Want to find the easiest PA schools to get into? PA school is notoriously competitive with average acceptance rates falling around 31%. However, there are some schools across the US that are less competitive than others, with higher acceptance rates and less rigorous admission criteria to meet. If you’re still debating PA vs MD be sure to check out the easiest medical schools to get into so you can make a well-informed decision before starting on your applications. In this blog, we’ll look at the easiest PA schools to get into based on acceptance rates, GPA and GRE scores. We’ve also included the PA schools in Canada and admission statistics.
Please note: although we have made every effort to provide the most accurate information, admissions information changes frequently. Therefore, we encourage you to verify these details with the official university admissions office. You are responsible for your own results. BeMo does not endorse nor affiliate with any official universities, colleges, or test administrators and vice versa.
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Easiest PA schools to get into
PA schools in the US use a variety of criteria to evaluate potential applicants for their programs, but some of the most common academic and personal are your GPA, GRE scores or PA-CAT scores and the amount of work experience you have under your belt. Not all institutions will have the same PA school requirements or will have more relaxed requirements, meaning some PA schools are less competitive than others. The tables below illustrate the easiest PA schools to get into in the US, based on physician assistant acceptances rates in the US, average accepted GPA, GRE scores and the number of work experience hours required.
Physician Assistant school acceptance rate in the US
Interested in a career as a PA? Watch this video on how to become one!
Easiest PA schools to get into in Canada
Applicants interested in physician assistant programs in Canada should know that there are only 4 in the country, meaning competition is even fiercer for limited spots. Even with physician assistant acceptance rates in Canada being notoriously competitive, though, you still have a shot at getting in. The table below shows the acceptance rate, average GPA, GRE requirements and work experience requirements for PA schools in Canada.
Learn what the common requirements for PA school are in the infographic below.
What to keep in mind when applying to PA school
When choosing where to apply to PA school, admission statistics can be helpful in determining where you are a competitive candidate, or where you meet the minimum admission criteria. But you need to keep in mind that GPAs and test scores are not everything, but they are important.
Some tips to keep in mind when you’re preparing your application:
- Do what you can to keep your GPA up
- Consider taking the GRE – even if not required
- Take time to write a strong personal statement
- Earn some work experience
- Choose referees who can best showcase your skill
- Research PA schools
- Talk to an advisor
Most PA schools require a minimum GPA of 3.0, but to be truly competitive as a candidate your GPA should be above 3.5 for most top-ranked schools. Even schools with no minimum GPA listed or a GPA minimum below 3.0 will be looking for the best candidates in the application pool. And while its possible to get into a grad school with a low GPA, you’ll need to offset a low GPA or low GRE score with a strong overall application. You can also take the GRE, even if it’s not a required part of the application, to demonstrate that you can handle graduate-level coursework. Properly prepping for the GRE and earning a good score may also sway the admission committee to accept you, even if it's not a strong requirement.
Writing a personal statement for PA school? Check out our tips.
Your other application components will include your personal background and experiences, which will show the admissions committees that you are motivated, focused and have diverse interests and an appetite to learn. Acing the non-academic parts of your application means writing an excellent PA personal statement and using your best extracurriculars for PA school. You’ll also need a physician assistant resume that reflects at least some clinical work experience or PA shadowing. Even at schools where work experience is not required or just recommended, having some good experience under your belt can put you ahead of other candidates.
Next, many schools ask for at least one letter of recommendation. If you’re applying through CASPA, you’ll need to submit your CASPA letter of recommendation. It’s best to ask a PA you’ve shadowed or a clinical supervisor, as these referees will best be able to write about your skill, professionalism and aptitude for PA school. Your reference letters need to be well-written and persuasive, so think hard on how to ask before you submit.
As you begin your applications, a common mistake students make is to apply to as many schools as possible without putting much effort in. But even the easiest PA schools to get into are selective, and they will skip over a careless application. Take the time to properly craft your application and tailor it to the schools you choose. Create a list of schools where you are a competitive candidate, and research the school’s values, mission, admission requirements and PA program so you know it’s a good fit for you, too. Physician assistant application help services can put you on the right track if you’re not sure where to start.
The easiest PA schools to get into will usually have below a 3.0 GPA minimum requirement, and do not ask for GRE scores or extensive work experience. These programs are considered less competitive and typically have high acceptance rates. However, there are many PA schools with high acceptance rates that have slightly higher admission criteria for applicants, yet still accept most candidates. You can choose a PA school based off how easy the admission requirements are but remember that this does not mean you should slack on the rest of your application. High scores are important, but you will be evaluated on the rest of your application and your performance in the PA school interview. For the best chance of getting into your chosen PA school, take the time to create the best application possible and do everything you can to make yourself a competitive candidate.
1. What percentage of PA applicants get accepted?
Around 31% of applicants to PA school get accepted, compared to around 40% of medical school applicants. This means PA schools are extremely competitive, even those that are easiest to get into.
2. Is it easy to get into PA?
Getting into PA school is not easy, even at the least selective schools. Preparing an application takes time and focus, and the competition at most PA schools is intense.
3. What GPA do I need for PA school?
Most PA schools have a 3.0 minimum GPA requirement, but to set yourself apart as a very competitive candidate, you should aim for a GPA of 3.5 and above.
4. What GRE score do I need for PA school?
PA schools do not typically set a minimum accepted GRE score. Scoring well on the GRE means a score of 300 or above, which will be competitive at most PA schools.
5. Is work experience important for PA school?
Yes. Work experience or shadowing hours are not required for all PA schools, but most of them do ask for a minimum amount of work hours. Having work experience can also significantly increase your chances of getting accepted as it shows you have a strong interest in the profession and are dedicated to learning.
6. How can I increase my chances of getting into PA school?
To increase your chances of getting into PA school, keep your GPA as high as possible, take the GRE and score high, and earn at least some shadowing hours or work experience. Next to this, your best chances of success are in writing a stellar personal statement and acing the admissions interview.
7. What should I do if I don’t get into PA school?
Many students don’t get accepted on the first try. You can always reapply the following year with a stronger application. In the meantime, focus on improving your grades, getting more clinical experience or volunteering your time in a medical profession.
8. Can I get into PA school with a low GPA?
It is possible to get into PA school with a low GPA, but this should be offset with a strong application, including a good GRE score, plenty of work experience and a great performance in the admissions interview.
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