Requirements for admission to the PA program
Northern Arizona University has technical standards regarding expectations, minimum requirements for admission, and course prerequisites.
Click on the accordion below to access more information about our requirements.
COVID-19 Accordion Closed
What elements of the admissions process has the PA program addressed?
A contingency plan was formulated and approved by the admissions committee for accommodations to the letter grade requirement for prerequisite coursework. All application deadlines will remain effective. All letters of recommendation requirements will remain effective. The minimum 500 hours of health care experience will remain effective.
What changes has the program made to accommodate COVID-19 contingencies?
The NAU PA program requires all prerequisite coursework to be completed with a letter (A, B, C, D) or numerical (4.0, 3.0, 2.0, 1.0) grade. Prerequisite courses completed with Pass/Fail or Credit/No Credit are accepted only by permission of the department. Exception to this policy includes advanced placement (AP) credit, which is accepted under certain conditions (see FAQs).
- Applicable March 1, 2020 through September 1, 2020 ONLY.
- Applicants who completed a prerequisite course as Pass/Fail or Credit/No Credit during the approved time period may submit those courses for prerequisite consideration.
- Qualifying courses are subject to the time period between March 1, 2020 and September 1, 2020.
- Qualifying courses must be completed and documented on the transcript in order to request consideration.
Download the official policy.
Minimum Requirements Accordion Closed
- Submit both CASPA and NAU applications by the September 1 deadline (CASPA verified no later than October 1)
- All applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the U.S.
- A minimum of an earned bachelor’s or higher degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution OR equivalent*
- Overall and science course GPA of 3.0 or higher (CASPA calculation)
- Complete prerequisite courses from a U.S. regionally accredited institution
- Minimum of 9 credits of science courses completed in the last 5 years
- A minimum of 500 hours of health care experience is required. Both volunteer and paid experiences are acceptable.
- Three letters of reference/recommendation. (CASPA submission only)
*If the degree was earned outside the U.S., applicants must:
- Submit official transcripts in the language of instruction and an official English translation evaluated by either WES or ECE to the NAU Graduate College and to CASPA no later than September 1. WES or ECE evaluation fees are the responsibility of the applicant.
- Complete prerequisite courses from a U.S. regionally accredited institution.
- Demonstrate English proficiency by submitting TOEFL scores with a minimum score of 100 on the iBT (internet-based testing) and a minimum of 26 on the speaking component.
Download minimum requirements HERE
Prerequisite Course Lists Accordion Closed
- Arizona State University (ASU)
- Grand Canyon University (GCU)
- Northern Arizona University (NAU)
- University of Arizona (UA)
- Arizona Western College (AWC)
- Central Arizona College (CAC)
- Cochise College
- Coconino Community College (CCC)
- Diné College
- Eastern Arizona College (EAC)
- Maricopa Community Colleges*
- Mohave Community College
- Northland Pioneer College (NPC)
- Pima Community College (PCC)
- Tohono O’odham Community College (TOCC)
- Yavapai College
* Includes Chandler-Gilbert, Estrella Mountain, GateWay, Glendale, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Phoenix College, and Rio Salado, Scottsdale, and South Mountain community colleges.
Inquiries Accordion Closed
Questions regarding the minimum requirements for admission should be sent to PAprog@nau.edu. Any questions regarding prerequisite coursework and equivalency sent to the program will not be answered without first completing our Prerequisite Inquiry Form. Please review all prerequisite equivalency lists available on our website (Arizona schools only) and the FAQs on our website before submitting your inquiry.
Preference Factors Accordion Closed
The university publishes a non-discriminatory policy in compliance with section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and with Title IX of the Educational Amendment of 1972 and consistent with federal and state statutes, rules and regulations.
Additionally, in accordance with the PA program mission and goals, the program will give preference to applicants who indicate a high potential for remaining in the state of Arizona to work following graduation as well as individuals from targeted populations defined by our HRSA Primary Care Training Grant. This includes individuals who are first generation college students, economically disadvantaged, educationally disadvantaged, underrepresented populations, military veterans, and those from rural backgrounds.
Applications Accordion Closed
Both the CASPA (Central Application Service for Physician Assistants) and the NAU Graduate College application must be completed by September 1 for consideration.
The application cycle begins in April and closes September 1 each year.
If you have any questions, or you wish to receive e-mail updates, send your request to PAprog@nau.edu. We look forward to hearing from you.