Charleston Southern University offers a Master of Medical Science in Physician Assistant
Studies (MMSPAS) Program. The program consists of didactic and clinical academic
work over the course of 24 months or 6 continuous semesters. Graduates of the program
will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for physician assistants
through the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA)
and will be able to apply for licensure through the Board of Medical Examiners in
the state in which they wish to practice medicine.
The mission of the Charleston Southern University Master of Medical Science in Physician
Assistant Studies Program is to educate compassionate and highly motivated individuals
in a Christian environment who excel in providing patient-centered care, practicing
as an inter-professional team, serving as leaders in their communities, and advancing
the PA profession.
- Recruit diverse and highly-capable students to the program.
- Deliver an outstanding curriculum that prepares students to provide patient-centered
medical care upon graduation.
- Foster a healthy and supportive Christian learning environment that prepares students
appropriately to transition from student to clinician.
- Engage faculty and students in opportunities for service, leadership, and scholarly
activities in the school, our community and the profession.
Student Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of the program, students will have acquired the knowledge, interpersonal
skills, clinical reasoning and problem solving abilities, clinical and technical skills,
and professional behaviors required for entry into PA practice:
- Demonstrate an understanding for the medical, behavioral and social knowledge necessary
to evaluate and manage patients across all ages and patient populations in both primary
care and specialty settings.
- Demonstrate an ability to make informed decisions about the care of patients consistent
with up-to-date scientific evidence and sound clinical judgment.
- Demonstrate an ability to elicit an accurate medical history on patients.
- Demonstrate the ability to deliver accurate patient education that encompasses verbal,
non-verbal and written forms of information to the patient, their family, and their
care team that considers disease prevention and health awareness.
- Demonstrate excellent communication skills with patients, their care teams, and other
members of the healthcare team that adapts to the needs of that person as necessary.
Clinical Reasoning and Problem Solving Abilities
- Demonstrate an ability to formulate a differential diagnosis relevant to the findings
in the history and physical exam.
- Demonstrate an ability to recommend appropriate diagnostic studies to assist in the
evaluation and treatment of the patient.
- Demonstrate the ability to develop and implement an appropriate therapeutic management
plan, either pharmacological or non-pharmacological, based on the patient’s medical
history, physical exam, and diagnostic study findings.
Clinical and Technical Skills
- Demonstrate the ability to perform a detailed physical exam relevant to the medical
- Demonstrate the ability to perform clinical procedures common to primary care including
but not limited to: venipuncture, intravenous access, joint injections and aspirations,
wound management, laceration repair, casting and splinting, strep screening, urinalysis,
catheterization, performing pelvic exams, and interpretation of radiographic images,
pulmonary function tests, and EKGs.
- Demonstrate professionalism with high ethical principles, sensitivity, and responsiveness
to all patients, their care teams, and members of the healthcare team.
The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation - Provisional status to the Charleston Southern
University Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Charleston Southern 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.
The Master of Medical Science in Physician Assistant Studies Program is approved by
the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).