Academic Programs Catalog

College of Osteopathic Medicine

Department of PA Medicine

John McGinnity, Director

The Department of PA Medicine in the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State University offers a 27-month curriculum leading to a Master of Science Degree in PA Medicine. PAs are medical professionals who diagnosis illness, develop and manage treatment plans, prescribe medication, and often serve as a patient’s principal healthcare provider. PAs practice in every medical specialty and collaborate in a team-based environment to provide medical care to a diverse patient population.

The curriculum leading to the degree includes four semesters of classroom and laboratory course work, and three semesters of community-based clinical courses. The curriculum is divided into two components: the preclinical curriculum, presented in the first four semesters which focuses on the basic medical sciences and detailed coverage of the human body systems, and the development of clinical skills required to practice medicine; and the clinical curriculum during the final three semesters of the 27-month PA Medicine program which includes clinical training in community hospitals, clinics, and private practice offices affiliated with the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine PA Medicine from across the State of Michigan.


Graduate Study

In addition to meeting the requirements of the University and the College of Osteopathic Medicine, students must meet the requirements below.

PA Medicine - Master of Science


To be considered for admission to the Master of Science degree in PA Medicine, an applicant must submit the following:

  1. The MSU Graduate School application.
  2. The CAPSA (Central Application Service for Physician Assistants) application.
  3. A transcript showing a completed undergraduate degree.
  4. A personal statement describing interest and experience in PA Medicine, including career goals.
  5. Three letters of reference.
  6. A test of English language proficiency for students for whom English is not a first language. The minimum requirement TOEFL score may vary from the general university requirements. The exam must be taken by May 1 of the application cycle year and the score received by June 15 of the same year. A score of 100 on the IbT (Internet based testing) must be attained.
  7. A transcript showing completion of prerequisite courses in anatomy, biochemistry, developmental psychology, English composition, general chemistry, human physiology microbiology with laboratory, and statistics. Students are allowed only two course retakes.
Students will be evaluated by an MSU College of Osteopathic Medicine PA Medicine screening team who will employ a rubric inclusive of the evaluation of academic performance, interview outcome, extracurricular experiences, letters of recommendation, and personal statements to determine eligibility for admission. Membership in professional organizations are preferred, but not required. Final admission decisions will be determined by the screening team which consists of PA Medicine and College of Osteopathic Medicine faculty, as well as community healthcare providers.

Requirements for the Master of Science Degree in PA Medicine
The Master of Science degree in PA Medicine is available only under Plan B (non-thesis). Students must complete 108 credits as specified below:
1. Complete all of the following courses (108 credits):
PA  801 PEAK Study Skills  1
PA  810 Clinical Human Anatomy  8
PA  828 Genetics  2
PA  832 Microbiology  2
   PA  839 Pathophysiology  2
   PA  851 Physical Examination I  3
   PA  852 Physical Examination II  3
   PA  853 Physical Examination III  3
   PA  854 Physical Examination IV  3
PA  855 Procedures and Diagnostics I  1
   PA  856 Procedures and Diagnostics II  1
   PA  857 Procedures and Diagnostics III  2
   PA  858 Procedures and Diagnostics IV  2
   PA  864 Pharmacology  2
   PA  871 Medicine I  3
   PA  872 Medicine II  4
   PA  873 Medicine III  4
   PA  874 Medicine IV  4
   PA  880 Medical History and Documentation  3
   PA  881 Medical Ethics  2
   PA  882 Primary Care Applications  2
   PA  883 Introduction to Clinical Rotations  1
   PA  884 Business of Healthcare  2
PA  900 Pediatrics Clinical Practicum  4
   PA  908 Behavioral Health Clinical Practicum  4
   PA  910 Clinical Elective  4
PA  920 Family Medicine Clinical Practicum  4
PA  940 Internal Medicine Clinical Practicum  4
PA  950 Internal Medicine Subspecialty Elective  4
   PA  951 Women’s Health Clinical Practicum  4
   PA  953 Surgery Clinical Practicum  4
   PA  955 Surgical Subspecialty Elective  4
   PA  957 Emergency Medicine Clinical Practicum  4
   PA  958 Ambulatory Medicine Elective  4
   PA  990 PA Medicine Competence Experience  1
PA  992 Public Health and Disease Prevention  1
   PA  993 Osteopathic Manipulation Medicine 1
   PA  998 Research and Evidence Based Medicine  1
2. Successfully complete a final evaluation.