Physician's Assistant Pre-Professonal Program Requirements
The requirements listed in this brochure pertain to IU South Bend students planning to apply to the Indiana University Master of Physician Assistant program offered through the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at IUPUI for the Fall 2014 entering class and later, although requirements for other physician assistant (PA) programs are generally similar. You will need to determine the entrance requirements for each PA program you plan to apply to, and make sure that you incorporate all required courses into your degree program.
A Bachelor's degree, either B.A. or B.S., is required prior to beginning a PA program, although it need not be completed prior to application for admission; many programs do require that all
Prerequisite courses must be completed prior to application. Students may major in any subject, but the most common major is Biology due to the overlap between the degree requirements and entrance requirements for PA school. When choosing a major, you should choose a subject area that allows you the potential to pursue other career options as well as becoming a PA. Each applicant must take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) and submit the scores as part of their application to PA school, so students should plan to take the MCAT or GRE in the spring or summer of the year in which they plan to apply. The IU Physician Assistant program minimum requirements are a 3.0 cumulative GPA, a 3.0 science and math GPA, and no grade lower than a C in any required pre-requisite course - any applicant who does not meet all of these requirements will be rejected without review.
The IU PA program also requires a minimum of 500 hours of "direct patient contact experience"; examples of appropriate experience, and a form for documenting your hours, can be found here. The number of contact hours required varies tremendously by program, from 200-2000 hours, so you should determine the requirements for the programs you're interested in and start working on this as soon as possible.
Once you have declared a major, you will need to be advised by an academic advisor in that department regarding the requirements for a Bachelor's degree; you can not earn a degree in "pre-physician assistant". You must include the required science courses listed below as part of your curriculum no matter what degree you choose to pursue; each course must be for science majors, not a general education/survey course, and must include both a lecture and laboratory component except as listed.
Please check ask your academic advisor for information about prerequisites for these courses.