Program Description

Physician Assistants (PAs) are health care professionals licensed to practice medicine under physician supervision. They are formally trained to provide diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive health care services. Within the MD/PA relationship, PAs conduct physical examinations, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret laboratory tests and x-rays, counsel on health care issues, and assist in surgery. They also treat injuries by suturing, splinting and casting. PAs record progress notes, instruct and counsel patients, and order or carry out therapy. The PA's practice is centered on patient care and may also include educational, research, and administrative activities.

The Physician Assistant program begins autumn quarter. It consists of a 12-month didactic phase that provides a foundation of biological, behavioral, and medical sciences. This is followed by a 12-month clinical phase of clerkships in a variety of medical specialties designed to provide diverse and intensive patient care experience. A new class is accepted annually, with students selected from a variety of clinical backgrounds. Students are selected from a variety of clinical backgrounds. Experience in patient care, duration of experience, level of patient contact, and degree of responsibility are considered in the evaluation of each prospective student.

Graduates from the program are eligible to take the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE).

Program Website | Catalog

Program Length

2 years or 8 quarters

Possible Careers

Private practice, Clinic or hospital settings, Research, Teaching and Administration.

Application Deadlines

There are currently no published application deadlines.

Admissions Requirements

To apply to the Physician Assistant program, the applicant must have the following: 
  1. A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution
  2. A minimum of 2,000 hours (approximately 1 year of full-time work) of hands-on paid patient care experience prior to entering the program
  3. An overall GPA of at least 3.0 or higher and a science GPA of 3.0 or higher

Please note the following important information regarding the application process:

  1. C-minus grades are not acceptable for transfer credit
  2. All applications must be made through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA) available at
  3. Applications are accepted through CASPA between May 1 and October 1 (CASPA deadline) for the following school year
  4. Applicants are required to submit a secondary application in order to complete the application process - the CASPA application should be submitted to CASPA prior to beginning the supplemental application


  • Human Anatomy & Physiology with lab (complete sequence) OR separate courses in Human Anatomy with lab & Human Physiology with lab. Must cover all organ systems.
  • One year of General Chemistry complete sequence with lab or sequence of inorganic, organic and biochemistry with lab (3 qtrs/2 sem)
  • Microbiology with lab (must cover medically important bacteria, virus, fungi and protozoa).
  • General Psychology or equivalent
  • General Sociology or Cultural Anthropology or equivalent
  • College Algebra or equivalent
  • One year of English (language courses not accepted) 


- Statistics 
- Medical terminology 
- Conversational Spanish

Discipline Accrediting Agency

The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA) has granted Accreditation-Continued status to the Loma Linda University Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Loma Linda University. Accreditation-Continued is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards.

Accreditation remains in effect until the program closes or withdraws from the accreditation process or until accreditation is withdrawn for failure to comply with the Standards. The approximate date for the next validation review of the program by the ARC-PA will be March 2027. The review date is contingent upon continued compliance with the Accreditation Standards and ARC-PA policy.


Integrating faith and health
Loma Linda University educates and encourages a balanced life by living our values of humility, compassion, justice, integrity, excellence, freedom and self- control. You will be surrounded by faculty who are committed to healthcare innovation and research while engaging your spirituality.

Expected Cost of Attendance

Academic Year 2020-2021

Year of Program:Year 1Year 2
Books & Supplies$4,850$1,000
Misc (e.g., Boards, Licensing exam, Uniforms)


Expected costs for the 2020-2021 academic year are based on full time attendance. From year to year, increases are anticipated consistent with inflation in the professional education sector.

The cost of attendance varies from year to year. Please contact the office of Student Finance for up-to-date costs.

Estimated Living Expenses

Academic Year 2020-2021, off campus, with a roommate

Year of Program:Year 1Year 2
Months enrolled1212
Room & Board$16,860$16,860
Personal Expenses$2,760$2,760


  • Amounts are what a student can apply to borrow for the number of months shown in each academic year based on living off campus with a roommate and not with a relative.
  • International students need to calculate 12 months of living expenses based on the numbers listed here.
  • In general, to qualify for financial aid a student must be enrolled at least half time taking degree requirements. Half time is 6 units in a quarter for undergraduate programs and 4 units in a quarter for graduate programs.