Online proctored testing is now available for all PTCB exams. Learn more.

Nonsterile Compounding

Gain recognition for your knowledge and skill in compounding nonsterile dosage forms.


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Your nonsterile compounding expertise is vital in meeting your patients’ unique medication needs. Put your knowledge to the test and demonstrate your understanding of this complex pharmacy area with the Nonsterile Compounding Certificate. You’’ll set yourself up for successful advancement while serving your patients with specialized, safe, and effective care.

Earn the Nonsterile Compounding Certificate to demonstrate your competency in:

  • Regulations and required processes for nonsterile compounding
  • Compounding types, equipment, and formulations 
  • Collecting patient information and identifying medication formulations 




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A Step Toward Your Advanced CPhT (CPhT-Adv) 

Earning this certificate takes you one step closer to becoming a PTCB Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician™ (CPhT-Adv™). Active PTCB CPhTs who have completed at least four of the certificate programs, or three certificate programs and the Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician® (CSPT®) Certification, and 3 years of work experience will be eligible to earn a CPhT-Adv credential.


Eligibility Requirements

A candidate must hold an active PTCB CPhT Certification and complete a PTCB-Recognized Nonsterile Compounding Education/Training Program.

View a list of PTCB-Recognized Education/Training Programs for the Nonsterile Compounding Certificate.

PTCB-Recognized Programs have been reviewed and found to provide learners with foundational knowledge that will help them be successful on PTCB exams. Please note that PTCB-Recognized Programs may not cover all information that appears on your exam. It is important that you review the exam content outline as part of your preparation and seek supplemental resources as needed.


Exam Fee

The fee to apply for this certificate exam is $89.


 How to Apply and Schedule

  1. Apply by logging into your PTCB Account.

  2. Once your application is approved, you will receive an email with your authorization to schedule your exam.

The Nonsterile Compounding Certificate Exam is administered through online proctored testing and in-person at more than 1,400 Pearson Professional Centers nationwide, including more than 100 military on-base sites.


Prepare for Your Exam

Online Testing Requirements Overview
This quick video explains the requirements and policies for online proctored testing.

Pearson VUE Tutorial
The Pearson VUE tutorial provides a preview of the testing experience and functionality for PTCB exams.

Exam Content Outline
Be sure to review the content outline as part of your exam preparation.

Regulations, Standards, and Guidelines (28%)
Terminology and acronyms used in regulations, standards and guidelines related to nonsterile compounding
Roles of various standards setting, regulatory, and accreditation bodies
Roles of pharmacy technicians in nonsterile compounding
References used for nonsterile compounding (e.g., technical, clinical, regulatory)
Nonsterile Compounding Processes (72%)
Drugs and components used in nonsterile compounding including physical and chemical compatibility criteria
Nonsterile compounding dosage forms and routes of administration
Container closure systems and packaging used for nonsterile compounding 
Nonsterile compounding equipment calibration, maintenance, cleaning, and use
Appropriate use of disposable supplies
Cleaning, sanitization, and appropriate use of reusable supplies
Weighing, measuring, and mixing techniques
Compounding process for nonsterile dosage forms
Processes to minimize potential for error (e.g., bar code scanning, electronic transmission of weighted components, cameras)
Garb and PPE used for nonsterile compounding (HD and non-HD)
Agents, supplies, and techniques used for deactivating, decontaminating, cleaning, and sanitizing for HD and non-HD areas
Calibration, maintenance, and use of equipment for environmental monitoring (e.g., temperature, humidity, and pressure)
Quality assurance and quality control processes including documentation requirements used prior to and throughout the compounding process (e.g., from vendor qualification to documenting and investigating patient complaints)


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About the Exam

The Nonsterile Compounding Certificate Exam is a computer-based exam with 70 multiple-choice questions. Be prepared to commit 1 hour and 30 minutes for the exam (5-minute tutorial, 1 hour and 20-minute exam, and 5-minute post-exam survey).


Exam Day Requirements

When you schedule your exam, you may choose to take your PTCB exam at a Pearson VUE test center or online from your own computer under the virtual supervision of a live proctor.

  • Arrive at the designated Pearson VUE test center 30 minutes prior to your appointment. If you are testing online, check-in 30 minutes prior to your appointment.
  • Bring an approved form of identification that matches your name as it appears on your PTCB Account. You will not be allowed to take the exam without proper identification.
  • Prior to your exam day, be sure to review more detail about what to expect and what is required in the Candidate Guidebook. Also, review important information about online testing requirements in our Help Center.


Testing Accommodations

Candidates who require testing accommodations must request these accommodations during the application process. Accommodations that are reasonable and consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) will be provided by PTCB at no additional cost to candidates. Learn more.


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 Your official score report will be presented on screen following your exam. If you pass the exam, your credential status can be verified through PTCB Certification Verification.



Once your official score is available, you can download your certificate through the Credly Platform. Learn more.

Digital Badges

Upon earning your credential, you will receive an email invitation from the Credly Platform via with instructions for claiming your badge and setting up your account.

This digital badge will contain information describing your credential, including how you earned it. You can display the badge in your email signature, electronic files of a resume, and on social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.



This certificate program does not require renewal.


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Quick access to additional documents you may need during this process. Download the necessary documents and submit the completed forms as required.


  1. Testing Accommodations Form