PgDip Pharmacy - Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme (OSPAP)

Why choose Herts?

  • Professional Accreditations: Accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC). Graduates start foundation training then sit the national registration assessment, which leads to UK registration as a pharmacist.
  • Work-placement Opportunities: 100% of students in previous years have gained a foundation training placement. This course includes a secondary care facility visit and a primary care placement.
  • Strong Industry Connections: We have strong links with local NHS healthcare organisations who provide placement opportunities and specialist clinical teaching.

Professional Accreditations

General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)

About the course

This course is for overseas (non-EEA) pharmacists who wish to convert their existing qualifications so they can practice as a pharmacist in Great Britain.


The University of Hertfordshire OSPAP is accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).

The Overseas Pharmacy Assessment Programme (OSPAP) is a full-time postgraduate diploma starting during September and ending in June. Learning and teaching is undertaken over a 3 day week during the academic year which is divided into two terms.  

The OSPAP will give you an insight into the way the National Health Service in the UK operates, inform you of the health regulatory laws and professional codes pharmacists must abide by, in addition to allowing you to integrate science-based knowledge, such as pharmaceutics and microbiology, into clinical and patient focused settings.

The OSPAP aims to prepare you for UK practice and entry to foundation training year. Whilst at the University, you will be expected to act professionally and in agreement with the Standards for Pharmacy Professionals and GPhC Fitness to Practise standards. You can read these guidelines on the GPhC website.

Take a virtual tour of our facilities

Why choose this course?

  • Bespoke programme with high levels of contact from industry experts, experienced practising clinicians and patients
  • Excellent facilities including our simulated suite comprising a community pharmacy, adult and paediatric wards and specialist labs
  • Placements and visits in secondary and primacy healthcare facilities
  • Interprofessional learning opportunities
  • Support for your foundation training year which follows on from the OSPAP
  • Friendly and supportive staff, as well as personalised support from your personal tutor
  • Active Pharmacy Society and students’ attendance in national and local Pharmacy events such as Clinical Pharmacy Congress is facilitated by teaching team
  • University is well placed geographically and has strong links with local healthcare providers and pharmaceutical industries.

How to apply

You cannot apply directly to the University for registration onto the OSPAP.

In order to enter the Overseas Pharmacist Assessment Programme (OSPAP), you must first successfully complete the adjudication process of the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC). You can visit the GPhC website and check the details of how to apply, necessary documentation and evidence required.

Once you have been approved by the GPhC, you may apply to this University on receipt of your paperwork from the GPhC by emailing the admissions tutor, Eman Al-Saeed.

Please note that the OSPAP is subject to statutory regulations - which means that spaces are limited, and the University is unable to exceed those numbers prescribed to us by the regulatory bodies. These are limitations beyond the University’s control, so if we reach capacity, we are not able to admit you for year that you have applied for, and your application may have to be deferred to the next academic year.

Applicants will be invited to an interview on MS Teams where a discussion on prior work experience and interest in pharmacy practice in the UK will be conducted. This will also give you the opportunity to ask us any questions you may have about the course or the university.

Part of our admissions criteria is that you have had prior experience working in a patient-facing pharmacy setting (approx. 6 months in the last 2 years).  The OSPAP course is a very intensive course, and we find it very beneficial if students already have some practical experience of being a pharmacist or working in a pharmacy setting with patients.

Another part of the admissions criteria is an IELTS score of 7 in all elements or an OET score of at least B in all 4 areas at a single sitting. The IELTS website provides information on how to prepare and register for this test. For those who meet types 1 and 2 exemptions under the Guidance on evidence of English language skills set by the GPhC, proof of English language proficiency may still be needed if you are going to require a student visa for study. 

Whilst studying the OSPAP at the University of Hertfordshire, you will go on work-based visits and placements in both primary and secondary healthcare facilities. Prior to attending these placements, all students undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (and an overseas police check for international students covering the last 5 years), as well as an Occupational Health check to ensure that it is safe for you to be sent on placement.  Appointments for these checks will take place in the first few weeks of term.

What will I study?

Teaching during the academic year is divided into two terms. During the programme, you will be taught and learn via a range of techniques, including formal lectures, laboratory-based classes, on-line discussions, workshops, tutorials and simulation. You will develop a wide range of academic and practical skills such as written and verbal communication, teamwork and leadership capabilities, critical evaluation, clinical judgement, and organisational skills. You will be expected to submit a variety of assignments and sit assessments regularly, as required on each module, in order to meet the specified learning outcomes of the programme.

  • Level 7
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    Pharmaceutical Sciences and Therapeutics 2 (OSPAP) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Medicines and Pharmacy Practice (OSPAP) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Preparation for Practice (OSPAP) 30 Credits Compulsory
    Study Skills and Practice Orientation (OSPAP) 0 Credits Compulsory
    Pharmaceutical Sciences and Therapeutics 1 (OSPAP) 30 Credits Compulsory
    ​Clinical Patient Care 2​ 15 Credits Compulsory
    Clinical Patient Care 3 15 Credits Compulsory
  • Further course information

    Course fact sheets
    PgDip Pharmacy - Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme (OSPAP) Download
    PgDip Pharmacy (Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme) Download
    Programme specifications
    PgDip Pharmacy - Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme (OSPAP) Download
    PgDip Pharmacy (Overseas Pharmacists Assessment Programme) Download
    Additional information

    Sandwich placement or study abroad year

    n/a

    Applications open to international and EU students

    Yes

    Student experience

    At the University of Hertfordshire, we want to make sure your time studying with us is as stress-free and rewarding as possible. We offer a range of support services including; student wellbeing, academic support, accommodation and childcare to ensure that you make the most of your time at Herts and can focus on studying and having fun.

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