COSM

Pre-Physician Assistant

Pre-Physician Assistant is not a major, but rather a compilation of courses and experiences to prepare students for next steps. Professional schools evaluate achievement in required prerequisites, regardless of major. We recommend for students to choose a major they enjoy and in which they can excel.

For Pre-Health inquiries, students are encouraged to contact us to receive assistance in planning when to take these prerequisite courses. Students will receive academic advisement for their chosen degree program with their assigned Academic Advisor.

A competitive GPA is essential when considering a career in the health field. Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA to remain in the Pre-Physician Assistant Program. Our experience is that students with a GPA below 3.0 are, unfortunately, not competitive.

The courses listed below are generally required for Physician Assistant schools in our region, in addition to the courses necessary for General Record Examination (GRE) preparation. We encourage students to seek out and familiarize themselves with the prerequisite and admission test requirements of their intended Physician Assistant school(s), as requirements may vary.

Biology and Anatomy Courses

  • BIOL 2107/2107L: Principles of Biology I/Lab (4)
  • BIOL 2108/2108L: Principles of Biology II/Lab (4)
  • BIOL 3130: Principles of Genetics (3)*
  • BIOL 4240: Biology of Microorganisms (4)
  • KINS 2531/2511: Human A & P I/Lab (4)
  • KINS 2532/2512: Human A & P II/Lab (4)

 

Chemistry Courses

  • CHEM 1145: Principles of Chemistry I/Lab (4)
  • CHEM 1146: Principles of Chemistry II/Lab (4)
  • CHEM 3341: Organic Chemistry I/Lab (4)
  • CHEM 3342: Organic Chemistry II/Lab (4)
  • CHEM 5541: Biochemistry I/Lab (4), or CHEM 3530: Principles of Biochemistry (3)

 

Mathematics Course

  • STAT 2231: Intro to Statistics (3)

 

Non-Science Courses

  • PSYC 1101: Intro to Psychology (3)
  • PSYC 3330: Abnormal Psychology (3), or PSYC 3333: Lifespan Development Psychology (3)

 

Additional courses to consider

  • BIOL 4230: Intro to Immunology (3)
  • BIOL 5131: Cell Biology (3)
  • BIOL 5132: Molecular Genetics (3)
  • BIOL 5142: Molecular Biotechniques (4)
  • BIOL 5148: Human Genetics (4)
  • BIOL 5239: Neurobiology (3)
  • BIOL 5240: Histology (4)
  • BIOL 5246: Human Pathophysiology (4)
  • BIOL 5247: Endocrinology (4)
  • BIOL 5248: Immunology (4)
  • BIOL 5341: Parasitology (4)
  • BIOL 5532: Evolution (3)

Visit us on the web at cosm.georgiasouthern.edu/prehealth.

Make it official. Add your Pre-Professional Program: myGeorgiaSouthern > Change Your Major/Add a Minor > Pre-Professional drop down menu > Pre-Physician Assistant Program. This step will ensure that you receive up-to-date information from Mrs. Payne regarding Pre-Health Professional Programs.

Learn+ Subscribe. Subscribe to the Pre-Health listserv to receive important information from Mr. Braselton. How to subscribe: send an email (from your Georgia Southern email account) to listserv@georgiasouthern.edu and leave the subject line blank. On the first line in the body of the message, type: subscribe PREPROF-L FirstName LastName (see below for example). Type nothing else in the message and press send. You will receive an email confirming that you have been added to the listserv.

listervStudy + Excel. A competitive GPA is essential when considering a career in the health field. You must have a minimum of a 3.0 to remain in the Pre-Physician Assistant Program at Georgia Southern University. Talk with your Academic Advisor, professors and Academic Success Center for help with study skills through various workshops and tutoring.

Resume + Interviews. Create and/or improve your resume at the Office of Career Services. You can also gain confidence and develop your interview skills with a video-taped mock interview.

Job Shadow. We recommend that you gain experience by shadowing a general practice Physician Assistant and specialists of your choosing. Document your experiences in a physical or digital format, and obtain at least one letter of reference from a Physician Assistant you have shadowed.

Direct Patient Care. Get hands-on experience to show your genuine interest in and commitment to the healthcare field. Program direct patient care requirements vary between 100 – 2,000 hours. Roles to gain experience include: Nursing/Medical Assistant, EMT, Phlebotomy, and more!

Volunteer + Lead. We recommend that you participate in volunteer activities that benefit others. Contact the Office of Leadership and Community Engagement for more information about volunteering with local weekly trips, Alternative Break Trips, and more. We also recommend that you participate in leadership seminars, workshops, retreats and LEAD courses. Get involved and join a student club or organization, such as the Association of Pre-Health Professionals or Pre-Physician Assistant Association.

Connect + Explore. Get to know your professors and local health care professionals. These individuals are valuable resources for research experience, volunteering, shadowing and letters of recommendation. Consider Study Abroad programs through the Office of International Programs and Services.

Research. Talk with your professors and peers who are involved with undergraduate research and consider opportunities within the College of Science and Mathematics.

Prepare for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This exam requires substantial amounts of preparation and study time, so it is never too early to begin. Typically, students prepare to take the GRE in the spring of their junior year, so it is important that necessary coursework be completed by this time.

Degree: MPAS or MMS. Physician Assistants (PAs) are medical professionals who work as part of a medical team with a doctor. PAs perform physical examinations, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret lab tests, perform procedures, and assist in surgery. PAs also provide patient education, counseling and make rounds in hospitals and nursing homes. After licensure and certification, PAs are allowed to practice medicine and prescribe medication under the supervision of a physician. If you choose to pursue a Pre-Physician Program alongside your major, you will be on track to apply to a master’s degree program in PA Studies upon graduation. Learn more about Physician Assistants at the American Academy of Physician Assistants website.

Entrance Exam: Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

Medical Programs in US: Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) and Physician Assistant Education Association Program Directory

There are five Physician Assistant programs in Georgia. Specific admissions requirements are available on each school’s website:

Emory University School of Medicine
Augusta University College of Allied Health Professions
Mercer University College of Health Professions
South University Master of Science in Physician Assistant
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Last updated: 6/8/2017

Pre-Health Professional Programs • PO Box 8044-01 Statesboro, GA 30460 • (912) 478-7472 • prehealth@georgiasouthern.edu