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Physician Assistant Program

Houston, Texas

Anatomy instruction at Baylor College of Medicine
Physician Assistant Program
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Advanced Placement

Advance Placement

The curriculum of the BCM PA Program is delivered in a sequential manner with each subsequent semester building upon the coursework completed in the previous one. As a result, the Program does not routinely consider applicants for advanced placement. However, applicants who believe they have a unique educational background or preparation deserving of advanced standing may request admission to the PA Program with advanced placement.

Petition for Course Credit

Advanced placement can occur in one of two ways. First, already enrolled students may petition for credit for courses in the curriculum of the PA Program if they were completed as part of another graduate program leading to a master's or doctoral degree. The written request must be received 30 days prior to the beginning of the term in which the course appears and accompanied by a letter from the BCM course director indicating agreement that the course in question is, indeed, equivalent to the BCM offered course. The completed request with accompanying documents, if approved by the Program Director, must be forwarded to the Registrar for action. The completed request with accompanying documents, if approved by the Program Director, is then forwarded to the Registrar for action. The BCM course director must in turn assign and file a grade for the course with the Registrar for entry on the transcript. Advanced placement through credit will not be considered if the course work being proposed is more than five years old.

Acceptance in Transfer

The second form of advanced placement involves the acceptance of students in transfer from other accredited graduate-level programs in the health sciences, in particular PA programs and medical schools. Because of the varied content and sequencing of courses in PA programs and medical schools, advanced standing placement is to the first day of the clinical phase of the curriculum. Students in good academic standing who seek advanced standing transfer into the BCM PA Program must accomplish the following:

  1. Complete the standard CASPA and Baylor Supplemental Applications to include all required, non-refundable fees.
  2. Provide a letter of reference from the Medical School Dean or Program Director supporting the application for transfer that documents academic standing status.
  3. Submit transcripts documenting attainment of the required grade point average and successful completion of all course prerequisites.
  4. Submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) results documenting attainment of minimum required scores to PA Program Admissions Office.
  5. Participate in three on-campus interviews with program faculty by intitation only.

Someone who has met the prerequisite and has been judged acceptable as a result of the interview process would be notified by the PA Program Admissions Committee of any offer of acceptance based upon space available.

International Medical Graduate Placement

The third form of advanced placement involves the accptance of graduates of international medical schools (IMGs). To be eligible for seeking advanced placement to the first day of the clinical phase of curriculum, the IMG candidate must be ECFMG certified and have passed all components of the USMLE within the past five years but not matched for residency training in the United States. IMG candidates who began but did not complete a US residency program are not eligible for admission through advanced placement. IMG candidates who seek advanced placement in the BCM PA Program must accomplish the following:

1. Complete the standard CASPA and Baylor Supplemental Applications to include all required, non-refundable fees.

2. Submit transcripts documenting attainment of the required grade point average and successful completion of all course prerequisites.

3. Submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) results documenting attainment of minimum required scores to PA Program Admissions Office.

4. Participate in three on-campus interviews with program faculty by invitation only.

An IMG candidate who has judged acceptable as a result of the interview process would be notified by the PA Program Admissions Committee of any offer acceptance based upon space available.

Competency Documentation

All accepted IMG applicants and student transfers from other PA programs or medical schools are required to complete the following subject exams and demonstrate the ability to effecively interview and examine a patient prior to beginning the clinical phase of the curriculum. The assesment process requires:
1. Successful completion of the PACKRAT and comprehensive Clinical Readiness Examination with a minimum passing grade of 76.
2. Successful completion of six subject exams in Clinical Medicine, Women's Health, Pediatrics, Clinical Prevention, Physical Diagnosis, and Problem Solving in Medicine with a minimum passing grade of 76.
3. Successful performance one comprehensive and one problem-specific patient work-ups with at least 76% accuracy graded by a program faculty member.
4. Meet with Program Director and Master's Paper Project Coordinator to formalize agreement about what additional steps must be taken to bring any research underway into line with BCM policies.
Failure to complete any one of the six subject or two skills exams will result in the denial of advanced placement and the requirment that the individual complete the entire 30-month curriculum of the BCM PA Program without exception.

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