Physician Assistant Prerequisites

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					   Physician Assistant Prerequisites

           What are the Prerequisites for Physician Assistant Schools?

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                           What are the prerequisites for physician assistant?

The physician assistant program prerequisites vary from college to college. In general, universities seem
to accept people from a fairly wide range of educational backgrounds. Therefore, no specific types of
degrees are necessary. So, you don’t need a degree in science but in general you will most likely need to
know some basic scientific concepts and they will most likely take a look at your science courses and
whether you’ve competed them or not. Those who have worked in a variety of medical care settings do
seem to be favored somewhat. Prerequisites for physician assistant may include for you to have been a
participant in the CASPA (Centralized Application Service for Pas)


As stated, the prerequisites for physician assistant school don’t necessarily require you to have a
degree in the sciences, but you do need a college degree from an accredited college or university (some
only accept degrees from the United States). Seniors who will be graduating soon are usually able to
apply in advance.

GPA (Grade Point Average)

Your grade point average must typically be higher than 3.0 (using the 4.0 GPA scale where 4.0 is an “A”).

GRE (Graduate Record Examination)

Your score in the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE must usually be at least around 1,000 or so
with about a 3.5 or above in the analytical parts of the GRE.

Course Requirements

Course requirements may vary from institution to institution, but the typical physician assistant
prerequisites include courses such as: Human Anatomy; Human Physiology; Microbiology; General
Chemistry; Organic Chemistry; Statistics; General Psychology; and English Writing.

Also, many colleges and universities value cultural diversity for this field due to the great diverse
backgrounds of the patients you will have to interact with as a Physician Assistant.

If you are still in college and are interested in this profession, to prepare, you might want to take courses
such as genetics, organic chemistry, microbiology, abnormal psychology, developmental psychology,
immunology, biochemistry, and cell biology.

BLS Certification

Some colleges and universities may also require that you have a BLS Certificate. Many do not accept BLS
certificates that do not fully comply with either the American Red Cross or American Heart Association
guidelines. Therefore, you may want to rethink simply getting an online certificate course here, you will
have to have actual practical experience to fully comply with the guidelines.

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Currently there are over one hundred and fifty accredited PA programs in the U.S. Most of them lead to
a master’s degree (MPSA or MHS or MMSc). A significant portion of these graduates go on to pursue a
doctorate degree in health-care related fields. Although post graduate programs are usually around two
to three years long which is much shorter than the four years plus residency required for medical school,
most who apply for a master’s usually have past experience in the health-care field. Thus, although the
physician assistant prerequisites for many schools may have a reasonable minimum requirement, it may
be difficult to get into some of the better ones without some prior experience in the medical or health-
care field.

A few things you might learn in Physician Assistant schools include things like:





Clinical medicine

Family medicine


Emergency medicine





Geriatric medicine

And other electives

There are a few examinations and prerequisites you must pass in order to graduate from an accredited
physician assistant program:

NCCPA (National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants)

PANCE (Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam)

100 Continuing Medical Education (CME) hours

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According to the statistics, over fifty percent of physician assistant graduates (PAs) end up working in a
physician’s office or clinic. Over twenty percent end up working in a hospital. The rest usually end up
working at some kind of public health clinic, school, nursing home, prison, or health-care agency. The
employment rate for physician assistants has been growing quite rapidly over the past five years or so
and it has been due to a multitude of different reasons:

Firstly, the health care industry has been expanded quite a bit in recent times, perhaps due to
government ran health care programs. Secondly, a very large percentage of the population is quite old
nowadays due to the baby-boomer generation. They procreated like mad during the 60’s and now their
quite old in the 2000’s. According to Money magazine and other sources, the PA profession is
considered to be one of the best jobs you can get in the United States. Over the next decade the job
growth rate may expand by up to fifty percent as a result. The median income for PAs is around $90,000,
those that work in certain fields such as emergency medicine and medical surgery related specialties
may expect to earn up to $200k.

Overall, the physician assistant prerequisites are pretty high and competitive; however, the rewards for
those that work hard at it are quite good. The salary for a physician assistant is very competitive and the
benefits are among the best in the country.

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To find out what you need to know to become a physician assistant, visit:


              Visit us at: