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Program Overview

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

The Prephysician Assistant Completion Program is intended for students who have completed some, but not all of the core science prerequisites needed to apply to PA school. Students in this program may take their remaining core classes through SPS and receive the same student services as those in the prephysician assistant post-baccalaureate program. This program is not intended as a records-enhancement program. Students who have already applied to PA school or completed all their prephysician assistant coursework should not apply.

Students must complete the program within 12 calendar months and be enrolled in at least two units of coursework per term to be eligible for financial aid.

Students who plan to enroll in this program during the summer immediately following the completion of their undergraduate degree may not be eligible for financial aid during that summer, depending on previous aid awards for that academic year.

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About the Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Required Courses

Course plans will vary based on each student’s previously completed coursework. The courses listed below are necessary prerequisites for Physician Assistant graduate programs. Upon admission into the program, students should consult with their academic advisor to create a plan of study. In order to receive a letter of completion, students must complete their individual required courses as determined in the initial advising meeting and must complete a minimum of 4 units with a 3.0 GPA.

Courses are selected from the following:

  • BIOL SCI 215 Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • BIOL SCI 217 Physiology
  • BIOL SCI 219 Cell Biology
  • BIOL SCI 220 Genetic and Molecular Processes Laboratory
  • BIOL SCI 221 Cellular Processes Laboratory
  • BIOL SCI 222 Investigative Laboratory
  • BIOL SCI 308 Biochemistry
  • BIOL SCI 313 Human Anatomy
  • BIOL SCI 317 Regional Anatomy Lab
  • BIOL SCI 328 Microbiology
  • CHEM 110 Quantitative Problem Solving in Chemistry
  • CHEM 131 General Chemistry 1 (with lab, CHEM 141)
  • CHEM 132 General Chemistry 2 (with lab, CHEM 142)
  • CHEM 210-A Organic Chemistry I
  • STAT 202 Introduction to Statistic
  • CLASSICS 110 Scientific Vocabulary Through Classical Roots

Due to Northwestern Department of Chemistry policy, students may not begin a chemistry course in the middle of a sequence. Students who need to complete a chemistry course must take the entire sequence at SPS. 

View Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Courses

Transfer Credit Policy for Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

Transfer credit is not accepted into this program. However, the program’s flexibility allows students to enroll in only the courses that they need.

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Tuition

Post-baccalaureate students at Northwestern's School of Professional Studies pay per course. For more information about financial obligations and tuition, please visit the Tuition page.

Admission for Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

In addition to completing an online application, you'll also need to submit a few supplemental materials. A list of requirements for admission including application deadlines and tips on how to apply can be found on the Admission page.

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Registration Information

Whether you're a first-time registrant or current and returning student, all students register using our online student registration and records systems. Important information about registering for courses at SPS, including registration timelines and adding or dropping courses in which you are already enrolled, can be found on the Registration Information page.

Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Sample Course Plans

View two Prephysician Assistant Completion Program Sample Course Plans here.

Find out more about the Prephysician Assistant Completion Program

Program Courses:Course Detail
Genetics and Molecular Biology <> BIOL_SCI 215-CN

This course is the first of a four-course sequence that is completed by BIOL SCI 217 in the fall quarter, BIOL SCI 308 in the winter and BIOL SCI 219 in the spring. The genetics and molecular biology course covers the principles of inheritance; gene function; mechanisms by which DNA is replicated, transcribed into RNAs, and translated into proteins; and the basics of the process of natural selection. This is an early fall course held between September 2 and September 22, 2020.

Synchronous sessions will be held on the following dates: W 9/2, Th 9/3, Sa 9/5, Tu 9/8, Th 9/10, Sa 9/12, Tu 9/15, Th 9/17, Sa 9/19, Tu 9/22.

Prerequisite: one year of general chemistry with laboratory (CHEM 101, 102, 103 or CHEM 110, 131, 132).


View BIOL_SCI 215-CN Sections
Physiology <> BIOL_SCI 217-CN

This course is the second in a four-course sequence that is completed by BIOL SCI 308 in the winter and BIOL SCI 219 in the spring. The physiology course covers organization and functioning of the major organ systems in mammals.

Schedule note: The first class session will be Monday, September 28.

A lab course, BIOL SCI 220 Genetic and Molecular Laboratory, may be taken concurrently with this course. Prerequisite: CHEM 131.


View BIOL_SCI 217-CN Sections
Cell Biology <> BIOL_SCI 219-CN

The cell biology course covers mechanisms that cells use to compartmentalize and transport proteins, to move, to regulate growth and death, and to communicate with their environments. This course was formerly BIOL SCI 216. Students who have previously taken BIOL SCI 216 should not register for this course.

A lab course, BIOL SCI 222, may be taken concurrently with this course. Prerequisite: CHEM 103 or 132.

 


View BIOL_SCI 219-CN Sections
Genetic Molecular Process Lab <> BIOL_SCI 220-CN

Laboratory techniques and experiments in fundamental aspects of transmission genetics and molecular biology. Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Prerequisite: CHEM 103 or 132.

Schedule Note (Updated 8/31/2020):

ALL sections (100, 101 102, 110, 111, and 112) of this lab course are labeled "Synchronous" in CAESAR and will meet remotely. No sections will meet on campus. The lab will also have an asynchronous, online component; details will be in the course syllabus.

Note for all sections: Students should be available from 2:00 to 6:00 pm on each Saturday of the quarter (10/3, 10/10, 10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, and 11/21) for synchronous, online course activities in Canvas. Details will be announced by the instructor.


View BIOL_SCI 220-CN Sections
Cellular Processes Laboratory <> BIOL_SCI 221-CN

Laboratory techniques and experiments in fundamental aspects of cell biology. Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Prerequisite: grades of C- or higher in both BIOL SCI 220 and CHEM 103 or 132.


View BIOL_SCI 221-CN Sections
Investigative Lab <> BIOL_SCI 222-CN

The Investigative Laboratory is a hypothesis driven, discovery based laboratory class. During the quarter, students will be engaged in independent laboratory research projects where they will design and implement their own experiments centered around a central theme. Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Prerequisite: grades of C- or higher in both BIOL SCI 221 and CHEM 103 or 132.


View BIOL_SCI 222-CN Sections
Biochemistry <> BIOL_SCI 308-CN

This course covers basic concepts in biochemistry, emphasizing the structure and function of biological macromolecules, fundamental cellular biochemical processes, and the chemical logic in metabolic transformations. This course was formerly BIOL SCI 218. Students who have previously taken BIOL SCI 218 should not register for this course.

A lab course, BIOL SCI 221, may be taken concurrently with this course. Prerequisites: BIOL SCI 217 and CHEM 210-A.


View BIOL_SCI 308-CN Sections
Human Anatomy <> BIOL_SCI 313-CN

This course is an introduction to human anatomy. Topics include: system approach to anatomical organization; sections of the body; musculoskeletal and nervous systems; embryology development. Lectures are supplemented by selected prosections of human cadavers and dry exercises using bones, models, and computer animations. Prerequisite: BIOL SCI 165, 170, or equivalent course.


View BIOL_SCI 313-CN Sections
Human Anatomy <> BIOL_SCI 313-DL

This course is conducted completely online.This is a course on human anatomy, focusing on morphology and function. It follows both a regional and systems approach. All course content, activities, and assessments will be online learning activities and assessments. The course will also have a broad emphasis on clinical application that is applicable to all health care professions. The course covers gross anatomy of the human body; therefore, images of human cadavers will be presented in your textbook, as well as in other course resources. Readings are assigned from the Marieb, Wilhelm and Mallatt text. Prerequisite: BIOL SCI 165, 170, or equivalent course.

This course will be conducted completely online. A technology fee will be added to tuition. There will be optional online office hours on Thursday from 6:15-9:15pm.


View BIOL_SCI 313-DL Sections
Regional Human Anatomy Lab <> BIOL_SCI 317-CN

This is a lab course utilizing prosections and demonstrations of human cadavers. It is an advanced anatomy course examining the details of human body systems. Topics include: Body wall and cavities, contents and features of the thorax and abdomen (cardiac, pulmonary, and gastrointestinal systems), pelvis (genito-urinary system), spinal cord and back, innervation and blood supply of the upper and lower limbs, cranial cavities and contents, cranial nerves and blood supply of the head and neck. The majority of the coursework will be done in the cadaver lab, with limited lectures to introduce topics. The lab work will be guided by a lab workbook, handouts and instructor demonstrations. Models, bones (skeletal materials), skulls, and medical images will supplement the cadaver prosections. Lab work will be assessed by the weekly lab assignment, three practical quizzes and a written final exam. A research project will be assigned to allow the student to bridge their knowledge of lab anatomy with more clinical concepts. Students are expected to follow all lab safety guidelines including the cadaver lab dress code; also students should show respect for the cadavers at all times.

Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Enrollment is in the course limited to 15 total, and is limited to students in professional health careers certificate programs.

Prerequisite: BIOL SCI 313. Only students who have completed the prerequisite will be able to register for this course.


View BIOL_SCI 317-CN Sections
Microbiology <> BIOL_SCI 328-CN

This course provides an introduction to microbiology with an emphasis on bacteria and viruses and their impact on human health and society. Topics covered include: introduction to microbiology including the evolution of microorganisms; essentials of bacterial, archaeal, eukaryotic and viruses; morphological, physiological and genetic elements; the general principles of bacterial growth and control of microorganisms in the environment; principles of microbial molecular biology and genetics including basics of bacterial genome replication; bacterial pathogenesis and current challenges regarding antimicrobial resistance. This course will also provide an introduction to the primary microbiology literature. Prerequisite: BIOL SCI 210-C or BIOL SCI 217.

This course will have a lab component, BIOL SCI 328-A, integrated into the lecture time. A lab fee will be applied to tuition.


View BIOL_SCI 328-CN Sections
Quantitative Problem Solving in Chemistry <> CHEM 110-CN

Solution strategies for traditional word problems and their application to basic chemistry quantitative problems: dimensional analysis, chemical equations, stoichiometry, limiting reagents


View CHEM 110-CN Sections
General Chemistry 1 <> CHEM 131-CN

Quantum mechanics, electronic structure, periodic properties of the elements, chemical bonding, thermodynamics, intermolecular forces, properties of solids and liquids, special topics in modern chemistry. Must be taken concurrently with the CHEM 141-CN General Chemistry I Lab. Prerequisite: completion of CHEM 110-CN (grade of C- or better), or current enrollment in CHEM 110-CN.


View CHEM 131-CN Sections
General Chemistry 2 <> CHEM 132-CN

Solutions and colligative properties, chemical equilibrium, aqueous solution equilibria, chemical kinetics, metals in chemistry and biology, oxidation-reduction reactions and electrochemistry, special topics in modern chemistry. Must be taken concurrently with CHEM 142-CN General Chemistry Lab 2. Prerequisite: completion of CHEM 131-CN and CHEM 141-CN (grade of C- or better), or current enrollment in CHEM 131-CN/CHEM 141-CN.


View CHEM 132-CN Sections
General Chemistry 1 Lab <> CHEM 141-CN

Chemical analysis of real samples using basic laboratory techniques including titration, colorimetric analysis, density measurements, and atomic spectroscopy. Planning, data collection, interpretation, and reporting on experiments. Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Must be taken concurrently with CHEM 131-CN General Chemistry 1. Prerequisite: completion of CHEM 110 (grade of C– or better), or current enrollment in CHEM 110-CN.


View CHEM 141-CN Sections
General Chemistry Lab 2 <> CHEM 142-CN

General Chemistry Lab 2 is a laboratory course in which techniques applied to materials science and nanotechnology, acid-base chemistry, and chemical kinetics will be employed. Major objectives involve work involving planning, data collection, interpretation, and reporting on experiments. Credit for this course is 0.34 units. Must be taken concurrently with CHEM 132-CN General Chemistry 2. Prerequisite: completion of CHEM 131-CN and CHEM 141-CN (grade of C- or better), or current enrollment in CHEM 131-CN/CHEM 141-CN.


View CHEM 142-CN Sections
Organic Chemistry <> CHEM 210-A

This course is the first of a three-course sequence that is completed by CHEM 210-B in the winter quarter, and CHEM 210-C in the spring quarter. Basic concepts of organic chemistry will be presented, including hybridization, resonance, nomenclature, stereochemistry, and reaction mechanisms. The preparation and reactions of alkyl halides, alkenes, alkynes, and alcohols will also be covered. There will be some additional lectures, to be arranged once the quarter begins. Prerequisite: completion of General Chemistry Sequence (CHEM 110, 131, 132 and 141, 142) with a grade of C- or better, or equivalent transfer credit with qualifying score on the Chemistry Placement Exam.


View CHEM 210-A Sections
Scientific Vocabulary Classical Roots <> CLASSICS 110-CN

The intent of this course is to familiarize students with a wide range of Greek- and Latin-derived words encountered in scientific and primarily medical fields. Students learn the basic components and an understanding of the underlying principles of word formation, which includes acquiring a basic vocabulary of word roots, prefixes, and suffixes, much of which is a matter of applied memorization. It also includes analysis of words, aiming at an understanding of the relationship of their various components. 

No prior knowledge of Greek and Latin is required for this course.


There is no available section.
Introduction to Statistics <> STAT 202-CN

This course provides an introduction to the basic concepts of statistics. Throughout the course, students will learn to: summarize data using graphs and tables; explain/calculate descriptive statistics, confidence intervals, correlation, regression, and probability; and explain tests of significance and data-production including sampling and experiments. Basic knowledge of algebra is recommended.


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Introduction to Statistics STAT 202-DL

This course provides an introduction to probability and statistics theory. Assignments and projects help develop students’ analytic and critical thinking skills and challenge them to apply statistical analysis with real world data. The course contains three parts: methods of data collection, techniques for data organization and analysis, and techniques for interpreting data using statistical methodologies. Students will learn not only how to appropriately collect and analyze data, but how to draw conclusions from their data for use in decision-making. The course emphasizes use of Microsoft Excel for graphing and data analysis in homework assignments. Students will also collect and analyze a data set of personal interest for the final project. A final paper will also be prepared. Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint techniques relevant to the final project will be taught in class, however, a basic understanding of these applications is expected. This course is conducted completely online. A technology fee will be added to tuition.


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