Become a Preceptor | Chatham University, Pittsburgh, PA

Chatham University

Become a Preceptor

Chatham University Master of Physician Assistant Studies

Chatham University's Physician Assistant Program relies on the professional expertise of preceptors to provide students with hands-on experience and real-world patient interaction. Precepting may take place as community-based teaching in an office environment or in a hospital educational setting.


Preceptor Frequently Asked Questions

What is a preceptor?

A preceptor is a teacher or instructor who gives practical experience and training to a student. Preceptors are healthcare professionals who volunteer their time to teach health profession students in a one-on-one relationship. Students are required to complete this type of real-world training during their clinical rotations.

What makes an effective preceptor?

Effective preceptors should be able to create an atmosphere that allows the student appropriate learning opportunities. It's also important for preceptors to develop trusting relationships with their students and provide them with honest and regular feedback about their progress, asthis will help them grow into successful healthcare professionals.

How much time does it take to teach a student?

The time commitment needed to teach a student varies depending on the type of student and their clinical rotation. For more information on time commitments, please contact the Physician Assistant Program.

How will I know what to focus on with students?

Each student rotation will have different objectives. It is the student's responsibility to share these objectives with their preceptor at the beginning of the clinical rotation. Additional information about objectives can be found in the provided Preceptor Manual.

Am I eligible to be a preceptor?

You are eligible to serve as a preceptor if you meet the following criteria.

  • Licensed and in good standing with your state medical board.
  • Must have practiced in discipline for one year full-time prior to teaching students.
  • Willingness to assist students in achieving objectives of rotation

How can I become a preceptor?

For detailed information on how to become a preceptor, contact Jessica Anderson, PA-C at, Lea O'Keefe at or Vicki Yann at

What are the benefits of volunteering as a preceptor?

Some of the benefits of volunteering as a preceptor include the opportunity to help shape the next generation of professionals, give back to and promote the medical profession, and achieve personal gratification. Preceptors often state that working with students is a rewarding experience for both staff and patients. In addition, the Athletic and Fitness Center (AFC) is available for use by preceptors.

American Academy of Physician Assistants AAPA Category 1 CME badgePhysicians receive Category II CME Credits toward the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award (PRA). Physician Assistants receive Category I or II CME Credits. Chatham University PA Program is approved by the American Academy of Physician Assistants to award AAPA Category 1 CME credit to eligible physician assistant preceptors. This approval is valid for one clinical year beginning June 5, 2017. This program was planned in accordance with AAPA’s CME Standards. Physician assistants may earn a maximum of 10 hours of AAPA Category 1 CME credit for clinical precepting during any single calendar year.

View the preceptor benefits page from the Preceptor Handbook for more information on CME credits and other benefits.

Do I give the student a grade at the end of their rotation?

Upon completion of the clinical rotation, students are required to provide their preceptor with an evaluation form that is to be returned to Chatham. Feedback included on the evaluation form will influence the student's overall grade.