MS in Physician Assistant Studies

Helen S. Martin, DHSc, PA-C, DFAAPA, Division Director 

The physician assistant is a licensed health professional qualified by specialized academic and clinical education to perform medical tasks traditionally undertaken by physicians, while practicing under the supervision and responsibility of a licensed physician. Physician Assistants (PA) play a critical role delivering high-quality, affordable health care, and more than ever before, are helping to meet the health care needs of our nation and the world. PAs provide essential diagnostic, therapeutic, preventative, and health maintenance services in primary and specialty care settings. The Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (PAS) program is the perfect place to gain the skills, knowledge, and experience to prepare student to practice in this exciting, ever evolving profession.

The PAS program begins at the end of May each year and is approximately 27 months (seven semesters) in length. The first four semesters are devoted to classroom study. They take place on campus and comprise the fifteen-month didactic portion of the program. During the last three semesters, which comprise the twelve-month long clinical year, students complete nine individual clinical rotations at sites predominately located in South Carolina. The clinical rotations include internal medicine, family medicine, women's health, pediatrics, mental health, emergency medicine, surgery, an adjunct clinical experience as well as an elective of the student's choosing. 


The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) has granted Accreditation-Continued status to the Medical University of South Carolina Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Medical University of South Carolina. Accreditation-Continued is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards. Accreditation remains in effect until the program closes or withdraws from the accreditation process or until accreditation is withdrawn for failure to comply with the Standards. The approximate date for the next validation review of the program by the ARC-PA will be March 2023. The review date is contingent upon continued compliance with the Accreditation Standards and ARC-PA policy. More information regarding Accreditation Standards can be found here: