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Overview of Master of Science (MS) Degree Program in Pharmaceuticals Management

Majors Overview April 3, 2018

This article talks about the Master of Science (M.S.) degree program in Pharmaceuticals Management and its education requirements, coursework, career options, job and wage outlook, and certification and continuing education options.

Master of Science (MS) Program in Pharmaceuticals Management

Schools may offer relevant pharmaceuticals management programs as Master of Science (MS) programs in broader topic areas, including healthcare management or management, with concentration options in pharmaceutical management. Professional pharmacists with a bachelor’s degree seeking managerial positions would benefit from enrolling in these programs. Management, leadership, project management and interpersonal skills necessary for supervising employees are available to students.

A clinical project or graduate project is a requirement for students enrolled in most programs. A Master of Science in Pharmaceuticals Management will not suffice the need of a prospective pharmacist who would have to hold licensure and a graduate degree and pass a national exam.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school and satisfy a GPA standard. Applicants for admission to some schools are required to have completed prerequisite courses in relevant subjects such as calculus and economics before they can begin core coursework.


Program coursework may focus on the technological and business aspects of the pharmaceuticals industry. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Organizational behavior and design
•Strategic management
•Marketing and sales
•Trends and issues
•Regulations and compliance

Career Options

Program graduates may seek management positions in a variety of work environments in the pharmaceutical field, including marketing, manufacturing, and research. They may choose from possible job positions such as:

•Pharmaceutical sales manager
•Drug distribution manager
•Marketing Manager

Job and Wage Outlook

Marketing managers and sales managers are expected to see respective job growth rates of 10% and 7%, over the 2016-2026 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2016, marketing managers and sales managers brought in respective median annual wages of $127,560 and $117,960 (BLS).

Certification and Continuing Education Options

Program graduates can continue their education by earning a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Health Policy or Ph.D. in Pharmacoeconomics that could lead to academic or research-based careers. Students are required to complete a dissertation based on original research in the field before they can graduate out of the program.

Pharmacists are required to obtain licensure through a State Board of Pharmacy. Licensure is typically necessary for an accredited Pharm.D. Apart from state exams, a North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) that tests examiners on their knowledge and pharmacy skills must also be taken.

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