Applying to the MS in Physician Assistant Studies Program

Sections:

Requirements

1) Completion of a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university by the time of matriculation.

2) A minimum cumulative GPA and prerequisite course GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale is REQUIRED for consideration. Transcripts from ALL colleges attended must be submitted through the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA).

3) Survey courses or courses for which a letter or number grade is not awarded (e.g., Pass/Fail, CLEP credit, AP credit, etc.) will not meet prerequisite requirements. NOTE: If your institution awarded ONLY P/F grading between January 1, 2020 and September 1, 2020, please contact antoinem@musc.edu for more information. A minimum of 30 credit hours of prerequisite courses (34 credit hours total) must be completed and transcripts received and verified by CASPA by the September 1st application deadline to be considered. We recommend that you apply early to maximize the likelihood of your application being verified by September 1st. 

*All 34 hrs. of prerequisite courses must be completed by matriculation.


Prerequisite Courses Semester Hours

Statistics or Biostatistics 3

Organic Chemistry or Biochemistry 3

General Chemistry - includes lab 8

Biology - includes lab 4

Human Anatomy - includes lab 4

Human Physiology - includes lab 4

Microbiology - includes lab 4

Medical Terminology - continuing education courses will not count 1

Psychology 

3

Total 34
  • Prerequisite courses must be completed at regionally accredited 2 or 4-year colleges or universities.
  • Courses can only be applied towards the prerequisite requirement if a grade of "C" or higher was earned. A prerequisite course may be retaken, and the highest grade will be used to calculate the prerequisite GPA. However, both grades will be reflected in the cumulative GPA.
  • The psychology course can be met by Introduction to Psychology or a higher-level psychology course.
  • Combined Anatomy and Physiology courses are accepted; however, an applicant must take Anatomy and Physiology I and II with labs to fulfill the separate Anatomy and Physiology requirements.
  • All prerequisite coursework MUST be completed within the 10 years prior to the application deadline.
  • There will be no waivers or exceptions to these requirements.
  • Here is a guide to Frequently Approved Prerequisites.
  • The MUSC Office of Enrollment Management (OEM) offers unofficial transcript evaluations from March 1st to June 30th.  Send requests to drummonl@musc.edu.

4) Submit your Physician Assistant College Admission Test (PA-CAT) scores. On the PA-CAT, if asked for a testing sponsor, select Exam Master as the exam sponsor.

NOTE: Beginning with the 2021 application cycle (Start Term, Summer 2022) all applicants to the MUSC PAS program will be required to take the PA-CAT.  The PA-CAT is a specialized test designed to measure applicant knowledge in key prerequisite science subjects typically required for PA school. For more information about the PA-CAT, visit their website at https://www.pa-cat.com/.

5) Technical Standards required for enrollment: The MUSC Division of Physician Assistant Studies will consider for admission and/or continuation any applicant who meets its academic and nonacademic criteria and who demonstrates the ability to perform skills and meet the Technical Standards listed below, with or without reasonable accommodations, consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Visit the Technical Standards page

If you have any questions about this document or whether you meet the standards as described above, please contact the MUSC Office of EEO and University Accessibility Services.  

Application Process

1) Submit an application through the Physician Assistant Centralized Application Service (CASPA). 

  • Your CASPA application and all requested materials must be verified by the September 1 deadline in order to be considered for admission. 
  • It is the applicant’s responsibility to review the progress of their CASPA application on the CASPA website. 

2) Submit official PA-CAT exam scores.    

  • For more information about the PA-CAT, score reporting, practice test, and other study resources, visit https://www.pa-cat.com/. The program recommends taking your exam at least 6 weeks prior to submission deadline. Your PA-CAT scores will be reported directly to MUSC if you have selected us to receive your scores.

3) Submit a separate MUSC application through the MUSC Office of Enrollment Management by the September 1 deadline. 

  • It is the applicant’s responsibility to review the progress of their MUSC application; progress may be seen by viewing the Application Progress Portal
  • Additional MUSC application questions should be directed to the MUSC Office of Enrollment Management at drummonl@musc.edu.

4) Factors that our admissions committee values include:

  • Traits desirable in a future physician assistant, previous accomplishments, diverse life experiences, and significant knowledge of how to deliver health care.
  • Experiences which demonstrate these traits may include: volunteer work, international mission work, military service, proficiency in foreign languages, unique life experiences, health training or certification, unique leadership positions, and biomedical research experience.
  • Admissions and enrollment practices do not favor specified individuals or groups.

5) To view the academic qualifications of incoming students, click here.

All application materials described above must be received by the September 1 application deadline. Without all materials, your application will be incomplete.

Use of Marijuana and/or CBD Products

Marijuana is a Schedule 1 drug and is illegal to purchase in South Carolina. Apart from a narrow and limited scope of codified/documented medical exceptions, it is illegal for individuals to use marijuana/tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)  in South Carolina. Although cannabidiol (CBD) products may be purchased and used in South Carolina, please be aware that CBD products may contain higher levels of THC than represented on packaging and use of CBD products can result in a positive drug screen for THC/marijuana.  Be aware that current drug testing methods cannot accurately ascertain the origins of THC metabolites (i.e., whether from marijuana or CBD products). Your academic program has the authority to conduct random and/or scheduled drug testing; if your test result is reported as positive for THC metabolites (even if you only used a CBD product), your ability to be accepted into the program, progress in the program, and/or successfully complete the program may be negatively impacted.  

Important Application Dates

Start Term Application Type Available Deadline
Summer 2022 CASPA Application April 30, 2021

September 1, 2021

(including transcript verification)

Summer 2022 MUSC Application July 1, 2021 September 1, 2021

 

Interview Process and Program Acceptance

Only completed applications will be reviewed for consideration for an interview. Interviews  are typically held between September and November of each year.  The program aims to provide acceptance decisions (acceptance, waitlist or denial letters) by the beginning of November.

Due to the nature of our interview process, no alternate interview dates will be offered. Interviews may be be conducted in-person on the MUSC campus or virtually, depending on CDC recommendations for Covid-19 mitigation.

If selected for an interview the applicant will be notified of the interview process as the dates approach.

International Students

MUSC’s PAS degree program only accepts applications from U.S. citizens, permanent residents, or those holding other valid nonimmigrant visa classifications that allow participation in lawful study while in the United States. We are unable to accept international students that require I-20 issuance.

 

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