Rigorous, real-world preparation for improving patients’ lives

The 25-month physician assistant program emphasizes the interrelationships of functions and organs and heightens students’ awareness of the unique social, psychological and medical needs of each patient.

The curriculum is divided into two major parts: 13 months of classroom study and 12 months of clinical experiences. Students complete course work the first 12 months and then have 12 months of supervised clinical practice experiences (SCPEs). During the 25th month, students present their capstone projects and complete the final SIM, SPAL, and written comprehensive assessment activities.

In addition to basic science and clinical medicine courses, the program features education in medical ethics, health care delivery systems, epidemiological principles and scientific research. Generally, this sequence will be followed, although the faculty reserves the right to make modifications in title, content, and order or length of teaching time.

The clinical curriculum begins with first-year clinical experiences starting during the fall term. Clinical experiences offer a break from the rigors of the classroom and let students apply the learned material to the clinical setting. Second-year clinical education is offered through an organized and comprehensive curriculum in which students are assigned to supervised clinical practice experience (SCPE) sites. These sites are located throughout Iowa, the Midwest, and the United States. Students may also be able to complete one of their clinical experiences internationally through the global health department.

We are proud of the breadth and depth of our clinical offerings and have developed a philosophy of early and regular reinforcement of the basic skills and fundamentals of the profession that are essential to the success of our graduates and the physician assistant profession.

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