Applications must be submitted through the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). Applications may be submitted with pending requirements, however applications will not be reviewed until all requirements are met. Applications with in-progress degrees will be reviewed if all other requirements have been met and the anticipated degree completion date is prior to August 31, 2022.
The PA program does not offer advanced placement. Transfer students are not accepted.
I. A U.S. Bachelor’s Degree or Higher from a Regionally Accredited College or University
A regionally accredited college or university is an institution that holds active accreditation recognized by the Department of Education from one of the following accreditation agencies. All degrees must be conferred by August 31, 2022 to be eligible for fall enrollment.
- 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
II. Required Courses
All prerequisite courses must be completed at a regionally accredited college or university. Official transcripts verifying successful course completion must be uploaded by CASPA by January 15, 2022. Applications may be submitted with pending prerequisite courses, however, the application will not be reviewed until the official transcript for each pending course is uploaded by CASPA.
All prerequisite courses must be completed with a C grade or above. Pass/fail grades will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, however, please note that pass/fail grades are not calculated into CASPA GPAs. AP and IB courses will be considered with a score of 3 or above, however, individual transcripts must be submitted if the AP or IB score is not listed on the college transcript.
Core Science Courses
Each course used to satisfy the requirements below must include a lab and have been completed no earlier than 2014 (7 years from the current admissions cycle). Introductory level courses are accepted, but upper-level courses are preferred. Online courses and labs are accepted.
- Chemistry (8 units) – Acceptable chemistry courses include general, organic, inorganic, and biochemistry
- Human Anatomy* (4 units)
- Human Physiology* (4 units)
- Microbiology (4 units)
*A combination human anatomy & physiology course will be accepted, however you cannot use the same course to fulfill both the anatomy and physiology prerequisites. If not titled “Human”, a course description must demonstrate a human focus.
- Mathematics (2 units) – Must be algebra or higher; a statistics course will not fulfill this requirement
- Psychology (3 units) – Introduction to Psychology is preferred
- English Composition* (3 units)
- Sociology or Anthropology (3 units) – Must be a course taken within the Sociology or Anthropology department
- Statistics (3 units) – Must be within the math, social science, or health science department.
- Medical Terminology (1 unit)
*Any course not titled “English Composition” must be a writing-intensive course that includes instruction on comprehension, investigation, evaluation, explanation, and refutation.
III. Recommended Courses
- Conversational Spanish
IV. Healthcare Experience
2,000 paid hours of clinical experience is required
Clinical experience may include (but not limited to):
- Medical Assistant
- Nurse Assistant
- ER Technician
- Physical Therapy Aide
- Patient Care Technician
- Behavioral Therapist
- Pharmacy Technician
- Ophthalmic Technician
- Speech Pathologist
- Radiologic Technologist
- Chiropractic Assistant
- Surgical Technician
- Registered Dietician
V. Additional Requirements
- Overall GPA (calculated by CASPA): 3.0 or above
- Core science prerequisite* GPA (calculated by CASPA): 3.0 or above
- Evaluations: Three (3) required, PA and supervisor preferred
*Core science prerequisite GPA includes all courses subject categorized by CASPA as chemistry, human anatomy, human physiology, and microbiology that meet core science prerequisite requirements.
Applicants are expected to demonstrate professionalism in their interactions with the program and our faculty and staff. Applicants who demonstrate unprofessional behavior at any time will not be considered for admission.
Academic or licensure infractions, misdemeanors, and/or felonies may prohibit participation in required supervised clinical practice experiences (SCPE), eligibility to take the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam, and/or eligibility for state licensure. Due to this, all academic or licensure infractions, misdemeanors, and/or felonies must be disclosed on CASPA and will be assessed by the Admissions Committee on a case-by-case basis. Failure to disclose the above will result in applicant denial and recension of an enrollment offer, if applicable. Additionally, programs are required to report an applicant’s failure to disclose this information to the Physician Assistant Education Association.
All admissions decisions are made in accordance with our program mission, vision, and goals. Additionally, preference is given to applicants with evidence of the following:
- Greater than the minimum GPA of 3.0 for overall and/or core science prerequisite GPA
- Greater than the minimum 2,000 hours of paid clinical experience
- Paid clinical positions:
- With direct patient contact
- Held within the past year
- Within a hospital, urgent care, outpatient clinic, or surgical center
- Continuous (≥1 year) leadership and volunteer roles
- Knowledge of, and interest in, the PA profession
- Knowledge of, and interest in, integrative medicine
VII. Admissions Process
- Applicants must apply to the program through the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA)*. Once a verified application is received, the Admissions Advisor will screen the application to ensure that it meets minimum admissions requirements as outlined above. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
- All applications are reviewed based on the admissions requirements and the information provided. Competitive applicants will be invited to an interview.
- Candidates offered a seat in the program will have 14 days to respond to the conditional enrollment offer and complete the supplemental application, admissions agreement, and $1,000 non-refundable deposit to be applied to their tuition. Being interviewed does not guarantee a seat in the program or on the waitlist.
- All remaining applicants will be notified of their application status (accepted, waitlisted, or denied) by June 2022.
- Applicants placed on the waitlist may be offered a seat if an offered applicant withdraws from the program or an enrollment offer is rescinded. Waitlist applicants who are offered a seat must complete the supplemental application, admissions agreement, and submit a $1,000 non-refundable deposit to be applied to their tuition within 72 hours.
*SCU does not refund CASPA application fees under any circumstance, including loss of accreditation during the application cycle.
VIII. Academic Standards for Enrollment
Once the class is fully seated, information about additional requirements will be provided. These may include the following requirements which must be completed prior to matriculation.
- A physical examination confirming the student’s ability to perform duties outlined in the program’s technical standards and to work as a physician assistant student
- Proof of current immunization status
- University-approved medical insurance
- Criminal background check* and drug testing
- Pre-matriculation reading and/or assignments
IX. Student Employment Policy:
- Due to the rigorous nature of the program, students are discouraged from working. Didactic and clinical schedules will not be altered for employment.
- Students are not mandated to hold any position of employment in the institution. University or program employment is not a term of acceptance or continuation in the program.
- Students of the program are not employees of the hospitals or clinics and, therefore, work entirely under the preceptor’s supervision. Students are not to substitute for paid clinicians, clerical staff, or other workers at their assigned clinical sites.