Physician's Technician Schools and Colleges

Physician's technicians are commonly known as physician's assistants. These healthcare professionals work under the supervision of physicians and perform many of the same tasks. Keep reading to learn about what you should look for in a physician's assistant program and to view some U.S. schools that offer degrees in this field.

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the typical training for a physician's assistant is a master's degree; from there, students can pursue state licensure in order to practice. However, there are a few specialized bachelor's degree options available through some schools as well.

Schools with Physician's Assistant Programs

Physician's assistant degree programs can be found at these schools:

University/College Location Institution Type Degrees Offered* Tuition and Fees, In-State (2015-2016)**
Miami Dade College Miami, FL 4-year, primarily associate's, Public Associate's, Bachelor's Undergraduate: $2,834
University of Florida Gainesville, FL 4-year, Public Master's Graduate: $12,737
University of Wisconsin - Madison Madison, Wisconsin 4-year, Public Master's Graduate: $11,870
University of Washington - Seattle Campus Seattle, WA 4-year, Public Bachelor's, Master's Undergraduate: $11,839 Graduate: $16,278
University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Master's Graduate: $40,670
Wayne State University Detroit, MI 4-year, Public Master's Graduate: $15,853
University of Iowa Iowa City, IA 4-year, Public Master's Graduate: $9,693
Nova Southeastern University Fort Lauderdale, FL 4-year, Private not-for-profit Master's Graduate: $17,454
University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT 4-year, Public Master's Graduate: $7,222

Sources: *School website, **National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Prospective students should consider the following when choosing a physician assistant program:

  • Students should make sure that the school is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc.
  • Students may want to examine the pass rates for graduates of the program on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination administered by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants.
  • Students should research the quality of laboratories and facilities offered by various schools.
  • Students with scheduling constraints may want to consider programs that allow for part-time or online studies.

Master's Degree Programs

Almost all physician's assistant programs result in a Master of Science (MS) degree. Students take advanced courses in the biomedical sciences, including anatomy and physiology. They also gain practical training in a variety of clinical areas. The combination of classroom, laboratory and clinical experience generally fulfills the educational requirements for students to take the physician's assistant licensure exam in their state. For full-time students, these programs take two years to complete, but part-time programs take longer.

Undergraduate Degree Programs

Some non-traditional physician's assistant programs confer bachelor's and/or associate's degrees. For instance, one school offers a two-year associate's degree program as well as a four-year Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) program that prepares graduates for licensure. Another possibility is a specialized Bachelor of Clinical Health Services (BCHS) degree, which also includes the same classroom, biomedical and clinical experience requirements as traditional master's degree programs.

Physician's assistant programs can typically be found at the master's degree level, with undergraduate options at only a few schools. When choosing a physician's assistant programs, students should consider licensure pass rates and scheduling options.

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