Pre-Physician Assistant

Pre-Physician Assistant


Pre-Professional Pathways are not offered as majors at Western, nor are they at most other universities, but they can be incorporated into or taken alongside any degree-granting major offered at Western.

A Physician Assistant practices and prescribes medicine under the license of a physician, and can work in a variety of healthcare settings. Pre-Physician Assistant is not a major at Western. Western students prepare for entry to a Physician Assistant program by obtaining a baccalaureate degree, completing the prerequisite course work for entry into specific programs, and by obtaining a broad variety of volunteer or paid clinical experience.

There is no one “right” major for gaining admission to a Physician Assistant program. Your undergraduate years offer you the opportunity to explore many academic fields, to develop basic skills and knowledge, and to demonstrate expertise and experience a major of your choice. Pick one in which you excel and enjoy. Popular majors for Pre-PA students are Biology and Chemistry, but students have majored in a diverse range of academic disciplines including Anthropology, Behavioral Neuroscience, Community Health, Psychology, History, Philosophy, Communications, Spanish, and Fairhaven self-designed majors. Some pursue combined majors such as Anthropology/Biology, Biochemistry, and Cellular & Molecular Biology. 

Beyond the Classroom

Western's Pre-Healthcare Professions Advising Office provides mentoring and advising to students interested in pursuing careers in healthcare professions. The office works with students to enhance their chances of gaining successful admission to the professional school of their choice. Services range from individual academic advisement to preparing students for the final application process.

Western's Associated Students is home to 200+ clubs, including those for students pursuing healthcare professions.

Careers and Graduate Studies

Physician Assistants are trained as generalists (but may work in specialty areas) and are formally trained through a master’s degree program to provide diagnostic, preventative and therapeutic services.


Sample Jobs

  • Physician Assistant

Requirements and Course Details

To learn more about this program, including grade requirements, a course listing, how to declare the major, and more, see the Program of Study Details.