Starting your training

Preparing for the start of your Pre-Registration training ensures you are ready for this important period. We have a range of resources, networks and guidance to get you started.

Currently a student member?

If you've completed the final year of your MPharm studies you can upgrade your student membership to our Associate category, which is specially designed for Pre-Registration trainees.

Upgrade your membership for invaluable support over the year ahead - and from as little as £6.50 a month.

Upgrade to Pre-Reg Associate membership

Finding a pre-registration training position Finding a pre-registration training position

The applicant handbook provides you with the necessary information to support you in making a successful application to pre-registration training. 

Pre-registration Pharmacy Applicant Handbook - Commencing 2020

Overview of pre-registration training Overview of pre-registration training

Pre-registration training comprises of:

  • Minimum of 52 weeks training if completed in full. A work based placement that takes place under the supervision of a pre-registration tutor
  • Three progress reviews with your tutor should be conducted to show your competency
  • Competency can be shown through achieving performance standards consistently
  • Formal assessments by your tutor who rates your progress as satisfactory or unsatisfactory

The registration assessment (of which you only have three attempts to pass). It consists of two parts. Each of these is a separate paper, and you will sit them on the same day.

  • The morning paper is made up of 40 calculation questions. The time time limit to complete this paper is 2 hours.
  • The afternoon paper is made up of 120 "selected response" questions. Some of these will be "single best answer" questions, where you will need to select one answer from a list of five as the best answer to the question. There will also be "extended matching questions", where you will need to pick the best answer from from a list of 6 to 12 options for a number of scenarios (grouped by theme). The time limit to complete this paper is 2.5 hours.

Progress review & progress report

During your training your pre-reg tutor carries out 3 progress reviews. These will take place at 13, 26 & 39 weeks into your training year. At each of these you should have a formal meeting with your tutor. This is known as a progress review.

The progress review is an opportunity to discuss your progress with:

  • performance standards
  • assessment syllabus (Now the “framework”)
  • calculation questions 

Once agreed you and your tutor will complete a progress report, your tutor will rate your progress as satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

At week 49 you will need to submit your registration application, including a final declaration signed off by your tutor. If your tutor is unsure that you are competent in all areas of practice, they will not submit this final declaration and you may have to complete extra training.

Performance standards

The performance standards are a list of 76 performance outcomes which demonstrate your competency as a pharmacist. They are separated into three sections that assess:

A. Personal effectiveness

B. Interpersonal skills

C. Medicines and health


  • Each performance standard is a description of what the GPhC expects you to be able to do and how you should behave if you were to register as a pharmacist
  • You must be able to demonstrate competence consistently across all 76 performance standards and record evidence of how you meet them
  • Once your tutor feels you have reached the necessary level of competence for a particular performance standard they can sign you off as competent (for that performance standard)

Achieving all performance standards is just as important as passing the assessment.

Your pre-registration timeline Your pre-registration timeline

Highlights key milestones through your pre-registration training.


Where to find help and support Where to find help and support

Throughout your pre-registration training you may encounter situations where you need extra support and guidance, this guidance gives you information on what organisations can provide you with varying support.


Building rapport with your pre-registration tutor Building rapport with your pre-registration tutor

Helps you build a rapport with your tutor and gain most out of your pre-registration training.


Managing difficult situations and overcoming barriers/challenges Managing difficult situations and overcoming barriers/challenges

Pre-registration can be a challenging time, this guidance provides great hints and tips on overcoming these challenges.


Other useful resources

RPS Associate member benefits
  • Pharmaceutical Press publications including pre-reg specific titles
  • Read the Pharmaceutical Journal for coverage of pharmacy news, reviews on medicines as well as regular continuing professional development section
  • Read the Clinical Pharmacist journal covering the clinical management of various diseases and clinical pharmacist practice
  • Medicines, Ethics and Practice, the essential guide to pharmacy practice and legislation, covering the Professional and Legal practice areas of the registration assessment framework
  • Familiarise yourself with all the RPS support resources and webinars that provides help with your practice, developing your medicines knowledge and advice on aspects important to you during your training
  • Revision course and full mock exam give you the opportunity to re-visit those difficult topics and gain gudiance and tips from experts on how to approach your preparation
Finding a Pre-Reg placement
GPhC resources

BPSA logo - Copy

BPSA is the official student organisation of the RPS and is there to represent and educate pharmacy students and pre-registration trainees.