Admissions Requirements

Admissions Requirements

Prerequisites: All prerequisite courses must be completed by January 15, 2020 to be eligible for the September 2020 enrollment date.

I. A Bachelor’s Degree from a Regionally Accredited College or University

NOTE: A Regional Accredited College or University are those institutions that hold Active accreditation recognized by the Department Education from one of these accreditation agencies:

  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • New England Association of Schools and Colleges
  • Higher Learning Commission
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges

Please note, coursework and degrees from foreign/international institutions will not fulfill admissions requirements at this time.

II. Prerequisite College Courses in Core Sciences

Quarter units will be converted into semester units to fulfill all prerequisites. The conversion rate is quarter units divided by 1.5 = semester units; i.e. 4 quarter units = 2.67 semester units.

Must be completed within 7 years

  • Chemistry (8 semester units) must include lab credits, acceptable chemistry courses include: General, Organic, Inorganic, Biochemistry
  • Human Anatomy (4 semester units) must include lab, must be Human Anatomy
  • Human Physiology (4 semester units) must include lab, must be Human Physiology
  • Microbiology (4 semester units) must include lab

III. Prerequisite General College Courses

  • Mathematics, algebra or higher (2 semester units)
  • Psychology (3 semester units)
  • English Composition (3 semester units)
  • Sociology or Cultural Anthropology (3 semester units)
  • Statistics in addition to mathematics requirement. Must be within math, social sciences, or health sciences departments (3 semester units)

IV. Recommended Courses

  • Medical Terminology
  • Conversational Spanish

V. Healthcare Experience: 2000 Paid Hours Clinical Experience is Required.

Examples of the types of clinical experiences (not limited to):
  • Military medic or corpsman
  • Chiropractic
  • Naturopathic Medicine
  • Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
  • Back Office Medical Assistant (MA)
  • Certified Nurses’ Aide
  • EMT (patient care hours only)
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse
  • Paramedic
  • Respiratory Therapist
  • Physical Therapy Aide
  • Radiological Technician
  • Occupational Therapist Aide
  • Registered Nurse

**Additional consideration will be given to applicants with leadership experience, volunteer community service or military experience (verifiable by DD-214)

Qualifying duties during clinical experiences must consist of direct patient contact. This may include, but is not limited to: consultation, assessment, diagnosis or treatment

VI. Admissions Process

Congratulations on considering SCU’s Physician Assistant Program. The admissions process has several steps:

  1. Applicants must meet all of the program’s admission requirements.
  2. Applicants must apply to the program through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). Once SCU has received a completed CASPA application, an official transcript has been verified for all courses, references have been received, and hours of experience have been documented, the program’s admissions committee will review a completed, verified application.
    2000 paid clinical hours hands-on healthcare-related experience. Applications that are incomplete will not be considered..
  3. All applications are screened based on the applicant’s GPA, submitted hands-on experience, a review of references, personal statement, and a supplemental question regarding integrative health. Competitive applicants are then invited to an interview.
  4. On the interview day, applicants are given a tour either before or after the interview. Each applicant is interviewed by faculty members or administrators in two one-on-one interviews. Applicants may also be required to participate in group activities.
  5. Applications are reviewed and ranked and fifty applicants are offered a seat in the program. Each applicant must respond to the invitation within 72 hours. Once the applicant has accepted the invitation, they are required to submit a $1,000 non-refundable deposit that will be applied towards their tuition.
  6. The remaining applicants are ranked and placed on an alternate list. Applicants placed on the alternate list may be offered a seat if a higher-ranking applicant declines the invitation or withdraws from the admissions process. The applicant on the alternate list is offered a seat and must respond within 72 hours and submit the $1,000 non-refundable deposit.

VII. Other Requirements

  • Cumulative: 3.0 or above is required
  • Core science prerequisites: 3.0 or above is required
  • Entrance Exam: GRE or MCAT is not required
  • International Students: TOEFL is required
  • TOEFL Scores:
    • Internet Based: 100 (this is divided into the following categories: Listening/Reading/Writing/Speaking) some programs require specific Sub scores in each category
    • Computer Based: 250
    • Paper Based: 550
    • CASPA requires applications to have a 250 score if the test is Computer Based and a score of 100 if it is Internet Based
  • Letters of Recommendations: Two (2) required: One Academic, One Professional
  • Official Transcripts: submitted through CASPA (Online)
  • Criminal background check and drug testing are required
  • Veteran assistance may be available

There is no advanced standing recognized for the MSPA Program. SCU’s MSPA program does not accept transfer students.

After a thorough application review process, those applicants selected as potential program candidates will be invited to interview with SCU Physician Assistant program faculty. Invitees are required to submit two passport sized photographs. These photos will not be returned.


Once a student has been notified that they are accepted into the program:

  • Proof of current health status and immunizations (PDF) is required. The university requires MSPA students to have the following immunizations as a minimum: Hepatitis B, Influenza, MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella). Varicella (Chickenpox), Annual PPD or chest x-rays, Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis), and Meningococcal.
  • University approved medical insurance is required.
  • A physical examination clearing the student to work as a health care professional student must be submitted prior to enrollment.

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