Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
FAQs for Physician Assistant Studies
To become a physician assistant (PA), you’ll need to:
- Earn a bachelor’s degree. Most PA programs prefer applicants who have a bachelor’s in science or a health-related field.
- Apply and get accepted to a PA school with an accredited PA program, such as Saint Joseph’s 24-month MS in Physician Assistant Studies degree.
- Complete and graduate from an accredited PA program, which involves clinical experiences
- Pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE) to get certified, then obtain a license in the state you want to practice in.
If you already have a bachelor’s degree, it takes around three years (26 months) to complete an accredited PA program. At Saint Joseph’s University, you can earn your PA degree in just 24 months. After graduating, you can sit for the PANCE exam and pass it to become certified and take the next steps to obtain a state license.
Saint Joseph’s University undergraduate students in the Pre-Professional PA Program are granted an interview for admission to the MSPAS Program if all progression requirements of the Pre-PA program and ALL admission requirements of the Graduate PA program are met. Students in the accelerated track who meet all requirements may apply to the graduate PA program between the end of their sophomore year, and the fall of their junior year. If accepted, they will earn the remaining credits to complete their bachelor’s degree with the completion of the didactic phase of the MSPAS Program. Undergraduate students in the traditional four-year Pre-Professional PA program who meet all progression criteria and all admission requirements of the Graduate PA program are also granted an interview. If granted an interview, this does not guarantee acceptance to the MSPAS Program.
All applicants to the MSPAS Program must apply through the CASPA application portal and follow the same admissions process.