Physician assistants practice a full scope of medical care under the supervision of a licensed physician after completing undergraduate and graduate-level studies. These studies combine academic learning and practical experience in the clinical setting. Accelerated physician assistant programs either condense a bachelor's and master's degree together into a four- or five-year program or allow individuals with a nonspecific undergraduate degree to apply to postgraduate training, as long as the applicant has completed particular prerequisite courses.

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Studies

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Studies offer a two-year master's degree in physician assistant studies that combines in-class learning and research with practical clinical experience. The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant accredits the program, which begins in January of each year and runs for 24 months. Courses include health care issues, clinical anatomy, patient assessment and pharmacology. Clinical placements take place in rural and urban medical facilities and include five-week rotations in family medicine, pediatrics, surgery and women's health. Prospective students must possess an undergraduate degree with an overall grade point average of 2.75 and a minimum GPA of 3.0 in prerequisite courses including organic chemistry, microbiology and biochemistry. Applicants are encouraged to participate in a minimum of 50 hours of job shadowing, and prior health care experience is favorable.

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Studies

179 Longwood Avenue

Boston, MA 02115-5896


University of Detroit Mercy

The University of Detroit Mercy offers an accelerated physician assistant program that combines undergraduate and career-specific, graduate-level training. Graduates of the five-year program are awarded a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies. The undergraduate work is completed throughout the first three years of the program and includes courses in general chemistry, academic writing, developmental psychology, applied nutrition and biostatistics. Beginning in the second year, students spend the summer semesters in clinical cooperative studies to gain patient interaction experience. Graduate level courses during the fourth year include advanced pathophysiology, advanced human anatomy, pharmacology, diagnostic, therapeutic and health care issues. The final year of the program is spent in four- and six-week clinical rotations in prenatal care and gynecology, psychiatry, emergency medicine, long-term care and internal medicine.

University of Detroit Mercy

4001 West McNichols Road

Detroit, MI 48221


University of the Sciences in Philadelphia

The accelerated physician assistant program at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia is a five-year program that combines undergraduate and graduate level studies to provide graduates with a Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences and a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies. Furthermore, applicants with a minimum grade point average in prerequisite college-level studies can qualify for advanced second-year placement in the program. These prerequisites include general chemistry, introduction to psychology, writing and rhetoric and general biology. The undergraduate segment of the program includes courses in microbiology, physics, introduction to sociology, hematology, scientific writing and medical terminology. In the fourth and fifth year of the program, students take courses in pathology, history taking, clinical medicine, radiology for the physician assistant and human gross anatomy. Clinical rotations take place throughout the final years and include rotations in general surgery, behavioral medicine, emergency medicine and elective rotations.

University of the Sciences in Philadelphia

600 South 43rd Street

Philadelphia, PA 19104


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