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Frequently Asked Questions

Application & Prerequisite FAQs

Applicants will receive a link to RSVP and commit to their seat at the virtual interview event.  Upon submitting their RSVP, they will receive a link to their interview waiting room.  On the day of the event, students should access the waiting room link at their designated start time, where the program director will introduce the faculty and provide an overview of the program.  In small groups of 2-3 students, applicants will be divided into break-out rooms to be interviewed by faculty and alumni of the program.  The interview consists of five questions.  Following the small group interview, applicants will have the opportunity to meet current students and learn more about the campus experience.  Refer to the current cycle's admission requirements on the program page for the next interview dates.  Successful performance at the interview event is required for admission.

CASPA recommends having your application completed 4-6 weeks prior to the October 1st deadline. You may complete your application later but you risk further delays in processing and this could jeopardize your admissions status. We strongly encourage you to ensure your application is fully verified by the October 1st deadline.

CASPA calculates cumulative overall GPA based on every course taken, including repeated courses.  The same calculator is used for cumulative science GPA, but looking only at hard science coursework (biology, chemistry, physics, etc.).  Chatham uses the overall and science GPA's as calculated by CASPA.

We look at the highest prerequisite course grade when checking off required prerequisite coursework. 

  • In the 2021-22 cycle, the GRE exam is not required. 
  • All applicants must submit official CASPer Situational Judgment Test scores. CASPer is not a cognitive test, rather it is used by programs to screen potential applicants for key personal and professional characteristics in a more fair and reliable way. CASPer is an important tool that assesses the characteristics that Chatham’s PA program and the profession values highly (example: strong communication skills, ethical behavior, team-work, professionalism, and problem-solving skills). Learn more at takecasper.com.

Healthcare experience is not required. As part of the holistic review of the application, healthcare experience is considered along with other work and volunteer experiences.

We do not accept advanced standing or transfer of credits into the PA program.  All students must apply through CASPA and start in the first year of the program with the rest of the cohort.

No, you may have prerequisite courses still in process.  However, if accepted into the graduate program, all prerequisites must be successfully completed with a grade of "B-" or higher prior to June 1st of the matriculation year. You must indicate on the CASPA application any courses that you still need to complete and the terms in which you plan to complete them.  It is recommended that you not have more than 3 incomplete and/or lower than B- pre-requisite courses at the time of application.

Prerequisite courses must have been completed within the past ten (10) years as of the date of CASPA submission.  Applicants requesting any exceptions to this policy should email the graduate admission counselor with unofficial transcripts and a copy of their resume showcasing their healthcare experience.  There is no guarantee that we will waive having to re-take the prerequisite more recently.

All admissions requirements must be completed by June 1st of the year in which you are planning to enter the Program.  Any student who has not done so will be unable to begin the Program.  Students must provide evidence of completion (official transcript) of any coursework.

Multiple third-party scholarships for PA students are available here.

Program & Clinical Rotation FAQs

Chatham University's PA program has been providing an innovative educational experience since 1995.

No, the PA Program is completed as a full-time, cohort program only. Due to the intensity and time demands associated with the Program, students are strongly discouraged from working while in the Program. There may be classes that meet during evenings or weekends as the schedule permits and students must be available to attend these sessions. The intensity of study required 

Offers of acceptance are valid for one entering class only. Each request will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Deferrals can only be applied to the next term of admission for the program. Please contact the Graduate Admissions Office for details via email or call 800-837-1290.  

The MPAS program has developed a selection process that gives students input on where they complete nine clinical rotation experiences, as available.

Chatham PA students are required to complete nine clinical experiences. Seven of these experiences are prescribed; Internal medicine, Family practice, OB/GYN, Pediatrics, Emergency medicine, Psych, and Surgery. Students can choose two areas for their elective clinical rotations. Chatham PA students complete their rotations at clinical sites that are located in the Pittsburgh area, as well as across the country and internationally. Rotation sites include in- patient facilities, out-patient facilities, and long-term care settings. Travel to sites greater than 50 miles from campus most likely will be required.

Chatham's PA program is an innovative leader in Problem-based learning. It was one of the first PA programs to incorporate PBL into its curriculum. PBL is a dynamic small group learning process for the self-directed adult learner.

The focus of the first-year curriculum is the problem-based learning format for learning clinical medicine in the Essentials for the Physician Assistant courses. A mixture of lecture based, on-line, and experiential courses provide information about the basic medical sciences, pharmacology, research, physical diagnosis, and clinical documentation and procedures that complements the material covered in PBL.