Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS)

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Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) Overview

Chatham University’s Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) program is an 85-credit program designed to produce highly skilled and competent healthcare providers. During the first year of the program, you will complete two didactic terms before continuing on to clinical rotations which comprise your second year. At the end of your second year, you will return to campus to finish coursework.
Degrees Offered
  • MPAS
Program School
Important Dates

Application Deadline

All applications will be considered on time if they are fully verified in CASPA by October 1. All applications must be submitted through CASPA. Additional information can be found in the below Admission Requirements section.

Credits Required

85 (6 terms)

The MPAS is a full-time cohort program that begins in the fall semester and is completed in six terms over 24 months.

Cost Per Term

$17,151

Cost consists of program tuition (cost per term times number of terms) as well as any applicable University and degree-specific fees. View the detailed program tuition, including information about our tuition lock program.

PANCE Success Rate

97%

Graduates of the program have achieved a 97% average first-time pass rate over the past five years on the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE).

Explore the MPAS Degree:

The MPAS program is part of Chatham’s School of Health Sciences. The School of Health Sciences has developed a strong reputation for its sought-after healthcare professionals. From high first-time certification rates to advanced clinical aptitude, our graduates enter their careers ready to meet the needs of patients and contribute to improving the quality of care their organizations deliver.

Learn more about Chatham's MPAS program admissions process, requirements (including prerequisites and recommended coursework), articulation agreements, and information for international applicants:

View Admission Details

PAS602: Clinical Application of Basic Sciences I

An in-depth study of topics in gross human anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology, supporting the instruction in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses. Instruction will involve basic sciences with an emphasis on the clinical application of the material, utilizing a systems approach.

PAS600: Essentials for the Physician Assistant I

Essentials for the Physician Assistant I is a problem-oriented approach to primary and specialty care medicine. This course incorporates medical diagnosis and treatment; pharmacotherapeutics; psychosocial assessment and management; patient education; management of patients with chronic illness; clinical decision making; and prevention of disability and disease through detection, education, and prevention. The course is divided into three segments, Units 1, 2, and 3.

PAS637: Clinical Skills for the Physician Assistant I

This skills-based course will cover history, physical examination, documentation of patient data and diagnostic aspects of the head and neck, integumentary, lymphatic, musculoskeletal, pulmonary and cardiac systems. History taking will also be introduced. Course format will include lectures, demonstrations, online simulation modules, and high-fidelity simulation. 

View Full Curriculum

You can never teach all of medicine to any one student. If I can teach a student to think, to learn, and to be a compassionate caregiver, then I have made a difference.

— SUSAN HAWKINS, MSED, PA-C, professor emeritus

Our Faculty

If one word could best sum up Chatham's faculty, it would be engaged. Professors bring experiences to relate the course lessons to real-world situations.

Full Faculty
Photo of Alyssa Abebe
Associate Program Director, Associate Professor
Photo of Nicole Brown
Associate Director of Curriculum & Instruction, Assistant Professor
Photo of Brenda Ealey
Associate Director of Clinical Education, Assistant Professor
Photo of Kerri Jack
Clinical Coordinator, Assistant Professor
Logo: Chatham C
Assistant Professor, Clinical Coordinator
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Tuition Lock Program

To reflect our commitment to your continuous enrollment and progress towards earning your degree, we’ve implemented a tuition lock program for the MPAS this year, meaning that as long as you are continually enrolled, what you pay in tuition your first year is what you will pay for your second. 

Explore Tuition Lock Program : Checkerboard 1 - Tuition Lock Program
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Interprofessional Education (IPE)

Interprofessional education involves students from two or more health professions learning together during their training. The goal of IPE is to enhance communication and decision-making, allowing various domains of knowledge to complement each other.

Learn About IPE : Checkerboard 3 - Interprofessional Education (IPE)
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Clinical Rotation Experience

Clinical rotations are a core experience of Chatham’s MPAS training. Through rotations in Family Practice, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Psychiatry/Behavioral Health, OB/GYN, Surgery, and various electives, students are able to become well-rounded practitioners and solid members of healthcare teams, as well as fine-tune their career aspirations.

Explore Clinical Rotations : Checkerboard 4 - Clinical Rotation Experience
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Admitted Student Profile (Fall 2021)

  • Number matriculated: 59
  • Median age: 22
  • Gender identification: 93% female, 7% male
  • Ethnicity identification: 2% Hispanic, 5% Asian, 5% Black or African American, 93% White
  • Residence: 61% Pennsylvania, 39% out-of-state
  • Average cumulative overall GPA: 3.74
  • Average cumulative science GPA: 3.69

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Vision & Mission

The vision of Chatham's MPAS program is, "To strive for excellence in physician assistant education whose graduates are known as outstanding clinicians in the community and leaders in the profession trained by faculty who are recognized for developing and researching innovative curricular methods."

View Full Vision and Mission : Checkerboard 8 - Vision & Mission
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Integrated Degree Program

Chatham University offers a 3+2 Integrated Degree Program (IDP) for prospective undergraduate students looking to accelerate their path toward enrolling in the master’s program. Highly qualified first-year applicants may be eligible for admission to the PA program based on high school and undergraduate performance. Interested students should work with the undergraduate admissions team for assistance with applying to the IDP.

Learn About IDP : Checkerboard 9 - Integrated Degree Program
Rolling grassy hills, historic red brick buildings, and multicolored autumn trees decorate Chatham University's Shadyside campus in Pittsburgh.

Accreditation

The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) has granted Accreditation-Continued status to the Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Chatham University. Accreditation-Continued is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards. The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website here. Once directed to the website, click on the document for further information about Chatham’s accreditation history.

View Full Accreditation : Checkerboard 10 - Accreditation
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Support a PA Student

Professor Emerita Susan Hawkins and PA Program Director Judy Truscott launched the first ever PA Student Award in honor of Susan’s retirement from Chatham University. The purpose of the Student Award is to provide recognition and financial assistance to a deserving PA Student who has completed the didactic phase of the program. 

Give Now : Checkerboard 12 - Support a PA Student
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Pi Alpha Honor Society

Chatham's PA program has a chapter within the Pi Alpha Honor Society. The motto of Pi Alpha is "Scholarship, Service, Leadership." The organization is committed to lifelong learning and participation in intellectual life.  

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Getting More Comfortable With Death and Dying

Last winter, Victoria Kissell, MPAS ’18, was able to add a facet to her education that not many PAs are able to claim. “We don’t learn how to deal with death in school,” she says. “Because we’re focused on making people better, we tend to push it aside, even though it’s inevitable. Through the Jewish Healthcare Foundation’s Fellowship in Death and Dying, I was able to talk to people who handle it every day, so that if I do have a patient who is terminally ill, I’m more comfortable talking about it.”

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Diverse Career Opportunities

Recent MPAS graduates have gone on to work in hospitals, medical centers, military bases, and specialized clinics throughout the country including Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH; Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Baltimore, MD; Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA; Healing Hands Ministries, Dallas, TX; Peak Vista Community Health Centers, Colorado Springs, CO; OIC Family Medical Center, Raleigh, NC; South Texas Rural Health Services, Cotulla, TX;  Squirrel Hill Health Center, Pittsburgh, PA, and many more.