What To Look For In The Best Physician Assistant Schools
How do you decide which schools offer the best masters degree programs for physician assistants? To come up with our list, we looked at the following factors:
- Accreditation: Students should choose a physician assistant degree program that has earned accreditation from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant . Choosing an accredited program is essential when preparing for a career as a licensed PA.
- PANCE scores: Individual schools report their students performance on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination , the licensing exam administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants . The national average pass rate for the PANCE is 93% for first-time test-takers and 91% for all test-takers.
- Graduation rates: Ideally, the vast majority of students accepted into a PA schools cohort will successfully graduate on time.
- Cost of attendance: PA school isnt cheap, but we included in our ranking the cost of attendance. Students should keep in mind that financial aid packages can make the cost of an education more affordable.
- Overall reputation and rankings: Schools reputations matter, and looking at rankings from other publications can provide a glimpse into how schools are perceived. In particular, we considered the Best Physician Assistant Programs ranking U.S. News & World Report compiled in 2019.
What Are Physician Assistant Programs
Physician assistant degrees are graduate degrees in medicine that prepare students for clinical practice under the supervision of a licensed physician. Unlike the Doctor of Medicine and Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree programs, physician assistant degrees arent doctorates but rather masters degrees.
PA masters degree programs take considerably less time than medical school does. Most physician assistant programs take two to three years, while medical school takes four years to finish. Additionally, while newly trained physicians still have to go through years of internship and residency training, PAs are ready to get started in their career field shortly after graduation.
In most physician assistant programs, students complete at least one year of classroom study, called the didactic phase of their education, and at least one year of clinical training. During the clinical component of their studies, PA students complete rotations in several areas of medicine.
Before you can apply to a PA masters degree program, you must earn a bachelors degree.
Southern California University Of Health Sciences Physician Assistant Program
Southern California University of Health Sciences PA Program Mission Statement SCUs Master of Science: Physician Assistant program will prepare students to participate in integrative healthcare teams. In todays ever-changing healthcare system, our graduates will deliver healthcare to a diverse population, with a primary care focus. PA PROGRAM AT A GLANCE Accredited Status: Provisional Accreditation Campus Location: Whittier, CA Degrees Offered: Masters Class Start Month: September Class Duration: 28 months Class Capacity: 50 students Decision Criteria: Matched to mission academic ability and understanding role of physician assistant, personal interview, personal statement Seat Deposit: $1,000 International Students: Accepted TOEFL: Required TUITION Resident tuition: $105,702 Nonresident tuition: $105,702 PANCE PASS RATE First-time PANCE pass rate: 94% Five year first-time PANCE pass rate: 89% APPLICATION INFORMATION Caspa Participant: Yes Application Deadline: January Supplemental Application: Not Required CASPA Deadline Type: Verified GPA Overall GPA: 3.0 Science GPA: 3.0 Average Applicant GPA Accepted: Overall:3.46 Prerequisite completion: must be completed within 7 year EXPERIENCE Healthcare Experience Hours: 2,000 hours SHADOWING PA Shadowing Not Required EVALUATIONS Three recommendation letters required GRE GRE Not Required CASPer CASPer Not Required For more information on CASPer click here PA-CAT PA-CAT Not Required For more information on PA-CAT
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Maintenance Of Good Academic Standing
The cumulative GPA for both good academic standing and degree conferral is a 3.0. A student admitted as a Special Matriculant is required to achieve a 3.0 average or better after completion of six credits. Please note certain graduate programs may have more stringent program policies. Please check the specific program regulations. Grades are subject to review by the faculty advisor and program director at the end of each term. If the academic average falls below 3.0 the student will be placed on academic probation.
University Of Southern California
The practice of primary care medicine lends itself particularly well to the PA profession. If youre interested in working in primary care, the University of Sothern California has a fantastic program for that. Offered out of USCs Keck School of Medicine, the Primary Care Physician Assistant Program awards a Master of Physician Assistant Practice degree.
The 33-month program covers a curriculum that consists of four semesters of didactic study and more than a year of full-time clinical training. After the first year of this three-year program, students enjoy a respite from their hard work in the form of a summer break.
For the 2021 through 2022 school year, the institution reported a total program cost of $190,713, $177,892 of which consisted of tuition costs.
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Carlow University Physician Assistant Program
Carlow University PA Program Mission Statement The mission of the Physician Assistant Program at Carlow University is to offer transformational educational opportunities for a diverse community of learners who are prepared as healthcare professionals to contribute to the quality and safety of healthcare for all. Consistent with the heritage and values of the Sisters of Mercy, graduates are expected to excel as compassionate, responsible leaders in the creation of a just and merciful world. PA PROGRAM AT A GLANCE Accredited Status: Developing-Not Accredited Campus Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Degrees Offered: Masters Class Start Month: August Class Duration: 24 months Class Capacity: See Program Website Decision Criteria: Matched to mission academic ability and understanding role of physician assistant, personal interview, personal statement Seat Deposit: See Program Website International Students: Accepted TOEFL: Required TUITION Resident tuition: $96,900 Nonresident tuition: $96,900 PANCE PASS RATE First-time PANCE pass rate: See Program Website Five-year first-time PANCE pass rate: See Program Website APPLICATION INFORMATION Caspa Participant: No Application Deadline: See Program Website CASPA Deadline Type: See Program Website GPA Overall GPA: 3.3 Prerequisite GPA: Minimum grade of C required for all prerequisites Prerequisite completion: must be completed within 10 year EXPERIENCE Healthcare Experience Hours: 500 hours SHADOWING PA
Monmouth University Physician Assistant Program
The mission of the Monmouth University Physician Assistant Program is to educate physician assistants to provide compassionate, patient-centered quality health care in a variety of settings. Program graduates will possess clinical skills to serve a diverse patient population and have the ability to advance the profession through leadership and research.
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Pennsylvania Society Of Physician Assistants
John G. Rangos Sr. School of Health SciencesDuquesne University
Kings College Physician Assistant Program133 North River Street
Curtis Grenoble, MHS, Med, PA-CProgram ChairmanLock Haven University of Pennsylvania432 Railroad St.
Department of Physician Assistant Studies501 East 38th Street
PCOM Department of PA Studies4190 City Avenue, Suite 207Philadelphia, PA 19131
Department of Physician Assistant StudiesThomas Jefferson University130 South 9th Street, 6th FloorPhiladelphia, PA 19107
Michael Rackover, MS, PA-C EmeritusInterim Program DirectorDepartment of Physician Assistant StudiesHayward Hall 224
David DeFilippo, DHSc, MBA, MSPAS, PA-CChair of the Physician Assistant ProgramProgram Director of the Physician Assistant Program600 South 43rd Street
Physicians Assistant Schools: Narrow Your Search
Look into great PA graduate programs for you by starting your search right here. Review the list on this page, or customize your search using the menu bar. You could look for a program using the degree type filter. Or search for physician assistant schools in a specific state. You might also consider . However keep in mind, these are more common for advanced masters physician assistant graduate programs.
Whichever physician assistant graduate program you choose, its important to contact the school directly. Then they can answer questions about applications, costs, curriculum and more. All you have to do is fill out the simple on page form by clicking the PA schools link. Then you could be one step closer to earning your graduate PA degree!
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Affordable Degrees Ranking Methodology
Data for the colleges listed in this article comes from NCES and IPEDS Data Center, both maintained by the U.S. Dept of Education.
- Step 1: Query NCES for public U.S. institutions offering graduate programs in Physician Assistant.
- Step 2: Refine the results with data from IPEDS, of colleges offering online masters programs.
- Step 3: Combine the two resulting data sets based on IPEDS ID.
- Step 4: For each institution, add any mandatory graduate fees to the graduate in-state tuition , to determine approximate yearly tuition+fees cost.
- Step 5: Sort by estimated in-state cost.
- Step 6: Manually verify that an institution actually has one or more masters degree programs in the above topics.
NOTE: Actual tuition for a master of physician assistant program at a given institution may vary greatly from their institutional graduate average plus mandatory graduate fees, especially because of the way average tuition for an institution is calculated, and the tuition variance between programs at a single institution.
As well, some institutions may have multiple additional semesterly fee requirements in their PA program for equipment, labs, etc. And there may be additional costs for students due to program-related presentations during clinical phases or simply from participating in clinical experiences, such as airfare, transportation, room and board, etc.
What Are The Selection Criteria
All applicants will be screened according to their CASPA-designated science GPA, as well as their overall GPA. If you do not have a baccalaureate degree, you must have completed 90 credits, including all general education requirements. Please note that no more than 75 credits can be from a two-year college. Applicants who pass the first phase of review will be contacted to schedule an interview. The second phase of the review will be based on a combination of the interview, letters of recommendation, medical/community experience, personal statement and an essay completed a the time of the interview.
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Physician Assistant Graduate Programs In Quebec
Physician Assistant graduate programs in Quebeccould help you prepare to examine, diagnose, and treat patients as part of a team in many areas of medicine. Physician assistant schools combine coursework and clinical experiences to provide a strong foundation of medical knowledge. Classes may cover core topics in science, pathology, human anatomy, clinical medicine, pharmacology and medical ethics. Then students participate in supervised clinic hours in several areas to gain hands on experience and prepare for the diverse challenges they may face in the field.i
Most physician assistant graduate programs in Quebecare masters programs. However advanced masters programs, for licensed PAs, may also be available. Check with your preferred physician assistant schools to see which program might best serve you you might even consider a PA program that accepts a low GPA.
DID YOU KNOW?
A Physician Assistant is one of the top 5 fastest growing careers with a graduate degree in 2016. Learn more about .iii
College Of Saint Elizabeth Physician Assistant Program
College of Saint Elizabeth PA Program Mission Statement In Physician Assistant degree program is designed to educate physician assistants who are committed to excellence in the medical care of all patients by embracing personal growth and development, servant leadership, and social justice and responsibility. PA PROGRAM AT A GLANCE Accredited Status: Provisional Accreditation Campus Location: Morristown, New Jersey Degrees Offered: Masters Class Start Month: October Class Duration: 27 months Class Capacity: 50 students Decision Criteria: Matched to mission academic ability and understanding role of physician assistant, personal interview, personal statement Seat Deposit: $500 International Students: See Program Website TOEFL:See Program Website TUITION Resident tuition: $104,104 Nonresident tuition: $104,104 PANCE PASS RATE First-time PANCE pass rate: See Program Website Five year first-time PANCE pass rate: See Program Website APPLICATION INFORMATION Caspa Participant: Yes Application Deadline: March Supplemental Application: Required CASPA Deadline Type: Verified Fee: $35 GPA Overall GPA: 3.0 Prerequisite GPA: Minimum grade of B- required for all prerequisites Prerequisite completion: must be completed within 10 year EXPERIENCE Healthcare Experience Hours: 300 hours SHADOWING Shadowing Required EVALUATIONS Three recommendation letters required GRE GRE Not Required CASPer CASPer Not Required For more information on
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Apply To A Pa Program And Get Into Pa School
Submit all the appropriate paperwork . For specific requirements & deadlines please see websites above.
If successful for the first stage of admissions, youll get invited for the interview process. PA programs in Canada use the Multi-Mini Interview . Successful candidates are contacted shortly after with invitations to join the PA program.
Does The Pa School You Attend Really Make A Difference
When it comes to finding a job, not so much, but when it comes to obtaining superb clinical experience along with solid faculty, excellent academics, and a top-rate student body – then yes, the PA school you attend does matter.
Below is a list of the absolute best and worst physician assistant schools based on the most recent survey of academics at peer institutions.
This table is updated annually to reflect the latest PA school ranking data and populated from the latest US News and World Report annual summary.
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Ist University Physician Assistant Program
The mission of the Methodist University Physician Assistant Program is to establish an environment in which qualified students, recruited nationally, can develop a strong foundation in treating their patients with clinical competence, compassion and respect, while developing both personal and professional integrity.
Canadian Pa Admissions Requirements
There are 3 PA programs in Canada. Each PA Program differs in terms of what they want submitted , pre-requisite courses, GPA, supplementary application format and even the format of the Multi-Mini Interview.
Please note: There are NO required written tests , nor will those test scores be considered for the programs.
The most common questions we get in our Canadian Pre-PA Student Networking Group often have to do with, I have a GPA of X, is this good enough to get in? What courses do you recommend taking? Do I need health care experience to apply to the PA Programs in Canada?
If you have specific questions, post your question over in the Canadian Pre-PA Facebook Group:
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Physician Assistant Clinical Rotations
During the clinical year, students complete nine six-week rotations in emergency medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, primary care, surgery, pediatrics, and an elective rotation. In addition, students complete 2 shorter 3 week rotations in long term care and psychiatry.
University Of North Texas Health Science Center
Opened in 1970 as the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine , our 2,100-student campus has grown to also comprise the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, School of Public Health, the School of Health Professions , which includes the Physician Assistant Studies and the Physical Therapy Programs, and the UNT System College of Pharmacy. TCOM faculty provide patient care to our community through UNT Health, the largest multi-specialty group practice in Tarrant County. Located on 33 acres in the heart of Fort Worths Cultural District, we are committed to providing Texas and the nation the highest quality health professionals.
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What Does A Physician Assistant Do
A physician assistant is charged with providing a variety of health care services under the supervision of a licensed physician. While a physician assistant is often confused with a medical assistant, they are not the same profession. A medical assistant will check-up on patients, collect information, help draw blood, arrange lab tests, and a variety of other important yet routine tasks.
On the other hand, a physician assistant or PA will be responsible for a greater number of job responsibilities than a medical assistant in diagnostic medicine, therapeutic treatments, and preventative measures. Examples of the job duties of a PA may include the following:
- Prescribe medication
- Manage inventory at clinic or hospital
- Help develop treatment plans
Pa School Application Process
|1000-word writtenStatement of Intent Complete CASPer Test CV/Resume Self-Declaration Statement||Timed video and written supplemental application||Complete written Supplemental application answering questions on health care experience & mini-essay questions.|
|Letters of Reference||Two letters of recommendation required.||None required, any submitted not reviewed.||One Reference submits a Confidential Applicant Reference Form|
|PA School Interview Format|
Note: Specific dates may vary year-to-year.
|January: Submit ALL documentation including online application Late February: PA school interview invites released mid-March: MMI invitations sent out Early to mid-April: Virtual Interviews take place End of April: Offers of acceptance sent out||Submit OUAC Form 105 & all transcripts Feb 21: Access to supp. app released. 1st week of April: MMI Invites sent out Early May: MMIs take place Mid-May: Offers of acceptance sent Sept 2022: Successful applicants begin PA cycle||Complete UofT Online Application Submit Transcripts and Proof of English Language Proficiency and submit ALL supplemental documentation. Early April: MMI Invites sent out. Early May: MMIs take place Mid-May: Notice of acceptance sent out to students Sept 2022: Successful applicants begin PA school cycle.|
|See MPAS Website||Admission Requirements|
NOTE: This is a summary of the application process. Always visit the Canadian PA programs official websites for the most up-to-date information.
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Missouri State University Physician Assistant Program
Missouri State University is a public, comprehensive metropolitan system with a statewide mission in public affairs, whose purpose is to develop educated persons. The Universitys identity is distinguished by its public affairs mission, which entails a campus-wide commitment to foster expertise and responsibility in ethical leadership, cultural competence and community engagement.