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Physician Assistant student

Fill a critical need in the future of health care

Impacting health care by preforming primary care under physician supervision.


Physician Assistant Studies: Master of Science

Our physician assistant program takes place in two phases - didactic and clinical. Your first 12 months is spent in the classroom on the Vermillion campus. You will learn important medical concepts necessary to succeed. The final 12 months you will gain supervised clinical experience from licensed physicians and physician assistant preceptors in a number of clinical areas from family medicine to surgery to emergency medicine.

View Curriculum

Curriculum Map

Admission Requirements

Required exam: None

Application Requirements

  • Complete a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. International applicants with a degree outside of the U.S. must have the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree as verified by WES, and a minimum of 40 semester hours from a regionally accredited U.S. higher education institution.
  • Obtain a cumulative and prerequisite GPA of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale.
  • Complete the Graduate School application and submit along with the $35 application fee (Due Sept. 1).

Application Deadline:

  • Fall: September 1
  • CASPA Deadline: September 1

Degree Requirements

  • Completion of the Master of Science degree curriculum maintaining an average grade of "B" in all courses with no more than one third of the credit hours with grades of "C"
  • No grade below a "C" is acceptable for graduate credit
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better
  • Completion of a master's project, as deemed appropriate by the PA faculty and the Graduate School
  • Successful completion of a comprehensive examination for PA studies candidates, consisting of a written final examination and a clinical skills examination demonstrating that the student has met the minimum requirements for graduation and is a suitable candidate for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination

The Classroom & Beyond

  • Diverse Clinical Settings

    Our program uses clinical sites throughout the state to provide students a number of specialty rotations.

  • Prerequisite Requirements

    To be eligible for our program you need to have completed a set of prerequisite coursework and other requirements.

  • Scholarship Opportunities

    Rachele Schrader and Kayla Weisbeck were awarded the department's Doc Hays Scholarship, named for Dr. Robert Hays, a South Dakota physician and health care pioneer. Dr. Hayes was instrumental in getting legislation passed to create the physician assistant as a health occupation in the early 1970s.