FAQs

General FAQs

Admissions FAQs

Tuition and Financial Aid FAQs

Clinical Field Placement FAQs

Accreditation FAQs

General FAQs

What is Yale PA Online?

Yale PA Online is the online Master of Medical Science program from the Yale School of Medicine. Yale PA Online prepares students to excel in the medical field as physician assistants (PAs).

How is Yale PA Online different from other online programs?

Unlike many other online programs, Yale PA Online students meet in live classes each week to engage with faculty and fellow students. Coursework is delivered through a multimedia format, and the curriculum takes an organ-systems approach to medicine.

Yale PA Online also has a dedicated field placement team that works in partnership with Yale School of Medicine Physician Assistant faculty to locate qualified clinical rotation sites in or near students’ communities. Students spend 15 months in these rotations and also attend three week-long on-campus immersions.

Is Yale PA Online accredited?

The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to the Yale Physician Assistant Online Program sponsored by Yale School of Medicine.

Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation-Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.

Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class.

Why is Yale creating the Yale PA Online program?

The mission statement of Yale University begins: “Yale is committed to improving the world today and for future generations through outstanding research and scholarship, education, preservation, and practice.” Yale School of Medicine believes creating the Yale PA Online program aligns with this ideal. One reason is that we know the United States will need many more physician assistants. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that between 2016 and 2026 the country will need to grow its workforce by 37 percent, which represents roughly 39,700 jobs.1

While we obviously won’t solve this problem on our own, Yale School of Medicine is confident the students we educate in the Yale PA Online program will grow to become leaders in this critical health care field and will have an impact nationally.

If the program is online, how can you be certain PA Online students are learning the required material before they practice?

Only the coursework in the first year of the program is delivered online, and the online format includes live weekly class sessions, opportunities to meet with faculty, assessments, and tests. Like the traditional on-campus program, the second component of the program requires Yale PA Online students to learn in clinical rotations that are completed on-site at health care facilities. Students also spend three weeks over the course of the program at Yale in mandatory immersions. Students from both programs must also complete the same board exam, the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE).

Is the online program available full time and part time?

The program is currently only available on a full-time basis.

How long does the program take to complete?

The program is structured to be completed in 28 months.

Can I work full time while enrolled in the program?

Due to the time intensive nature of the Yale PA Online program, students are discouraged from working while enrolled.

Any student who chooses to work while in the program is expected to attend scheduled classes and fulfill all stated activities of the program. A student who chooses to work may not switch classes, labs, special assignments, or clinical rotations to accommodate their work schedule.

If the student’s academic or clinical performance falls below the minimum program standard, the program director may recommend a student stop working. This recommendation will be made in writing and placed in the student’s file.

Students are not at any time required to perform work duties for the PA program. Students are not permitted to substitute for clinical or administrative staff during supervised clinical practice experiences. Violation of these policies will result in a referral to the Academic Affairs Committee.

Is there an on-campus requirement?

Yes, students must attend three immersion experiences at the main campus located in New Haven, Connecticut. These immersions will allow students to develop hands-on clinical skills, work in small groups, and meet classmates and faculty in person. Students also work in the Yale School of Medicine simulation lab and participate in cadaver dissection.

The immersions last five days and typically run Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM daily with open lab time available Monday to Thursday evening. The first immersion occurs near the middle of the first semester of the didactic year, the second immersion occurs near the end of the didactic year and the third immersion occurs just prior to program completion. Travel, hotel and food costs are the student’s responsibility.

Upon completion of the program, students are also invited to travel to campus for the May University commencement.

What is the student-to-faculty ratio?

Classes are kept small with only 12–15 students.

Does the online program offer specializations?

While Yale PA Online does not have specializations, students take three elective clinical rotations in order to gain expertise in a specific area of medicine.

Will my diploma indicate that I earned my degree online?

No. As with the on-campus program, Yale PA Online diplomas are issued from Yale University and do not indicate that the degree was earned online.

Will this degree allow me to pursue licensure in any state?

We encourage applicants to research the requirements specific to their home state. Please visit the NCCPA website for more information about specific states.

What are the PANCE pass rates for Yale’s PA program?

Once the Yale PA Online program has students who have completed the board exam, the results will be posted on the program website.

Where can I find information on the PA on-campus program?

Visit the PA on-campus program website for more information.

Will my admission and academic records be protected if I apply to Yale PA Online or enroll as a student?

Yes, your records are safe. Yale PA Online follows the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) which affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. Review the policy here.

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Admissions FAQs

Do I need to have prior health care experience in order to be eligible for this program?

Applicants are not required to have prior health care experience, but it is highly recommended that applicants have a minimum of six months full-time health care employment or 1,000 total hours of hands-on patient care experience and/or community service in a health care setting.

Preference is given to applicants having experience that requires a period of training and results in direct (hands-on) patient care. You can view a list of relevant health care experience on the Admissions Requirements page.

Do I need to submit standardized test scores?

Applicants must submit Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores as part of the Yale PA Online application. To send test scores, use the institutional code 0028.

I’m not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Can I apply?

People who are not US citizens or permanent residents are not eligible for the online program at this time.

I’m a U.S. citizen living abroad. Am I eligible for the program?

Due to the difficulty in locating appropriate placements internationally, U.S. citizens living abroad are ineligible for the online program. Applicants who will be living in the United States before their desired cohort begins are eligible to apply.

Is an interview required for Yale PA Online?

Qualified candidates will be invited to interview once the Admissions Committee has reviewed the completed application and made the recommendation to interview. These candidates will be notified with ample time to prepare for the interview. Interviews are offered on a rolling basis and are conducted online.

Is there an application fee?

CASPA applicants are subject to an additional $50 non-refundable supplemental fee paid to Yale Physician Assistant Online Program. Additional information and instructions on CASPA application fees can be found in the CASPA portal.

Applicants who wish to apply only to the Yale PA Online program, may do so through the Yale PA Online portal application; this application is subject to a non-refundable $50 application fee.

Can the application fee be waived?

Fee waivers are available. Please contact an admissions counselor for more information.

Are there any prerequisite course requirements?

Yes. You can see the full list of requirements on the Application Prerequisites page.

What are the minimum eligibility requirements for admission to the program?

Applicants must have a cumulative science GPA of at least 3.0 and an overall undergraduate cumulative GPA of at least 2.8 to be considered for the program. Competitive applicants score in the 50th percentile or higher on each section of the GRE exam.

Will Yale consider advanced placement in the program for prior academic or clinical experience?

No. Coursework in the Yale PA Online program is different from most traditional graduate programs. The curriculum is designed so that knowledge acquired in one semester is required for knowledge acquisition in the next. Therefore, it is vital that all students in the program complete the required work in the prescribed sequence.

I hold a degree as a physician from a country outside the United States and have been unable to complete the USMLE examinations. How do I apply to your program?

Our program is not intended for individuals who already possess a medical degree.

How long do I have to complete my application if it's submitted at the final deadline?

Applicants have 30 days after the final deadline (September 1, 11:59 p.m.) to complete their application which includes letters of recommendation, transcripts, and all other requirements.

Visit our Applications Requirements page for a full breakdown. Contact your Admissions Counselor with any additional questions you may have.

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Tuition and Financial Aid FAQs

What is the cost of attendance for Yale PA Online?

With activity and technology fees, we estimate the total cost of the 28-month Yale PA Online Program at $101,080. Note that this figure should only be used for estimation purposes as tuition rates are reassessed each academic year.

Will tuition change with each academic year?

A moderate tuition increase can be expected in the fall of each year.

Who can I contact with questions about financial aid?

Contact an admissions counselor at 844-433-9253 or via email with questions about financial aid.

Are scholarships available?

Scholarships are available from numerous organizations external to Yale School of Medicine.

If I withdraw from the program, will Yale issue me a tuition refund?

You can see our tuition refund policy on the Tuition and Financial Aid page.

How do I apply for financial aid?

Yale PA Online does not currently offer need-based or merit-based scholarships. However, U.S. citizens and permanent residents can apply for financial aid, which is based on federal student loans, through Yale School of Medicine, once they receive an offer of acceptance and have remitted the non-refundable seat deposit. In addition to applying for federal education loans, students may explore alternative scholarship opportunities. For more information about applying for financial aid and exploring alternative opportunities, go to the Tuition and Financial Aid page.

What is the Yale FAFSA code?

Yale's FAFSA code is 001426.

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Clinical Field Placement FAQs

Where will clinical rotations take place?

Students complete their rotations in health care settings such as inpatient hospitals, operating rooms, emergency rooms, private practice offices, nursing homes/long-term care facilities, and psychiatric facilities. Our specialists will attempt to place students near their home communities, however, students may need to travel to complete rotations if there are no sites available that meet Yale’s standards while allowing the student to remain in their community. Any costs related to travel, housing, or food for distant clinical sites are the responsibility of the student.

Do I need to secure my own field placement?

No. At no time are students required to identify or obtain clinical training sites for their education. Students may make recommendations to the program, but only the PA program can assign students to a given site during a specific time frame.

How much time should I expect to spend at my placement site?

Yale PA Online students can expect to dedicate 40 hours or more per week to each rotation.

Are there weekend and weeknight placements available?

Weekends and weeknight placements are not the norm, but certain rotations require the student to work nonstandard shifts and weekends as part of the clinical year experience.

I do not have a car. How does this impact my field placement selection?

The Yale PA Online field placement team will make every effort to find appropriate clinical rotation sites based on your needs, but the number of options for students who do not drive or cannot use public transportation is limited. A lack of transportation may delay your placement.

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Accreditation FAQs

Given Yale PA Online’s provisional accreditation status, is there a chance that the program can lose accreditation during my enrollment? If so, would I lose my tuition payment and be unable to finish the program? 

If the program loses accreditation, students in the program will complete all courses and clinical requirements, graduate, and be eligible to take the boards.

Will my physician assistant certification ever be invalid if Yale PA Online loses its accreditation status? 

No, your certification will remain valid as long as you maintain certification through the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA).

Will my diploma state that the program was provisionally accredited, and will this status ever hurt my future job search? 

The diploma makes no statement regarding accreditation and does not mention the degree was completed online.

Will I be eligible for the PANCE exam given the Yale PA Online program’s provisional accreditation status?

Yes. To be eligible for PANCE, you must graduate from a physician assistant program accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). Yale PA Online program graduates will be deemed to have graduated from an accredited program if their PA educational program was accredited at the time of their matriculation. Note that Accreditation-Provisional is a form of full accreditation.

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To learn more about Yale PA Online, request information and an admissions counselor will contact you.