Curriculum

Overview

Students will embark on an intensive 27-month program. Upon completion of the didactic coursework (4 semesters), students will begin 10 months of rotations within the PBA PA Medicine community and in other select clinical sites.

What to expect:

  • Master Medical Science in Physician Associate
  • 125 credit hours in PA Education
  • 10 rotations of Clinical Experience including Community Medicine

ARC Standard A3.15 a-d Curriculum Practices

The program must define, publish, consistently apply and make readily available to students upon admission: any required academic standards, requirements and deadlines for progression in and completion of the program, policies and procedures for remediation and deceleration, policies and procedures for withdrawal and dismissal.

 

Didactic Curriculum

Semester 1 – Fall 16 Weeks (Including Finals) (22 Credits)

Course Description:

The integrated lecture-laboratory course will instruct the student in gross anatomy, neuroanatomy, molecular pathophysiology, immunology and physiology. The course is taught by body systems in order to facilitate learning with an emphasis on clinical relevancy. At the end of anatomy course, a two-week gross anatomy IPE intensive will be done with local medical school. The course will familiarize the student with basic immunology principles as it relates to diseases processes. Special concepts including immune assessment, tumor and transplantation immunology will also be covered. The student will develop an awareness of how the various parts and systems of the human body are related spatially, functionally, and clinically which will provide a framework to understanding Medicine I, II, III as well as Pharmacology, Surgery, Emergent Medicine and Infectious Disease. Physiology will cover systems not covered in the Pathophysiology/Medicine courses.

Credits: 9

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the history of the Physician Assistant profession and provide an overview of the PA scope of practice in medicine. Students will acquire relevant knowledge of the existing relationships, similarities and differences among different health care providers and the critical role Physician Assistants play in today’s health system. The course will be taught via discussion, student presentation, readings, and lecture.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will begin by providing the student with the basic knowledge and skills to effectively use biostatistics in different research designs and data analysis and to critically evaluate articles in related professional journals. The student will then utilize these skills in discussing in depth selected chronic diseases and how they impact the overall health care of the world. The course will be taught via lecture and Team-Based Learning discussion.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to a variety of cultures prevalent today and will heighten the student’s awareness and management of these cultures. This course seeks to diminish barriers of care to (1) social identity groups (racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity), (2) visual, hearing, and language impaired, and (3) patients with religious barriers. Lecture, discussion, and interactive scenarios will be used.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the medical interview and proper documentation of a patient encounter.  Included within the course is practicing the medical interview and vital signs and how to communicate with patients with cultural sensitivity. The course will also introduce the student to the components of a comprehensive physical examination. The course will be taught via lecture, small group discussions, and practice lab sessions. Emphasis is placed on proper technique, efficiency, and patient sensitivity. The students will be encouraged to study in a collaborative manner.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the basic principles of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. The course will lay the foundation of the value of therapeutics in treating disease as well as preventive modalities. In addition, this course promotes a link between microbiology, disease processes and medication use. Students will learn the clinical therapeutics essential in treating conditions taught in pathophysiology/Medicine I, II, III.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This is the first course in a four-part series, which will instruct the student on the clinical skill of utilizing various modalities in the diagnosis of diseases and medical conditions and the technical skill of performing various clinical procedures. It will introduce the ordering and interpreting of basic laboratory tests, radiologic studies, and electrocardiography. Technical skills such as phlebotomy, suturing, basic sonography, performing EKGs and others will be taught with hands on training in a laboratory setting.  The course series will augment Pathophysiology Medicine I, II, and III (PAS 5118, PAS 5128, PAS 5135), Infectious Disease (PAS 5012), Emergency Medicine (PAS 5922), and the Surgical Principles (PAS 5932). The course will be taught via lecture, flipped classroom, small groups, laboratory, student performance, discussion, and one-on-one learning.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This course will help students better understand the concept of professionalism and how it relates to their own competence, confidence, commitment, self-preservation, and awareness as a professional. This course will also help students learn how they can develop a sense of professionalism and what it means to them as a Physician Associate.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to problem-oriented history and physical examination. The student will observe relevant components of history and physical examination to address and treat an illness or condition. The course will be problem based and taught via lecture, small groups, and simulated patient scenarios.

Credits: 0

Semester 2 – Spring 15 Weeks (21 Credits)

Course Description:

The course will instruct the student on problem-oriented history and physical examination. The student will learn to identify and utilize relevant components of history and physical examination to address and treat an illness or condition. The course will be problem based and taught via lecture, small groups, and simulated patient scenarios.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will discuss and investigate Infectious diseases. Emerging and reemerging infectious diseases (EIDS) greatly concern the scientific, medical, and public health communities and a firm knowledge is necessary to provide primary care in any setting. The use of microscopy in primary care and the interpretation of such can be invaluable ability. Topics will include blood smears, parasites, urinalysis microscopy to include casts, vaginal swabs to identify pathogens and special smears used in dermatology. Providers that work in rural health care or around the world may not have laboratory services available and the provider must be able to perform basic functions to aid in the best diagnosis of patients.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This is the first course in a three-part series, which focuses on human diseases and disorders in clinical medicine.  This course runs concurrently with and builds upon other courses this term to include (1) pharmacology, (2) physical diagnosis, and (3) critical reasoning. The Medicine section of the course will instruct the student on illnesses related to dermatology, hematology, ophthalmology and otolaryngology, pulmonology, and cardiology. The student will review the pathophysiology of each organ system in relation to disease processes. Integration of this material as well as clinical presentation, physical examination findings, and diagnostic findings will aid the student in developing a differential diagnosis and treatment plan. Emphasis will be on disease processes common to primary care practices, development of a differential diagnosis, interpreting diagnostic tests, and developing treatment plans. The course will be taught via lecture, small groups, PBL format and discussion.

Credits: 8

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Medical Interviewing/Physical Diagnosis I and will instruct the student on how to competently perform a comprehensive physical examination and body system specific focused exams. Emphasis is placed on proper technique, efficiency, and patient sensitivity. Instruction will also include generating differential diagnoses, selection of diagnostic studies, and the development of treatment plans. The course will be taught via lecture, small group discussions, and practice lab sessions. Students will be taught physical examinations corresponding with Pathophysiology/Medicine I organ systems. The students will be encouraged to study in a collaborative manner.

Credits: 3

Course Description:

This is the second course in a four-part series, which will instruct the student on the value of utilizing various modalities in the diagnosis of diseases and medical conditions and the technical skill of performing various clinical procedures. It will build on clinical skills I and be the basis for clinical skills III and IV. This course will focus on intentional repetition of interpretation of laboratory tests, radiologic studies, and EKGs. This course will also instruct students on the most common procedures done by primary care providers in practice. The course will shadow the Pathophysiology Medicine I course (PAS 5118) as much as possible so that disease processes and procedures are taught simultaneously. The course will be taught via lecture, flipped classroom, small groups, laboratory, student performance, discussion, and one-on-one learning.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This course is a continuation of Professionalism I.  This course continues to help students better understand the concept of professionalism and how it relates to their own competence, confidence, commitment, self-preservation, and awareness as a professional. This course will also help students learn how they can develop a sense of professionalism and what it means to them as a Physician Associate.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course will expose the student to medical ethical issues. The course will highlight situations that a practitioner may encounter while practicing medicine and will include issues not only related to patient care, but professional practices as well. The course will be taught via readings, discussion, and student presentations.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will instruct the student on problem-oriented history and physical examination. The student will learn to identify and utilize relevant components of history and physical examination to address and treat an illness or condition. The course will be problem based and taught via lecture, small groups, and simulated patient scenarios.

Credits: 1

Semester 3 – Summer 15 Weeks (22 Credits)

Course Description:

This is the second course in a three-part series, which focuses on human diseases and disorders in clinical medicine.  This course runs concurrently with and builds upon other courses this term to include (1) pharmacotherapy, (2) physical diagnosis, and (3) critical reasoning. The Medicine section of the course will instruct the student on illnesses related to gastroenterology, urology, nephrology, musculoskeletal, neurology, and endocrinology. The student will review the pathophysiology of each organ system in relation to disease processes. Integration of this material as well as clinical presentation, physical examination findings, and diagnostic findings will aid the student in developing a differential diagnosis and treatment plan. Emphasis will be on disease processes common to primary care practices, development of a differential diagnosis, interpreting diagnostic tests, and developing treatment plans. The course will be taught via lecture, small groups, PBL format and discussion.

Credits: 8

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Pharmacotherapy and Patient Management I. Students will learn the clinical therapeutics essential in treating conditions taught in Pathophysiology/Medicine II. The course will be taught via lecture and discussion.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Medical Interviewing/Physical Diagnosis II and will instruct the student on how to competently perform a comprehensive physical examination and body system specific focused exams. Emphasis is placed on proper technique, efficiency, and patient sensitivity. Instruction will continue in generating differential diagnoses, selection of diagnostic studies, and the development of treatment plans. The course will be taught via lecture, small group discussions, and practice lab sessions. Students will be taught physical examinations corresponding with Pathophysiology/Medicine II organ systems. The students will be encouraged to study in a collaborative manner.

Credits: 3

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to common psychiatric and mental health disorders frequently encountered in outpatient settings. Human sexuality be discussed. The course will be taught via lectures, small group exercises, and discussion. populations. The course will be taught via lectures, small group exercises, and discussion.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to community medicine with a focus on a wide range of health disorders frequently encountered in outpatient settings. Human sexuality will be discussed. The global medicine section will discuss how providers in other countries deliver and care for their populations. The course will be taught via lectures, small group exercises, and discussion.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This is the third course in a four-part series, which will instruct the student on the value of utilizing various modalities in the diagnosis of diseases and medical conditions and the technical skill of performing various clinical procedures. It will build on clinical skills I and II and be the basis for clinical skills IV. This course will focus on the intentional repetition of interpretation of laboratory tests, radiologic studies, and EKGs. This course will also instruct students on the most common procedures done by primary care providers in practice. The course will shadow the Pathophysiology Medicine II course (PAS 5128) as much as possible so that disease processes and procedures are taught simultaneously. The course will be taught via lecture, flipped classroom, small groups, laboratory, student performance, discussion, and one-on-one learning.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

This will be a one credit hour course that will focus on clinical aspects of medical nutrition. Students will learn calculations for calorie intake during disease processes, the different diets that providers prescribe for different medical conditions and the important nutritional aspects of food and vitamins. The course will be taught via lecture, experiential and discussion.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

This course is a continuation of Professionalism I and II.  This course continues to help students better understand the concept of professionalism and how it relates to their own competence, confidence, commitment, self-preservation, and awareness as a professional. This course will also help students learn how they can develop a sense of professionalism and what it means to them as a Physician Associate.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course will instruct the student on problem-oriented history and physical examination. The student will learn to identify and utilize relevant components of history and physical examination to address and treat an illness or condition. The course will be problem based and taught via lecture, small groups, and simulated patient scenarios.

Credits: 1

Semester 4 – Fall 13 Weeks And 2 Weeks (16+4 Credits)

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the field of genetics and teach skills in identifying families for evaluation. Basic genetic principles will be discussed and their relevancy in counseling patients and disease processes. Ethical and legal issues will be discussed as well. The course will be taught via lecture and discussion.

Credits: 5

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Medical Interviewing/Physical Diagnosis III and will instruct the student on how to competently perform a comprehensive physical examinations and body system specific focused exams for the special populations of women’s health, pediatrics, and geriatrics. Emphasis is placed on proper technique, efficiency, and patient sensitivity. Instruction will continue in generating differential diagnoses, selection of diagnostic studies, and the development of treatment plans. The course will be taught via lecture, small group discussions, and practice lab sessions. Students will be taught physical examinations corresponding with Pathophysiology/Medicine III organ systems. The students will be encouraged to study in a collaborative manner

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Pharmacotherapy and Patient Management I and II. Students will learn the clinical therapeutics essential in treating conditions taught in Pathophysiology/Medicine II. The course will be taught via lecture and discussion.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the principles of emergency patient, triage, and management. Included in patient management will be the management of the undifferentiated patient and development of a comprehensive differential diagnosis. The course will be taught via lecture, class participation, and discussion.

Credits: 2

Course Description:

The course will discuss general surgical concepts in the management of the surgical patient. Included in the course are illnesses that require surgical intervention. Pre, Intra and post-operative care will be discussed.  The course will be taught via lecture, class participation and discussion.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course is a continuation of Clinical Reasoning I and II.  The course will instruct the student on problem-oriented history and physical examination. The student will learn to identify and utilize relevant components of history and physical examination to address and treat an illness or condition. The course will be problem based and taught via lecture, small groups, and simulated patient scenarios.

Credits: 5

Course Description:

This is the fourth course in a four-part series, which will instruct the student on the value of utilizing various modalities in the diagnosis of diseases and medical conditions and the technical skill of performing various clinical procedures. It will be built on clinical skills I, II and III. This course will focus on the intentional repetition of interpretation of laboratory tests, radiologic studies, and EKGs. This course will also instruct students on the most common procedures done by primary care providers in practice. The student will also successfully complete BLS and ACLS.  The course will shadow the Pathophysiology Medicine III course (PAS 5135) as much as possible so that disease processes and procedures are taught simultaneously. The course will be taught via lecture, flipped classroom, small groups, laboratory, student performance, discussion, and one-on-one learning.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

This course is a continuation of Professionalism I, II and III.  This course continues to help students better understand the concept of professionalism and how it relates to their own competence, confidence, commitment, self-preservation, and awareness as a professional. This course will also help students learn how they can develop a sense of professionalism and what it means to them as a Physician Associate.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to legal issues of health care to include professional liability, laws and regulations regarding prescriptive practice, and licensing. The course will be taught via discussion and lecture. The Integrative master’s Project is an empirical study that integrates theoretical and applied concepts and results in a manuscript ready for submission to an academic journal. Students work in groups to develop a project proposal and apply expertise learned in the PA program to investigate a problem of interest.

Credits: 2

Credits: 4

Entrustable Performance Month I – May - 4 Weeks

Course Description:

The course will introduce the student to the field of genetics and teach skills in identifying families for evaluation. Basic genetic principles will be discussed and their relevancy in counseling patients and disease processes. Ethical and legal issues will be discussed as well. The course will be taught via lecture and discussion.

Credits: 1

Course Description:

OSCE Summative

The summative evaluation measures mastery in the graduate competencies and outcomes and associated ARC-PA Standards and NCCPA Blueprint items.  This phase is 1 month in duration and represents the final stage of the program and includes the following ‘summative’ evaluations:

Written examination covering the knowledge base content associated with all the basic medical and clinical sciences and its application to the practice of medicine (testing aptitude of competency 1 – 12 and associated outcomes).

Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), which is used to evaluate direct patient care skills including obtaining the medical history, physical examination skills, communication, and professionalism with Skill Specific Testing, which is used to assess the student’s ability to perform and/or interpret the diagnostic and therapeutic skills.

Never miss test. A compilation of never miss clinical events that students will take during their PA education with questions gauged at information providers in practice should never miss. This same test will be given during every formative and summative test and the goal will be all students achieving 100%.

Integrated Master’s Project.

The Integrative Master’s Project is an empirical study that integrates theoretical and applied concepts and results in a manuscript ready for submission to an academic journal. Students work in groups to develop a project proposal and apply expertise learned in the PA program to investigate a problem of interest.

Credits: 1

Entrustable Performance Month II – October/November – 4 Weeks

Course Description:

OSCE Summative

The summative evaluation measures mastery in the graduate competencies and outcomes and associated ARC-PA Standards and NCCPA Blueprint items. This phase is 1 month in duration and represents the final stage of the program and includes the following ‘summative’ evaluations:

Written examination covering the knowledge base content associated with all the basic medical and clinical sciences and its application to the practice of medicine (testing aptitude of competency 1 – 12 and associated outcomes).

Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE), which is used to evaluate direct patient care skills including obtaining the medical history, physical examination skills, communication, and professionalism with Skill Specific Testing, which is used to assess the student’s ability to perform and/or interpret the diagnostic and therapeutic skills.

Never miss test. A compilation of never miss clinical events that students will take during their PA education with questions gauged at information providers in practice should never miss. This same test will be given during every formative and summative test and the goal will be all students achieving 100%

Integrated Master’s Project

The Integrative Master’s Project is an empirical study that integrates theoretical and applied concepts and results in a manuscript ready for submission to an academic journal. Students work in groups to develop a project proposal and apply expertise learned in the PA program to investigate a problem of interest.

Credits: 2

Program Total Credit Hours: 125 Credits

ARC Standard A3.12e Academic Credit

The program must define, publish and make readily available to enrolled and prospective students general program information to include all required curricular components including academic credit offered by the program.