Applicants must meet the following minimum requirements prior to application. Any requirement below that is not completed prior to submitting the CASPA application will not be considered for review:
Applicants must have earned a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States.
PA-CAT (Physician Assistant College Admission Test) **NEW AS OF 2023**
Rocky Vista University PA Program requires applicants to take the PA-CAT (Physician Assistant College Admission Test). The PA-CAT is a specialized test designed to measure applicant knowledge in key prerequisite science subjects typically required for PA school. For information about the PA-CAT and to schedule your exam, click here to visit their website. Additional information can be found in our RVU PA Admissions FAQ section
How does the Program use the PA-CAT scores?
The Program has no minimum score requirement for the PA-CAT, therefore, we are not utilizing the exam scores to eliminate applicants. The Program utilizes the PA-CAT scores as part of its holistic admissions review process to help us identify students who may need additional academic support after being selected into the Program. Please refer to the Admissions FAQ section for more information on how the program supports students during the Program.
Step 1: Go to their website to register, pay and schedule your exam date for the PA-CAT.
- Select Rocky Vista University PA Program from the list as the institution to receive your score report.
- We do not accept scores sent to us by applicants. The program will receive official transcripts from the PA-CAT exam administrators (Exam Master) as long as our institution was selected by the applicant.
- The PA-CAT exam must be registered for or taken by the time of submission of your CASPA application. This means you should not submit your completed CASPA application until you have either registered for or taken the PA-CAT exam.
- It is highly recommended you take the PA-CAT at your earliest opportunity.
- The program strongly recommends taking the PA-CAT by the 20th of the selected month so that scores can be delivered to the program by the 1st of the following month. If the exam is taken after the 20th of any given month, scores will not be available for the program to review for an additional month from the time you completed the exam. This may cause delays in review of your CASPA application.
- The program reviews completed applications in the order they are received and offers interviews on a rolling basis, thereafter.
Step 2: (Optional) Study for the PA-CAT with resources provided on their website
All applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. **Applicants with a CASPA verified Biology, Chemistry, Physics (BCP) GPA of 3.0 or higher are preferred
Applicants are required to have a minimum of 1,000 hours of documented paid healthcare relevant experience. Paid internships are not accepted as paid healthcare relevant experience. The RVU PA Program does not determine for the applicant what is acceptable healthcare relevant experience and encourages applicants to appropriately describe, within the CASPA application, the type of experience they have accumulated and support why they feel it is healthcare relevant.
Physician Assistant Shadowing
Though shadowing PA professionals is not required, it is strongly recommended. Shadowing enhances the applicant’s exposure to physician assistants, giving them a deeper understanding of the PA profession.
The Program does not require applicants to have completed specific prerequisite courses. However, the program strongly recommends the following coursework from a regionally accredited institution of higher education:
- General Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Behavior/Social Science
- Additional coursework such as:
Genetics, Human Anatomy, Physiology, Microbiology, Cellular Biology, Medical Terminology, Ethics, Humanities, and Communication
Three letters of reference must be submitted through CASPA before an application will be considered complete and reviewable by the RVU PA Program. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure all references have been received by CASPA and are not pending at the time of application submittal. The RVU PA Program does not specify who letters should be written by, rather references should be selected from individuals who are well acquainted with the applicant academically, professionally and/or personally over a period of time. References from family members are strongly discouraged. The program does not accept and will not consider any form of reference (email, phone call, letter, etc.) from individuals outside of the 3 official letters submitted through CASPA.
Advanced Placement and Transfers
The RVU PA Program does not take into consideration advanced placement credit for any courses and does not accept transfers from other Physician Assistant Programs.