Physician Assistant Studies



The curriculum design is based upon the concepts of professional education which focus on mastery of knowledge, skills, and professionalism required by the graduate to practice effectively as a physician assistant. The curriculum, offered in didactic and experiential components, is an approach that moves from basic to more advanced skills. The curriculum design assumes that students will develop the necessary skills to be self-directed learners and to apply effectively what they learn in the clinical setting.


The Physician Assistant Program is offered on a full-time basis only.  The length of the program is seven consecutive semesters (27 months). The credit load ranges from 10 to 17 hours per semester. Learners are expected to adjust their non-curricular demands to complete the degree requirements. As adult learners, it is expected that students will actively engage in independent study, inquiry, and fieldwork outside the classroom to augment learning and maximize the effectiveness of classroom and laboratory contact time. Students will be expected to complete and present a scholarly project, an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), and a comprehensive written examination to graduate from the PA program.

Computer literacy is an expectation since the PA Program will use computer technology in the delivery of the curriculum. The ability to use the computer for research and the exchange of campus e-mail will be expected.

Students must not substitute for or function as instructional faculty, must not be required to work for the program or substitute for clinical or administrative staff during supervised clinical practice experiences.

Clinical Year

The Clinical Year consists of 4 didactic weeks and 40 weeks of required clinical rotations. The first four weeks of the clinical year are dedicated to the Introduction to Clinical Practice course. Each student will then complete all the following five-week clinical rotations: Behavioral Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Surgery, Women’s Health, and an Elective. The Elective rotation can be in the student's preferred specialty of medical practice. Each student is responsible for his or her transportation to and from the clinical sites.

PA Program course list and credit hours

1st semester (fall ) - 17 credit hours

8 Cr. Hr.     ANAT5000 Anatomy for Physician Assistants 

4 Cr. Hr.     PHSL5050 Human Physiology                                 

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5010 Introduction to the PA Profession       

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5100 Principles of Interviewing & Medical History

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5140 Health Care Teams & Systems                                   

2nd semester (spring) - 20 credit hours

4 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5130 Patient Evaluation

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5210 Diagnostic & Therapeutic Skills I                                

5 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5310 Clinical Medicine I       

4 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5400 Pathophysiology

4 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5510 Fundamentals of Pharmacology                                

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6050 Ethics for the PA Profession                        

3rd semester (fall ) - 13 credit hours

3 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5220 Diagnostic & Therapeutic Skills II

4 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5340 Clinical Medicine II                               

3 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5410 Pathophysiology II       

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5520 Fundamentals of Pharmacology II

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6110 Health Promotion & Disease Prevention                              

4th semester (fall ) - 20 credit hours

5 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5230 Diagnostic & Therapeutic Skills III

6 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5330 Clinical Medicine III                               

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5430 Pathophysiology III      

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA5530 Fundamentals of Pharmacology III

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6010 Clinical Genetics                             

3 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6130 Evidence Based Medicine                             

2 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6150 Behavioral Science                             

Clinical Year (spring - fall ) - 47 credit hours

4 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6500 Introduction to Clinical Practice

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6610 Scholarly Project I                             

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6620 Scholarly Project II       

1 Cr. Hr.     PHYA6630 Scholarly Project III   

Clinical Year consists of eight 5-week rotations in the following specialties:

  • Behavioral Medicine
  • Elective (which my be any specialty of medicine except the required eight rotations)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Family Medicine
  • Internal Medicine
  • Pediatrics
  • Surgey
  • Women's Health                                                 
Last Updated: 4/21/23