Didactic Curriculum

Semester I          16hrs

PA 500 Anatomy
PA 507 Physiology
PA 509 Introduction to Pharmacology
PA 511 Intro to the Physician Assistant Profession
PA 512 Fundamentals of Medical Science
PA 513 Interpersonal Communication and History Taking
PA 506 Health Systems and Risk Management

Semester II          15hrs

PA 520 Clinical Medicine I
PA 522 Physical Exam I
PA 524 Clinical Skills and Procedures I
PA 528 Pediatrics
PA 530 Surgery
PA 626 Pharmacology I

Semester III          15hrs

PA 630 Clinical Medicine II
PA 632 Physical Exam II
PA 634 Clinical Skills and Procedures II
PA 636 Pharmacology II
PA 638 Emergency Medicine
PA 639 Geriatrics

Semester IV          15hrs

PA 640 Clinical Medicine III
PA 642 Physical Exam III
PA 644 Clinical Skills and Procedures III
PA 646 Pharmacology III
PA 648 Research

Clinical Curriculum

Semester V          12hrs

PA Clerkships (3)

Semester VI          12hrs

PA Clerkships (3)

Semester VII          13hrs

PA Clerkships (3)
PA 720 Capstone

Course Descriptions

500 Anatomy (4:3-3) F. This course is organized by organ systems. The course will emphasize the application of anatomical knowledge to clinical practice. Students will conduct a complete dissection of the human body (interactive simulator of cadaver lab, animal organs, cadaver lab tours). Students will dissect the human body in order to reveal the anatomical basis for performing clinical procedures, conducting a physical exam, and assessing which structures may be injured or diseased based on a patient presentation. Embryology and developmental biology will be incorporated into the curriculum. This course integrates the basic discipline of human anatomy, histology, and organ systems. The course emphasizes human structure-function relationships at multiple levels of organization, specifically cell, tissue, organ and systems.

506 Health Systems and Risk Management (3) S. This course addresses quality assurance methodology and legal responsibilities of advanced practice patient care. Reporting systems, issues that affect advanced practice role, financing, coding, and credentialing criteria will be discussed. Best practice protocols, use of benchmarking, and safe work environments will be emphasized to ensure risk reduction for patients, families, and populations.

507 Physiology (3:2-3) F. This course provides students with an understanding of the physical and chemical processes that occur in the human body that are responsible for the growth, development, and the propagation of life. This is a lecture course that uses an organ systems approach to convey the principles of physiology.

509 Introduction to Pharmacology (1) F. This course provides a practical approach to pharmacology concepts and will emphasize mechanisms of action, drug-receptor interactions, drug-drug interactions, pharmacokinetic principles, drug development, and safety, as well as clinical implications for dosing and administration in regards to pediatric and geriatric populations.

511 Introduction to the Physician Assistant Profession (1) F. This course provides a strong foundation in the role of the physician assistant (PA), including history of the profession, health care financing and health care delivery systems, PA and medical professional organizations, professionalism, diversity, and health equity, as well as other social, cultural, economic, and political structures in society and in the PA profession.

512 Fundamentals of Medical Science (2) F. This course covers basic principles of genetics and molecular function at the cellular level and the application of these principles to primary care. The discussions include the structure of a gene, the human genome, the regulation of gene expression, the role of genetics in medicine, genetic basis of human disease, application of clinical genetics therapies, and ethical and legal considerations. This course provides a strong foundation in the concepts underlying health and disease at both the individual and population levels. The students will learn to recognize and use guidelines for preventive care and disease screening.

513 Interpersonal Communication and History Taking (2) F. This course provides an introduction to medical history taking and offers practical strategies for effective, patient-centered interpersonal communication. Special topics emphasize technical skills and attitudes of the learner which optimize interpersonal communication and rapport building with patients. Learners will be instructed in the appropriate formats for documentation of patient history as well as techniques to enhance the effectiveness of both history taking and patient education.

520 Clinical Medicine I (5) S. This is the initial course in a three part series covering primary care clinical medicine. The course will be presented in a systems-based format and will include instruction on the pathophysiology, evaluation of clinical presentation, diagnosis, and management of primary care diseases.

522 Physical Exam I (3: 2-3) S. This course is the first of a three part series. This is a systems-based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. This course is designed to provide fundamental knowledge, introduce practical skills, develop professional attitudes and behaviors relevant to the clinical assessment of a patient. This course emphasizes professionalism, sensitivity to gender, age and sociocultural background. This will be accomplished by learning how to obtain a relevant medical history and physical exam. Instruction in the art of assessment is complemented by topics in evidenced-based medicine, and clinical problem solving. The course emphasizes developing skills which allow for the recognition of normal findings as well as abnormal presentations.

524 Clinical Skills and Procedures I (2: 1-3) S. This course is the first of a three part series. This is a systems-based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. The course provides foundational knowledge in clinical and diagnostic skills that prepare the student for required responsibilities in clinical medicine and patient care. Course content includes clinical, laboratory, and basic surgical procedures and techniques in primary care, appropriate utilization, and selection in being able to diagnose and manage disease states of patients across a wide spectrum of medical conditions in various settings. Students learn best practices for approaching patients with illness or health maintenance goals, reinforce clinical reasoning skills, recognize, and use guidelines for preventive care, and disease screening. 

528 Pediatrics (2) S. This is a population-based course that will include instruction on the pathophysiology, evaluation of clinical presentation, diagnosis, and management of diseases as they relate to pediatrics. The course will include pediatric diseases across all organ systems. Providing care to infants through late adolescence including periodic health assessments, evaluation of growth and development, health promotion and preventive care, and developmental screening tools will be explored. 

530 Surgery (1) S. This course studies major and minor surgical conditions, emphasizing indications for surgical intervention and pre-operative, intra-operative, and post-operative management in both ambulatory and inpatient settings.

626 Pharmacology I (2) S. This is the first course of a three part series that is presented with a systems-based approach. This course covers pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacotherapeutic uses of relevant medications as they relate to the organ systems covered.

630 Clinical Medicine II (5) SU. This is the second course in a three part series covering primary care clinical medicine. The course will be presented in a systems-based format and will include instruction on the pathophysiology, evaluation of clinical presentation, diagnosis, and management of primary care diseases.

632 Physical Exam II (3: 2-3) SU. This course is the second of a three part series. This is a systems-based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. This course is designed to provide fundamental knowledge, introduce practical skills, develop professional attitudes and behaviors relevant to the clinical assessment of a patient. This course emphasizes professionalism, sensitivity to gender, age and sociocultural background. This will be accomplished by learning how to obtain a relevant medical history and physical exam. Instruction in the art of assessment is complemented by topics in evidenced-based medicine, and clinical problem solving. The course emphasizes developing skills which allow for the recognition of normal findings as well as abnormal presentations. 

634 Clinical Skills and Procedures II (2: 1-3) SU. This course is the second of a three part series, this is a systems based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. The course provides foundational knowledge in clinical and diagnostic skills that prepare the student for required responsibilities in clinical medicine and patient care. Course content includes clinical, laboratory, and basic surgical procedures and techniques in primary care, appropriate utilization, and selection in being able to diagnose and manage disease states of patients across a wide spectrum of medical conditions in various settings. Students learn best practices for approaching patients with illness or health maintenance goals, reinforce clinical reasoning skills, recognize, and use guidelines for preventive care, and disease screening. 

636 Pharmacology II (2) SU. This is the second course of a three part series that is presented with a systems-based approach. This course covers pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacotherapeutic uses of relevant medications as they relate to the organ systems covered.

638 Emergency Medicine (2) SU. This course explores various types of urgent and emergent conditions across the lifespan that present in an emergency medicine setting and prepares the student to triage, stabilize, evaluate, treat, and monitor such conditions. The resources needed for management of patients presenting to an emergency medicine setting are discussed as they relate to the hospital setting and include referrals and specialty consultations.

639 Geriatrics (1) SU. This is a population-based course that will include instruction on the pathophysiology, evaluation of clinical presentation and conditions, diagnosis, and management of diseases as they relate to geriatrics. Appropriate evaluation, treatment, counseling and referral of the elderly is presented. The process of death and dying is discussed.

640 Clinical Medicine III (5) F. This is the third course in a three part series covering primary care clinical medicine. The course will be presented in a systems-based format and will include instruction on the pathophysiology, evaluation of clinical presentation, diagnosis, and management of primary care diseases.

642 Physical Exam III (3: 2-3) F. This course is the third of a three part series, that is a systems based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. This course is designed to provide fundamental knowledge, introduce practical skills, develop professional attitudes and behaviors relevant to the clinical assessment of a patient. This course emphasizes professionalism, sensitivity to gender, age and sociocultural background. This will be accomplished by learning how to obtain a relevant medical history and physical exam. Instruction in the art of assessment is complemented by topics in evidenced-based medicine, and clinical problem solving. The course emphasizes developing skills which allow for the recognition of normal findings as well as abnormal presentations.

644 Clinical Skills and Procedures III (2: 1-3) F. This course is the third of a three part series. This is a systems-based course covering advancing concepts with different organ systems. The course provides foundational knowledge in clinical and diagnostic skills that prepare the student for required responsibilities in clinical medicine and patient care. Course content includes clinical, laboratory, and basic surgical procedures and techniques in primary care, appropriate utilization, and selection in being able to diagnose and manage disease states of patients across a wide spectrum of medical conditions in various settings. Students learn best practices for approaching patients with illness or health maintenance goals, reinforce clinical reasoning skills, recognize, and use guidelines for preventive care, and disease screening. 

646 Pharmacology III (2) F. This is the third course of a three part series that is presented with a systems-based approach. This course covers pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacotherapeutic uses of relevant medications as they relate to the organ systems covered.

648 Research (3) F. This course is designed to cover basic medical literature review, research methods, ethical standards, and relate how this information may affect the delivery of patient care when addressing diverse patient populations. The course will emphasize accessing and utilizing different medical databases through the use of informatics in reviewing medical decision-making, problem-solving, and critical research needed in improving practice delivery, and patient outcomes through use of evidence-based medicine.

710 Family Medicine Clerkship (4)  (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. Under the supervision of experienced family medicine preceptors, this clerkship provides students with experience, primarily in the outpatient evaluation of pediatric and adult patients in a community setting, which emphasizes prevention, health maintenance, and the management of acute and chronic illnesses.

711 Women’s Health Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with experience in managing common gynecologic issues and disorders as well as prenatal care under the supervision of experienced preceptors.

712 Pediatrics Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with extensive clinical exposure to aspects of pediatrics under the supervision of experienced pediatric preceptors.

713 Behavioral Health Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with extensive clinical exposure to the major aspects of behavioral health care under the supervision of experienced preceptors.

714 Emergency Medicine Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with experience in triage, evaluation, and management of patients in the emergency department under the supervision of experienced preceptors.

715 Internal Medicine – (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with extensive clinical exposure to the major aspects of inpatient internal medicine care under the supervision of experienced physician and PA preceptors.

717 General Surgery Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with hands-on experience in general surgery through exposure to the operating room, to pre- and post-operative management and to out-patient surgical management and follow-up.

718 Elective Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with extensive clinical exposure to the major aspects of an area of medicine selected in consultation with the clinical coordinator, under the supervision of experienced preceptors.

719 Primary Care Elective Clerkship (4) (Prerequisite: Completion of the didactic curriculum) F, S, Su. This clerkship provides students with extensive clinical exposure to the major aspects of an area of primary care medicine selected in consultation with the clinical coordinator, under the supervision of experienced preceptors.

720 PA Capstone (1) (Prerequisite: completion of 6 clerkships) F. This course will emphasize test-taking skills, testing practice, and critical thinking. Emphasis will be placed on prioritization and delegation. Learners will review critical medical concepts and content needed for their success as a professional PA.