Become a Physician Assistant in five years
The Physician Assistant (PA) program at Detroit Mercy is the first five-year entry level master's degree program in Michigan. "Entry level" means that you enter Detroit Mercy as a freshman and five years later you graduate with both a bachelor of science degree in Biology and a master of science degree in Physician Assistant studies.
Our traditional program requires two years after you complete a four-year undergraduate program and those who are not currently high school students or those with a bachelor's degree may apply directly to the graduate program.
Detroit Mercy's five-year accelerated track in the Physician Assistant program accepts a select number of highly-qualified entering freshmen. To find out more about the program, see below for the admission requirements.
For curriculum requirements, visit the Undergraduate Catalog.
Find out more about the PA profession online.
Alternatives to PA five-year: At Detroit Mercy, students can enter the Pre-PA program then apply to the graduate school.
Tradition of Excellence
The new five-year BS/PA Program option joins a rich tradition of academic excellence in the preparation of Physician Assistants.
The PA program began in 1972—one of the first in Michigan.
The Physician Assistant Program
The five-year accelerated BS-Bio/MS-PA program accepts a select number of highly-qualified entering freshmen. To remain in the program, students must maintain a 3.5 overall GPA and a 3.3 GPA in the sciences. In addition, students must demonstrate maturity, leadership, academic integrity and complete 1000 patient contact hours before beginning the graduate studies phase of the program. Students must pass the following criteria:
- Current seniors in high school are eligible for admission
- ACT of 26+ or SAT 1170+
- Cumulative High School GPA of 3.5+
- Science and Math GPA of 3.5+
- Participation at Visit Day with five-year PA Information Session
- Admission Essay and Interview
- Enrollment is capped at 15 freshmen per year
- The application deadline is November 1 during the senior year of high school.
- Select candidates are required to attend the December Visit Day which will include a five-year PA Information Session. Students will be asked to write a 500 word admission essay on this day. Essays will be reviewed by the PA admissions committee and will be used to determine interview candidates.
- The PA admissions committee will invite 35 finalists for an admission interview during the month of January.
- Interview candidates will be notified of their admission decisions in February.
The accelerated five-year PA Program may not be the best program option for all students. Applicants not selected for admission into the accelerated five-year Program may choose the regular four-year Pre-PA track and then apply to the PA school after earning their Bachelor degree.
Program Course Schedule Example
Fall Winter BIO 1200 Gen Bio I 3 BIO 1220 Gen Bio II 3 BIO 1210 Gen Bio Lab I 2 BIO 1230 Gen Bio Lab II 2 CHM 1070 Gen Chem I 3 CHM 1080 Gen Chem II 3 CHM 1100 Gen Chem Lab I 1 CHM 1110 Gen Chem Lab II 1 MTH 1400 Elementary Func. 3 CST 1000 Speech 3 ENL 1310 Acad. Writing 3 CIS 1000 Intro Comput. 3 PAS 1010 Intro PA Profession 1 15 17
Fall Winter CHM 2270 Org Chem I 3 CHM 2290 Org Chem II 3 CHM 2250 Org Chem Lab I 1 CHM 2260 Org Chem Lab II 1 BIO 2700 Genetics 3 BIO 4210 Microbiology 3 BIO 2040 Applied Nutrition 3 BIO 4220 Microbiol. Lab 2 HSA 3010 Intro. Hlth. Care 3 PSY 2500 Dev. Psych. 3 Objective 4 3 BIO 2900 Biostat 3 Objective 4 3 16 18
SUMMER YEARR 2 CLINICAL TRAINING, NREMT certification and GRE/PA Application
Fall Winter PHY 1300 Physics I 3 PHY 1320 Physics II 3 PHY 1310 Physics Lab I 1 PHY 1330 Phys. Lab II 1 BIO 4740 Cell & Mol. 3 BIO 4630 Physiology 3 BIO 4750 Cell & Mol. Lab 2 ETH 3580 Med. Ethics 3 HUS 4410 Multicult. Underst. 3 Objective 4 3 HSA 4610 Hlth. Care Econ 3 Objective 5 3 Objective 5 3 CEC 3000 1 18 17
SUMMER YR 3 SCI 391 CLINICAL CO-OP (2cr)
Year 4—PA Graduate
Fall Winter BIO 5430 Adv Human Anat 2 HLH 5300 Pharmacology I 2 BIO 5450 Human Anat Lab 2 HLH 5500 Rsrch. Meth. in HC 3 HLH 5900 Adv Pathphys 3 HLH 5700 Hlth.Care Issues 3 HLH 5100 Pt. Eval. Pract I 3 PAS 5200 Pt. Eval. Pract II 3 PAS 5240 Clin. Med. I 3 PAS 5250 Clin. Med. II 3 PAS 5360 Diag.& Therap. 1 PAS 5370 Diag. & Therap. II 1 14 15 SUMMER 4 HLH 5310 Pharmacology II 2 HLH 5320 Hlth. Promo. 3 PAS 5260 Clin. Med II 3 PAS 5300 Pt Eval & Pract. 3 PAS 5380 Diag and Therap. III 1 12
Year 5—PA Graduate
Fall Winter PAS 5800 Clin. Rotation I 8 PAS 5810 Clin. Rotation II 8 AS 5870 PA Seminar I 1 PAS 5880 PA Seminar II 1 9 9 SUMMER 5 PAS 5800 Clin. Rotation III 8 PAS 5890 PA Seminar III 1 9
Total number of credit hours = 170
Courses listed as Objective # are Core Curriculum requirements
Link to Undergraduate Course Descriptions
Five-Year Master's Degree Track Curriculum
The program has two phases: undergraduate and graduate.
The three years of medically related undergraduate science courses, pre-requisite introductory health care courses along with all of the components of the core curriculum and general education requirements for a bachelor's degree are included in the undergraduate phase. The undergraduate phase also includes a required co-operative education component that students complete during the third summer.
The clinical training requirement provides training and certification as basic emergency medical technician or nurse's aide. After completion of certification, students will gain practical skills by working in the field during summer term year three.
To remain in good academic standing and progress to the Professional Phase of the program, a student must maintain a 3.5 overall GPA and a 3.3 in sciences.
The GRE/PA Application and interview is completed in year 3. Students in good academic standing having completed the entire undergraduate phase are eligible for the graduate phase of the program.
The Graduate Phase
The Graduate Phase (years four and five) is 24 months of continuous study and consists of additional graduate course work in the medical sciences and related educational experiences, which address the physical, interpersonal and psychosocial needs of patients. During the fifth year, students acquire medical expertise through a broad range of intensive clinical rotations, community health education and health projects with medically underserved communities. Each student completes the course of study with a preceptorship in primary care medicine.
Upon completion of the full five-year program, graduates are eligible to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination.