Pharmacy Schools in Illinois - 2024

Illinois has a steady demand for pharmacists, just like any other state in the country. As of 2021, there are estimated to be 12,430 pharmacists working in the state, drawing an annual salary of $118,770. To pursue a career in pharmacy, you must complete your Doctor of Pharmacy from any of the pharmacy schools in the state. To start with, we have ranked ACPE accredited pharmacy schools in Illinois, based on their NAPLEX performance.

Our Ranking Methodology

To become a licensed pharmacist you are required to pass the NAPLEX and your success on it will greatly influence your pharmacy career. A school that has its graduates consistently doing well on the licensure exam indicates the success of its program and teaching methodologies. Taking this fact into consideration, we have evaluated pharmacy colleges in Illinois based on their NAPLEX first time pass rates in the last four years. 40% weightage given to 2021, 30% to 2020, 20% to 2019 and 10% to 2018.

NAPLEX Pass Rate YearWeightage

2024 Ranking of ACPE Accredited Pharmacy Schools in Illinois

#1. Southern Illinois University

Ranking Score: 92.13%
Location: Edwardsville
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: Located 25 miles away from St. Louis, Missouri, the doors of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) were opened in 1957. With around 1,000 academic staff and over 1,400 administrative staff, SUIE serves more than 14,000 students every year in streams like arts & science, dental medicines, business, health & human behavior, engineering, nursing and pharmacy. Being a part of Southern Illinois University system, SIUE also provides graduate programs at its graduate school.

Program Details: The SIUE School of pharmacy offers a fully accredited PharmD course which can be completed in four years provided that you have undergone the two-year pre-pharmacy curriculum as per the SIUE admission criteria. Each of the four years of this course is divided into two semesters - fall and spring. Curriculum of first year includes general education subjects such as English, math, chemistry, biological sciences, etc. In second-year you will pursue advanced courses in microbiology, organic chemistry, genetics, etc. In third year, you will gain knowledge in pharmacy law, pharmacotherapeutics, and electives. And your fourth and final year will be practical experience in pharmacies, ambulatory care, general medicine, and other specialized practices.

*You can pursue PharmD course in two specific specializations -

Education: This specialization will prepare you for the teaching positions.

Pediatric: This specialization can land you a job in pediatric pharmacy and enhance your chances to complete pediatric PG course.

Southern Illinois University NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 73 97.30%
2019 77 92.00%
2020 82 92.00%
2021 75 91.00%

#2. University of Illinois

Ranking Score: 85.32%
Location: Chicago
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: A part of the University of Illinois system, University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) is the largest university in Chicago - with more than 2,600 academic staff in fifteen colleges, UIC serves around 30,000 students in various streams of education. As per US news & world report ranking, UIC College of Pharmacy stands 6th for its unparalleled contribution to research, discoveries, innovative practices in the clinical field and high-quality learning solutions.

Program Details: The UIC College of Pharmacy received HEED award in 2016 for providing one of the best Pharm.D Program in IL, at its campuses located in Chicago and Rockford. This is a 4-year program and each year is divided into two terms - fall and spring. The coursework during the first year comprises of, but is not limited to, integrated physiology, pharmacokinetics, drug action, US healthcare systems, and 6-credit hour IPPE. Second and third year will have advanced courses and 4-credit hours of IPPE during both years. In the fourth and final year you will gain 28-credit hours of advanced pharmacy practice experiences.

*Depending upon your specific choice of work area, you can pursue this program with one of the two concentrations: Urban & Rural, and you will be trained accordingly.

University of Illinois NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 178 88.20%
2019 173 88.00%
2020 151 87.00%
2021 172 82.00%

#3. Rosalind Franklin University

Ranking Score: 84.34%
Location: North Chicago
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science is well known for providing healthcare-focused education to over 2,000 students annually in more than 29 health-related areas. The college of pharmacy is equipped with inter-professional education which distinguishes it from other pharmacy programs. The performance of the class of 2017 on the NAPLEX surpasses the state and the national average.

Program Details: A maximum of 70 students are enrolled in the Pharm.D program offered at Rosalind, providing patient-centered education and career-focused training required to thrive in the fast-paced healthcare industry. This program can be completed in four years - each year includes three terms: fall, winter and spring. Curriculum of the first year comprises of basic principles of pharmacy, physiology and pharmacology; and the remaining three years includes instructive coaching and 54-hour APPE during every year.

*Elective courses are included in third year.

Rosalind Franklin University NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 59 81.40%
2019 66 85.00%
2020 57 88.00%
2021 51 82.00%

#4. Midwestern University - Chicago

Ranking Score: 79.45%
Location: Downers Grove
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: Midwestern University Chicago College of Pharmacy is committed to provide excellent education and practices in pharmacy through innovative and collaborative efforts required to upgrade healthcare standards in the state of Illinois. At CCP you can expect high quality teaching, research, services and patient care practices with collegiate and professional attitude.

Program Details: The Pharm.D. Program at the college is available with two flexible options for full-time students effective from fall 2019 -

1) Standard graduation option is a four-year course where first three years includes the basic knowledge on pharmaceutical terms and the fourth or final year has a clinical block which includes pharmacy practice and PharmD seminar.

2) Accelerated graduation option where you can complete the entire coursework in three years and you need to complete six full-time advanced pharmacy practice experience in the final year (winter quarter), each rotation requires 40 hours each week.

Graduates will be fully capable to practice patient-centered care, manage pharmacy practice and promote health and wellness in a professional manner.

Midwestern University, Chicago NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 159 85.53%
2019 202 76.00%
2020 174 87.00%
2021 162 74.00%

#5. Roosevelt University

Ranking Score: 67.31%
Location: Chicago
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: Roosevelt University offers patient-centered and innovative learning experience to about 68 students in each class, with state-of-the-art medical equipment and highly qualified faculty and staff. Located at Schaumburg in Illinois, the college of pharmacy is surrounded with research hospitals, pharmacies, and fortune 500 pharmaceutical companies which enables an easy access to complete clinical rotations for pharmacy students.

Program Details: With full-time daytime classes, the doctor of pharmacy program offered at the college of pharmacy has a comprehensive educational model which lets you complete the program in just three years. Including 9-credit hour elective courses, the entire coursework is of 188.5 credits. 6 credits of elective courses should be completed in 5th term and 3 credits between 6 to 8 terms. In the last year or final three terms, you will be required to complete six APPEs with each rotation of 240 hours, and a minimum total of 1440 APPE hours.

*Admissions to this program requires submission of PharmCAS application, completion of 57-semester hour pre-pharmacy course and other formalities.

Roosevelt University NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 55 89.10%
2019 61 84.00%
2020 47 68.00%
2021 68 53.00%

#6. Chicago State University

Ranking Score: 54.08%
Location: Chicago
Accreditation: ACPE

About the College: With a history of more than 150 years, Chicago State University (CSU) is affiliated with AASCU and TMCF and serves over 3,100 students annually offering 56 programs related to health science, arts, business, teaching, pharmacy and many more. CSU-COP is one of the most promising pharmacy colleges in Chicago, dedicated to imparting knowledge with a mission to cater the healthcare needs of the citizens.

Program Details: You can enroll for the 4-year Doctor of Pharmacy program only during the fall, provided that you have completed 2-year pre-pharmacy course at CSU or any other college. Each of the four years of coursework is classified into two terms. The professional curriculum at the college of pharmacy comprises of core pharmacy studies, elective courses, and 41-credit hours of introductory and advanced pharmacy practice experiences. Graduates will be fully prepared to enter the pharmacy profession in a variety of practice settings.

Chicago State University NAPLEX Performance
Year # of Students Attempted Pass Rate
2018 71 57.80%
2019 73 51.00%
2020 51 55.00%
2021 43 54.00%

Licensure - Passing the NAPLEX and MPJE in Illinois

To become a licensed pharmacist in Illinois, you need to apply to the Illinois Board of Pharmacy. Once the board approves your eligibility, apply to the NABP site for the NAPLEX and MPJE. Take and pass these two exams to become a licensed pharmacist.

Illinois Pharm. D. Graduates NAPLEX Performance (2018-2021)

Pharm. D. graduates in Illinois have given an almost below average performance on the NAPLEX in the last three years. While the national average in 2021 was 83.55%, In 2021, Illinois graduates passed with an aggregate of 72.67%

School Location 2018 2019 2020 2021
#Taken Pass% #Taken Pass% #Taken Pass% #Taken Pass%
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville 73 97.30% 77 92.00% 82 92.00% 75 91.00%
University of Illinois Chicago 178 88.20% 173 88.00% 151 87.00% 172 82.00%
Rosalind Franklin University North Chicago 59 81.40% 66 85.00% 57 88.00% 51 82.00%
Midwestern University, Chicago Downers Grove 159 85.53% 202 76.00% 174 87.00% 162 74.00%
Roosevelt University Chicago 55 89.10% 61 84.00% 47 68.00% 68 53.00%
Chicago State University Chicago 71 57.80% 73 51.00% 51 55.00% 43 54.00%
Overall Illinois NAPLEX Performance 595 83.22% 652 79.33% 562 79.50% 571 72.67%

Pharmacist Salary in in Illinois

On an average, a pharmacist in Illinois earns an average annual salary of $118,770, which is slightly lower than national pharmacist earnings by 5.55%. A pharmacist working part-time earns an hourly wage of $57.10, which is again 5% lower lower. While the highest salaries are paid to pharmacists working in Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, the lowest are in Bloomington.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Pharmacist Job Outlook in Illinois

The projected 10-year employment growth rate for pharmacists in the state is 0.97% in negetive, considering 2020 as the base year. Each year Illinois will have 440 job openings for pharmacist positions, that includes new as well as replacement positions.

2020 Employment2030 EmploymentGrowthProjected Annual Job Openings (New + Replacement)
Source: Career One Stop

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