The 2022 Guide to Online Physician Assistant (PA) Programs
Why Attend a PA Program Online?
Online Physician Assistant Master’s Program Admissions Requirements
Online Physician Assistant Program Curriculum
Becoming a Physician Assistant Through an Online PA Program
Online PA Master’s Degree Career Outlook
Find the Best Online PA Program for You
Accredited Online PA Programs to Consider
Online Master of Physician Assistant Studies FAQ
Requirements for physician assistant programs vary from school to school. However, most physician assistant master’s programs require that you hold a bachelor’s degree and have completed undergraduate coursework in areas such as chemistry, physiology, microbiology and human anatomy. Some schools also have GPA and GRE score requirements. Many students who apply to online PA programs already have some patient care work experience, but this is not always a prerequisite.
How long is PA school, and how long does it take to become a physician assistant? Generally, online physician assistant master’s programs take at least two years of full-time study. Depending on the specifics of the program’s curriculum, you may spend one year completing online coursework and then another year focusing on hands-on clinical experience. Keep in mind that in most cases, you will need to have completed a bachelor’s degree program before you begin your MPAS program.
After graduating from an accredited online physician assistant program and completing any other state specific requirements, you may pursue your physician assistant license. This involves passing the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE) and applying for licensure with your local licensing board. After passing the PANCE, you use the PA-C credential, which stands for Physician Assistant-Certified. You may then begin practicing as a physician assistant, working directly with physicians, surgeons and other healthcare workers.
There are several PA specializations that you may be interested in pursuing after becoming a PA-C. The NCCPA offers the Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in emergency medicine, hospital medicine, psychiatry, cardiovascular surgery, orthopedic surgery, nephrology and pediatrics. These specializations are optional, but they do provide an opportunity for existing PA-Cs to gain additional education in specific areas of medicine.