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on January 26, 2018
Sort of useful but I think that this was the book that had some incorrect answers for the practice test in the back. There is no one book that will help you pass the test. I read parts of a lot of different books, searched the internet, and attended a class put on by the Board of Pharmacy for the state I live in before I took and passed the PTCB test. That test had some seriously crazy questions on it! I had no clue if I passed it or failed it before I hit the final submit button and got my unoffical results, I was that thrown by some of the questions. I ended up only missing 5 of the 80 questions! My suggestion for anyone studying to take the test is to take as many practice tests that you can find in books and on the internet.....many of the questions on these tests are still being used on the current test but they will also prepare you so you feel confident and comfortable when you actually take the test. Forget studying any of the anatomy information in any of the books it isn't on the test. Learn the all the math and practice practice practice. There are youtube videos that can help. Check out for games that will help you learn sig codes and brand/generic names. Make flash card for the at least the top 200 drugs. When you are at work test yourself about drug names as you are filling Rx's. Know the law and the different federal departments that oversee drugs. Know how to read and translate a sig code as well and calculating dosages and amounts of pills dispensed. Be able to do the math for a sales transaction. Remember there is a calculator on the computer for you to use, practice using the one on your computer so you are comfortable using it. I have only worked in a retail pharmacy and there are a lot of hospital only questions including one about what device do nurses use to make sure they are giving the right patient the right medication......I knew the answer because I had been in a hospital as a patient, and from seeing the question on a practice test. How a person who has only worked in a hospital or only worked in a retail setting is able to pass this test I don't know but you can pass if you research the area you are unfamiliar with. There were so many questions that I was only able to answer because I had dealt with a similar situation at work. I studied most nights for a couple of hours for about 2 months. When I ran across info I didn't understand I would ask my pharmacists about the next chance I got. I worked on the hardest math questions with a senior tech. I work with a person who has been a tech for 7 years and has not been able to pass the test so clearly work experience is not enough to pass the test. Don't take this test until you have spent a good amount of time doing inputting in a real pharmacy. Read the questions carefully, you can mark any question you aren't sure you have the correct answer to and after you are done with the test but before you hit submit go back and redo these questions again and look at them in a new light, especially do this with all math questions. Look for tricks and red herrings. Don't assume anything. Remember that some of the hardest questions might be the ten "test" questions that they are testing before they use them for real. There are 90 questions but only 80 are graded. I took the test later in the afternoon and spent the early part of the day studying. Make sure the name you submitted to the testing company matches your picture ID or they will not let you take the test and you will lose the fee you paid. You have to take this seriously or you are wasting the$129 test fee. Good Luck, work hard.
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The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board Examination (PTCE) is a test that accesses the skill sets that “specifically correspond to required knowledge for performing technical and production duties in the pharmacy.” In the introduction in this book you’ll learn about all the requirements and pre-qualifications you’ll need to actually schedule a test. A pharmacy technician will “assist patients, interact with physicians and nurses, are responsible for the administrative responsibilities of the pharmacy, and help prepare prescription and compounded medications.” It’s certainly not a career path for the faint of heart.

Glancing around online told me things such as the fact that the PTCE will cost $129 and will be held at at Pearson-VUE Professional Testing Center. There’s a lot of information in the introduction of the book that gives anyone wanting to enter the field a good idea of what to expect. The PTCE is “a computer-generated multiple-choice exam that contains ninety questions” and takes a couple of hours. The scores range from 1000 to 1600 and in order to become a CphT (certified pharmacy technician), you’ll have to have a broad-based skill set.

There are several “unseen” resources that come with this book, including an online practice test and a YouTube video. In the front matter / introduction you’ll learn what a pharmacy technician is, the qualifications you’ll need to have, the responsibilities, the settings in which a CphT will work, the future of the field, information about national certification, what the PTCB is, what you’ll need to know in order to pass it, what happens “after the PTCE,” and you’ll read about the code of conduct.

There are numerous informative tables, black and white photographs, figures, as well as a full-length practice test. One table that most will find especially useful is the one on pharmacy abbreviations, the Common Sig Codes. The abbreviation is followed by the abbreviation, the meaning, and the category. For example: agit. / shake, stir / other (category). Definitely one study guide that’s worth considering, even if only thinking about becoming a CphT.


Pharmacology (13.75%)

Pharmacy Law and Ethics (12.50%)

Medication Safety (12.50%)

Sterile and Non-Sterile Compounding (8.75%)

Quality Assurance (7.50%)

Medication Order and Fill Process (17.50%)

Inventory Management (8.75%)

Billing and Reimbursement (8.75%)

Information System Usage and Application (10.00%)

Pharmacy Math and Calculations

Each one of these categories has a brief explanation of of the subjects and and skill sets that will be on the PTCB. There are also some flash cards available for purchase as a complementary resource for this test. I do have them and find they are an invaluable study asset. No on says you have to stick with one book as brand loyalty isn’t necessary when studying. I do like a variety of materials and there are several out there. There is no DVD included in this book, but is available by request after posting a review.

This book courtesy of the publisher.
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on April 16, 2018
Studied this from cover to cover and utilized online test. I passed the certification exam. I took the book test first to see what I needed to know (you need a 70% to pass.) Then, after I studied, I took the online practice test. I didn't feel that the certification exam closely matched what studied, but apparently it was enough.
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on February 15, 2018
I tried some other PTCB guide books before, but finally I found out this ASCENCIA one is the best. It will show out the necessary knowledge of anatomy, physiology, chemistry and pathology in combination with the core pharmacology. These knowledge are simply shown out, easily for students to connect together and review together. About the laws of pharmacy, this book also shows out in well organized and easy to remember. The content of this book is rich, compared with many other reference books about PTCB.
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on June 29, 2018
This book is fairly good, but it has so many typos it’s not even funny. I’m only on page 44 and have encountered too many to name, the most recent being that “neuralgia” (which means “nerve pain”) is a type of nerve cell (instead of “neuroglia”). If you’re going to write a book for health professionals, please make sure your grammar (especially your spelling) is correct. I’m nowhere near perfect, but most of these are easy fixes and you have to be super careful about typos in this field because of the Latin language. One little typo from a practicing health professional (e.g. CNA, RN, MD) can lead to a dangerous situation.

Also, this book does cover some random, useless topics. It’s alright for now, but I am definitely considering buying another book.
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on September 13, 2017
I am loving your book. I am studying to be a pharmacy technician, and I am doing a fast-track program. Your book is more up to date with information the other course does not. I do not see anything you need to change as of yet.

i have this book, but i cannot seem to access any of the online material that it states in the book? If it comes with the online materials, please let me know how to get there?
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on June 22, 2018
This book is great! I work at RiteAid and will be doing my national soon for pharmacy technician and this book seems to cover everything. It helped me with the math as that is where I seem to struggle. I'm actually going to leave this book at my work for any future technicians who wish to study for their national exam! I even recommended this book to my coworker whose daughter is studying to be a pharmacist. This book is jam-packed with great material and very thorough! The best material to have to study and pass your exam!
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on April 9, 2018
I bought the hard copy & kindle formats. I use the kindle while I'm traveling and the book when at home. The book is full of information. The tests are great; they help me to focus on where I need to concentrate more studies. I also purchased the electronic flash cards. All are helpful with my studies. I'd recommend them. I'd purchase a cd audio for my vehicles if available.
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on July 11, 2018
I received my study guide today and while looking through it, it brought back so many memories. I am a retired Air Force pharmacy technician. I let my PTCB certification expire so I have to retake the test. I take my test in September, but want to start refreshing my memory now. I bought one of these study guides before I left my last duty station so that our new technicians could study for their exam. I miss that part of my job, but not the other monotonous parts. Thank you for putting this guide together.
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on January 26, 2018
I would’ve given it 5 stars, but I ordered “new” and it looked as though it had been a bit used and, due to a lack of padding, the corners of the book and some of the pages were dented during shipping. The back looks like it has some scratches and is a tad dirty. The front is also a bit dirty and there is a crease near the spine that makes it look as though someone opened it. The pages inside, however, look clean and white. I am a little disappointed at this, but I’m going to keep the book because returning it would be a hassle and I really need this to help me pass the exam.
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