisdiction.
Minimum Curriculum Length
- Four-Year Degree: If you were issued a pharmacy degree prior to January 1, 2003, you must have completed a minimum four-year pharmacy curriculum at the time of graduation.
- Five-Year Degree: If you were issued a pharmacy degree on or after January 1, 2003, you must have completed a minimum five-year pharmacy curriculum at the time of graduation.
Pre-pharmacy coursework completed at the university level as part of admission into the university’s pharmacy program may be considered during the evaluation of a candidate’s education. However, coursework and internships completed after graduation will not be considered as part of the five-year pharmacy curriculum requirement.
See the FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin for more information.
Ready to Apply for FPGEC Certification?
For details about application requirements, review the section on FPGEC and Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) application procedures in the FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin before applying for FPGEC Certification. An incomplete or incorrect application will result in a delay in the process.
Before applying for FPGEC, you will need to create an e-Profile and get an e-Profile ID if you do not already have one. The e-Profile ID replaces the EE number as an identifier for the FPGEC program and will be used when requesting a service from NABP or Pearson VUE. Visit the e-Profile dashboard, and select the ‘Customers’ button to start the process. If you were assigned an EE number by the FPGEC, have it available during this process.
If you applied for FPGEC or FPGEE before May 2, 2018:
The FPGEC has already entered your information and assigned you an e-Profile ID. When you create your e-Profile account you must enter your information exactly as you did when you first applied to FPGEC. This will synch your account information so that you can view all your status information.
To create a new e-Profile account click on the link called “Create a login.” See the e-Profile FAQs for more information.
After creating or re-registering an e-Profile, select the FPGEC tile to start the application. The non-refundable application fee ($100) and evaluation fee ($450) are submitted at the time you apply. Once you submit your application, you are still required to send the following documentation via postal mail to NABP:
- Two identical, full-face photographs of passport size and quality (one will be used as your profile ID, the other is to be adhered to the FPGEC Attestation Page).
- Documentation of license and/or registration as a pharmacist in your country of practice.
- A certified photocopy of a current photo identification, preferably a passport. Other acceptable forms of identification include a driver’s license or a state-issued identification card.
Once you submit your application, you have two years for your application to be approved and to be made eligible to take the FPGEE. If you are not accepted within two years, you must reapply.
Education Credentials/General Evaluation Report
As part of your application to the FPGEC Certification Program, you must also complete an application with Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) for an evaluation of your educational credentials. This application can be submitted at the same time as your FPGEC application.
Detailed instructions on what you need to submit to ECE are covered in the FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin, but be prepared to submit the following to ECE:
- Documentation of education including official transcripts
- Proof of degree
- Photocopy of your pharmacy degree
- Translation of non-English documents
- Payment of fee for the General Evaluation Report
You must request that ECE forward one copy of your General Evaluation Report to the FPGEC along with your supporting educational documents.
All official documents must be submitted to the FPGEC in an envelope sealed by the issuing body. A seal, stamp, or signature of an official must be placed across the flap closure and the envelope to ensure the confidentiality of the documents inside. You can request that the issuing body send the official, appropriately sealed documentation directly to the FPGEC, or you can request that the issuing body send them to you so that you can forward them to the FPGEC. Envelopes that are not sealed as specified in the FPGEC Application Bulletin or that appear open or tampered with will not be accepted.
Download the image of an appropriately sealed envelope for an example.
Also, if your documents are not in English, you must follow translation requirements as outlined in the FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin.
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT)
As part of the FPGEC Certification Program, you must take and achieve the minimal acceptable score for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) Internet-Based Test (iBT). You must take the TOEFL iBT at an Educational Testing Service (ETS) test center located within one of the NABP member jurisdictions including the 50 United States, District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Bahamas, and 10 Canadian provinces (Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan). Check with the Educational Testing Service (ETS) for dates and locations.
TOEFL iBT Passing Standards for FPGEC Certification
- Reading: 22
- Listening: 21
- Speaking: 26
- Writing: 24
You must complete all four sections in one testing session; NABP does not accept MyBest™ scores.
Use institution code 9103 to have an official report of your TOEFL iBT scores mailed to the FPGEC.
You may take the TOEFL iBT at any time during the FPGEC Certification process; however, ETS will only forward score reports for up to two years following a test date.
The FPGEC evaluates each application and supporting documentation and the ECE General Evaluation Report for accuracy, authenticity, and fulfillment of certification requirements. If your application does not meet requirements, you will be notified and will be asked to correct those deficiencies. You must meet all requirements and be made eligible to take the FPGEE within two years of submitting your FPGEC application or you will have to reapply. Details about each step of the process and the approximate time to complete each step are available in the FPGEC Certification Timeline.
If your application to the FPGEC Certification Program meets requirements, you will receive a letter of acceptance to sit for the FPGEE. Once you are made eligible, you will need to purchase the exam. You have two years to take the FPGEE.
Awarding FPGEC Certification
FPGEC Certification is awarded once you fulfill the requirements as stated in the FPGEC Application Bulletin. Certification ensures that you have met the educational requirements of the FPGEC and have successfully passed the FPGEE and the TOEFL iBT. Visit the board of pharmacy website for specific licensing and internship requirements in the state or jurisdiction where you wish to pursue licensure.
How to Communicate With NABP Customer Service and the FPGEC
Reference the e-Profile FAQs for questions related to the topics listed below.
- Changing your mailing address and phone number
- Updating or correcting your date of birth or Social Security Number
- Submitting a change in email address/username or assistance with forgotten username
- Changing or resetting a forgotten password (note: Customer Service cannot provide verification codes or log into your account on your behalf)
- Finding out your application status
You can change certain things in ‘My Profile’ without the assistance of Customer Service, such as changing your profession from student to pharmacist. Reference the e-Profile FAQs for instructions on how to access e-Profile features.
Application status updates can be found in your e-Profile. Be sure to log in and check for status updates in your e-Profile before contacting Customer Service or the FPGEC.
For procedure related inquiries please reference the FPGEC application bulletin. Most or all answers can be found in the bulletin and contacting the FPGEC may be unnecessary.
To contact Customer Service:
Note that Customer Service will not provide information to people who cannot answer questions to confirm their identity, nor will they speak or correspond with anyone calling or writing on an applicant’s behalf. These restrictions are put in place to ensure applicants’ privacy and protect their information.
To contact FPGEC:
1600 Feehanville Drive
Mount Prospect, IL 60056
WRITING TO THE FPGEC
Written communications to the FPGEC may be emailed, mailed or faxed. Please be sure to log in to your NABP e-Profile and check the status of your application prior to contacting Customer Service or FPGEC. Also reference the FPGEC application bulletin to all procedural related inquiries.
Responses to your questions on the above topics may take up to three weeks. When sending correspondence, you need only send your question to either FPGEC or to NABP Customer Service. Do not submit your question to both departments.
When sending questions to the FPGEC, you must include:
- your full name as it appears on the application form
- you must send from the email address used when creating your e-Profile, and
- your e-Profile ID number.
The FPGEC uses the email and mailing addresses stated in your e-Profile. Be sure your addresses are correct and where you want to receive communications. Emails received from an email not found in your e-Profile will not be answered, in order to keep your personal information secure and confidential.
Policies related to file closures are included in the FPGEC Candidate Application Bulletin.
Your Signature is Required
All communications submitted via fax, mail, or private courier service must be personally signed by you, the applicant. The FPGEC will not respond to unsigned communications. Email communications must come from the email stated on your e-Profile which will serve as a “signature.”
It may take an additional 30 business days for international mail to be delivered and 10 business days for mail sent within the US.
The FPGEC cannot be responsible for delayed, lost, or misdirected mail. If you want a receipt showing that the FPGEC received your written communication, send your correspondence via private courier service or United States Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested.
Due to the high volume of correspondence received, the FPGEC and Customer Service are unable to confirm receipt of faxes and mail.