The Faculty of Pharmacy, the first in Jordan, was established as a department of the Faculty of Medical Sciences at Yarmouk University by a Royal Decree in 1979. The rapid growth and development of the department led to the transformation of the department into an independent faculty in September 19, 1983. Three years later -in September 1986- the Faculty of Pharmacy became affiliated to Jordan University of Science and Technology.
The profession of pharmacy is considered a very dynamic area. This is due to the rapid changes in pharmaceutical industry and health care system. The development of pharmaceutical industry over the years in providing pre-packed medications restricted the traditional role of the pharmacist to a compounder and dispenser of medicine. In health care systems, significant changes required pharmacists to adopt total responsibility for pharmaceutical needs of patients in hospitals as well as the development of pharmaceutical care plans for individual patients. Therefore, the pharmacy profession has to adopt a more patient-oriented approach so that pharmacists can expand their role as advisors for both patients and other health care professionals within the health care team.
In the past, pharmaceutical education was mainly drug-oriented concentrating on the art of compounding and detailed description of drug properties. A second phase of pharmacy education then concentrated on product formulation. This phase was associated with the introduction of physical pharmacy, pharmaceutical technology, structure-activity relationship, and drug design.
Later, pharmacy education was more biologically oriented with emphasis on pharmacokinetics and drug equivalence. Therefore, topics like biopharmaceutics, pharmacokinetics, and clinical therapeutics were introduced. It was then followed by a patient-oriented phase where topics like clinical pharmacy, community pharmacy, and communication skills were introduced.
Recently, pharmaceutical education has moved further toward a more patient-centered and practice-centered approach rather than being drug-centered and product formulation centered. We, at the Faculty of Pharmacy at Jordan University of Science and Technology, are closely observing these dynamic changes in the pharmacy profession since the establishment of the Faculty of Pharmacy back in 1979. Accordingly, we have modified our undergraduate curriculum several times to cope with these changes. The general features of these modifications were mainly the following:
First: Improving the quality of practical courses to better reflect on education and quality of our graduates.
Second: Emphasizing the clinical pharmacy orientation by introducing several core courses in this area as well as the area of therapeutics and pharmacy practice.
Third: More emphasis has been addressed to pharmacy training. Training has been given 3 credit hours where each student has to undergo a practical training period of 14 weeks in a community or a hospital pharmacy to cover major classes of drugs regarding their therapeutics and patient consultation. The training is under complete supervision of the faculty and the student has to pass an examination at the end of the training period.
Fourth: Introducing new elective courses that cover new areas and trends in pharmaceutical sciences to suit the needs of our graduates and their prospective employers.
Fifth: The Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) program was introduced, in 2000, to serve the needs of Jordan and the region in the field of Clinical Pharmacy.