LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program


Admission Process


All applications must be processed through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). GRE Scores must be sent directly to the CASPA website. Unsolicited information or letters of recommendation will not be added to any application. All application materials will be gathered by CASPA and mailed to the program after completion and all information is verified. The LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program will then review applications for accuracy and compliance with published prerequisites. Those applications not meeting minimum criteria will not be considered for an interview. PA Program faculty will screen and rank all eligible candidates against pre-determined criteria. The final stage of the process involves face-to-face interviews with PA Program faculty.


The specific criteria used to select an application for further advancement are set by the PA Program Admissions Committee. Applications which are complete, meet all the published prerequisites, are sent through the CASPA system, verified  and mailed to the program by CASPA by the published deadline will be submitted for further advancement. Admission to the LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program is on a competitive basis. Satisfactory completion of the minimum requirements is required. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission into the Program.

Applications are eliminated for the following reasons:

  • failure to submit an application, have it verified and mailed through CASPA by the deadline posted on the LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies website
  •  failure of application verification and mailing by CASPA by the published deadline
  • aptitude scores and grade point averages that do not reach the required minimums
  • missing transcripts or letters of recommendation
  • inability to complete course prerequisites prior to matriculation
  • failure to meet and or maintain the program technical standards
  • failure to accumulate 80 hours minimum of healthcare experience

Faculty Screening Criteria

Each application is graded against ten criteria using an eleven point scale [from zero to ten]. The screening criteria include: communication, critical analysis, commitment to service, teamwork, role awareness, leadership, care provider attributes, intellectual capacity, maturity, and motivation. Evidence for scoring is derived from the applications, letters of recommendation, work, and extra-curricular activities described in the application. The scores assigned result in the Invitation Rank Score. Invitations are extended to those applicants that the admissions committee perceives to be competitive for admissions.


After review of all application materials, the Admission Committee will invite qualified applicants to interview on campus. This interview may include interviews based on the Multiple Mini Interview technique or may include a panel interview and the performance of an onsite writing example. The Admission Committee will evaluate all application materials and the results of the interview and select the most qualified candidates. All invitations for interviews are generated and communicated to qualified applicants through CASPA and the LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program. This occurs in writing and via email within one week of generating the Invitation Rank Score. The dates for interviews are decided by the PA Program. Invitees are required to acknowledge their acceptance of the offer for interview to the program within seven days. A maximum of 120 applicants are interviewed.
The ten criteria used by the faculty interviewers to rate candidates include: communication, critical analysis, commitment to service, teamwork, role awareness, leadership, care provider attributes, intellectual capacity, maturity, and motivation. Each interviewer then completes an Interview Form that generates a mean score that is factored into the Final Acceptance Rank Score.


The Program Director, the Admissions Committee and the Medical Director will then review all materials and recommend one of the following:

  • Acceptance (for those who have completed all prerequisites and are highly recommended for admission)
  • Conditional acceptance (for those who need to complete prerequisites)
  • Wait list (applicants who meet the minimum requirement and who may be offered acceptance if the best qualified candidates do not fill all available seats)
  • Non-admission (applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements or who are not competitive within the applicant pool)

Each of the following qualities is viewed as essential to support the development of a physician assistant. When evaluating an applicant's readiness to matriculate in the LSUHSC-NO Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program, members of the admissions committee consider closely all information available with particular attention to the following elements:

  • Rigorousness of courses taken in undergraduate school
  • Science and overall grade point average
  • Scores received on the Graduate Record Examination
  • Responses to questions contained in the application
  • References from advisors, professors, and employers
  • Leadership experience
  • Community service experience
  • Communication skills
  • Interest in the problems of people
  • Compassion
  • Personal integrity
  • Motivation for a career in health care
  • Recommendations of faculty interviewers

The accelerated nature of the graduate-level curriculum offered by LSUHSC-NO for students enrolled in the Master of Physician Assistant Studies Program requires that applicants seeking admission provide adequate evidence of their ability to undertake an advanced course of study.

Louisiana Residence Status

Residents of the State of Louisiana are given preference in the admissions processes of all LSU Health Sciences Center certificate and degree programs. For certain highly competitive curricula, non-resident applications will not be accepted.

Residence status is determined by the Office of the Registrar and is based upon guidelines established by The LSU System in Permanent Memoranda 31.


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