- How can I apply for the Master in Physician Assistant Studies program?
All applicants must apply through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). Applicants should visit CASPA Application for more information.
Upon completion of CASPA application applicants must also apply to the FIU Graduate School Supplemental Application. Both applications to CASPA and FIU Graduate School must be completed prior to January 15 to be considered for fall enrollment.
- How are GPA’s (Quality Point Averages) calculated?
The HWCOM MPAS program utilizes the GPA’s calculated by CASPA and does not recalculate GPA’s. For more information on CASPA’s GPA calculation visit Verification: Grade Point Average (GPA) Calculations.
- Do the prerequisites need to be completed prior to applying to the program?
Applicants can apply to the program while completing the prerequisites, but the prerequisites must be completed by December 31. Upon completion of the course, the applicant must send the official transcript to CASPA, self-report the grade in CASPA, and submit unofficial transcripts to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will not be reviewed until all documents are received.
- I have a medical degree but my prerequisites are older than 7 years, can I still apply to the program?
All applicants with prerequisites older than the seven-year matriculation period MUST retake the science prerequisites to be considered for acceptance into the program. Foreign graduates must complete all prerequisite courses from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States to be considered.
- What types of experience counts as direct patient care?
Direct Patient Care involves obtaining manual vital signs, collecting detailed patient histories, assisting with minor procedures or treatments, administering medications, etc. MPAS requires a minimum of 500 hours of DPCE and recommends 1,000 hours of DPCE. MPAS recommends 500 hours of Shadowing experience.
Nurse (RN or LPN), EMT or Paramedic, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist, Respiratory Therapist, Surgical Technologist, Medical Assistant, Certified Nursing Assistant, Medic (Army), Chiropractor, Pharmacist, Optician, EKG Tech, Phlebotomist, Respiratory Therapist, Ultrasound Tech, Patient Care Tech, Medical Tech, Radiologic Tech, Midwife, Cardiovascular Perfusionist, Imaging Tech, Home Health Aide, Dietician/Nutritionist, Exercise Physiologist, Physical Therapist Aid, Athletic Trainer, Scribe, Speech Therapy, Research Assistant, Pharmacy Tech, Certified Athletic Trainer, Mental Health Tech, Dental Hygienist, Research Coordinator, Patient Care Tech.
Note: Only DPCE and shadowing hours submitted with CASPA application will be applicable.
- Can I update my direct patient care experience and send in additional letters of recommendation after submitting my CASPA application?
No, we do not accept any additional information after CASPA has verified your application. It is in your best interest to submit your CASPA application with all the information you wish to be evaluated.
- Will my CASPER score from the January 5, 2023, test administration be accepted after the January 15th MPAS application deadline?
- Are applicants required to shadow a PA prior to applying to the program?No, applicants are not required to shadow a PA prior to applying to the program; however, shadowing is recommended (500 hours). Once the CASPA application is submitted, additional hours cannot be added and will not be accepted.
- What are the requirements for admissions to the Master in Physician Assistant Studies program?For admissions and prerequisite requirements visit Master in Physician Studies Program Prerequisites.
- How many students will be selected for enrollment?45 students will be selected for enrollment.
- How are students contacted?Applicants are communicated with via the email address listed on their CASPA application.
- Is there a seat deposit required? A non-refundable professional development seminar fee seat deposit of $715 is required to secure your seat in the program.
- Is a background check performed for admission?
All students selected for admission will be required to have a criminal background check, health assessment, and immunizations completed prior to matriculation. The offer of admission is conditional upon the results of the background check and health assessment, and drug screen.
During enrollment, repeat background checks, health, and drug screens may be required. If a prospective student declines to undergo the background check, health assessment, or drug screen or if findings of a grievous nature are revealed, the offer of admission will be revoked. If a student declines to undergo a background check, health assessment, or drug screen while enrolled in the program or if findings of a grievous nature are revealed, this will be grounds for dismissal from the program. Acceptance into and successful completion of the FIU HWCOM MPAS Program does not imply or guarantee that the student will be able to obtain state licensure upon graduation.
- Who can I speak with regarding admission?All applicants can schedule an appointment with the Assistant Director of Admissions by emailing email@example.com or by calling 305-348-4162.
- Are information sessions available?
Yes, MPAS Information Sessions are held the second Tuesday each month at 3:00 pm via Zoom. Please register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: Dates are subject to change as needed (email will be sent to those registered).
- Is the Master in Physician Assistant Studies program accredited?
At its 2021 March meeting, the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA) placed the Florida International University Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Florida International University on Accreditation-Probation status until its next review in 2023 March.
Probation accreditation is a temporary accreditation status initially of not less than two years. However, that period may be extended by the ARC-PA for up to an additional two years if the ARC-PA finds that the program is making substantial progress toward meeting all applicable standards but requires additional time to come into full compliance. Probation accreditation status is granted, at the sole discretion of the ARC-PA, when a program holding an accreditation status of Accreditation-Provisional or Accreditation - Continued does not, in the judgment of the ARC-PA, meet the Standards or when the capability of the program to provide an acceptable educational experience for its students is threatened.
Once placed on probation, a program that fails to comply with accreditation requirements in a timely manner, as specified by the ARC-PA, may be scheduled for a focused site visit and is subject to having its accreditation withdrawn.
Specific questions regarding the Program and its plans should be directed to the Program Director and/or the appropriate institutional official(s).
The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website.
- When do the Master in Physician Assistant Studies classes begin?
Classes begin the first week of August, but students are required to attend a professional development seminar in the last week of July.
- Is there on-campus housing available?
At this time, there is no on-campus housing available for graduate students, but students can visit off-campus housing for options near campus. Our program also creates a Facebook page where students can network to find roommates and other resources from the incoming class.
- Will students be able to work while attending classes?
The program is very demanding and intense; therefore, students are strongly discouraged from working while committing to the program. The program requires a full-time commitment for the duration of the program i.e., days, nights, and weekends.
- What can I expect in terms of clinical rotations?
Clinical rotations include seven core rotations of 4 weeks duration in the following areas: family practice, internal medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, women's health, surgery, and emergency medicine. In addition, there are two four-week electives in which students may choose to gain additional experience in one of the above areas or other sub-specialty areas of interest.
Clinical rotations are done within an extensive network of locations which include hospitals, medical centers, and inpatient and outpatient clinics.
- If I am accepted at FIU, can I select any of my own rotations during the clinical year?
The program determines the clinical placements for the seven core rotations. Students can submit a "wish list" for the 2 four-week elective rotations. This may include further experience in a core rotation area, a sub-specialty of interest, and/or placement in a desired geographic area. The program does its best to match the student with the site providing an optimal clinical education experience.
- Where will the clinical rotations take place?
The clinical educational experiences are done predominantly in South Florida. Placement is determined by PA program faculty who customize rotations to best complement a student's academic and clinical experiences, expertise, and personality. Each student will do rotations in health care institutions of various sizes, populations, settings, and resources to ensure positive and diverse clinical experiences.
- What degree do students earn?
Graduates earn a Master in Physician Assistant Studies. They are eligible to take the National Certifying Examination for Physician Assistants and apply for Licensure with the Florida State Medical Board as Physician Assistants.
For further information, contact:
- Florida Department of Health
Council of Physician Assistant
P.O. Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32399-3255
- Florida Department of Health