Pre-Physician Assistant Pathway

Information and resources for pre-physician assistant students.

Pre-Physician Assistant Timeline:

First and Second Years:

  1. Download our Pre-Physician Assistant Guide below and subscribe to the HPOInfo emails.
  2. Get to know your professors.
    • You will need faculty evaluations when you apply to physician assistant schools. Two from science faculty are recommended.
  3. Meet with a pre-health professions coach.
    • Coaches explore health professions and to discuss your goals and preparation, especially how to make the most out of your first two years.
  4. Declare a major by your second year on campus.
  5. Non-College of Natural Sciences students are highly encouraged to add the Pre-Health Professions Certificate. Learn more about the certificate here.
  6. Get involved in extracurricular activities (e.g. student organizations, volunteering, and shadowing in medical settings, community service).
  7. English proficiency: international students whose native language is not English must also submit scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
  8. Attend the Health Professions Fair each year, generally held in February or March, to visit with representatives from physician assistant schools and other health professions programs.
  9. Keep viable career alternatives open.

Third Year:

  1. Complete pre-physician assistant requirements by May of your third year.
  2. Prepare for and take the GRE and, potentially, the PA-CAT, ideally no later than the end of your third year.
  3. Visit physician assistant school websites; decide where you will apply.
  4. Ask faculty who know you well if they will write evaluations in support of your physician assistant school applications; you will need two faculty evaluations. Science faculty letters are recommended.
  5. Attend the Health Professions Fair, generally held in February or March, to visit with representatives from physician assistant schools and other health professions programs.
  6. Complete and submit physician assistant school primary and secondary applications early in the summer, after your 3rd year.

Fourth Year:

  1. Most physician assistant school interviews take place during the late summer and the fall semester.
  2. Acceptance to physician assistant school begins during the fall semester.
  3. Complete UT Austin degree requirements necessary for graduation.
  4. Throughout your fourth year, continue in pre-physician assistant activities and additional courses to prepare for physician assistant school and to strengthen your application in case you need to apply again.

DIY Pre-PA Student Planning Guide

Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Pre-PA Planning Guide and Self Assessment document provides important resources for UT Austin students planning on applying to Physician Assistant School.

Acceptance Statistics

If you are a Pre-PA student please remember to check the box to release your acceptance data back to us so we can ensure we get the most comprehensive statistics we can for all future UT Austin Pre-PA students. If you have questions on the Pre-PA acceptance statistics, please ask your Pre-Health Professions Coach during an appointment.