Palliative Care Certificate Courses By Semester Offered and PharmD Year

Foundations of Palliative Care - Offered in spring. Open to P1s, P2s, P3s.   
Ethics & Spirituality in Healthcare - Offered in fall. Open to P2s, P3s.
Advanced Pharmacopalliation - Selective/APPE Block 1. Open to P3s.
Continuing Professional Development in Palliative Care - Longitudinal: Spring P2-Spring P3. Open to P2s and P3s.
     * This course is only available to students accepted into the Palliative Care Certificate Program.
APPE elective in Pain Management, Hospice, or Palliative Care - Selective/APPE Blocks 2-9. Open to P3s and P4s.

Foundations of Palliative Care

This 2 credit-hour course introduces palliative care as a public health issue and provides exploration of the principles and practice of palliative care, including interdisciplinary care of the whole person and family, communication, and self-care.

Offered: Spring Semester
Open to students in the P1, P2, P3 year

Ethics & Spirituality in Healthcare

This 3 credit-hour case-based course examines ethical issues in caring for patients with serious illness and explores suffering, spirituality, death, and dying.

Offered: Fall Semester
Open to students in the P2, P3 year

Advanced Pharmacopalliation

This 5 credit-hour advanced pharmacotherapy course explores symptom management across the trajectory of serious illness through a series of longitudinal patient cases examining advanced heart disease, renal disease, HIV/AIDS, lung disease, neurocognitive disease, and cancer. Highlighted topics include discontinuing life sustaining therapies, pharmacokinetic and pharmaceutic issues in advanced illness, terminal agitation, and wound management.

Offered: Selective/APPE block 1
Open to students in the P3 year

Continuing Professional Development in Palliative Care

This 1 credit-hour longitudinal course fosters self-directed learning and development in palliative care among pharmacy students. Students will create and implement a professional development plan to include 10 hours of activities in each of the following professional development areas: service, scholarship & education, leadership & advocacy and self-care & personal resilience. Reflections are required for each palliative care professional development activity completed.

Sample activities in each area include, but are not limited to:


  • Volunteer in a hospice or palliative care program
  • Volunteer at an addiction treatment facility
  • Volunteer at a geriatric long-term care facility

Scholarship & Education:

  • Conduct a research project related to palliative care or symptom management
  • Write a scholarly article related to palliative care
  • Participate in up to 2 palliative care journal clubs per year.
  • Develop educational materials related to palliative care for patients, caregivers, and/or other healthcare professionals

Leadership & Advocacy:

  • Serve in a leadership role for a professional organization related to pain management of palliative care
  • Attend a professional meeting related to pain management or palliative care (e.g. Midwest Pain Society, American Academy of Hospice & Palliative Medicine)
  • Deliver an poster or oral presentation related to palliative care at a professional meeting
  • Organize a letter-writing campaign to advocate for palliative care

Self-Care & Resilience:

  • Complete a mindfulness class
  • Practice mindfulness
  • Develop a personal resilience plan and discuss it with your mentor
  • Attend a seminar on self-care and personal resilience
  • Attend the Examine Life conference
  • Participate in a Palliative Care book club
  • Participate in journaling or reflective writing

Each student will work with a palliative care faculty advisor to review and update the individualized Continuing Professional Development (CPD) plan each semester. Students may not count activities in this course toward any other PharmD curriculum requirement.

Offered: begin after acceptance into Palliative Care certificate; credit awarded Spring of P3 year.
Open to all students in Palliative Care Certificate program.

APPE in Pain Management, Hospice, or Palliative Care

This experiential course will provide a capstone experience in providing pharmacotherapy for patients living with high symptom burdens as an integral member of an interdisciplinary team.