SaintsRiseUp Safe Return | Campus Updates


The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to The College of St. Scholastica Physician Assistant Studies Program sponsored by The College of St. Scholastica.

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.

The program's accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website.

Admissions Information

Pencil Sharpener

1. Preparation

  1. Completion of a bachelor’s degree at a regionally accredited college or university.
  2. Minimum cumulative and prerequisite GPAs of 3.0.
  3. All prerequisites must have a minimum grade of “C.”
  4. 750 hours of paid direct patient/client work experience (HCE) is strongly encouraged. A successful applicant will typically have greater than 750 HCE hours. An applicant may still apply while actively completing HCE hours and will have the opportunity to describe plans for completion on the CASPA application. Typical experiences may include CNA, personal care attendant through an agency, EMT, paramedic, scribe, or other healthcare professional. The key part of this requirement is that the experience must involve direct, face-to-face service with the patient/client.
  5. Applicants must be able to demonstrate knowledge of the role and responsibilities of a PA.
  6. All students must also review the technical standards (pdf) required for program entry.
  7. Applicants are required to complete the GRE within five years of application. Request official scores to be sent to CASPA code 0552. MCAT scores are not accepted. Due to COVID-19, GRE offers an at-home testing option. GRE writing score above national average preferred.

Note: Meeting minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission.

All prerequisite coursework must be completed with GPA of 3.0 or above; individual course grades must be a C or better:

  • Organic Chemistry I and II
  • Biochemistry
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II
  • Microbiology
  • Lifespan Developmental Psychology
  • Medical Terminology
  • Statistics

Policy regarding Pass/No Pass (P/F, C/NC, S/U) and online coursework due to COVID-19 impact

Any prerequisite course taken for credit (pass/fail, credit/no credit, satisfactory/unsatisfactory, etc.) between spring 2020 - spring 2021 will be accepted; however, it will not count toward the prerequisite GPA. We strongly encourage grades if there is an option between grades and pass/fail. We have always accepted grades from regionally accredited online courses and will continue to do so.

Note: Labs are preferred in science-related courses, when applicable. All prerequisites must have been completed within 10 years* from the year of application. All prerequisites must be completed, via official transcript, by Aug. 1 of the program start year. Preference is given to those applicants with the majority of the science prerequisites complete (with a letter grade) at the time of application. Because prerequisite courses establish the framework for the PA program, all prerequisite courses must be completed at an institution of higher learning.

Applicants must report every college course attempted in the Coursework section of the CASPA application, including those courses later repeated for a higher grade. CASPA GPAs include ALL courses completed with grades/credits, even if they were later repeated for a higher grade. 

Due to the high volume of interest in the Master of Science in PA Studies program at The College of St. Scholastica, the Office of Graduate Admissions does not review unofficial transcripts to determine the completion of prerequisite coursework. If you have specific questions about a particular course, please reference the prerequisite equivalency tables to determine if the course meets the stated requirement. 

*Any student may request a waiver of admission requirements through a written request to the Graduate Admissions Office. These requests must be received by the Graduate Admissions Office by July 30th to allow ample time for review prior to the September 1st application deadline. The Department Chair may determine prerequisite course equivalencies and grant waivers for time limitations without full PA Admission Committee involvement.  Other waiver requests may require a committee vote. Waiver of GPA and course grade minimum requirements will not be considered. The Department Chair notifies the applicant and the Graduate Admissions Counselor of waiver decisions in writing.

The admissions committee will consider:

  • Cognitive factors which include cumulative and prerequisite GPA, and GRE with writing score. Additional consideration is given to applicants who exceed the minimum GPA requirements, show upward GPA trends (undergraduate/post-bacc/graduate) and have GRE scores above the national average.
  • Admissions preference will be given to applicants with a CSS undergraduate degree, and/or demographic factors which include those from rural/urban communities, those from underrepresented and underserved populations, and those from the upper Midwest (Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan, North Dakota and South Dakota, with an emphasis on students from Minnesota and Wisconsin)
  • Interest in underrepresented populations and primary care as demonstrated by healthcare and volunteer experiences that indicate a commitment to service
  • Desired qualities include student career goals that fit the program’s mission, professionalism, interpersonal skills and dedication to lifelong learning

The College of St. Scholastica has a long-standing history of supporting veterans in reaching their career goals. The PA Studies program at CSS is committed to our nation's veterans. We offer admissions preference to all veteran applicants. While this does not guarantee admission, it is an acknowledgment of the College's dedication to veterans and their needs.

Helping Veterans Become Physician Assistants
Veteran Admissions Information


2. Application

Official transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended or where credit was earned must be sent to CASPA. Instructions are indicated on the CASPA application.

  1. Submit a CASPA application. The program does not interview applicants for admission. We may contact you by email or phone to clarify information in your CASPA application.

  2. In the CASPA application, enter contact information for three people to submit recommendation information/letters on your behalf. Applicants will be asked to provide a personal statement and a response to three program specific essay questions. 

  3. After the application deadline, completed and verified applications from CASPA will be reviewed by the admissions committee.

Please see our International Admissions page for information on additional documentation that may be required.

Our financial aid includes options for financing, refund policies and commonly used forms. Contact the OneStop Student Services office early in the application process at (877) 287-8716 or

The U.S. Government and the State of Minnesota strongly support PA education with loans and loan repayment opportunities:


3. Post-Completion

  • Submit $500 nonrefundable deposit and Decision Response Form. Upon matriculation, this deposit is applied to the student’s tuition.
  • Submit Student Health Services forms, including the immunization form, through the COR student portal/My Health/Forms.
  • Meet specific health requirements of the PA Program prior to Matriculation:
  • Pass mandated criminal background checks prior to first day of classes. Background checks will be completed during orientation.
  • Submit a copy of current BLS certification (certification needs to be current through August of the didactic year)

As a college student at St. Scholastica, you get to take the lead in your own education and assume responsibility for your success. Please use our accepted students information page to help you along the way, and remember, your advisors and instructors are here to guide and support you as you proceed through your journey toward a degree.

Application Deadline

Applications are accepted through CASPA from April 30 to Sept. 1, for the following fall enrollment period.

Next Steps...

Receive Program Info and Financial Aid Options
  • Detailed program overview
  • Personalized financial aid
  • Individual admissions support

By requesting information, I authorize The College of St. Scholastica to contact me by email, phone or text message.


Apply Now

Contact Us

Courtney EickmanCourtney Eickman
Assistant Director, Enrollment Management
(218) 625-4823
Schedule a Meeting