A pharmaceutical math course is often a core requirement for students who plan to pursue professional careers as pharmacists. Pharmaceutical math prepares students for performing mathematical calculations that are important to the distribution of medications. There's little room for error in this field, so pharmacists' calculations must be accurate and reliable.

## Technical Math and Conversions

Pharmaceutical math combines math formulas with chemical equations to create content that's vital to a pharmacist's role and job responsibilities. Pharmacy students must perform calculations that involve measurements, fractions, decimals, conversions and ratios. A pharmacist might need to convert metric measurements to household measurements. For example, it takes 240 milliliters to fill an 8-ounce bottle of prescription cough syrup, because there are 30 milliliters in one ounce -- so 30 milliliters times 8 ounces equals 240 milliliters. Accurate calculations ensure the safety and well-being of patients.

References

- A Self-Paced Course in Pharmaceutical Mathematics Using Web-Based Data Bases; David W.A. Bourne and A. Machelle Davison
- American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education; Teacher Topics -- Introduction to Pharmaceutical Calculations; Michael C. Brown
- Therapeutic Research Center: Pharmacist's Letter: Calculations for Pharmacy Technicians: Math and Measurements Part I

About the Author

As curriculum developer and educator, Kristine Tucker has enjoyed the plethora of English assignments she's read (and graded!) over the years. Her experiences as vice-president of an energy consulting firm have given her the opportunity to explore business writing and HR. Tucker has a BA and holds Ohio teaching credentials.

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