Experiential Education Site Selection Policy


This policy applies only to PharmD students entering in 2018 and beyond.

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The purpose of this policy is to define the processes for experiential site selection within the PharmD curriculum.


  • Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE): Experiences within community and institutional pharmacy practice settings involving supervised pharmacy practice and direct patient care experiences.
  • Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE): Experiences within a variety of practice settings designed to enhance and refine student performance in pharmacy practice and direct patient care and to expose students to a variety of career pathways.


Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE) Scheduling

IPPE program assignment for the first-year PharmD student (P1) community pharmacy experiences takes place in July/August months of the P1 year. During this time, students may enter preferences for specific community pharmacy sites in the San Francisco Bay Area. Students will remain at the assigned pharmacy site for the entire P1 experience.

The second-year PharmD student (P2) IPPE program ‘Introduction to Health Systems’ is a concentrated rotation conducted prior to the start of the P2 year. Site assignment is based on APPE Program Assignment or is located in the Bay Area. Students assigned to an off-site APPE program are eligible to complete this experience at specific off-site partner sites. Once APPE Program Assignments are finalized, students enter preferences for this experience.

During the P2 year, longitudinal health system IPPEs are conducted in the San Francisco Bay Area. Assignments are made based on preference, site availability, and previous experience within a health system.

For each IPPE experience, changes to a site may be requested through a mini lottery system. Students complete a form to enter the mini lottery during a specified time period. Mini lottery changes are made only if matches occur among the requests submitted. Site placement changes are not guaranteed via the mini lottery process. If no match occurs, students remain at the current IPPE assignment.

APPE Program Assignment

APPE program assignment (San Francisco Bay Area, North Bay, Greater Sacramento, Fresno, Los Angeles/ Orange County) takes place through a lottery process conducted in the P1 year.

If students anticipate issues related to the format or requirements of any part of their APPE program, students are to meet with their Program Director and the Associate Dean of Experiential Education and Professional Development as soon as possible to discuss ways to ensure full participation.

If disability‐related accommodations are necessary, the student must be registered with UCSF Student Disability Services and notify the Program Director and the Associate Dean of Experiential Education and Professional Development of their eligibility for reasonable accommodations prior to APPE scheduling in order to ensure optimal coordination for accommodations during APPEs. If accommodations are needed after APPE schedules has been finalized, the student must notify their Program Director as soon as possible to plan for their remaining APPEs. If faculty determine that the resources available at an off‐campus program are inadequate to meet student needs, the student may be re‐assigned from an off‐campus program to the San Francisco Bay Area program.

Students must complete all required APPEs at the program to which they are assigned.

Students can request up to one elective APPE at another program or outside the UCSF School of Pharmacy experiential system (e.g., Federal program such as FDA, CDC, NIH). Out-of-state clinical experiences are not currently allowed and placements to external Federal programs are not guaranteed.

APPE Scheduling

The APPE scheduling process takes place during late Fall Quarter/early Winter Quarter of the P2 Year. All required APPE‐readiness training and documentation (i.e., California pharmacy intern license; basic life support certification valid through the end of the APPE year; personal immunization record; HIPPA training certificate; proof of Bloodborne Pathogens training; proof of APhA immunization training) must be uploaded into E*value before students can submit APPE preferences.

Upon notification by experiential education staff or the Program Director, students submit their APPE preferences for required and elective experiences within E*Value. An automated E*Value schedule optimization process is used to create an APPE schedule for each student.

APPE schedules and availability are ultimately determined by the School. Once released, APPE schedules are considered final. Changes to any assigned APPEs are made at the discretion of the Program Director based considerations related to the student and/or circumstances related to the site.

All required APPEs must be completed at the assigned program site (Greater SF Bay Area, North Bay, Greater Sacramento, Fresno, LA/OC). Required rotations are NOT changed unless a site is unable to honor its commitment to the School. In such a case, the School will place the student in a comparable experience based on site availability.

Requests to change an assigned elective must be made in writing (e.g., Smartsheet form submission) at least 12 weeks (2 full blocks) prior to the rotation start date. Rotation change requests based on timing or the order of specific rotations are not granted. Consideration for a change will be based upon the reason for the request and rotation availability at the time of the request. A maximum of one elective change may be requested per student per year – this includes any changes requested and granted during post‐APPE scheduling program meetings between students and the Program Director.

Students may request up to one elective APPE at another program or outside the UCSF School of Pharmacy experiential system (e.g., CDC, FDA, NIH,). These requests should initially be made to the student’s Program Director and are only considered for an elective experience that is unavailable within the student’s assigned program site. These requests should also be made in writing to the Program Director as far in advance of the actual APPE scheduling process as possible and before the APPE schedule is finalized. Out-of-state clinical experiences are not currently allowed and placements to external programs are not guaranteed.

During the rotation scheduling process, off‐site elective requests are processed as an individual student’s top (#1 ranked) elective choice and scheduled after initial APPE schedules have been created for all students. Off‐site electives are granted on a space‐available basis with the approval of all Program Directors.

During the time the off‐site elective takes place, students report to and work directly with the Program Director of the program in which their elective is based. The student must participate in all student conferences held within that program. If the elective takes place outside the UCSF School of Pharmacy experiential system (e.g., CDC, FDA, NIH), the student will continue to work with and report to the Program Director of their assigned APPE program.

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