Admission Requirements to the Nashville MHS in Physician Assistant Studies Program

Applications

CASPA

On April 1, 2024 CASPA (www.caspaonline.org) will open for applicants to apply to our PA program for the class starting in fall 2025. Application deadline for this PA class is March 1, 2025. 

CASPA Application

Supplemental Application

A supplemental application is required of ALL applicants to the South College PA Program. This is in addition to the CASPA application. Your application to South College is not complete, and cannot be processed until we receive your supplemental application. There is a $95 application fee.

Students will need to submit supplemental applications and pay the associated fees for each campus they apply to.

*There is a $95 application fee (made out to South College) that must accompany the supplemental application.

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Program Requirements

1  Completion of a baccalaureate degree (Science, Nursing, Health Science recommended) from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States, prior to matriculation.

Advantage: Master’s degree holders will receive higher standing.

2.  Documentation of the following – Overall college cumulative GPA of a minimum of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale, completion of all prerequisite coursework with a cumulative GPA of a minimum of 2.75, and completion of all science prerequisite coursework with a cumulative GPA of a minimum of 2.75.
Scoring will be assigned on a graduated scale:

Advantage: higher overall GPAs will receive higher standing within the admission process.

3.  It is preferred that applicants obtain patient care experience, sufficient to recognize the physical and psychological demands of dealing with patients and to appreciate the challenges and rewards of being a health care professional. Health care experiences should provide the applicant with a knowledge and/or orientation to the signs and symptoms of a variety of ill or injured patients. Health care experiences will be evaluated on an individual basis, with an emphasis on direct patient care.

Advantage: While there is no minimum requirement, higher overall patient care, shadowing and volunteer patient care hours, will receive higher standing.

4. Completion of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). The GRE code for The School of Physician Assistant Studies is: South College, Nashville: 4148 (Each section of the GRE is evaluated separately. Scoring will be assigned on a graduated scale; higher GRE scores will be assigned higher standing).

5. 3 Letters of Recommendation – one letter must be from one of these specific Health Care Providers: (Physician Assistant (PA), Medical Doctor (MD), Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO), or Nurse Practitioner (NP).

6.  Each applicant is required to compose a personal statement on CASPA expressing his or her desire to become a Physician Assistant. Each personal statement will be reviewed and scored, based on the following: Grammar, Clarity of Expression, Creativity, Understanding of PA role and expressed interest in primary care and/or underserved populations.

7. All students are required to have current Basic Cardiac Life Support (BLS) from the American Heart Association. South College will provide this training during orientation of during 1st Quarter classes. Most clinical sites do not recognize BLS training from other institutions. No substitutions are allowed

8. Strongly suggested courses include: Genetics, immunology, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and other advanced biology or chemistry courses. The successful completion of these additional courses will assist in your competitiveness.

9. In order for your application to be processed, we must receive the following items:

Verified CASPA application that includes:

  • Official GRE Scores
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Completion of the PA Supplemental Application and fee (see admission application for details and a link).

*Additional applicant information and details can be found on the Nashville PA Program Admissions Web page.

Additional Information for All Applicants:

  • Applicants who have completed a bachelor or masters degree through South College and meet our minimum admissions requirements, will be granted an interview (pending seat availability).
  • Applicants who hold United States military veteran or active duty status will be advantaged in the scoring of their initial application.
  • The Program does not award or grant advanced placement in the program based on prior education or clinical experience.
  • The Program is committed to conducting an equitable and unbiased admission process that can help provide opportunities to all groups of applicants across the United States. We strongly believe that PA education and healthcare should be represented by a diverse population (including but not limited to gender, race, ethnicity, age, physical abilities, sexual orientation and socioeconomic status.
  • Rolling Admission: The Program operates on a rolling admissions basis. Applications that meet the requirements will be reviewed when received, which allows us to interview students on a continuous basis during the application cycle.
Prerequisites Courses
  1. Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II with laboratory (minimum of 8 semester hours or 12 quarter hours)
  2. General Chemistry I and II with laboratory (minimum of 8 semester hours or 12 quarter hours)
  3. Biology I and II with laboratory (Mammalian, Cell, Molecular, or Human Biology). Upper Level Mammalian, Cell, Molecular, or Human Biology may be substituted for Biology II.  Minimum of 8 Semester or 12 quarter hours.
  4. Microbiology with laboratory (Minimum of 4 Semester or 6 quarter hours)
  5. English (Minimum of 6 semester hours or 8 quarter hours)
  6. Statistics, Algebra, Calculus, Finite Math, or other equivalent Advanced Mathematics (minimum of 6 semester hours or 8 quarter hours)
  7. Humanities and/or Social Science (minimum of 6 semester hours or 8 quarter hour)

Strongly suggested courses include: Genetics, immunology, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and other advanced biology or chemistry courses. The successful completion of these additional courses will assist in your competitiveness.

Advanced Placement courses may be reviewed for prerequisite credit by the South College Nashville PA Director of Academic Curriculum.

Selection for the Physician Assistant program is very competitive. It is anticipated that the successful applicant will generally exceed the minimum criteria for consideration for admission.

Applications are reviewed relative to undergraduate cumulative and pre-requisite course GPAs, health care experience (military or civilian), letters of reference, and GRE scores. Additional consideration is given to applicants with military medical experience. Personal interviews with the principal Physician Assistant faculty, practicing Physicians, and Physician Assistants from the community will be required for final admission and will be offered only to the most qualified individuals.

Mean Scores

  • Overall GPA                                                         3.75
  • Science GPA                                                        3.67
  • GRE scores (verb/quant/writ)                     150/150/3.9
  • Patience care experience (hours)               2712
Applying & Transfer of Credit

Applying

The South College Masters of Health Science Physician Assistant Studies Program participates in the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA).

CASPA provides a web-based service that allows applicants to submit a single application to multiple participating PA programs.

All official transcripts, GRE Scores (Nashville Code 4148), and letters of reference are sent directly to CASPA as part of the application process. Please visit CASPA at http://www.caspaonline.org/ for more information on how to apply for admission. We encourage you to visit CASPA’s Frequently Asked Questions section for answers to most common questions.

If you have not completed all required coursework at the time of your application with CASPA, any official transcripts including recently completed course work will have to be mailed directly to South College PA Program.

WE WILL SEND YOU AN EMAIL CONFIRMING YOUR APPLICATION ONLY WHEN YOUR APPLICATION IS COMPLETE (CASPA, SUPPLEMENTAL APPLICATION WITH APPROPRIATE FEES AND GRE SCORES RECEIVED).

Applicants with incomplete applications or applications that are not completed by the published deadline will not be considered.

You will be contacted if you are selected for a personal interview.

GRE scores are sent to CASPA and received by South College Physician Assistant Program through your completed CASPA application. It is the applicant’s responsibility to make sure their “Official” GRE scores are included in their CASPA application. Our GRE school codes is Nashville Code 4148.

Transfer of Credit

Applicants to the program should be aware that all courses within the professional didactic and clinical curriculum are required. The Masters of Health Science Physician Assistant Program at South College does not recognize international medical experience, or transfer credits from another Physician Assistant Program or Medical School. 

Questions

For any admissions questions not answered by our website, please contact us at:

South College Nashville
Physician Assistant Studies
Attn: PA Admissions
616 Marriott Dr.
Nashville, TN 37214

Email

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