PA Program FAQs

General

Prerequisites

Application

Admissions

Advanced Placement

Clearance

PA Program

Accreditation

General

How long is the program? How many credits is the program?
The length of the program is 29 months (12 month Didactic Phase, 17 month Clinical/Advanced Clinical Phases). The total credits for entire program is 132 credits.
Do you allow part-time status?
No. Due to the sequential construction of the PA curriculum, PA students are required to attend all courses and rotations in the didactic and clinical phases and therefore, part-time status is not an option.
Is preference given to residents of New Jersey?
No. There are no admission or enrollment practices that favor specified individuals or groups.
How many students will be admitted?
For each entering class the cohort is limited to no more than forty (40) students.
What are the technical standards for the program?
The candidate for the PA profession must have abilities and skills including observation, communication, motor, intellectual, conceptual & integrative – quantitative, and behavioral & social. Technological compensation can be made for some handicaps in certain of these areas, but such a candidate should be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner. For more information, please visit the PA Program Technical Standards section of our website.
What is the schedule like?
The first year of the program begins in early January and ends in December. Classes typically take place between Monday through Friday. The schedules for the clinical phases of the program are dependent upon the clinical experiences and vary widely. Students should expect to be at a clinical site at least 40 hours a week. Some clinical experiences may have a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule, while others may require a 12-hour day, and others may require overnights and weekend calls.
Do you offer information sessions?
Yes. Open house events are scheduled and will be posted on the program website.

Prerequisites

Do I need to earn a bachelor’s degree prior to entering the program?
Yes, this is a graduate level program and requires a bachelor’s degree or higher prior to starting the program.
Are community college credits acceptable?
Yes. We accept prerequisites courses from any regionally accredited university or college, including community colleges.
Can I take an online course to meet a prerequisite requirement?
Yes. We accept online courses from any regionally accredited university or college.
Are Advanced Placement (AP) credits accepted to fulfill prerequisite requirements?
No. Advanced Placement (AP) credits are not accepted to fulfill prerequisite requirements.
What are the admission requirements?
For more information regarding admission requirements, please visit the FDU PA Program Admissions section of our website.
If I have prerequisites in progress, can I still apply?
Yes. We encourage applicants to complete all prerequisites to applying but will review applications with up to two courses in progress. All prerequisites must be satisfactorily completed prior to enrollment.
Do the prerequisite courses require laboratory components?
We encourage, but do not require, laboratory components for prerequisite courses.
Is there a time expiration on prerequisites?
Yes. Prerequisite courses must be completed within ten years of submission of the CASPA application.
Is there a minimum requirement for patient care or healthcare related experiences?
Yes. The FDU PA Program requires a minimum of 400 hours of patient care, healthcare related experiences, or PA shadowing obtained through work or volunteer commitments.
What classifies patient care or healthcare related experiences?
The program accepts a wide range of patient care or healthcare related experiences including, but not limited to, certified athletic trainer, certified nursing assistant, ECG technician, emergency medicine technician/paramedic, medical assistant, medical scribe, patient care technician/assistant, pharmacy technician, phlebotomist, physical therapy aide, registered nurse, respiratory therapist, and ultrasonographer. These experiences do not have to be paid to count as patient care or healthcare related experiences but the greater the level of involvement, the better. We also encourage PA shadowing to better familiarize oneself with the profession.
Is documentation required for patient care or healthcare related experiences?
Yes. A completed Patient Care Experience Form must be included in the CASPA application for each category of patient care, healthcare-related experience, and PA shadowing. This form is available under the PA Program Admissions section, under Application Process, of our website at https://www.fdu.edu/academics/colleges-schools/pharmacy/pa/admissions/.
Is PA shadowing required?
PA shadowing is not required, but it is encouraged that applicants familiarize themselves with the profession.
Are letters of recommendations required?
Yes. Three letters of recommendations are required which may be provided from employers, supervisors, professors, or others who may be able to reflect on the applicant’s professional and educational achievements and potential.
I have taken a course twice because my first grade was a “C.” When calculating the GPA do you use the first grade or the second grade?
The grade point average includes all courses and therefore, both grades will be taken into account and calculated.

Application

What is the application deadline?
The application deadline for the FDU PA Program is September 17, 2021.
Do you require a supplementary application?
Yes. The FDU PA Program Supplemental Application is required and included within the CASPA application. There is no additional fee for the supplementary application.
Are GRE scores required and will it help to submit them?
No. GRE scores are not required and are not factored into the admissions process.

Admissions

Does the program participate in CASPA?
Yes. The FDU PA Program participates in CASPA. All applications are submitted through CASPA.
When does the admission process open?
The current CASPA application cycle opened on April 29, 2021.
Are interviews required?
Yes. Interviews are required and may take place in-person or through video conference. The most qualified applicants will be invited for a personal interview and from this group, a cohort of 40 students will be selected. The selection process will reflect on academic background and potential; healthcare, work, and volunteer experiences; leadership skills; and motivation, understanding of the PA profession and professional responsibilities, professional demeanor, and interpersonal/verbal skills.
Does FDU maintain an admission wait list?
Yes. All candidates will be notified of the admission committee’s decision which may include acceptance to the program or placement on a wait list. A ranked wait list from candidates who have been interviewed will be maintained. Placement on a wait list does not guarantee admission into the program. Should an accepted candidate withdraw from the program prior to the start of classes, the position will be offered to candidates on the wait list.

Advanced Placement

Can I transfer into the program or be admitted with advanced placement?
No. The PA Program does not grant prospective or enrolled PA students a waiver of required coursework or advanced placement. Due to the sequential construction of the PA curriculum, PA students are required to attend all courses and rotations in the didactic and clinical phases and cannot advance in the curriculum without completing all curricular components. While the program requires prerequisite courses (such as anatomy, physiology, microbiology, and genetics) prior to enrollment, those prerequisites do not substitute for more advanced medical science courses offered within the curriculum of the PA Program.
If I already have a medical degree, can I be admitted with advanced placement?
No. The PA Program does not grant prospective or enrolled PA students a waiver of required coursework or advanced placement. Due to the sequential construction of the PA curriculum, PA students are required to attend all courses and rotations in the didactic and clinical phases and cannot advance in the curriculum without completing all curricular components. While the program requires prerequisite courses (such as anatomy, physiology, microbiology, and genetics) prior to enrollment, those prerequisites do not substitute for more advanced medical science courses offered within the curriculum of the PA Program.

Clearance

Will I need to be medically cleared prior to enrollment?
Yes. Upon acceptance, a medical clearance form will be sent to you to be completed by your health care provider. This form is required to be completed and submitted prior to enrollment.
Will I need a background check prior to enrollment?
Yes. Upon acceptance, you will be required to complete a background check prior to enrollment.

PA Program

What degree is awarded at graduation?
A Master of Science in PA Studies is awarded upon satisfactory completion of all program requirements.
Can I work while enrolled in the program?
The PA Program does not maintain a policy that limits or prevents students from working, but does discourage students from working due to the time constraints of the intense curriculum and the requirements of the supervised clinical practice experiences.
Are students required to find their own clinical sites?
No. The PA Program coordinates all clinical practice sites and preceptors for all program required and elective rotations. Students expressing an interest in a new clinical site and/or preceptor not included in the program’s preceptor database must complete a request form and the site is reviewed and evaluated, in compliance with the site development policy for program approval.
What distance are the required clinical rotation sites from the FDU PA Program?
All required clinical rotation sites are within a 50-mile radius of the FDU PA Program. As part of the PA Program, PA students regularly travel off campus to clinical affiliate sites for supervised clinical practice experiences throughout New Jersey, New York and the region. For this reason, it is essential that students have regular, on-demand access to transportation to complete the supervised clinical practice experiences, integral components of the curriculum of the PA Program.
What are your NCCPA board pass rates?
With the anticipated graduation of our first class in May 2024, we will be posting our NCCPA PANCE Rate Summary Report to the program website. For more information, please visit the PA Program Mission, Goals, and Outcomes section of our website.
What is the rate of attrition of the FDU PA Program?
With the anticipated graduation of our first class in May 2024, we will be posting our attrition data to the program website. For more information, please visit the PA Program Mission, Goals, and Outcomes section of our website.
What are some of the unique aspects of the FDU PA program?
Some of the unique aspects of the FDU PA Program are: high tech and hands on learning (Physical Examination Lab, Clinical & Technical Procedure Lab, Simulation Lab, and Virtual Cadaver Lab with Anatomage tables); exceptional clinical experiences (17 months of clinical rotations including 5 weeks of simulation training with high fidelity manikins, part-task trainers, and virtual simulation); training at top health care facilities in Northern NJ and the Metropolitan NY area; participation in medical research; and an all inclusive tuition.
What is the cost of the program?
The tuition rate for full-time students entering January 2022 is $108,000 for the 29-month program. The tuition for the FDU PA Program is inclusive of tuition, fees, textbooks, and equipment. The medical textbooks, medical equipment, white jacket, and scrubs are provided to the PA student by the PA Program and included in the PA tuition.
Are there student services available at the university?
Yes. Student services such as Student Counseling and Psychological Services, Student Health Services, Career Services, Financial Aid, Computer & Library Resources, Academic Support Services, as well as Disability Support Services are available for students. For more information, please visit the FDU Florham Campus Student Services.

Accreditation

What is the program’s accreditation status?
FDU has applied for Accreditation – Provisional from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). FDU anticipates matriculating its first class in January 2022, pending achieving Accreditation – Provisional status at the September 2021 ARC-PA meeting. Accreditation – Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding accreditation-provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students. In the event that Accreditation – Provisional status is not achieved, the program will not start in January 2022.