Physician Assistant Studies Program
Health Science Building
9200 University Blvd., Charleston, SC 29406
Requirements for applying
Centralized Application Service for PAs (CASPA)
The Charleston Southern University Physician Assistant Program utilizes the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA) for application processing.
- All applications and supporting documents must be submitted directly to CASPA.
- We will only consider verified CASPA applications, so please ensure that you submit your application before the deadline.
- It is the responsibility of the applicant to confirm that all application materials have been submitted to and received by CASPA. The PA Program and University are not responsible for notifying applicants of incomplete applications.
- All required materials must be received by the specified deadlines. No exceptions will be made.
- Applicants may apply with 2 remaining prerequisites provided they complete each with a B (3.0) or higher before September 1st. Official transcripts must be received at University by October 1st or a selected candidate will relinquish their seat.
CSU’s Application Opens: April 27, 2023
CSU’s Application Deadline: September 1, 2023*
*Applications must be verified by this date
Baccalaureate Degree with Official Transcripts
- A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution must be completed at the time of application.
- The degree can be from any field of study, provided that all prerequisite coursework requirements are met.
- Transcripts sent directly to the University will not be accepted.
- All official transcripts must be received by CASPA for the application to be considered complete.
Minimum Grade Point Averages (GPA)
- The minimum requirement for both cumulative GPA and science GPA is 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
- There is no minimum requirement for the prerequisite GPA, but it is considered in the application review process.
- CSU follows CASPA GPA calculation and coursework reporting policies.
- Please see CASPA website for detailed information on course grade reporting and GPA calculations.
- Applicants may apply with up to 2 work in progress prerequisites provided they complete each with a B (3.0) or higher before September 1st. Official transcripts must be received at the University by October 1st or a selected candidate will relinquish their seat.
- There is no expiration date on prerequisite coursework with the exception of Anatomy and Physiology which must be completed within the past seven (7) years at a two year or four year regionally accredited institution.
- All prerequisite coursework must be awarded a letter or numeric grade and completed with a grade of “C” or higher. “C-“ or 1.7 on CASPA 4.0 GPA scale will not be accepted, with the exception of work in progress classes as noted above.
- Classes taken between January 1, 2020 and September 1, 2022 and awarded satisfactory completion (P) will be accepted for prerequisite requirements.
- All prerequisite course hour requirements are in semester hours.
- Online course and lab work is accepted.
- We will not accept the following to satisfy prerequisite requirements:
- Survey Courses
- Advanced Placement (AP) Credit
- CLEP Credit
- Exam Credits
- Competency Testing
- Work Experience
|Required Coursework||Minimum Hours||Course Information|
|Human Anatomy Lecture with Lab**||4 semester hours|
|Physiology Lecture with Lab**||4 semester hours|
|Microbiology Lecture with Lab||4 semester hours|
|General Chemistry||8 semester hours|
|Organic Chemistry with Lab OR Biochemistry Lecture with Lab||4 semester hours|
|Upper Level Biology, Chemistry, or Physics Courses*||3 semester hours||Upper level courses are considered 300- or 400-level courses and may be designated by the university as “UL” or “U.”|
Suggested courses include:
-Molecular or Cellular Biology
-Biochemistry (This can only be used once)
|Statistics||3 semester hours|
Total Prerequisite Hours: 30
*Upper-level courses are typically 300 or 400-level courses and may be designated by the university as “U” or “UL”. If the course is not numbered 300 or 400 level, you must provide documentation proving it is an upper level course as determined by your university or college.
**Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 and 2 sequences with lab is also acceptable.
If you are interested in taking prerequisite courses at CSU please contact our Enrollment Services Office at 843-863-7050.
Health Care Experience
- A minimum of 500 hours of direct patient care experience is required at the time of application submission.
- Applicants will be able to continue to add hours to their application on June 1, July 1, August 1, and September 1 by completing the PCE Hours Addition form and emailing it to the Admissions Coordinator at email@example.com. Additional hours will only be accepted and added to the application on these specific dates.
- Acceptable forms of patient care experience:
- Athletic Trainer
- Certified Physical/Occupational Therapist
- Dental Hygienist/Assisting
- Emergency Medical Technician
- Laboratory Technician
- Massage Therapist
- Medical Assistant
- Military Medic
- Nursing (CNA, LPN, RN, MSN)
- Patient Care Technician
- Pharmacy Technician
- PT/OT Assistant
- Radiological Technician
- Respiratory Therapist
- Shadowing of Medical Provider (PA, NP, MD or DO)
- Surgical Technician
- Unacceptable forms of patient care experience include:
- Administrator or Business Manager for Physician’s Office
- Fitness Trainer
- Inpatient Patient Transport or Orderly
- Life Guard
- Medical Interpreter
- Medical Research Assistant
- Medical Transcriptionist
- Nanny or Babysitter
- Receptionist for Physician’s Office
- Veterinarian Assistant
- A bachelor’s degree must be completed from a regionally accredited institution or an equivalent from a foreign institution.
- CSU requires that all official transcripts be submitted, including foreign, study abroad and overseas US transcripts.
- All foreign transcripts are to be submitted to a U.S.-based evaluation service for a U.S. equivalency report. The equivalency report will then need to be submitted directly to CASPA from the evaluation service. Please reference the CASPA website for a list of suggested evaluation services and detailed instructions on how to submit study abroad, US overseas and foreign transcripts.
- The program requires international applicants or those who have foreign transcripts to complete the 26 semester prerequisite credit hours at a regionally accredited institution prior to applying to the program.
- Transcripts sent directly to the University will not be accepted.
- Additionally, the Test of English as a Foreign Language must be taken by those whose native language is not English. Please note the score requirement is different than the University’s Graduate School requirement.
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
For international applicants whose native language is not English, TOEFL scores are required. Only the internet-based testing is accepted and must be submitted through CASPA. A minimum total score of 94 on the exam and minimum scores on the following sections are required:
- Reading: 22
- Listening: 22
- Speaking: 26
- Writing: 24
- Total: 94
If you have specific questions about applying to the PA Program as an international student, please contact CSU’s International Student Enrollment Counselor for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Two letters of recommendation are required for the application to be considered complete.
- One letter must be from a medical provider (PA, NP, MD, DO).
- Letters cannot be from a family member or friend.
- We recommend that you choose references that have known you in a professional setting for at least six months.
- Interview invitations are extended to the most competitive applicants for admissions.
- Applicants who are invited for the interview portion of the selection process must participate in the interview to be considered for a position in the program.
- We will be transitioning back to in person interviews for the 2023 application cycle, but the program will still offer one virtual interview day for applicants who prefer this option. The virtual interview will be offered to all applicants who are offered an interview on a first come first serve basis. Once the virtual interview is full, all other applicants will be offered an in-person interview only. While considering interview options, it is important to note that admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis.
- Interviewees will be notified of their status within one month of the interview. The decision will be one of the following: accepted to the program, placed on the waitlist or declined.
- The program uses a rolling admissions process and with this approach, it is possible for the program to fill all available seats prior to September 1st application deadline.
Updated on 4/27/2023