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  • Home / Academics / Find a Program / Master of Medical Science (MMSc) Physician Assistant / Frequently Asked Questions | Ursuline - Liberal Arts College in OH

    Master of Medical Science (MMSc) Physician Assistant

    More program details

    Apply Now Visit Ursuline Find a Program Request Info

    Master of Medical Science (MMSc) Physician Assistant Frequently Asked Questions

    When does the program start?

    New cohorts begin each January.

    Is the program available to complete on part-time basis?

    No, the program is only offered on a full-time basis.

    What is the minimum GPA requirement?

    Ideal candidates will complete all recommended courses with a grade of “B” or better and have a 3.2 or better GPA.

    Do you have a supplemental application?

    Yes, the supplemental application can be completed within the CASPA application.

    Do I need healthcare experience to complete community service?

    Yes, applicants are required to have at least 250 hours, 50 of which must be with a PA. Community service is highly recommended.

    Can I apply if I still need to complete recommended coursework?

    Applicants with outstanding degree completion and/or one outstanding prerequisite course will be considered if successfully completed prior to matriculation. All admission requirements must be completed by September 1 to apply for the current cycle. Applications with incomplete requirements submitted after September 1 will not be considered for admission. Only application materials submitted through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA) will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee.

    Do you have early decision or rolling admissions?

    Applications will be reviewed when CASPA opens on a rolling basis for the purpose of interview scheduling. The deadline for complete application submission is September 1 with most interviews occurring prior to the application deadline. Applications with incomplete requirements submitted after September 1 will not be considered for admission. Students should be encouraged to apply early as CASPA verification process may take up to 4-6 weeks.

    Is the program accredited?

    The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Ursuline College.

    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.

    Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class. The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website at: Accreditation-History-Ursuline-College.pdf (arc-pa.org)

    Am I required to provide my own clinical sites and/or preceptors?

    Clinical Site Solicitation Policy A3.03

    The program does not require students, prospective or enrolled to provide or solicit clinical sites or preceptors. Students may make requests regarding a potential clinical site or preceptor, however the program with the guidance of the Coordinator of Clinical Education are responsible for vetting all locations and preceptors and making final decisions on approval or denial of each site according to program policies.

    How does the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program evaluate prerequisite coursework taken at other institutions?

    At the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program, we strive to maintain a fair and consistent admissions process for all applicants. To ensure that prerequisite coursework meets our program's requirements, we consider courses taken at accredited institutions other than Ursuline College to be equivalent if they meet the following criteria:

    The course content and learning objectives closely match those of the corresponding course at Ursuline College.

    The course is at least equivalent in credit hours and level (e.g., lower or upper division) to the required course at Ursuline College.

    Does the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program have a list of approved prerequisite courses from other institutions?

    Currently, we do not maintain a list of approved prerequisite courses from other institutions. We evaluate each applicant's coursework on a case-by-case basis to determine whether it meets our program's requirements.

    Can I submit my course syllabi for evaluation to determine if my prerequisites meet the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program's requirements?

    Due to the high volume of applications we receive, we are unable to review syllabi for every applicant. However, in cases where an applicant has taken a course that they believe may be equivalent to our prerequisites, we may request a copy of the course syllabus for further evaluation. Syllabus review requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

    Who is responsible for ensuring that prerequisite coursework meets the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program's requirements?

    It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that their prerequisite coursework meets our program's requirements. We encourage applicants to review our prerequisite course descriptions carefully before applying. If an applicant is unsure whether a course will be accepted, they should consult with their academic advisor or the institution where the course was taken.

    Who makes the final decision on whether a course satisfies the Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program's prerequisite requirements?

    The Ursuline College Physician Assistant Program reserves the right to make the final determination on whether a course satisfies our prerequisite requirements. In some cases, we may request additional information or documentation from the applicant or the institution where the course was taken to make an informed decision.

    For prerequisite courses that include a lab component, do both the lecture and lab sections need to have a grade of B or better? For instance, could I have a C in the lecture but an A in the lab and still meet the requirement?

    Our prerequisite requirements state that applicants must earn a B or better in all prerequisite courses, with the exception of Organic Chemistry which requires a C or better. This applies to both the lecture and laboratory components of any given class.
    In your example, a C in the lecture section would not meet our minimum grade requirement, even if it was offset by an A in the corresponding lab. Each individual component (lecture and lab) must meet the B or better threshold independently.

    If a student receives below a B in either the lecture or lab portion of a prerequisite course, they would need to retake that component of the class and earn a B or higher in order to fulfill our prerequisite expectations. We do not accept blended or averaged grades between lecture and lab sections.

    Please review our prerequisite course list carefully to ensure you are meeting our criteria for each course. If you have any questions about a particular class or situation, we recommend reaching out to our admissions office for clarification.

    I noticed that your admission requirements state that applicants must have a B or better in all prerequisite courses, with the exception of Organic Chemistry which requires a C or better. My grades in some prerequisites are lower than a B. Should I still apply? Will I be considered if I don't have a B or better in every required course?

    Our current admissions criteria require applicants to have earned a B or better in all prerequisite courses, with the sole exception of Organic Chemistry which requires a C or better. These grade minimums are strictly enforced by our admissions committee to ensure we maintain a high academic standard.

    If you do not have a B or better in all prerequisite courses (besides Organic Chemistry), you are still welcome to apply to our program. However, please understand that not meeting our minimum grade requirements significantly reduces your likelihood of being invited for an interview or receiving an offer of admission.

    For applicants in this situation, we strongly encourage you to consider retaking classes to improve your prerequisite grades. Courses can often be retaken at community colleges, online institutions, or other local universities. Not only will improving your grades strengthen your application, but mastering this foundational knowledge will help prepare you for the rigorous challenges of PA school.

    Our prerequisite grade requirements are in place to ensure that all admitted students are well-prepared for the demands of our curriculum. Historically, applicants with lower grades in prerequisite courses have faced greater academic challenges in PA school. By retaking courses and solidifying your understanding of key concepts, you will be better positioned for success in our program.

    Ultimately, the choice to apply is yours, but we want all applicants to have realistic expectations of their admissions chances based on our published criteria.

    Can a biology course count towards the English prerequisite if my university designates it as a writing-intensive course and grants English credit for it?

    In order to maintain a fair and consistent evaluation process for all applicants, our admissions committee does not review or make judgments on individual courses for specific candidates prior to the formal application process. We must ensure that all prospective students are treated equally and have access to the same information.

    Our prerequisite requirements are clearly outlined on our website, including the specific courses and credit hours required for each subject area. In general, courses must be taken within the relevant academic department and cover the expected foundational content to fulfill our prerequisites.

    While we appreciate that some universities may offer interdisciplinary courses or allow credits to be applied in creative ways, our admissions process relies on a standardized interpretation of prerequisite coursework to ensure fairness across all applicants.

    If you have any doubt about whether a course meets our prerequisite criteria, we advise erring on the side of caution and taking a class that clearly aligns with our stated requirements. You are also welcome to reach out to our admissions office for general guidance on what types of courses typically fulfill each prerequisite category.

    However, please understand that we cannot provide a definitive answer on whether a specific course will count towards your prerequisites until our admissions committee has had the opportunity to review your complete application, including all official transcripts, through CASPA.

    We appreciate your understanding and cooperation as we strive to maintain the integrity and equity of our admissions process for all prospective students.

    How do you consider graduate coursework and GPAs in the admissions process? Does a graduate GPA get combined with the undergraduate GPA? Can strong graduate grades compensate for a lower undergraduate GPA?

    Our admissions requirements state that applicants must have a minimum 3.2 overall GPA and 3.2 science GPA from their undergraduate degree. We do not blend undergraduate and graduate GPAs.

    However, we do consider advanced graduate coursework as part of our holistic application review process. For example, if an applicant received a "C" in an undergraduate biology course but later earned an "A" in a more advanced graduate-level biology class, the graduate performance would be taken into account.

    That said, applicants must still meet our minimum undergraduate GPA requirements of 3.2 overall and 3.2 in science courses to be eligible for admission. Strong graduate grades alone cannot compensate for undergraduate GPAs below our stated minimums.

    Please note that we are unable to review transcripts prior to a complete application being submitted and verified through CASPA. If you have additional questions about your specific academic background, we encourage you to apply and complete the CASPA process so our admissions team can fully evaluate your credentials.

    Can I meet with someone from the admissions team to discuss my application or candidacy for the program?

    In order to maintain a fair and equitable admissions process for all candidates, our program does not offer individual meetings with prospective applicants. We strive to ensure that no applicant receives preferential treatment or additional information that could give them an advantage over others.

    We understand that many prospective students would appreciate the opportunity to meet with our admissions staff and faculty. However, given the large volume of applicants we receive each year, it would be impossible for us to accommodate individual meetings while still guaranteeing a level playing field.

    Instead, we encourage all interested individuals to carefully review the detailed information available on our website. Our site provides comprehensive information about our program, curriculum, admissions requirements, and application process. We strive to make our admissions criteria and expectations as transparent as possible so that all applicants have access to the same information.

    Once you have submitted your application through CASPA, our admissions team will carefully review your materials. If we require any additional information or have specific questions about your application, we will reach out to you directly. At that time, we may request further documentation or even invite you for an interview, depending on the strength of your application.

    Please be assured that our commitment to fairness does not diminish our desire to support and assist prospective students. We are deeply invested in helping all applicants put their best foot forward in the admissions process. However, we must balance that commitment with our responsibility to maintain an equitable evaluation system for everyone.

    Why can't I meet privately with the admissions committee?

    We cannot accommodate private meetings because it would suggest some applicants are getting preferential access or additional opportunities to influence the committee, undermining faith in an equitable process. With limited staff resources, spending more time with certain applicants is also unfair and fails to standardize how candidates are assessed.

    Don't I deserve an explanation if I was a qualified applicant who got rejected?

    We deeply empathize with applicants who expected an acceptance letter. However, legally and ethically we have strict limits in discussing specifics about applicant evaluations to protect confidentiality. We assess all candidates against the same criteria, but cannot disclose details comparing applicants.

    What if I have more questions about my application that weren't answered?

    We encourage reviewing our website and other materials which comprehensively outline our admissions process and expectations. You may also submit general questions which we can add to our FAQs. However, we cannot provide individualized feedback or comparisons discussing why one applicant gained admission over another.

    Why can other graduate programs meet with applicants about decisions but you can't?

    Our physician assistant program receives exponentially more qualified applicants than slots available, heightening concerns over equity and confidentiality. The priority of preserving an unbiased process that fairly evaluates all candidates outweighs any nominal benefits to individual meetings. We follow best practices shaped by our accreditor and legal counsel.

    Wouldn't meetings help applicants feel the process is more transparent?

    We appreciate that desire for transparency. However, private meetings often raise unrealistic expectations over the explanations we can provide without legal and privacy issues. There is also greater risk of inappropriate comparisons or breaches of confidential data that, once occurring, undermine applicant rights and institutional accountability.