General Admissions Questions
- Can I transfer credits into the PA program?
No. The PA program does not offer advanced standing or accept graduate transfer credits. All students must complete the entire established curriculum at FSU.
- What credentials will I have when I complete the program?
After successful completion of the program, students will graduate with a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Practice (MSPAP) degree. Students will also be eligible to sit for the PANCE exam to be certified as a clinical PA.
- How many students will you accept into the PA program?
We anticipate matriculating a charter class of 40 in the fall of 2017.
- When will the first class begin?
The first class is expected to begin on 28 August 2017.
- What is the approximate cost of the PA program?
View the program costs page
- Does FSU offer tuition benefits for military veterans?
Yes, view the program costs page
- The classes I took did not have a lab, will you still accept them?
No. All courses that are identified as having a required lab component must have a lab component. Classes without a lab will not be considered as meeting admissions requirements.
- My undergraduate advisor suggested that I take Survey of Organic Chemistry (General Chem, Bio Chem, Micro, etc.) but your requirements say all courses must be for science majors. Will you still accept my course?
No. All required science courses must be courses designated for science majors.
- I still have prerequisites in progress, can I still apply?
Yes. You may apply with up to two prerequisites outstanding. All others must be completed by the time of your application. All outstanding courses must still meet the requirement of C or higher and must be completed prior to matriculation into the PA program.
- How old can my prerequisites be?
There is no time limit on prerequisite coursework. However, the length of time since the courses were taken will be taken into consideration as part of the overall admission decision. More recent is considered favorable.
- How current must my GRE score be?
The GRE exam must be taken within 3 years prior to matriculation into the PA program.
- My most recent GRE was taken 3 ½ years ago. Am I still eligible for admission to the FSU PA program?
No. The GRE must be taken within 3 years of matriculation into the PA program.
- I took the GRE 3 ½ years ago. Will you make an exception to the 3 year requirement?
No. The GRE must be taken within 3 years of matriculation into the PA program. Unfortunately, we cannot make exceptions.
- Can foreign medical graduates apply to the program?
Yes. But all must meet the prerequisite requirements for the PA program. International transfer credit is awarded for coursework completed at an accredited (recognized) institution of higher learning. No credit is awarded for technical, vocational, or below-college-level coursework, or courses completed with grades below "C." “C-“ will not be accepted. An official course-by-course evaluation is required for all academic records from non-U.S. institutions. We recommend the evaluation be done by a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or the International Education Credential Services provided by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.
- I took 1 year of vertebrate anatomy and physiology, not human anatomy and physiology. Can I substitute the course?
No. All anatomy and physiology courses must be in human anatomy and physiology.
- Where can I take prerequisite courses?
Prerequisite coursework can be completed at any regionally accredited college or university. Community college courses are accepted.
- My science course had an online lab. Will you accept online labs?
No. All labs must be traditional, on-campus format.
- What is the best undergraduate degree for the PA Program?
Many will tell you a degree in the sciences will best prepare you for your PA education. However, there are required prerequisite courses that will prepare you. Our suggestion is to study something you are passionate about. Your performance, not the degree will set you apart.
- Do you accept AP courses?
Yes, but not for the science prerequisite courses. AP courses will only be accepted for Statistics, College Algebra, English Composition, General Psychology and Medical Terminology. No exceptions. In order to receive credit you must have received a score of 4 or 5 on the AP exam.
- Do you accept CLEP and DSST/DANTES exams for prerequisite coursework?
No. Unfortunately we cannot accept these exams for prerequisite course credit.
Direct Patient Care Experience Questions
- Do volunteer hours count for patient care experience?
Yes. Your experience does not have to be paid to count as direct patient care. However, you must be in a role that requires medical skill and direct patient contact. Volunteer experiences that are more observational do not meet this requirement.
- What qualifies as direct patient care experience?
There is a wide range of direct patient care experiences that will be accepted by the PA program (examples are listed below). The key to getting a quality patient care experience is to a gain skill or certification that will allow you to work directly with patients. If you have any questions regarding the patient care experience requirement, please email PAadmissions@med.fsu.edu.
• Athletic Trainer
• Cardiovascular Perfusionist
• Military Medical Corpsman
• Dental Hygienist
• Caregiver (trained)
• Exercise Physiologist
• Foreign Medical Graduate – Physician
• Home Health Care Aide
• Medical Assistant
• Nursing Assistant
• Orthopedic Technician
• Patient Care Technician
• Physical Therapist
• Physical Therapist Assistant
• X-Ray Technician
• Ultrasound Technician
• Respiratory Therapist
• Surgical Technician
- If I have not completed all of my patient care hours, can I still apply?
Yes. However, if accepted, all hours must be completed before May 1st of the year that you will matriculate. Please note, applicants who have completed, or exceeded the required hours at the time of application may be at an advantage for admission over those with requirements still outstanding.
- I am an undergraduate student, how can I meet the patient care experience requirement?
Clinical experience is difficult to obtain while enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student. But it is possible. Look for options in obtaining a certification (nursing assistant, EMT, etc.) and/or direct patient contact experiences. Working part-time in schedule and on breaks is an excellent opportunity.
- Is there a way to waive the 500 hour minimum clinical hours?
Yes. Students enrolled at FSU can take the course PAS 2050, Introduction to the PA Profession, to waive the 500-hour minimum requirement. This course is an intensive exploratory course designed for individuals considering a career as a PA. However, the intent is not for the applicant to have no patient care experience, but rather for the student who will not quite hit the 500-hour mark at the time of matriculation. Minimal patient care hours will likely reflect negatively on the applicant during the student selection process.
- Is working as a medical scribe considered for direct patient care?
No. Although working as a medical scribe is an excellent experience, it is not considered direct patient care experience for the purpose of our program. We consider this “related health care experience.”
- I am an EMT. Does on-call hours count for patient care experience?
No. Hours actually caring for patients will qualify for direct patient care experience.
The Physician Assistant (PA) Program at Florida State University (FSU) College of Medicine has applied for Accreditation-Provisional from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA).
The FSU PA Program anticipates matriculating its first class in August 2017, pending achieving Accreditation-Provisional status at the March 2017 ARC-PA meeting.
Accreditation - Provisional is an accreditation status first awarded when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation-Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.
In the event that ARC-PA withholds accreditation, the FSU PA Program will not admit students in August 2017 and will provide a refund to those individuals accepted to the program and paid their program deposit. CASPA application fees cannot be refunded to applicants by the FSU PA Program or by CASPA.
The PA Program was approved by the FSU Board of Trustees and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 2015.