Frequently Asked Questions

The PA program is housed at the main campus in West Palm Beach, Florida

For the first year, PA Medicine has 42 seats total.  In the second year, PA Medicine will increase to 48.  In the third year and beyond, PA Medicine will increase to 56 seats

We require for admissions:  

 

A qualifying bachelor’s degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA

Prerequisite Courses must have been completed within 7 years of application

Must earn a grade of C (2.0) or better in each of the following prerequisite classes/courses.

General Biology including lab – 4 semester hours

Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II – 8 semester hours

General Chemistry (I & II) including lab – 8 semester hours

Organic Chemistry including lab – 4 Semester hours

Microbiology including lab – 4 semester hours

Psychology – 3 semester hours 

YES.  We do offer rolling admissions

You can find our application on the CASPA portal at the beginning of April of every year. We recommend that you apply as early as possible, and no later than the close of March.

 

We recommend that you apply as early as possible!

 

March 30th is the absolute latest your application can be verified, but we strongly recommend submitting it no later than December.

No. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited academic institution in the United States or Canada* or a graduate degree from the United States** before matriculation. No specific discipline or major is required.

Applicants with non-U.S. or non-Canadian degrees, including international medical degrees, are eligible to apply with a verification equivalency conducted by Admissions. 

Applicants with degrees in progress at the time of application may be conditionally accepted into the program but must demonstrate that they are on track to complete their degree.

Yes. International students are welcome to apply as long as they meet our eligibility requirements.  

Applicants with degrees in progress at the time of application may be conditionally accepted into the program but must demonstrate that they are on track to complete their degree. 

In order to practice in Florida or any other state, physician assistant graduates must pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE) and apply for state licensure. Criteria for eligibility to sit for the PANCE board examination and/or to qualify for state licensure are set by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) board and each state. DACA students are currently eligible to apply for and obtain a license to practice as a physician assistant in Florida; however, this varies by state. Prospective PA students should consult the requirements of the licensing authority in any state in which they contemplate practicing to determine the qualifications for licensure. Information concerning licensure in Florida can be found at Florida Board of Medicine,or  Florida Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners Information about other states can be found at https://www.nccpa.net/state-licensing-boards.

 

YES.  Applicants with non-U.S. or non-Canadian degrees, including international medical degrees, are eligible to apply with a verification of course equivalency conducted by Admissions.

Your degree can still be in progress when you submit an application. If you are accepted, you can begin the program following graduation and verification of completion of courses.

You must have ALL but FOUR prerequisites completed and verified to apply.  However, ALL prerequisites MUST be completed and verified before matriculation.

Acceptance will be conditional on completion of courses.

If your prerequisites are from within the past 7 years, they are considered current and will be accepted.

Must have a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and Prerequisite Science GPA of 3.0

General Biology including lab – 4 semester hours

Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II – 8 semester hours

General Chemistry (I & II) including lab – 8 semester hours

Organic Chemistry including lab – 4 Semester hours

Microbiology including lab – 4 semester hours

Psychology – 3 semester hours 

We will accept your AP credits if they’re shown on an accredited official college transcript as three (3) credits completed within the required timeframe.

We will accept some of your credits from online prerequisite courses that are from a regionally accredited educational institution. However, we do require that courses with a lab component (e.g., Anatomy and Physiology) be completed in person.

We do not offer Advanced Placement for this program.

No. All elements of the application are included in the CASPA application.

We require three letters of recommendation with your application. 

One letter is recommended to be from a physician assistant

Other letters can be from another healthcare professional (e.g., physician, dentist, pharmacist, registered nurse, nurse practitioner, physical or occupational therapist) and/or from a mentor

Please note recommendations submitted by relatives, friends, personal healthcare providers, or personal friends of the family are not acceptable.

Your GRE Scores are sent by searching “Palm Beach Atlantic University” for GRE program code 5553. Then, you can search for “Physician Assistant Program” for department code 0634.

YES, Students who matriculate into PBA PA Medicine will be required to undergo background checks as those are required to work with minors and to participate in clinical training activities at our partnering clinical training sites. Students with a history of a criminal conviction may not be able to successfully complete the curriculum and progress through the program and may not be able to graduate.  Given this, students with a history of a criminal conviction should discuss this with the program prior to matriculation.

In addition, criminal background checks are required for state licensure in Florida and a history of criminal conviction may be considered by the Florida Physician Assistant Board as well as other state medical boards and the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants in the licensure application. Applicants with a criminal conviction should consult with these entities prior to matriculation to ensure they will be eligible for licensure upon completion of their degree.

We will accept any GRE score however to be competitive a 300 or higher is recommended.

Five (5) years. If your GRE scores are older than the five-year limit, you will have to retake the exam and submit your current scores.

Must have a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and a Science GPA of 3.0

When your application is verified, we will only consider the overall and science GPA that are provided by CASPA. For specifics on their calculations, you can contact their Customer Service.

We will see all coursework completed on any transcript(s) submitted in the CASPA application. In the case of multiple grades for the same course, we will give preference to the better grade.

Yes. All preparatory coursework from regionally accredited educational institutions will be considered. While we require that courses with a lab component (e.g., Anatomy and Physiology) be completed in person.

Probably. As long as the course appears on the transcript from your “home” institution and was completed for a grade, we will consider it in our review.

No. We strongly recommend that preparatory coursework be completed within the last seven (7) years. Coursework completed more than seven years ago will be noted but not formally considered during the review process.

YES. We require that applicants complete a minimum of 500 hours clinical experience. Clinical experience includes direct patient care experience and health care experience, broadly defined. While all types of clinical experience will be considered in our review, direct patient care experience in a medical setting is strongly preferred. Common examples of direct patient care experience include but are not limited to: athletic trainer, behavioral health technician, certified nursing assistant, clinical pharmacist, dietician, emergency medical technician, medical assistant, medical scribe, medical technician, military medic, nutritionist, paramedic, physical therapist, physical therapy aide, radiology technician, registered nurse, respiratory therapist, and sonographer. We will consider other health care experience as well, including volunteer experience. Applicants will have an opportunity to describe their clinical experience in their application. Clinical experience completed for academic credit will be noted but not formally considered in our review.  Likewise, shadowing will be noted but not formally considered in our review.

No. We do not require shadowing experience and do not formally consider it during the review process.

As of 1/17/23 the CASPA application fee is $179 for the first program and $56 for each additional program. We have an additional supplemental fee of $500 due at time of acceptance and $500 due before matriculation . For more information about CASPA fees, including the CASPA Fee Assistance Program, visit the CASPA Fees and Fee Waivers page.

In the event accreditation is not obtained, all deposits will be refunded.

Tuition is a flat rate, which means the tuition will not increase annually for that specific cohort. If a student decelerates, they will pay the tuition of the class they are moving into. In the event accreditation is not obtained, all deposits will be refunded to cohort members.

ARC Standard D1.02c
The developing program must publish and make readily available to everyone who requests information, applies, or plans to enroll:
c) the implications of non-accreditation by the ARC-PA

You can update your CASPA application at any time prior to the application deadline directly though the CASPA application portal. However, we only consider experience and coursework completed by the time of application. Please contact our admission office with updates about additional experience or coursework after the application deadline, as it will be considered during the review process.

Please update your contact information directly through the CASPA website.

We do offer information sessions or tours directly through our program; in addition , we participate in the PAEA Virtual Fairs. The PAEA Virtual Fairs are held each year in early April and late July. Registration information for the PAEA Virtual Fairs can be found here. Information about scheduling a tour of Palm Beach Atlantic University PA Medicine can be found here.  

Your seat cannot be deferred except for some medical reasons and that is on a case-by-case basis. We can only welcome you for the year that you apply.

Financial aid is offered and reviewed by the graduate financial aid office once you are offered a seat in the program.

You can find a breakdown of our cost of attendance on the website.

This program is full time.

We cannot offer a part-time option for this program; you must be a full-time student.

Once in the program, you can expect to be in class from Monday to Friday, anywhere between 8 AM and 3 PM. For that reason, you are strongly discouraged from working while enrolled in the program. The curriculum is very demanding and time consuming. It would prove difficult to hold external employment simultaneously and do well in the program, particularly during your clinical rotation year, when, your location, and hours will vary greatly.

We do not provide housing. Palm Beach Atlantic University offers limited graduate housing at the West Palm Beach location and will help to assist students in locating possible housing.

 

We do have a dress code. We require that you dress business casual during the didactic year. On certain days, you will be required to wear scrubs or other alternate attire. For your clinical year, we have a different dress code. Please see the didactic and clinical year manuals for more specific information.

The P.A. Program is 27 months. Your first year is didactic education. Your second year consists of ten clinical rotations. Your last month is advance didactic where final preparation for the PANCE exam will be completed.

 

We have ten four-week rotations plus two Entrustible Performance Activity Months (One between rotations 5 and 6 and the other after rotation 10).  These are as follows: Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Women’s Health, Pediatrics, Psychiatry & Behavioral Medicine, Surgery, Community Medicine, and two Elective Rotations.

We have affiliations with local hospitals, clinics, health departments, and private offices. You will get to experience rotations in a variety of settings.

If you are a student in good academic standing with our program, you will be permitted to complete limited rotations out of state.  

We will provide your rotations, so you do not have to worry about creating your own.

There is no maximum distance for an assigned clinical site.

We do give special consideration if you are an applicant who meets the competitive requirement for the program.

Yes, the GRE Exam is required for all applicants.

Yes, attendance is required.

Our admissions team reviews all eligible applications on a semi-rolling basis. This means that once an application has been submitted and verified in CASPA, we begin the review process. If we determine that an applicant will move forward in the admissions process, we will send an interview invitation via email.  Interview invitations may be sent anytime between late August and December. If we determine that an applicant will not move forward in the admissions process, we will send a denial letter via email. Denial letters may be sent anytime between late August and December.