Physician Assistant Studies

Welcome to the Physician Assistant Studies Program

Congratulations on your decision to attend the Physician Assistant Studies program at MCPHS! See a welcome message [PDF] from Kristy Altongy-Magee, DScPAS, PA-C, Program Director.

We’re excited that you’ll be joining us soon. There are some important steps to prepare for your time at MCPHS, detailed below. We will continue to post specific information on this page, so be sure to check back often.

White coats and name tags will be ordered for each student by the department. Sizes should be based on blazers or jackets that you wear over other clothing.

The white coat order form for students entering in spring 2025 will be available in fall 2024.

For questions, you may contact Sara Miles.

The equipment package that each student will need for the PA didactic and clinical years will be purchased in bulk. Each student will receive a portable ophthalmoscope and otoscope, stethoscopes, reflex hammer, EKG caliper, tape measure, and 2 different tuning forks. The cost of this equipment package will be included as a line item in your tuition bill as this has an advantage in that you may receive financial aid for your equipment purchase. The bulk purchase rate allows us to save you hundreds of dollars on the price in comparison to purchasing each item individually. This also ensures that all students will have high quality professional equipment and your equipment will be ready for you to use at the beginning of the program. You will have the option of upgrading your stethoscope for an additional cost.

By having items like an ophthalmoscope and otoscope, it also means that students can practice their physical examination skills at home without coming into the patient assessment lab. All of us on the faculty are currently, or have practiced in the clinical setting, and we know from our own experience that once you begin clinical rotations and clinical jobs as practicing PAs the ophthalmoscope/otoscope kits you purchased for the program will come in handy. We are providing you with quality sets. The ophthalmoscope is a valuable diagnostic tool, and the knowledge and skill set learned from using this equipment is invaluable in becoming a competent PA. We know that our students are pleased with their equipment, and we have taken the guess work out of trying to decide what to purchase in an area in which you may not be very familiar.

Information about customization for students matriculating in spring 2025 will be available in fall 2024.

MCPHS has established technology guidelines for all new students.

The Accelerated Physician Assistant Studies program will use ExamSoft (electronic testing software) in all first-year courses. All students are required to bring a laptop meeting the minimum specifications in order for you to be able to sit for exams. If you are planning to purchase a new device, it is advised you delay purchase until closer to the start of the program in January due to rapidly changing technology (new devices from Mac or Microsoft must be supported by ExamSoft, which can take time).

Each student will be required to purchase a privacy screen or privacy filter that fits on their PC or Mac. Minimum technology requirements are listed below. Please note that iPads, tablets, and Chromebooks are not acceptable for taking exams.

Please review minimum system requirements.

A BLS Provider through the American Heart Association must be completed by all students and maintained for the duration of the program. Students must complete either a blended learning or face-to-face provider course prior to matriculation. Please send a copy of your certification to the admission office at no later than December 15.

All students in the PA program will be required to take a medical terminology competency test on the first day of classes. The competency test will be a combination of true/false, matching, and multiple choice questions. In order to prepare for this test, review and study the text Medical Terminology: An Illustrated Guide, 9th Edition by Barbara Janson Cohen and Shirley A Jones, which will be used throughout your time in the program.

Students must score 80% or greater to successfully pass the competency test. If a student scores less than 80%, they must meet with their assigned advisor for remediation within the first week of classes and will be required to retake the examination within the first 2 weeks of classes and receive a score of 80% or greater on the retake exam. This competency is required to pass your MPA-530 Clinical Medicine course.

If you have any questions, please contact Stephanie Maclary.

The schedule for spring 2025 will be available in fall 2024.

Within your Clinical Medicine course, there is an additional mandatory learning aid known as the ROSH Didactic QBank. Throughout Clin Med I, II and III you will have assigned assessments from ROSH to help supplement and broaden your knowledge base.

ROSH registration information for MCPHS PA students entering the program in spring 2025 will be available in December before term start. Please do not register for an account until instructed to do so by the program. No additional fees will be incurred when registering for a ROSH account as an MCPHS PA student.

Information for students entering the program in spring 2026 will be available in December 2025.

Students matriculating in spring 2025 will receive their book list in the fall of 2024.

The American Academy of Physician Assistants is the national professional society for Physician Assistants. AAPA advocates and educates on behalf of the profession and the patients PA’s serve. AAPA works to ensure the professional growth, personal excellence and recognition of physician assistants. The organization also enhances the ability of PA students to improve the quality, accessibility, and cost-effectiveness of patient-centered healthcare. SAAAPA is the Student Academy of the American Academy of Physician Assistants and a nationally recognized forum for PA students. Student membership to the AAPA is a requirement of the program. The membership fee is $75. This is a one time payment that provides membership for the entire length of the program. Please visit to sign up.

Students entering the program in spring 2025 should email proof of membership to Mrs. Cindy Naum ( by Friday January 11, 2025.