Originally Posted by ACCP
In 1986, representatives from seven national pharmacy organizations met to discuss the need for common definitions and use of the terms "residency" and "fellowship" because considerable potential existed for program applicants to be misinformed regarding program purposes and content. The definitions and interpretations that follow resulted from that conference.
Definition: A pharmacy residency is an organized, directed, postgraduate training program in a defined area of pharmacy practice.
Interpretation: Residencies exist primarily to train pharmacists in professional practice and management activities. Residencies provide experience in integrating pharmacy services with the comprehensive needs of individual practice settings and provide in-depth experiences leading to advanced practice skills and knowledge. Residencies foster an ability to conceptualize new and improved pharmacy services. Within a given residency program, there is considerable consistency in content for each resident. In addition, accreditation standards and program guidelines produced by national pharmacy associations provide considerable program content detail and foster consistency among programs.
A residency is typically 12 months or longer in duration, and the resident's practice experiences are closely directed and evaluated by a qualified practitioner-preceptor. A residency may occur at any career point following an entry-level degree in pharmacy. Individuals planning practice-oriented careers are encouraged to complete all formal academic education before entry into a residency.
Definition:A pharmacy fellowship is a directed, highly individualized, postgraduate program designed to prepare the participant to become an independent researcher.
Interpretation: Fellowships exist primarily to develop competency in the scientific research process, including conceptualizing, planning, conducting, and reporting research. Under the close direction and instruction of a qualified researcher-preceptor, the participant (the fellow) receives a highly individualized learning experience that utilizes the fellow's research interests and knowledge needs as a focus for his or her education and training. A fellowship graduate should be capable of conducting collaborative research or functioning as a principal investigator. Fellowships are typically offered through colleges of pharmacy, academic health centers, or specialized healthcare institutions. Fellowships are usually offered for predetermined, finite periods of time, often exceeding 12 or even 24 months. Individuals planning research-oriented careers should expect to complete formal education in research design and statistics either before or during a fellowship. A fellowship candidate is expected to possess basic practice skills relevant to the knowledge area of the fellowship. Such skills may be obtained through practice experience or through an appropriate residency and should be maintained during the program.
(Definitions of pharmacy residencies and fellowships. Amer J Hosp Pharm 1987;44:1142-4.)
Developed by a consortium of representatives from the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP), the American College of Apothecaries (ACA), the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP), the American Pharmaceutical Association (APhA), the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), the American Society of Hospital Pharmacists (ASHP), and the National Association of Retail Druggists (NARD). Approved by the ACCP Board of Regents on December 5, 1986.