Admission Requirements

Begin your career in health care

Missouri State’s physician assistant program is a graduate, entry-level curriculum that leads to the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies. This 24-month course of study prepares graduates for primary care practice.

You may enroll only on a continuous, full-time basis. Course work begins in January of each year. Each cohort includes no more than 36 students.

Application process

Our program participates in the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). We do not require any supplemental application. Your verified application will be reviewed by our program. It may take up to four weeks for CASPA to complete verification after you submit your application. You will wish to follow up directly with CASPA to ensure that your information is complete and accurate and that your application has been verified.

Completed CASPA applications are first reviewed by the admissions coordinator for complete prerequisite work, PA-CAT (recommended), GRE or MCAT scores and other required information. You will be contacted if any additional information or clarification is needed.

Applicants are expected to represent themselves honestly to the program. Falsifying academic or professional materials or omitting or misrepresenting facts are grounds for ineligibility for admission or dismissal from the program if discovered after matriculation.

The admissions committee will then review and rate completed applications. The highest-rated applicants will receive invitations to on-campus interviews in September. Successful candidates will be notified after the interview sessions.

Preference is given to applicants who complete all prerequisites at the time of application. Weighted consideration is given to the following: academic potential (overall GPA, science GPA, last 60 hours GPA, PA-CAT/GRE/MCAT), quality and duration of health care experience, upper division courses in anatomy and physiology, supplemental life science courses beyond required prerequisites, service experiences (includes local charity volunteer, medical or non-medical volunteer experiences in a foreign country, U.S. military service, AmeriCorps or Peace Corps service), leadership experiences (includes student, professional, civil or U.S. military leadership), rural upbringing, strong motivation to practice in rural/underserved areas, graduates of Missouri State University, first generation college students, Missouri residence, diverse background and/or cultural experiences, educational experiences or long-term residence in a foreign country, or previous applicants who have strengthened their applications.

Using CASPA to apply

The application portal will be open May 1 - July 15, 2024, for individuals interested in applying for the class beginning in January 2025. The early consideration deadline is May 24, 2024. The final deadline to submit your complete application to CASPA is July 15, 2024.

CASPA will forward your application to Missouri State for consideration only when it has received the following information:

  • Electronic application
  • All official transcripts
  • At least two of the three required letters of recommendation
  • Payment

You are encouraged to apply early. You must allow up to four weeks for a completed and verified CASPA application to reach our program; all verified applications must be received by August 12, 2024 in order to be considered for the class beginning January 2025. If you submit your CASPA application too close to the July 15, 2024 deadline, it may not reach our program in time for a full evaluation. Applications that are submitted and complete by May 24, 2024 will be reviewed for early consideration.

Any missing information, such as a third letter of recommendation or your PA-CAT/GRE/MCAT score, should be submitted as soon as possible for timely evaluation.

Letters of Recommendation

Three professional or academic letters of recommendation should be submitted to CASPA from individuals who can attest to your potential as a physician assistant. Acceptable references include, but are not limited to: healthcare provider, supervisor, professor, co-worker, advisor. Family members and friends should not provide recommendation letters.

Standardized Testing requirement

If you are applying for the class beginning January 2025, your official PA-CAT (recommended), GRE or MCAT score report must be available in your application by July 15, 2024.

If you are completing the GRE, please use the MSU PA CASPA GRE code 2189. GRE scores are transmitted directly to CASPA.

Typical class profile

In 2024, the typical entering student to the Missouri State University Physician Assistant Studies Program earned a Bachelor of Science with an overall grade point average of 3.7, including a science GPA of 3.7 and a last 60 hour GPA of 3.8. The typical student also had more than 5,000 hours of paid, direct patient health care experience prior to admission and GRE scores (combined) of 302 for the verbal and quantitative sections.

PA-CAT scores averages are unavailable as they are a newly recommended exam. MCAT scores have been accepted in lieu of GRE, but data on MCAT averages is also unavailable.