Sep 20, 2017
Theresa Horvath, Director
Administered by the School of Health Sciences and Human Services
Professor Carol T. Ferrand, Supervising Chairperson
Physician assistants are health professionals licensed to practice medicine with physician supervision. Physician assistants work in a variety of medical settings, ranging from basic primary care to sub-specialty medicine. Physician assistants are qualified to assist in surgery, attend medical emergencies, or care for patients in out-patient internal medicine, pediatrics or family medicine offices and clinics.
Hofstra’s program is designed for both graduate and first-year direct-entry undergraduate students and provides undergraduates the opportunity to earn both the B.S. and the M.S. in Physician Assistant Studies, as well as provide graduate instruction and an M.S. degree to post-baccalaureate students who complete all requirements. For more information on the first-year direct-entry undergraduate program, please see the undergraduate Bulletin.
The graduate-level curriculum is divided into three semesters of didactic instruction, three semesters of clinical clerkships and one semester of research. Using a number of learning modalities including case-based learning, students integrate basic science with the study and application of clinical medicine. During the clinical phase of the program, students are assigned to clinical clerkships at affiliated hospitals, private physicians’ offices and community clinics. Located in a variety of medical settings, these clinical campuses offer training in all disciplines of medicine and provide the opportunity for exposure to a wide variety of patient populations. The research semester will culminate in a research project using community partnerships and based on the principles of community-oriented primary care. Upon successful completion of the program, candidates are eligible to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE). Students will earn a master of science in physician assistant studies upon completion of the entire curriculum.
M.S. Entry Requirements (Post-Baccalaureate)
Students must meet the following requirements to be considered for the MS program.
- Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0;
- Cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the science courses;
- Completion of all prerequisite course work;
- Personal essay;
- Two letters of recommendation;
- Documentation of 50 to 100 hours of health-care experience;
- International students must take the TOEFL exam and pass with a minimum score of:
Internet-based test: 80;
Computer-based test: 213;
Paper-based test: 550.
Prerequisite Course Work
All prerequisite course work must be completed before matriculation into the physician assistant program. It is necessary to indicate courses in progress or planned on the CASPA application.
- General biology (with laboratory): 8 s.h.
- General chemistry (with laboratory): 8 s.h.
- Human or mammalian physiology: 4 s.h.
- Biochemistry: 3 s.h. or organic chemistry: 4 s.h.
- Statistics: 3 s.h.
- Microbiology: 4 s.h.
- Genetics, or cell biology, or another upper-level biology course: 3-4 s.h.
Please note the following conditions:
- Physiology, microbiology, and either biochemistry or organic chemistry must have been taken within the five years preceding the start of the curriculum;
- General biology and general chemistry will be waived in circumstances where more advanced courses have been passed with a grade of B+ or better;
- SOC 180 (Statistics in Sociology), PSY 040 (Statistics), or any other statistics courses approved by the program director may be substituted for BIO 100 (Biostatistics);
- Introductory courses in anatomy and physiology will fulfill the pre-requisite in human or mammalian physiology only if these courses are advanced enough to be applied to the biology major. BIO 103 and 105 do not fulfill the pre-requisite. Most anatomy and physiology courses taken in community colleges do not fulfill the pre-requisite, and will be evaluated by the program director; and
- Genetics, cell biology, or any other upper-level biology course (3-4 s.h.) must have been taken at a four-year college or university.
Students must apply to the physician assistant studies program through the centralized application service. Applications are submitted online through the Central Admission Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). In addition, a supplemental application must be completed.
Deadline for CASPA application: November 1 of each year for the subsequent fall semester. Qualified applicants will receive a supplemental application that must be completed to progress further in the application process.
Applicants should be aware that a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and a cumulative GPA of 3.0 in science courses do not guarantee entry into the program. The PA program is competitive and only the strongest applicants will be selected for a personal interview with the physician assistant studies program admission committee prior to acceptance into the program.
Admission to the PA program is granted on a rolling basis. Those who apply earliest have the best chance of being invited for an interview and therefore being offered a seat.
M.S. Program Curriculum - Total Semester Hours: 79
The following major and additional requirements can be fulfilled as follows:
M.S. in Physician Assistant Studies
Two and one-half Year Sequence
Full-time Students: 79 s.h.
NOTE: Each of these courses must be completed before the end of the program; however, the sequencing varies.
Students in the PA Professional Phase of the program will be charged the standard graduate tuition .