Calculations!

Pharmacy calculations is one of the cornerstones of any pharmacy degree. Students must learn about doses, concentrations, moles and molarity, displacement values, biopharmaceutics and much more. Here, we have put together complete study guides to help you master this

It takes time – often considerable time - to master pharmacy calculations, that’s for sure. It doesn’t happen overnight. However, once you get your head around the fundamental concepts, the numbers begin to make far more sense. Never try to “memorize” formulae for the sake of it. You will get caught out come exam day.

It’s not enough to understand the theory, either. You must be able to put that theory into practice. Metaphorically speaking, pharmacy students should be able to think three-dimensionally about pharmacy alculations – understanding the nature of each problem; knowing what tools to apply; and applying the necessary critical thinking skills to bring the answer together.

Calculation Exam!

Don’t rush

You’d be surprised how sneaky lecturers can be, and how a seemingly innocuous question has a deadly sting in the tail. By taking your time, you avoid the risk of overlooking important insights into the question and how it should be answered.

Identify loaded information

Remember that not all information in a question needs to be used. Often, irrelevant detail is included simply to help the instructor know whether you have the skills to identify the correct details that need to be used to answer the question. That’s why practicing pharmacy calculation questions in the lead up to the exam is so important.

Verifying your answers

Formulae are helpful, but they often create their own sets of confusion. If upon using an equation the answer doesn’t seem correct, then try to answer the question – if possible – without the equation and see if you arrive at the same answer. If you do, you can be sure you have arrived at the correct answer.

Arrive to the exam on-time

Pharmacy students are always rushing – even to exam halls. Avoid this elementary mistake as it only leaves you stressed and unprepared. To perform well during a pharmacy calculation exam, you need to have a crystal clear, focussed mindset. Arriving late, or almost late, may turn out to be the first nail in the calculation coffin!

Time yourself

There’s nothing worse than running out of time during a pharmacy exam. Whilst it’s important to take your time, it must be timed proportionally. Don’t spend a disproportionate amount of time on any one question. It only leaves you rushing in the end which, for calculations, can turn out to be a gruesome nightmare.

Know units, conversions, and formulae.

RThis may sound obvious, but you would be surprised just how many students enter the exam hall not knowing their units, conversions, and formulae. Remember – it’s not enough to memorize a formula, you must also know how to use it properly! Some formulae may be provided, but other formulae you are expected to know!

Optimize study time

With limited time leading up to the exam, it’s imperative that you optimize time wisely and focus on your weakest points. Yes, practice your strengths – but not as often. If they are your strengths, then leave them be. You need to focus on your weaknesses to transform those weaknesses into strengths.

Calculation Exam!

Don’t rush

You’d be surprised how sneaky lecturers can be, and how a seemingly innocuous question has a deadly sting in the tail. By taking your time, you avoid the risk of overlooking important insights into the question and how it should be answered.

Time yourself

There’s nothing worse than running out of time during a pharmacy exam. Whilst it’s important to take your time, it must be timed proportionally. Don’t spend a disproportionate amount of time on any one question. It only leaves you rushing in the end which, for calculations, can turn out to be a gruesome nightmare.

Identify loaded information

Remember that not all information in a question needs to be used. Often, irrelevant detail is included simply to help the instructor know whether you have the skills to identify the correct details that need to be used to answer the question. That’s why practicing pharmacy calculation questions in the lead up to the exam is so important.

Know units, conversions, and formulae.

RThis may sound obvious, but you would be surprised just how many students enter the exam hall not knowing their units, conversions, and formulae. Remember – it’s not enough to memorize a formula, you must also know how to use it properly! Some formulae may be provided, but other formulae you are expected to know!

Verifying your answers

Formulae are helpful, but they often create their own sets of confusion. If upon using an equation the answer doesn’t seem correct, then try to answer the question – if possible – without the equation and see if you arrive at the same answer. If you do, you can be sure you have arrived at the correct answer.

Arrive to the exam on-time

Pharmacy students are always rushing – even to exam halls. Avoid this elementary mistake as it only leaves you stressed and unprepared. To perform well during a pharmacy calculation exam, you need to have a crystal clear, focussed mindset. Arriving late, or almost late, may turn out to be the first nail in the calculation coffin!

Optimize study time

With limited time leading up to the exam, it’s imperative that you optimize time wisely and focus on your weakest points. Yes, practice your strengths – but not as often. If they are your strengths, then leave them be. You need to focus on your weaknesses to transform those weaknesses into strengths.