PharmCAS Community

Cooperative Admissions Guidelines (CAG)

  • 1.  Cooperative Admissions Guidelines (CAG)

    Posted 01-31-2019 08:50


    The AACP Board of Directors endorsed the Cooperative Admissions Guidelines (CAG), a set of admission traffic rules for pharmacy schools and applicants, in 2016. There are currently 58 colleges and schools of pharmacy (67% public, 32% private) participating in the CAG, as compared to 55 in the last cycle. While all member institutions (PharmCAS and non-PharmCAS) are encouraged to abide by the CAG by the 2019-2020 (next) admissions cycle, AACP does not enforce them. The Board will continue to monitor the impact of the CAG on stakeholders this year. Below is an excerpt from the CAG and information to assist member institutions.

    After March 1:

    • Applicants may hold only one acceptance. Schools and colleges may choose to rescind their offers to applicants holding multiple acceptances.
    • Schools and colleges may require a second deposit, and will set the dollar value, if applicable. Applicants may consider additional admission offers after March 1, but may still only hold one acceptance.

    All PharmCAS institutions, regardless of CAG status, are expected to enter Offer Made and Offer Accepted decision codes to date on a regular basis and by no later than March 1, so that the "Competing Offers Made" and "Competing Offers Accepted" reports in WebAdMIT reflect current and accurate data. WebAdMIT Support can assist with bulk code changes, as needed. PharmCAS does not display decision codes to applicants. Below are definitions for select codes. Please refer to the PharmCAS Manual to learn more.

    • Offer Made: Institution made an offer of admission to the applicant.
    • Offer Accepted: Applicant accepted offer of admission. (Typically, the applicant has paid a deposit.)
    • Matriculated: Accepted applicant began professional program. Use this code once the accepted applicant has started classes in the fall. Do not use the code if an applicant has only accepted an offer of admission, participated in a new student orientation, or registered for classes.

    While strongly encouraged, not all colleges and schools may enter decision codes in WebAdMIT by March 1 or on a consistent basis for a variety of reasons. Therefore, the "Competing Offers Made" and "Competing Offers Accepted" reports may not always reflect up-to-date information for reasons beyond an applicant's control.

    Colleges and schools participating in the CAG should follow their local admissions policies to determine how they can respond to applicants who are holding multiple offers after March 1. Schools are discouraged from automatically revoking any offers based solely on the reports in WebAdMIT, since the data may not be current and the CAG is still relatively new. Instead, schools are encouraged to contact affected applicants and have a conversation with them about their enrollment plans. This approach may allow schools more time to market their programs and help applicants to make the best decision for themselves while gently pushing them along. Schools should consider whether they will extend deposit deadlines for accepted applicants who have voluntarily shared they are waiting on decisions from other programs. The way in which a school responds to applicants should not be affected by whether competing schools are also participating in the CAG.

    Although the March 1 date does not apply, colleges and schools that do not participate in the CAG may also want to contact applicants who have received or accepted multiple offers of admission, and have a conversation with them about their enrollment plans. They may also consider whether they will extend deposit deadlines for those applicants who have voluntarily shared they are waiting on decisions from other programs.

    AACP created a new frequently asked questions (FAQ) resource for applicants about the CAG in addition the related PharmCAS web page. Beginning in the 2018-2019 (current) admissions cycle, AACP sends automated emails about the CAG to every applicant with a newly verified file. Related announcements will also soon be posted on PharmCAS social media.

    2019 CAG SURVEYS
    AACP surveyed applicants and institutions in spring 2018 about their experiences with the CAG during the 2017-2018 (previous) cycle. Related CAG survey questions will also be included in the upcoming PharmCAS surveys scheduled for release in late spring 2019. These survey results will be shared with the AACP Board of Directors in July 2019.

    Please consider emailing your questions and thoughts directly to me at, rather than clicking the Connect reply button, so we can minimize the number of community messages in everyone's inbox. Thank you!

    Libby J. Ross, MA
    Senior Director of Student Affairs
    American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy
    703-739-2330, x1009