This option is for students preparing to apply for admission into a physician assistant program. Physician assistants are in demand. The profession is one of the fastest growing in the country due to the shortage of primary care physicians, as well as economic pressures on health care costs. The required and supporting courses are typically required for admission into physician assistant programs.

The Department of Biology has numerous research and teaching labs and many regional field sites that provide excellent opportunities for “hands-on” experiences. We also have good relationships with local health professionals and two regional hospitals, providing numerous opportunities for volunteering, part-time employment, internships, and shadowing. Students may also choose to be involved in two student organizations, which allow them to explore their interest in the health profession.

Pre-Physician Assistant students will…
  • Meet with their advisor each semester to assess their progress towards admission to a professional school.
  • Take a core of courses that prepares them in any area of biology.
  • Take rigorous coursework in anatomy and physiology and molecular genetics which are required for most MMS schools.
  • Select additional electives in virology, immunology, pathogenic bacteriology, epidemiology, health physics, and toxicology.
  • Complete 80 hours (for 2 credit hours) of experiential learning, usually shadowing doctors and nurses.
  • Complete additional coursework in medical terminology, psychology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics to make them competitive for admission to MMS schools.
  • Attend classes in the renovated Magill Hall furnished with modern equipment.

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