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Physician Assistant Program - Orlando

Admissions Requirements

Prospective students are selected by the Committee on Admissions (COA), which considers the overall qualities of the applicant. Areas of consideration include:

  • personal motivation,
  • interpersonal skills
  • knowledge of the PA profession,
  • quality and length of prior health care experience,
  • academic performance and level of achievement,
  • recommendations/evaluations
  • life experiences.

Personal interviews are offered to the most qualified applicants to assess interpersonal and communication skills, maturity, altruistic attitude and commitment to a PA career. Due to the popularity of the PA profession there has been a tremendous increase in applicants, which makes this a very competitive process. Applicants are urged to apply early in the application cycle. The NSU PA Program in Orlando conducts interviews from September through March. Completing all of the minimum requirements does not guarantee the applicant an interview. Candidates for the incoming class are accepted throughout the interview process.

Application Procedure

The Physician Assistant Program participates in the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA) for the receipt and processing of all applications. CASPA takes no part in the selection of students. CASPA applications are completed online at CASPA.

Questions regarding completion of the online application may be directed to CASPA's email address or by telephone at (617) 612-2080.

The CASPA application may be submitted as early as April 27, the year prior to the admission cycle. The CASPA application deadline is December 1 to be considered for admission the following May.

Supplemental Application Form

Once the CASPA application has been received by Nova Southeastern University, a supplemental application will be made available online. Your complete supplemental application must be returned and received no later than January 15 in order to be considered for admission for the May entering class. Once we receive the GRE scores, the supplemental application, and the $50 fee, your file will be reviewed by the admissions counselor.

  1. Prior to matriculation, applicants must have received a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a four point grading scale and a minimum science GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 grading scale as calculated by CASPA at the time of application. 

    Course work, particularly required and recommended prerequisites, completed in the recent past is deemed to be more relevant to the related content in the professional curriculum and serve as better preparation than course work completed in prior years. Academic preparation is considered on a case by case basis in the context of health care experience, etc.

    Recommended courses are regarded as important elements of comprehensive preparation for application and success in the curriculum.

    Introductory and survey courses are not accepted to fulfill the required science prerequisites.
  2. Required Courses: The College requires applicants to earn a grade of C or better in each of the following required subjects (science prerequisites must be completed by the end of the fall semester prior to matriculation):
    • College Math – 3 semester hours (Statistics does not satisfy this requirement)
    • English (including 3 semester hours of English Composition) – 6 semester hours
    • Humanities/Arts - 3 semester hours (examples include; philosophy, religion, foreign language, law, ethics, literature, performing/visual arts, e.g. music, dance, film, theater, band, opera, painting, drawing.)
    • Social Sciences - 9 semester hours (examples include; anthropology, psychology, sociology, political science, economics, history, geography, criminology, archeology, communication, cultural studies, law, ethics) 
    • General Inorganic Chemistry (I & II) including lab - 8 semester hours
    • Microbiology including laboratory - 4 semester hours
    • General Biology (or Zoology) including lab - 4 semester hours
    • Human Anatomy & Physiology - 6 semester hours*
    • Biochemistry - 3 semester hours
    • Human Genetics – 3 semester hours
    • Medical Terminology - 1 semester hour

*If you take the combination class of Human Anatomy & Physiology I (A&P I), then must complete the sequence by taking Human Anatomy & Physiology II (A&P II).

  • Note: Graduates of foreign institutions where English is not the primary language of instruction must present transcripts showing at least 18 semester hours of study from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States. Of these 18 semester hours: three must be in English Composition, English Literature, and Public Speaking (courses do not include ESOL). The remaining nine semester hours can be any course of the applicant's choosing (excluding physical education).

  1. Recommended Courses:
    • Biochemistry lab - 1 semester hour
    • Anatomy lab - 1 semester hour.
    • Physiology lab - 1 semester hour
    • Introduction to Statistics – 3 semester hours
  2. GRE Standardized Test: All applicants are required to submit official scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) general test through the CASPA admissions portal. The CASPA GRE code for the Orlando program is 0964. The GRE must have been taken within the past 5 years and must be taken early enough for official scores to be received in the admissions office by the supplemental application due date of January 15th. Applications will not be considered complete without GRE scores.

    For further information, contact:
    Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  3. Basic Cardiac Life Support:
    We no longer require proof of current certification in Basic Cardiac Life Support. All students are required to take BLS/BCLS, ACLS and PALS (pediatrics) during the program regardless of previous certification status or training.
  4. Computer Requirement:
    All students are required to have a laptop computer and printer. The computer must have the following minimum specifications:
    • Combo DVD and RW drive
    • Sound capability and speakers
    • Internet connection with private Internet service provider (ISP) for universal access to the Internet
    • Wireless capability
    • Printer
    • Webcam (internal or attached)

      The following are recommended features:
    • Intel Core i5 or i7 processor
    • Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10.7
    • Microsoft Office 2007 with PowerPoint, Word, and Excel minimum
    • Surge suppressor electrical outlet
    • Flash drive

      Note: Mac computers may have difficulties integrating with the required PDA software.
  5. Computer Skills:
    All applicants must show evidence of computer skills through course work or self study prior to the end of the first term. Students may obtain instruction through the NSU Microcomputer Laboratory or other training facilities.
  6. Foreign Transcripts:
    Applicants who have attended foreign universities or colleges are required to have their academic credentials evaluated for U.S. institution equivalence by either World Education Services, Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. or Josef Silny and Associates, Inc.

    World Education Services
    P.O. Box 01-5060
    Miami FL 33101
    212-966-6311 (N.Y. Office)

    Josef Silny & Associates, Inc.
    International Education Consultants
    7101 SW 102 Avenue
    Miami, FL 33173
    Ph: (305) 273-1616
    Fax: (305) 273-1338 / Translation fax: (305) 273-1984

    Educational Credential Evaluators
    P.O. Box 514070
    Milwaukee , WI 53203-3470
  7. Healthcare Experience:
    Prior health care experience is highly recommended and is considered for admission. Applicants must submit verifiable information about prior health care experience in order to be competitive for admission to the program. The most current PA program brochure, university catalog and application information should be consulted for the most up-to-date information.
  8. Transcripts:
    Official transcripts from the Registrar of all institutions where course work was completed OR attempted must be mailed directly to CASPA by the institutions. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that arrangements are made for these transcripts to be sent.
  9. Letters of Recommendation:
    • Two letters of recommendation are required:

      •    One letter from a physician assistant
      •    One letter from a healthcare professional (e.g. physician assistant, physician, dentist, pharmacist, registered nurse, nurse practitioner, physical or occupational therapist)

      Recommendations submitted by relatives, friends, personal healthcare providers, or personal friends of the family are not acceptable.

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