Master of Physician Assistant Program – California

WCU’s hybrid physician assistant program at the Center for Graduate Studies (CGS) in Los Angeles combines online, on-campus, and clinical-site learning experiences.

Master of Physician Assistant Hybrid Program, CGS-Los Angeles

24 Months

Earn your Master of Physician Assistant degree in 24 months

9 Clinical Rotations

Complete 9 in-person, 5-week clinical rotations to gain real-world experience

108 Credits

Complete 108 credits to earn your Master of Physician Assistant degree

Hybrid Master of Physician Assistant Program Highlights

Continued Growth

Distance education combined with on-site experiences to help you gain hands-on practice

Stethoscope

Simulation suite with industry-current equipment where you can practice patient care techniques

Real Life Icon

Innovative tools, including virtual dissection practice through the cloud

One-on-one tutoring and resources to help you study for your licensure exam

Why Choose WCU’s Hybrid PA Program in California?

WCU’s Master of Physician Assistant (MPA) program at the Center for Graduate Studies (CGS) in Los Angeles is designed to provide a diverse and robust PA education with maximum flexibility for students.

Because our program is delivered in a hybrid modality, students can complete coursework online while also benefitting from experiential learning through on-campus immersion activities and a full year of in-person clinical rotations.

Learn in an environment that emphasizes person-centric care, interprofessional education, collaboration, communication, and leadership development. With our technologically advanced facilities, our innovative learning tools, and extensive wrap-around services providing student support, we’re here to help you achieve your goals.

Overview: Master of Physician Assistant Program – California

Program Details

Program Pace - California

On-Campus

108 Credits

24 Months

6 Trimesters

Curriculum

First Year

Our hybrid program combines online learning with in-person campus labs for hands-on experience.

01SPRING TRIMESTER
PA501Professionalism in Medicine I with Lab
PA504Applied Anatomy & Physiology I with Lab
PA510Holistic Medicine & Patient Care I
PA513Holistic Medicine & Patient Care I Lab and Clinical Immersion
PA516Problem Based Clinical Application Lab I
02SUMMER TRIMESTER
PA531Professionalism in Medicine II with Lab
PA534Applied Anatomy & Physiology II with Lab and Clinical Immersion
PA540Holistic Medicine & Patient Care II
PA543Holistic Medicine & Patient Care I Lab and Clinical Immersion
PA550Problem Based Clinical Application Lab II
PA558Behavioral Medicine with Lab
03FALL TRIMESTER
PA561Professionalism in Medicine III with Lab
PA564Applied Anatomy & Physiology III with Lab and Clinical Immersion
PA570Holistic Medicine & Patient Care III
PA573Holistic Medicine & Patient Care III Lab and Clinical Immersion
PA576Problem Based Clinical Application Lab III
PA580Health Communications
PA590Clinical Preparation Skills Lab with Clinical Immersion

Second Year

For the Supervised Clinical Practice Experiences, students have 3, five week courses each trimester. These are not lock-step and the order will be determined by the faculty.

Students have to take 2 of the three elective courses.

04SPRING II TRIMESTER
PA660Advanced Clinical Seminar I
PA664Certification Preparation I
05SUMMER II TRIMESTER
PA670Advanced Clinical Seminar II
PA674Certification Preparation II
06FALL II TRIMESTER
PA680Advanced Clinical Seminar III with Clinical Immersion
PA684Certification Preparation III
04-06TRIMESTERS CLINICAL ROTATIONS
PA662Family Medicine Supervised Clinical Practice
PA668Internal Medicine Supervised Clinical Practice
PA672Pediatric Medicine Supervised Clinical Practice
PA678Women’s Health Supervised Clinical Practice
PA682Behavioral Medicine Supervised Clinical Practice
PA686Surgery Supervised Clinical Practice
PA688Emergency Medicine Supervised Clinical Practice
PA690ESupervised Clinical Practice Experience Elective I
PA692ESupervised Clinical Practice Experience Elective II
PA694ESupervised Clinical Practice Experience Elective III
Tuition & Financial Aid

How Much Does the LA Master of Physician Assistant Program Cost?

We know school is a substantial commitment. At WCU, we want to equip you with all the information you need to make the right decision for your future.

Our goal is to give you a clear understanding of LA MPA tuition costs so you can be well-informed as you navigate the application and enrollment process. To assist you in your decision, we provide a breakdown below of the MPA program costs in Los Angeles at West Coast University.

We offer several financial aid options — including scholarships, grants, and loan access — to help support you through your studies.

For more information about your financial support options, visit our financial aid page.

Master of Physician Assistant (MPA) - CA

Tuition and Fees
Degree TypeMaster of Physician Assistant
Total Program Credits108
Program Length (Full-time)6 trimesters
Tuition Cost (per credit)$1,019
Total Tuition Cost$110,052
Program Fee ($1,500 per trimester)1 $9,000
Technology Fee ($300 per trimester)2$1,800
Estimate for Materials & Supplies3$1,270
Estimate for Uniform Fees3$350
STRF Fee4 (non-refundable; CA residents only) $305
Application Fee (non-refundable)$0
Total Program Costs (non-CA residents)$122,472
Total Program Costs (CA residents) $122,777

 

Indirect Costs

8 Month Academic Year5
with parentsoff campus
Federal Student Loan Fees$220$220
Course Materials (Personal Electronic Device-1st year only)
$1,000$1,000
Living Expenses (Food & Housing)$3,552$11,840
Transportation$2,456$2,456
Miscellaneous Personal Expenses$8,048$8,048
Total$15,276$23,564

 

8 Month Academic Year - MPA clinical rotation5
with parentsoff campus
Federal Student Loan Fees$220$220
Living Expenses (Food & Housing)$3,552$18,840
Transportation$5,456$5,456
Miscellaneous Personal Expenses$8,048$8,048
Total$17,276$32,564

1 Program Fee covers the establishment, on-going management, scheduling, coordination, site visits, and any other expenses related to the PA clinical relations.  

2 Technology Fee includes eBooks and online course materials, 24/7 technical support, Office 365, learning management system, mobile app, and portal access.

3 The Estimate for Book, Uniform, and Supply fees reflect the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price totals compiled in and are subject to change. Supplies become student purchases once issued to student. Students who drop or have been dismissed after supplies have been issued will assume ownership for these items and will not be eligible for refunds. For details on all of the supplies, contact the Bursar Office.

4 Effective April 1, 2022, the Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) assessment rate will be two dollars and fifty cents ($2.50) per one thousand dollars ($1,000) of institutional charges.

The State of California established the Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) to relieve or mitigate economic loss suffered by a student in an educational program at a qualifying institution, who is or was a California resident while enrolled, or was enrolled in a residency program, if the student enrolled in the institution, prepaid tuition, and suffered an economic loss. Unless relieved of the obligation to do so, you must pay the state-imposed assessment for the STRF, or it must be paid on your behalf, if you are a student in an educational program, who is a California resident, or are enrolled in a residency program, and prepay all or part of your tuition.

You are not eligible for protection from the STRF and you are not required to pay the STRF assessment, if you are not a California resident, or are not enrolled in a residency program.

It is important that you keep copies of your enrollment agreement, financial aid documents, receipts, or any other information that documents the amount paid to the school. Questions regarding the STRF may be directed to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, 1747 N. Market Blvd. Ste 225 Sacramento, CA 95834, (916) 431-6959 or (888) 370-7589.

To be eligible for STRF, you must be a California resident or enrolled in a residency program, prepaid tuition, paid or deemed to have paid the STRF assessment, and suffered an economic loss as a result of any of the following:

  1. The institution, a location of the institution, or an educational program offered by the institution was closed or discontinued, and you did not choose to participate in a teach-out plan approved by the Bureau or did not complete a chosen teach-out plan approved by the Bureau.
  2. You were enrolled at an institution or a location of the institution within the 120-day period before the closure of the institution or location of the institution or were enrolled in an educational program within the 120-day period before the program was discontinued.
  3. You were enrolled at an institution or a location of the institution more than 120 days before the closure of the institution or location of the institution, in an educational program offered by the institution as to which the Bureau determined there was a significant decline in the quality or value of the program more than 120 days before closure.
  4. The institution has been ordered to pay a refund by the Bureau but has failed to do so.
  5. The institution has failed to pay or reimburse loan proceeds under a federal student loan program as required by law or has failed to pay or reimburse proceeds received by the institution in excess of tuition and other costs.
  6. You have been awarded restitution, a refund, or other monetary award by an arbitrator or court, based on a violation of this chapter by an institution or representative of an institution, but have been unable to collect the award from the institution.
  7. You sought legal counsel that resulted in the cancellation of one or more of your student loans and have an invoice for services rendered and evidence of the cancellation of the student loan or loans.

To qualify for STRF reimbursement, the application must be received within four (4) years from the date of the action or event that made the student eligible for recovery from STRF.

A student whose loan is revived by a loan holder or debt collector after a period of noncollection may, at any time, file a written application for recovery from STRF for the debt that would have otherwise been eligible for recovery. If it has been more than four (4) years since the action or event that made the student eligible, the student must have filed a written application for recovery within the original four (4) year period, unless the period has been extended by another act of law.

However, no claim can be paid to any student without a social security number or a taxpayer identification number.

5 The purpose of the Cost of Attendance (COA) is to provide students and families with an estimated cost to attend West Coast University. The COA includes both direct and indirect cost estimates. Direct costs are paid directly to West Coast University and are shown separately for each program. Indirect costs are not paid to West Coast University and are estimates students may use to budget expenses they may incur while attending school. While actual indirect costs may vary, West Coast University estimates these amounts based on the number of months in an academic year and whether students will live with parents or off campus.

NOTE: Applicants are conditionally accepted to the Master of Physician Assistant program until a non-refundable $250.00 good faith payment for a Seat Deposit has been submitted. The Seat Deposit is not a separate charge but will be credited to the program costs should the student not cancel their enrollment. The University will retain the full amount of this deposit should the student cancel their enrollment at any time, for any reason. Seat Deposits may be paid by credit card, debit card, money order, or cashier's check made payable to West Coast University. A Seat Deposit will be collected for each enrollment and cannot be applied to or carried over to enrollments for other programs or start terms. At their discretion, the Executive Director may refund the full Seat Deposit for unusual or unexpected circumstances that would warrant a full refund. 

Admission Requirements

The WCU MPA-CA program may not be available to residents in certain states. Applicants must have proof of residency in one of the following approved states: Arizona, California, Florida, Hawaii, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont. Please contact your admission advisor for more information.

A student applying for admission to a graduate program at West Coast University must:

  1. Submit a completed application for admission to WCU and through Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA).
  2. Submit official transcripts for all previous higher education through CASPA.
  3. Participate in an admissions interview.
  4. Meet all requirements by the application deadline to be considered.
  5. Meet all program specific admissions requirements.
  6. Complete the enrollment agreement if accepted to the program.

Program specific application requirements:

  1. Obtain a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university, by November 1st.
  2. Complete all aspects of the CASPA application including the personal statement and program-specific questions.
    • List all college coursework taken (including foreign coursework and transcript evaluation from World Education Services (WES)) on the CASPA application.
    • Submit three letters of recommendation. These letters of recommendations must be able to provide feedback regarding your preparation for a profession in medicine including professionalism, work ethic, ethics and character, and academic preparation. Letters of recommendation must come from: medical providers (MDs, DOs, PAs, etc), professors, supervisors/employers, and mentors. Letters must not come from personal contacts such as family members, neighbors, personal medical providers, and religious leaders.
  3. Meet the Technical Standards for admissions as follows:
    • Candidates must be able to observe and participate in demonstrations and experiments in the basic sciences.
    • Candidates must have sufficient use of the sensory, vision, hearing, motor, and somatic sensation necessary to perform a physical examination including point-of-care techniques.
    • Candidates must be able to perform examination activities such as palpation, auscultation, percussion, the administration of intravenous medication, the application of pressure to stop bleeding, the opening of obstructed airways, and the movements, equilibrium, and functional use of the sense of touch and vision.
    • Candidates must be able to learn to respond with precise, quick, and appropriate action in emergency situations.
    • Candidates must have the interpersonal skills necessary to communicate with accuracy, clarity, efficiency, and sensitivity.
    • Candidates must have the skills to be able to analyze and synthesize information, solve problems, and reach diagnostic and therapeutic judgments.
    • Candidates must be able to acknowledge evaluation and respond appropriately.
    • Candidates must possess the interpersonal skills to develop rapport and positive relationships with patients.
    • Candidates must possess basic technology and digital literacy.
    • Candidates are expected to possess the perseverance, diligence, and consistency to complete the PA Program curriculum. Candidates, therefore, must be able to tolerate physically taxing workloads, to function effectively under stress, to adapt to changing environments, to display flexibility, and to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in the clinical problems of many patients.
  4. Pre-admission academic standards:
    • Have obtained a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution recognized by the United States Department of Education with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher and a Biology/Chemistry/Physics (BCP) grade point average of 3.0 or better.
    • Applicants must provide documentation of having achieved 500 hours of observation, volunteer, and/or work in a clinical setting(s). (Waived for COVID restrictions)
    • Must earn a “B” or better in all prerequisite courses. Non-science major/introductory courses are not accepted.
    • Baccalaureate degree and prerequisite courses must be completed by October 1 prior to matriculation.
    • For prerequisite courses, advanced placement, transfer of credit, pass/no credit, CLEP or credit for experiential learning will not be accepted.
  5. Applicants for the Master of Physician Assistant – California program must have completed specific prerequisite coursework from a regionally accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
  6. Required Prerequisite Courses:
    1. Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II with lab (6 semester credits or 8 quarter credits) OR Human Anatomy I with lab (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits) AND Human Physiology I with lab (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits)
    2. General Chemistry I and II with lab (6 semester credits or 8 quarter credits)
    3. Microbiology with lab (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits)
    4. Human Genetics (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits)
    5. Organic Chemistry with lab (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits)
    6. Biochemistry (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits)
    7. Statistics (3 semester credits or 4 quarter credits) (Introductory level accepted for this prerequisite only).
  7. Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification by the American Heart Association prior to matriculation and current certification maintained throughout the program.

Preference will be given for:

  • Strong GPAs
  • No course repeats, withdrawals, or incompletes
  • History of healthcare experience (waived due to COVID-19 pandemic)
  • Strong written communication skills
  • Evidence of commitment to serving the underserved
  • Proven success taking online coursework

International Applicants

International applicants who are not U.S. citizens and who are living in the U.S. must be prepared to provide proof of legal U.S. residency during the application process. Applicants must provide proof of legal U.S. residency prior to any offer of acceptance.

International Applicants with a degree earned outside the U.S. must meet the following criteria:

  1. Submit your foreign degree coursework for a transcript evaluation by World Education Services (WES), submitted through CASPA.
  2. All required prerequisite courses must be taken at a regionally accredited U.S. higher education institution and be verifiable through official transcripts.
  3. Official TOEFL scores submitted to CASPA with a minimum score of 100 (Internet-based) AND at least 25 in each section (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). TOEFL scores are only valid for two years.

Transfer Policy

The Master of Physician Assistant-California program does not allow for transfer credit.

Candidate Seat Deposit

Applicants that are conditionally accepted to the Master of Physician Assistant program will be required to submit a $250.00 good faith payment for a Seat Deposit. The Seat Deposit will be credited to your program costs. Should you cancel your enrollment within seven calendar days (excluding holidays) of enrollment, the university will retain $175.00 of this deposit. Deposits may be paid by money order or cashier’s check made out to West Coast University.

Master of Physician Assistant – Program Requirements

  1. Obtain background clearance.*
  2. Undergo one or more comprehensive drug screening test.*
  3. Strict adherence to the Bloodborne Pathogens Policy and Exposure Control Plan.
  4. Submit documentation of immunizations, vaccinations, and tuberculosis clearance.*
  5. Provide and maintain a current Basic Life Support (BLS) and ACLS certification.*
  6. Expect the hours and days to vary depending on the trimester schedule.
  7. Expect the trimester schedule to be final and non-negotiable. If a student refuses a clinical assignment, the student will be dismissed from the program.

*Information regarding these requirements is provided during the application process and at the program orientation.

Academic Calendar

Academic terms begin in Spring, Summer, and Fall. To see a list of term start and completion dates, view the Academic Calendar.

Additional Information About Our MPA – Los Angeles Program

 The Master of Physician Assistant – California hybrid program at the Center for Graduate Studies provides an intentionally immersive learning environment focused on clinical and cultural competence, personal wellness and insight, and ethical responsibility.

Through our unique approach to transformational education and student support, we help prepare medical professionals who demonstrate competent, compassionate, holistic, person-centric care with respect and equity to all persons and communities served.

We help prepare professionals who will contribute to the advancement of the physician assistant profession through leading, lifelong learning, and service, within and across their communities.

California Physician Assistant Program Goals

In alignment with our program goals, the WCU California physician assistant program strives to:

  1. Select competent, qualified, and diverse applicants
  2. Provide intentionally immersive educational opportunities in support of student engagement and deep learning
  3. Provide experiences with diverse patient care opportunities to prepare students for compassionate, inclusive, person-centric care
  4. Meet or exceed the national average for the first-time pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE)

Get more information by reviewing our goal measurement and benchmarks.

Master of Physician Assistant Program Requirements

  1. Obtain background clearance.*
  2. Undergo one or more comprehensive drug screening tests.*
  3. Strict adherence to the Bloodborne Pathogens Policy and Exposure Control Plan.
  4. Submit documentation of immunizations, vaccinations, tuberculosis clearance.*
  5. Provide and maintain a current Basic Life Support (BLS) and ACLS certification.*
  6. Expect the hours and days to vary depending on the trimester schedule.
  7. Expect the trimester schedule to be final and non-negotiable. If a student refuses a clinical assignment, the student will be dismissed from the program.

*Information regarding these requirements is provided during the application process and at the program orientation.

Immunizations and Health Screening

The West Coast University Physician Assistant – California DE program policy on immunization and health screenings policy states students must have their immunization and health screening up to date with formal documentation from their healthcare provider. Our process is based on current CDC guidelines for healthcare professionals. Students must provide proof of screening, vaccination, and/or immunity for the following:

  • Completed and signed health clearance form from the student’s primary physician.
  • Tuberculosis (TB) – TB screening procedures vary based on a student’s immunization/disease history.
  • Students who do not have a history of TB infection/disease or have not had positive TB test results in the past (regardless of BCG vaccination status) are required to have an initial TB skin test (TST) or QuantiFERON TB Gold or TSpot blood test within three months of matriculation (completed by student). Students who have a skin test only will be required to complete a second skin test within the first month of the program (provided by the school). (The second TST must be placed at least seven days after the first.) Annual testing is required thereafter.
  • Students who have a positive history of TB disease must provide documentation of positive TB skin test (TST) results and TB treatment and must complete the program TB symptoms form upon matriculation. Students must complete the symptoms form annually. Based on the results of the symptoms form, additional action may be required.
  • Students who have tested positive for TB infection must provide documentation of positive TB skin test (TST) results and TB treatment, a negative two-view chest x-ray, and must complete the program TB symptoms form upon matriculation. Students must complete the symptoms form annually. Based on the results of the symptoms form, additional action may be required. An additional negative two-view chest x-ray may be required by some clinical affiliates and will be the financial responsibility of the student.
  • Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis (Tdap/Td) – Evidence of one dose of Tdap within 10 years of all program activities. If a student has received Td only, then a one-time dose of Tdap must be received, then boost with Td every 10 years.
  • Measles, Mumps, & Rubella (MMR) – Students born after 1957 must show immunity through documentation of a series of two doses of MMR vaccine (must be administered at least one month apart) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titer results. Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series.
  • Varicella (chickenpox) – Evidence of immunity is documentation of two doses of the varicella vaccine (administered at least 28 days apart with the last dose completed at least two weeks prior to clinical start date) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titers. Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series.
  • Hepatitis B – Evidence of immunity is documentation of three Hepatitis B vaccines (2nd injection administered at least 28 days after 1st injection, and the 3rd injection must be administered 6 months after the 1st injection or 5 months after the 2nd injection) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titer (titer must be obtained at least 30 days after the 3rd injection). Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series and an antibody titer 1-2 months after the third dose of the second series.
  • Meningitis – Evidence of vaccination or signed waiver.
  • Annual Influenza vaccination – While WCU does not require annual influenza vaccination, students are expected to fulfill the immunization requirements of clinical sites.
  • COVID-19 vaccination – While WCU does not currently require COVID-19 vaccination, students are expected to fulfill the immunization requirements of specific clinical sites that require this vaccination.

References

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Adult Immunization Schedule: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/hcp/imz/adult.html

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Updated April 20, 2017.) Recommended Vaccines for Healthcare Workers: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/adults/rec-vac/hcw.html

Specified immunizations and health screenings are required for all students unless medically contraindicated (health care provider documentation must be provided and based on CDC contraindication guidelines). By submitting immunization records, the student authorizes WCU to release the information in the WCU records to affiliated hospitals or clinics where a student is engaged in the clinical learning experience

Additional immunization and/or health screening requirements beyond those mandated by the program may be required by a clinical affiliate. If so, students will be made aware of additional requirements and will need to ensure compliance at their own cost, as necessary. Immunization and health screening requirements will be reviewed annually by the program to ensure they minimally meet the most recent CDC recommendations, state-specific mandates, and affiliate policies. Students will be notified of changes to the immunization policy and given direction on how to complete any additional requirements, as necessary. Failure to comply with clinical site requirements for immunization and/or health screening resulting in incomplete supervised clinical practice experiences may prevent students from completing the clinical year resulting in dismissal from the program.

Master of Physician Assistant – California Licensure Disclosure

To become a certified PA (PA-C), graduates must pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE), In addition, graduates must obtain state medical/physician assistant board licensure/registration. Licensure requirements vary from state to state.

A PA may not begin working as a physician assistant in most states until successfully passing the PANCE and obtaining state licensure/registration. There may be exceptions for state licensures or federal employment, such as the military. Failure to complete all necessary steps may constitute practicing medicine without a medical license. Upon graduation, students are responsible for ensuring certification and licensure/registration in their state of residence. West Coast University is not responsible for registration or licensing; the student is solely responsible for all such requirements and verifying proper authorizations to practice medicine have been obtained.

Health Insurance Requirement

Students enrolled in the Master of Physician Assistant – California program will be required to provide evidence of health insurance and maintain their health insurance while enrolled in the program.

Admissions Alternate List

A ranked alternate list of interviewed candidates for a position in the class is generated and maintained. In the event that an accepted candidate chooses to withdraw from the program prior to the beginning of classes, a candidate from the highest-ranked alternate position is notified and offered a seat in the class. Applicants chosen for the Alternate list are notified and offered acceptance on the Alternate list, but not notified of their position on the Alternate list.

Transfer Policy

The Master of Physician Assistant – California program does not allow for transfer credit.

Candidate Seat Deposit

Applicants that are conditionally accepted to the Master of Physician Assistant – California program will be required to submit a $500.00 good faith payment for a Seat Deposit. The Seat Deposit will be credited to your program costs. The university will retain maximum of $175.00 of this deposit should you cancel your enrollment within seven calendar days (excluding holidays) of enrollment or by the seventh calendar day of the first term, whichever is later. Deposits may be paid by money order or cashier’s check made out to West Coast University.

Supervised Clinical Practicum Experience (SCPE) Location

The MPA-CA Program Clinical Team will work diligently to secure SCPEs within each student’s home region based on the approved clinical sites in states that have been vetted by the University. WCU MPA-CA program may not be available to residents in certain states. Please contact your Admission Advisor for more information. In the event that all nine clinical rotations are not found in the student’s home region, the student will be required to come to California or another area with an established, clinical site to complete one or more rotations. Travel to clinical rotations and the CGS campus are at the student’s expense.

Student Financial Responsibility for Clinical Site Travel

Students are required to travel to clinical sites that may be outside of their immediate area or state and are responsible for their own housing, transportation (reliable), food, and any related expenses.

Student Financial Requirement for Computer and Computer Specifications

Students are required to have a working laptop with the ability to function with Canvas LMS and the Exemplify system/software at their own expense. Specifications for ExamSoft requirements are found here and University Computer requirements as detailed in the Information Technology section of the WCU Student Handbook here.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the Master of Physician Assistant program, the practice-ready graduate should be able to:

  • Demonstrate evidence-based medical knowledge and practices to effectively provide holistic, person-centric care. (Patient-Centered Practice Knowledge)
  • Integrate knowledge related to the business of healthcare to prepare students for professional practice and promote equitable utilization of resources for optimal patient care. (Health Care Finance and Systems)
  • Illustrate person-centric engagement and practices including but not limited to cultural humility to promote optimal patient care and population health with all persons. (Society and Population Health)
  • Demonstrate person-centric communications practices that optimize patient care. (Health Literacy and Communication)
  • Exhibit interprofessional collaboration to improve patient outcomes and demonstrate leadership skills that prioritize safety. (Interprofessional Collaborative Practice and Leadership)
  • Embody professionalism to be prepared for responsible and ethical medical practice. (Professional and Legal Aspects of Health Care)

The Master of Physician Assistant-California Hybrid Program at the Center for Graduate Studies provides an intentionally immersive learning environment focused on clinical and cultural competence, personal wellness and insight, and ethical responsibility. Through our unique approach to transformational education and student support, we help prepare medical professionals who demonstrate competent, compassionate, holistic, person-centric care with respect and equity to all persons and communities served.

Master of Physician Assistant- California: The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to the West Coast University Physician Assistant Program sponsored by West Coast University.

Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation. Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.

Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class. The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website.

Physician Assistant National Certifying Examinations

Five-Year First-Time Test Taker Summary Report (will be reported after first cohort, Class of 2025, completes their PANCE)

WCU MPA CA Program Attrition Table for Three Most Recently Graduated Cohorts (will first be reported after graduation of first cohort, Class of 2025)

Graduated Classes
Maximum entering class size (as approved by ARC-PA)Class of 2024Class of 2025Class of 2026
Entering class size
Graduates
*Attrition rate
**Graduation Rate

*Attrition rate calculation: Number of students who attritted from cohort divided by the entering class size.
**Graduation rate: Number of cohort graduates divided by the entering class size.

PANCE Preparation

Come join a student-centric university where student success is our priority. Get support as you prepare for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE), including one-on-one guidance and tutoring.

From the moment you start your PA program at WCU to beyond graduation, you’ll receive the personalized attention and assistance you deserve.

Advisors at Your Service

As a WCU student, you will be assigned a Student Success advisor who will work with you throughout the duration of your program. You’ll also have access to admissions and financial aid advisors who can answer any questions you have, whether it has to do with enrollment or how to finance your degree.

Program Goal Metric and Benchmark

 GoalMetricBenchmarkResponsible Party/ Timing
Goal 1 :

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California selects competent, qualified, and diverse applicants.

Competent: Admissions Criteria:

  • Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)*
  • Mission driven Admissions* MMI

Qualified:

  • Cumulative GPA
  • Clinical experiences
  • Grades in prerequisite courses

Diverse:

  • Gender
  • Race/ethnicity
Competent Admissions Criteria:

  • Matriculant Average Multiple Mini Interview Score (5/7 Likert scale)
  • Demonstrated Mission focus through MMI: Mission focused scoring in each MMI stations interview score Average (5/7 Likert scale)

Qualified:

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • B or better in prerequisite courses

Diverse:

  • Gender 30% or more non-female
  • Race/ethnicity 20% or more under-represented
Annually after enrollment cycle.
Goal 2:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California provides intentionally immersive educational opportunities in support of student engagement* and deep learning*.

  • Curriculum mapping and design
  • Final individual course scores in all courses to show efficacy
  • Student satisfaction on end of course evaluation
  • Presence of at least one high impact practice* (immersive opportunity) in each syllabus
  • Student course scores Passing in 93% of students
  • Student satisfaction on Faculty/Course Evaluation with 80% of students rating it a 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 Likert Scale (average of all questions)
  • Curriculum committee
  • Annual survey assessment of curriculum delivery and efficacy
Goal 3:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California provides experiences with diverse patient care opportunities to prepare students for compassionate, inclusive, person-centric care.

Clinical Rotation data:

  • Exxat patient logs demonstrating patient demographics, billing and coding, diagnoses, counseling and procedural opportunities
  • Demonstrating clinical experiences in:
    • Patient encounter benchmarks are noted on each core rotation syllabus to include: age, setting. Demographic information rubric for Exxat Logging includes: gender, and ethnicity.
  • Demonstration of variety of health system exposure in patient logging of clinical setting and patient insurance information.
    • Percentages averaged at the end of each clinical rotation.
    • Logging requirement in rubric: All funding areas are required through the clinical year including private insurance, government subsidized, and self-pay.
    • Billing and coding is required on all pt encounters.
  • Demonstration of variety of diagnoses, procedures, counseling, with task areas denoted by the NCCPA blueprint identified and mapped.
    • Top 10 list of diagnoses are designated for each core SCPE. Students are required to log each diagnosis and frequency/ percentage is documented at the end of each rotation.
    • Counseling services and patient education are required fields for patient encounters in the Exxat logging system. Students are required to document their participation in these activities during each SCPE. Exxat logs are reviewed weekly. 10% of all patient encounters must include patient counseling and/or patient education.
    • Procedures are logged in Exxat and in the Clinical Skills Passport. Students review the Clinical Passport weekly each SCPE. Deficiencies are identified and sought during the remaining SCPE. Required skills must be attained during the clinical year. If a skill is unable to be attained, students will have the opportunity to demonstrate the skill during the final Clinical Immersive*.
Director of Clinical Education is responsible for annual data extraction, reporting, and evaluation of clinical sites and patient diversity
Goal 4:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California strives to meet or exceed the national average for the first-time pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE).

PANCE scoresEach cohort’s pass rate will be at the national average for first-time test takers of the PANCE examination.Annually Assessment Committee

*Definitions

Clinical Immersive: During the Physician Assistant- California Program, the students return to campus for hands-on, face-to-face instruction, competency, and high-stakes testing during one-week periods called clinical immersives. Immersive instruction includes, but is not limited to professionalism, history and physical exam skills, procedural skills, formative and summative assessment, interprofessional education opportunities, and simulation.

Deep Learning: Learning through the active process of reflection, integration/application of information, use of evidence, and refining critical-thinking and decision-making skills.

Immersive Education: Immersive opportunities refers to a highly engaging and interactive environment for students to utilize an artificial environment that induces thinking capacity. Immersive opportunities (high impact practices) include the use of technology, but are not limited to interactions requiring advancements in augmented, virtual, and mixed reality, 3D learning, and gamification. Each immersive experience can perpetuate further interactions and deeper learning.

Mission Driven Admissions: Mission driven admissions refers to admissions recruitment, review, and interview processes that align to the mission and goals of the program.

Multiple Mini Interview: A series of short independent assessments in a timed circuit used to assess an applicant’s character, professionalism, interpersonal skills, and ethical and moral judgement.

Student engagement: Student investment in their own learning through curioisity, attention, passion, and drive. Faculty in the Master of Physician Assistant- California Program encourage student engagement with goal-setting meetings, in- and out- of- class interaction, formative assessment opportunities, and reflection.

 

Information SessionsTo view available dates and reserve your virtual seat, click here!.
Campus ToursAvailable every Thursday at 2pm.
Campus Address: 590 N Vermont Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90004

To contact admissions directly, please feel free to reach out to WCUCGSMPAGradAdmissions@westcoastuniversity.edu

Mission

 The Master of Physician Assistant – California hybrid program at the Center for Graduate Studies provides an intentionally immersive learning environment focused on clinical and cultural competence, personal wellness and insight, and ethical responsibility.

Through our unique approach to transformational education and student support, we help prepare medical professionals who demonstrate competent, compassionate, holistic, person-centric care with respect and equity to all persons and communities served.

We help prepare professionals who will contribute to the advancement of the physician assistant profession through leading, lifelong learning, and service, within and across their communities.

Program Goals

California Physician Assistant Program Goals

In alignment with our program goals, the WCU California physician assistant program strives to:

  1. Select competent, qualified, and diverse applicants
  2. Provide intentionally immersive educational opportunities in support of student engagement and deep learning
  3. Provide experiences with diverse patient care opportunities to prepare students for compassionate, inclusive, person-centric care
  4. Meet or exceed the national average for the first-time pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE)

Get more information by reviewing our goal measurement and benchmarks.

Program Information and Disclosures

Master of Physician Assistant Program Requirements

  1. Obtain background clearance.*
  2. Undergo one or more comprehensive drug screening tests.*
  3. Strict adherence to the Bloodborne Pathogens Policy and Exposure Control Plan.
  4. Submit documentation of immunizations, vaccinations, tuberculosis clearance.*
  5. Provide and maintain a current Basic Life Support (BLS) and ACLS certification.*
  6. Expect the hours and days to vary depending on the trimester schedule.
  7. Expect the trimester schedule to be final and non-negotiable. If a student refuses a clinical assignment, the student will be dismissed from the program.

*Information regarding these requirements is provided during the application process and at the program orientation.

Immunizations and Health Screening

The West Coast University Physician Assistant – California DE program policy on immunization and health screenings policy states students must have their immunization and health screening up to date with formal documentation from their healthcare provider. Our process is based on current CDC guidelines for healthcare professionals. Students must provide proof of screening, vaccination, and/or immunity for the following:

  • Completed and signed health clearance form from the student’s primary physician.
  • Tuberculosis (TB) – TB screening procedures vary based on a student’s immunization/disease history.
  • Students who do not have a history of TB infection/disease or have not had positive TB test results in the past (regardless of BCG vaccination status) are required to have an initial TB skin test (TST) or QuantiFERON TB Gold or TSpot blood test within three months of matriculation (completed by student). Students who have a skin test only will be required to complete a second skin test within the first month of the program (provided by the school). (The second TST must be placed at least seven days after the first.) Annual testing is required thereafter.
  • Students who have a positive history of TB disease must provide documentation of positive TB skin test (TST) results and TB treatment and must complete the program TB symptoms form upon matriculation. Students must complete the symptoms form annually. Based on the results of the symptoms form, additional action may be required.
  • Students who have tested positive for TB infection must provide documentation of positive TB skin test (TST) results and TB treatment, a negative two-view chest x-ray, and must complete the program TB symptoms form upon matriculation. Students must complete the symptoms form annually. Based on the results of the symptoms form, additional action may be required. An additional negative two-view chest x-ray may be required by some clinical affiliates and will be the financial responsibility of the student.
  • Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis (Tdap/Td) – Evidence of one dose of Tdap within 10 years of all program activities. If a student has received Td only, then a one-time dose of Tdap must be received, then boost with Td every 10 years.
  • Measles, Mumps, & Rubella (MMR) – Students born after 1957 must show immunity through documentation of a series of two doses of MMR vaccine (must be administered at least one month apart) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titer results. Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series.
  • Varicella (chickenpox) – Evidence of immunity is documentation of two doses of the varicella vaccine (administered at least 28 days apart with the last dose completed at least two weeks prior to clinical start date) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titers. Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series.
  • Hepatitis B – Evidence of immunity is documentation of three Hepatitis B vaccines (2nd injection administered at least 28 days after 1st injection, and the 3rd injection must be administered 6 months after the 1st injection or 5 months after the 2nd injection) OR laboratory evidence of immunity via positive antibody titer (titer must be obtained at least 30 days after the 3rd injection). Students with negative or indeterminate antibody titer results will be required to complete the vaccination series and an antibody titer 1-2 months after the third dose of the second series.
  • Meningitis – Evidence of vaccination or signed waiver.
  • Annual Influenza vaccination – While WCU does not require annual influenza vaccination, students are expected to fulfill the immunization requirements of clinical sites.
  • COVID-19 vaccination – While WCU does not currently require COVID-19 vaccination, students are expected to fulfill the immunization requirements of specific clinical sites that require this vaccination.

References

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Adult Immunization Schedule: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/hcp/imz/adult.html

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Updated April 20, 2017.) Recommended Vaccines for Healthcare Workers: www.cdc.gov/vaccines/adults/rec-vac/hcw.html

Specified immunizations and health screenings are required for all students unless medically contraindicated (health care provider documentation must be provided and based on CDC contraindication guidelines). By submitting immunization records, the student authorizes WCU to release the information in the WCU records to affiliated hospitals or clinics where a student is engaged in the clinical learning experience

Additional immunization and/or health screening requirements beyond those mandated by the program may be required by a clinical affiliate. If so, students will be made aware of additional requirements and will need to ensure compliance at their own cost, as necessary. Immunization and health screening requirements will be reviewed annually by the program to ensure they minimally meet the most recent CDC recommendations, state-specific mandates, and affiliate policies. Students will be notified of changes to the immunization policy and given direction on how to complete any additional requirements, as necessary. Failure to comply with clinical site requirements for immunization and/or health screening resulting in incomplete supervised clinical practice experiences may prevent students from completing the clinical year resulting in dismissal from the program.

Master of Physician Assistant – California Licensure Disclosure

To become a certified PA (PA-C), graduates must pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE), In addition, graduates must obtain state medical/physician assistant board licensure/registration. Licensure requirements vary from state to state.

A PA may not begin working as a physician assistant in most states until successfully passing the PANCE and obtaining state licensure/registration. There may be exceptions for state licensures or federal employment, such as the military. Failure to complete all necessary steps may constitute practicing medicine without a medical license. Upon graduation, students are responsible for ensuring certification and licensure/registration in their state of residence. West Coast University is not responsible for registration or licensing; the student is solely responsible for all such requirements and verifying proper authorizations to practice medicine have been obtained.

Health Insurance Requirement

Students enrolled in the Master of Physician Assistant – California program will be required to provide evidence of health insurance and maintain their health insurance while enrolled in the program.

Admissions Alternate List

A ranked alternate list of interviewed candidates for a position in the class is generated and maintained. In the event that an accepted candidate chooses to withdraw from the program prior to the beginning of classes, a candidate from the highest-ranked alternate position is notified and offered a seat in the class. Applicants chosen for the Alternate list are notified and offered acceptance on the Alternate list, but not notified of their position on the Alternate list.

Transfer Policy

The Master of Physician Assistant – California program does not allow for transfer credit.

Candidate Seat Deposit

Applicants that are conditionally accepted to the Master of Physician Assistant – California program will be required to submit a $500.00 good faith payment for a Seat Deposit. The Seat Deposit will be credited to your program costs. The university will retain maximum of $175.00 of this deposit should you cancel your enrollment within seven calendar days (excluding holidays) of enrollment or by the seventh calendar day of the first term, whichever is later. Deposits may be paid by money order or cashier’s check made out to West Coast University.

Supervised Clinical Practicum Experience (SCPE) Location

The MPA-CA Program Clinical Team will work diligently to secure SCPEs within each student’s home region based on the approved clinical sites in states that have been vetted by the University. WCU MPA-CA program may not be available to residents in certain states. Please contact your Admission Advisor for more information. In the event that all nine clinical rotations are not found in the student’s home region, the student will be required to come to California or another area with an established, clinical site to complete one or more rotations. Travel to clinical rotations and the CGS campus are at the student’s expense.

Student Financial Responsibility for Clinical Site Travel

Students are required to travel to clinical sites that may be outside of their immediate area or state and are responsible for their own housing, transportation (reliable), food, and any related expenses.

Student Financial Requirement for Computer and Computer Specifications

Students are required to have a working laptop with the ability to function with Canvas LMS and the Exemplify system/software at their own expense. Specifications for ExamSoft requirements are found here and University Computer requirements as detailed in the Information Technology section of the WCU Student Handbook here.

Learning Outcomes

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the Master of Physician Assistant program, the practice-ready graduate should be able to:

  • Demonstrate evidence-based medical knowledge and practices to effectively provide holistic, person-centric care. (Patient-Centered Practice Knowledge)
  • Integrate knowledge related to the business of healthcare to prepare students for professional practice and promote equitable utilization of resources for optimal patient care. (Health Care Finance and Systems)
  • Illustrate person-centric engagement and practices including but not limited to cultural humility to promote optimal patient care and population health with all persons. (Society and Population Health)
  • Demonstrate person-centric communications practices that optimize patient care. (Health Literacy and Communication)
  • Exhibit interprofessional collaboration to improve patient outcomes and demonstrate leadership skills that prioritize safety. (Interprofessional Collaborative Practice and Leadership)
  • Embody professionalism to be prepared for responsible and ethical medical practice. (Professional and Legal Aspects of Health Care)
Accreditation

The Master of Physician Assistant-California Hybrid Program at the Center for Graduate Studies provides an intentionally immersive learning environment focused on clinical and cultural competence, personal wellness and insight, and ethical responsibility. Through our unique approach to transformational education and student support, we help prepare medical professionals who demonstrate competent, compassionate, holistic, person-centric care with respect and equity to all persons and communities served.

Master of Physician Assistant- California: The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to the West Coast University Physician Assistant Program sponsored by West Coast University.

Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation. Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.

Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class. The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website.

PANCE Pass Rate and Attrition Table

Physician Assistant National Certifying Examinations

Five-Year First-Time Test Taker Summary Report (will be reported after first cohort, Class of 2025, completes their PANCE)

WCU MPA CA Program Attrition Table for Three Most Recently Graduated Cohorts (will first be reported after graduation of first cohort, Class of 2025)

Graduated Classes
Maximum entering class size (as approved by ARC-PA)Class of 2024Class of 2025Class of 2026
Entering class size
Graduates
*Attrition rate
**Graduation Rate

*Attrition rate calculation: Number of students who attritted from cohort divided by the entering class size.
**Graduation rate: Number of cohort graduates divided by the entering class size.

One-on-One Support

PANCE Preparation

Come join a student-centric university where student success is our priority. Get support as you prepare for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE), including one-on-one guidance and tutoring.

From the moment you start your PA program at WCU to beyond graduation, you’ll receive the personalized attention and assistance you deserve.

Advisors at Your Service

As a WCU student, you will be assigned a Student Success advisor who will work with you throughout the duration of your program. You’ll also have access to admissions and financial aid advisors who can answer any questions you have, whether it has to do with enrollment or how to finance your degree.

Program Goal Metric and Benchmark

Program Goal Metric and Benchmark

 GoalMetricBenchmarkResponsible Party/ Timing
Goal 1 :

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California selects competent, qualified, and diverse applicants.

Competent: Admissions Criteria:

  • Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)*
  • Mission driven Admissions* MMI

Qualified:

  • Cumulative GPA
  • Clinical experiences
  • Grades in prerequisite courses

Diverse:

  • Gender
  • Race/ethnicity
Competent Admissions Criteria:

  • Matriculant Average Multiple Mini Interview Score (5/7 Likert scale)
  • Demonstrated Mission focus through MMI: Mission focused scoring in each MMI stations interview score Average (5/7 Likert scale)

Qualified:

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • B or better in prerequisite courses

Diverse:

  • Gender 30% or more non-female
  • Race/ethnicity 20% or more under-represented
Annually after enrollment cycle.
Goal 2:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California provides intentionally immersive educational opportunities in support of student engagement* and deep learning*.

  • Curriculum mapping and design
  • Final individual course scores in all courses to show efficacy
  • Student satisfaction on end of course evaluation
  • Presence of at least one high impact practice* (immersive opportunity) in each syllabus
  • Student course scores Passing in 93% of students
  • Student satisfaction on Faculty/Course Evaluation with 80% of students rating it a 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 Likert Scale (average of all questions)
  • Curriculum committee
  • Annual survey assessment of curriculum delivery and efficacy
Goal 3:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California provides experiences with diverse patient care opportunities to prepare students for compassionate, inclusive, person-centric care.

Clinical Rotation data:

  • Exxat patient logs demonstrating patient demographics, billing and coding, diagnoses, counseling and procedural opportunities
  • Demonstrating clinical experiences in:
    • Patient encounter benchmarks are noted on each core rotation syllabus to include: age, setting. Demographic information rubric for Exxat Logging includes: gender, and ethnicity.
  • Demonstration of variety of health system exposure in patient logging of clinical setting and patient insurance information.
    • Percentages averaged at the end of each clinical rotation.
    • Logging requirement in rubric: All funding areas are required through the clinical year including private insurance, government subsidized, and self-pay.
    • Billing and coding is required on all pt encounters.
  • Demonstration of variety of diagnoses, procedures, counseling, with task areas denoted by the NCCPA blueprint identified and mapped.
    • Top 10 list of diagnoses are designated for each core SCPE. Students are required to log each diagnosis and frequency/ percentage is documented at the end of each rotation.
    • Counseling services and patient education are required fields for patient encounters in the Exxat logging system. Students are required to document their participation in these activities during each SCPE. Exxat logs are reviewed weekly. 10% of all patient encounters must include patient counseling and/or patient education.
    • Procedures are logged in Exxat and in the Clinical Skills Passport. Students review the Clinical Passport weekly each SCPE. Deficiencies are identified and sought during the remaining SCPE. Required skills must be attained during the clinical year. If a skill is unable to be attained, students will have the opportunity to demonstrate the skill during the final Clinical Immersive*.
Director of Clinical Education is responsible for annual data extraction, reporting, and evaluation of clinical sites and patient diversity
Goal 4:

The West Coast University Physician Assistant Program of California strives to meet or exceed the national average for the first-time pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE).

PANCE scoresEach cohort’s pass rate will be at the national average for first-time test takers of the PANCE examination.Annually Assessment Committee

*Definitions

Clinical Immersive: During the Physician Assistant- California Program, the students return to campus for hands-on, face-to-face instruction, competency, and high-stakes testing during one-week periods called clinical immersives. Immersive instruction includes, but is not limited to professionalism, history and physical exam skills, procedural skills, formative and summative assessment, interprofessional education opportunities, and simulation.

Deep Learning: Learning through the active process of reflection, integration/application of information, use of evidence, and refining critical-thinking and decision-making skills.

Immersive Education: Immersive opportunities refers to a highly engaging and interactive environment for students to utilize an artificial environment that induces thinking capacity. Immersive opportunities (high impact practices) include the use of technology, but are not limited to interactions requiring advancements in augmented, virtual, and mixed reality, 3D learning, and gamification. Each immersive experience can perpetuate further interactions and deeper learning.

Mission Driven Admissions: Mission driven admissions refers to admissions recruitment, review, and interview processes that align to the mission and goals of the program.

Multiple Mini Interview: A series of short independent assessments in a timed circuit used to assess an applicant’s character, professionalism, interpersonal skills, and ethical and moral judgement.

Student engagement: Student investment in their own learning through curioisity, attention, passion, and drive. Faculty in the Master of Physician Assistant- California Program encourage student engagement with goal-setting meetings, in- and out- of- class interaction, formative assessment opportunities, and reflection.

Admission Events

 

Information SessionsTo view available dates and reserve your virtual seat, click here!.
Campus ToursAvailable every Thursday at 2pm.
Campus Address: 590 N Vermont Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90004

To contact admissions directly, please feel free to reach out to WCUCGSMPAGradAdmissions@westcoastuniversity.edu

Clinical Experience

Clinical Experience MPA LA

Supervised Clinical Practicum Experience (SCPE)

As a part of the California MPA hybrid program’s supervised clinical practicum experience (SCPE) requirements, students will complete nine in-person, 5-week clinical rotations.

Currently, we have established all required rotations in Southern California and Texas. For students living outside these areas, the program clinical team will work diligently to establish rotations in other regions, but this may not be possible for some or all of the rotations. For more information about SCPE placements, see our Program Information and Disclosures section.

Advanced Clinical Skills Lab

At the WCU Center for Graduate Studies campus, we have 8 outpatient clinical exam rooms and 3-room simulation suite with adult, pediatric, and OB manikins, which mimic the physiological responses of real-life patients. Our MPA California hybrid program students use this space to practice patient history intake, physical exams, and communication skills.

Career Services

At West Coast University, we are committed to seeing our students and graduates succeed. That’s why we have a Career Services team that is dedicated to helping you find your next career opportunity.

Our career advisors can provide you with the following and more:

  • Personalized career guidance
  • Workshops offering professional development training
  • Help tracking down relevant job leads1

These services are available to every WCU student, so you’ll be able to get the help you need even after graduation.

Featured Faculty

Elizabeth Bunting, DSc, PA-C, DFAAPA

Dean/Program Director of Physician Assistant Studies, WCU CGS-Los Angeles

Elizabeth Bunting serves as Campus Dean (Center for Graduate Studies) and Program Director of the Master of Physician Assistant – California hybrid program at West Coast University. She developed and implemented the program attaining initial provisional accreditation. She continues to serve as the Dean and Program Director overseeing program functions, accreditation, and students and faculty.

Prior to this tenure, she served as Special Projects Advisor and as a Clinical Associate Professor of Practice at the University of Tennessee (UTC), and previously, Program Director and Chair for Physician Assistant (PA) Studies.

Prior to UTC, she served as Clinical Associate Professor and Admissions Director for Physician Assistant Studies at East Carolina University. She was also a Chancellor appointed Faculty Leadership Fellow and served on many committees and boards.
She is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Academy of PAs (DFAAPA), and further devotes her time to the PA profession by serving on the Item Writing Board for the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA).

FAQ

What is the role of a physician assistant?

Physician assistants are licensed clinicians who practice medicine in every specialty and setting. They are committed to improving access to care with a focus on patient-centered, team-based medicine.2

As a PA, you will be able to carry tasks that are critical to patients’ health and well-being, including physical exams, diagnosis and treatment of illnesses, prescribing of medications, medical procedures — though these tasks need to be performed in collaboration with a medical doctor. The amount of collaboration that is required varies by state.3

What is a hybrid program?

At WCU, a hybrid program is a program that combines both online coursework and in-person learning experiences. Students in our PA program at WCU spend their first year taking online course and completing on-campus labs for hands-on practice, and they spend their second year completing clinical rotations at a local partner site.

How long does it take to complete the PA program at WCU?

You can complete our physician assistant program in 24 months, which is six trimesters.

What type of bachelor’s degree do I need to apply to the WCU Master of Physician Assistant program?

While it is helpful to have a bachelor’s degree in the sciences when you apply to our PA program, it is not required. We accept students with all types of bachelor’s degrees.

Will I be able to use transfer credits in the program?

Our California Master of Physician Assistant program does not allow for transfer credit.

Is financial aid available?

Financial aid and scholarships are available for those who qualify. You may be eligible for student aid such as loans, scholarships, grants, federal work-study, employer reimbursement, and military tuition reductions. To learn more, visit our Tuition and Financial Aid page, and be sure to speak with a WCU financial aid advisor to properly explore all your options.

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1 WCU provides career guidance and assistance but cannot guarantee employment.

2 American Academy of Physician Associates, “What is a PA?” Accessed Dec. 12, 2022

3 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Physician Assistants, “What They Do,” Updated Sept. 15, 2022

Financial aid and scholarships are available for those who qualify.