The UCSF School of Pharmacy’s education agenda includes professional degree programs and science degree programs for students who have the potential to excel in their respective fields. Like UCSF as a whole, the School offers graduate degrees only. Postdoctoral degree programs offer additional advanced and specialized training for both new clinicians and scientists. In addition, short courses prepare leaders in industry, regulatory agencies, academia, and health care to lead in medical product development and to apply advanced knowledge of pharmacokinetics.

Degree programs

PharmD professional program and combined degree programs

  • Vice Dean: Sharon Youmans, PharmD, MPH
    • Experiential Programs Director: Valerie Clinard, PharmD
    • Satellite Program Directors:
      • Fresno: Mitra Assemi, PharmD
      • Greater Sacramento Area: Tiffany Glocke, PharmD, BCPS
      • Los Angeles/Orange County: Robin Corelli, PharmD
      • North Bay/South Bay: Kirsten Balano, PharmD
      • San Francisco Bay Area: Tram Cat, PharmD

The UCSF doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree curriculum is a science-based, integrated, experiential course of study that prepares ambitious minds for diverse and dynamic careers in pharmacy and beyond.

Students are at the center of their own learning in this curriculum, as they question the status quo, identify and solve problems, and explore the latest developments in science and the latest innovations in practice with renowned research and clinical faculty members. Ultimately, the curriculum prepares students to lead in a constantly changing health care environment while developing into skilled, compassionate, patient-centered pharmacists.

Faculty members in the three School of Pharmacy departments develop and deliver the PharmD degree program, which is administered by the Dean’s Office. Faculty members outside the School also teach in the program.

UCSF PharmD students are an important part of the entire body of professional students at UCSF, along with those studying dentistry, medicine, nursing, and physical therapy.

The School also offers combined degree programs in association with the PharmD.

  • PharmD/MSCR - The Training in Clinical Research (TICR) program offers students in our PharmD program the opportunity to earn a master of science in clinical research (MSCR) degree.
  • PharmD/PhD - There is a growing need for clinical scientists in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries to design and carry out clinical studies. UCSF is one of only a few universities in a position to train top-flight PharmD/PhD scientists.

Master of translational medicine degree program

The School co-directs the Master of Translational Medicine (MTM) degree program, designed to train students to apply translational research and engineering approaches to solve fundamental problems in health care delivery. The program links the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences at UCSF with the Department of Bioengineering at UC Berkeley. A department faculty member co-directs this program.

PhD graduate degree programs

The School of Pharmacy administers five PhD programs, all of which promote an interdisciplinary approach to science and education. The programs are delivered by faculty members in the School of Pharmacy and the School of Medicine. All are offered by the Graduate Division.

  1. PhD in Bioengineering (BioE)
    Director: Todd McDevitt, PhD
  2. PhD in Biological and Medical Informatics (Bioinformatics pathway) (BI)
    Director: (unfilled)
  3. PhD in Biophysics (BP)
    Director: Tanja Kortemme, PhD
  4. PhD in Chemistry and Chemical Biology (CCB)
    Director: Jason Gestwicki, PhD
    Associate Director: Danica Galonić Fujimori, PhD
  5. PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences & Pharmacogenomics (PSPG)
    Director: Nadav Ahituv, PhD

See all: Graduate Division Programs

The five PhD programs administered by the School sit under the broader umbrella of the Quantitative Biosciences Consortium (QBC).

Postdoctoral programs

Pharmacy residency program

  • Director: Amanda Morris, PharmD, BCPS, BCCCP

The Pharmacy Residency Program offers first-year general practice and second-year specialty residencies, administered by the Department of Clinical Pharmacy in partnership with the UCSF Medical Center’s Department of Pharmaceutical Services.

Postdoctoral scholars, including fellows

Postdoctoral scholars add to the intellectual rigor of the School’s three departments while furthering their own research.

The departments welcome inquiries from postdoctoral research fellows who have received fellowship funding for postdoctoral study by an extramural agency.

Faculty members usually prefer to receive directly from respected research colleagues the names of prospective postdoctoral scholars. See Office for Postdoctoral Scholars.

Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (CPT) Postdoctoral Training Program

  • Co-directors: Leslie Floren, PharmD, MA, DABCP, and Esteban G. Burchard, MD, MPH

The goal of the Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (CPT) Postdoctoral Training Program is to develop clinical scientists who will be experts in clinical pharmacology research. The program trains PharmD, MD, and PhD scholars in laboratory and clinical investigations focused on therapeutics.

Supported by the National Institutes of Health, this training program is a cornerstone for the development of future clinical and translational scientists.

PrOPEPS/Biogen Pharmacoeconomic Fellowship

  • Contact: Leslie Wilson, PhD

The Program for Outcomes, Pharmaceutical Economics, and Policy Studies (PrOPEPS) aims to meet the needs of patients, caregivers, health care systems, and industry to determine the best use of pharmaceutical care resources in the management of disease in the current health care environment of scarce resources. The program is research- and teaching-focused and concentrates both on theoretically based economics research and health care system-based clinical outcomes research. Economic research impacting health policy, new technology, new payment systems, and outcomes of clinical practice are major goals of the research program.

UCSF-Actelion Clinical Research and Medical Communications Fellowship Program

  • Contacts: Francesca Aweeka, PharmD and Leslie Floren, PharmD, MA, DABCP

The UCSF-Actelion Clinical Research and Medical Communications Fellowship Program partners with the top leaders in academic research and industry to provide an innovative, mentored, two-year experience combining academic clinical investigation and pharmaceutical industry training for PharmDs in early postdoctoral years.

UCSF-Genentech Clinical Development Fellowship Program

  • Contacts: Leslie Floren, PharmD, MA, DABCP and Jennifer Cocohoba, PharmD

The UCSF-Genentech Clinical Development Fellowship Program partners two top leaders in academic research and the biotechnology industry to provide an immersive, innovative, mentored, two-year experience combining academic clinical investigation and pharmaceutical industry training for PharmDs in early postdoctoral years. The objective of this program is to provide training in proper conduct of clinical trials, safety surveillance and risk management, methodologies, and exposure to scientific and ethical issues in research and development.

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Regulatory Science

  • Educational Program Director: Natalia Khuri, PhD, MBA

The Postdoctoral Fellowship in Regulatory Science offered by the UCSF-Stanford Center of Excellence in Regulatory Science and Innovation (CERSI) is an experiential program that provides our most outstanding postdocs with unique immersion experiences in regulatory science research.

International programs

UCSF-Tsinghua University Collaborative Education and Research Program

  • Director: Kathy Giacomini, PhD

This joint academic program is primarily for third- and fourth-year Tsinghua University undergraduate pharmacy students who seek research training at UC San Francisco in pharmacology and the pharmaceutical sciences, including pharmaceutical chemistry and translational research. While at UCSF, visiting students work on a research project; write and submit a manuscript for publication or poster presentation; audit graduate courses; and attend symposia and conferences. Mentors guide students through the program.

The program is administered in partnership by Tsinghua University and the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences and the Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, UCSF School of Pharmacy.

Career-development and leadership courses

The School shares its expertise nationally and internationally through the following courses, offered to professionals in industry, regulatory agencies, academia, and health care.

Drug development

American Course on Drug Development and Regulatory Sciences (ACDRS)

  • Executive Board Members: Kathy Giacomini, PhD, and Leslie Benet, PhD

This course provides education and training in the field of medical product development at an advanced level. It focuses on the drug development pipeline with emphasis on clinical trials and regulatory sciences. See American Course on Drug Development and Regulatory Sciences.


Pharmacy Leadership Institute

  • Contact: Kevin Rodondi, PharmD

The Department of Clinical Pharmacy and the UCSF Center for the Health Professions administer the Pharmacy Leadership Institute, which develops new leaders in pharmacy by empowering them with the skills, information, and professional networks needed to lead health systems, hospitals, and pharmacies. See Pharmacy Leadership Institute.


Pharmacokinetics for Pharmaceutical Scientists (PK Course)

  • Directors: Leslie Benet, PhD, and Robert Upton, PhD

This course covers the basic principles of pharmacokinetics with emphasis on physiologic conceptualization and problem solving. Course content aims to greatly enhance pharmacokinetic knowledge and to integrate pharmacokinetic principles and concepts into everyday practice. See Pharmacokinetics for Pharmaceutical Scientists.

Tobacco cessation

Rx for Change: Clinician-assisted tobacco cessation

  • Contact: Robin Corelli, PharmD

A comprehensive tobacco cessation training program that equips health professional students and practicing clinicians, of all disciplines, with evidence-based knowledge and skills for assisting patients with quitting. See Rx for Change.

Interdisciplinary approach

PhD education is a highly interdisciplinary endeavor at UCSF—a natural outgrowth of UCSF’s hallmark interdisciplinary approach to research.

The education of health professional students is becoming increasingly interdisciplinary as issues of health care cost, quality, access, and disparities in the United States call for dramatic changes in how care is delivered.