Physician Assistant Program
Master's Project/Capstone Project
Evidence-based practice has emerged as the standard by which established and future providers will be expected to execute the delivery of medical care. Several learning experiences are used to develop the students’ ability to identify questions to be answered through investigation and properly convey their findings to others. These skills are essential to engaging in practice-based learning and improvement over the course of one’s professional career.
Throughout the program, students will be introduced to the concepts of evidence based practice and will be given the opportunity to apply these concepts during the course of their training. These skills will be critical to their practice as health care providers.
Knowledge of the research process is explored in-depth during the Research I and II courses. Students will learn to evaluate the quality of published literature dealing with disease diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, harm and cost-effectiveness. Upon completion of the courses, students will identify, investigate, and answer a question using the research method coupled with statistical strategies under the mentorship of faculty members. The research topic must be generated from an actual case in which the student was involved.
Each student must identify a topic for their research. Research leading to the Masters Project may include:
- Retrospective chart reviews to answer questions regarding clinical outcomes or to further interpret and compare laboratory results with current practice protocols.
- Prospective studies assessing outcomes of a clinical or educational intervention.
- Surveys to gather data on issues such as physician assistant attitudes, roles, and/or education or patient satisfaction regarding a clinical or educational intervention.
- Meta-analyses/case studies to draw upon the results of other research and literature reviews in addressing a specific research question.
Based on their research, students will be required to develop a paper of publishable quality or a poster of a quality acceptable for submission to a peer reviewed entity. Upon completion, the class will present these projects to the faculty and students of the SAHP.