Taught course

Physician Associate Studies (Masters Apprenticeship) MSc

Queen Mary, University of London · Institute of Health Sciences Education

Entry requirements

2:2 or above at undergraduate level in a Life Sciences, Biomedical or Health Profession Degree. You must be employed by your NHS Trust in a suitable role.

Months of entry


Course content

The Physician Associate Masters degree apprenticeship is a 30-month course based in a vibrant and diverse east London community, delivered through a blend of learning on campus, online and in your workplace. On successful completion, you’ll gain a full MSc degree from a from a Russell Group university alongside a Level 7 qualification, which will prepare you for a career as a physician associate.

  • Strong foundation for careers which have excellent employment prospects, as the demand for physician associates outweighs the supply
  • Earn while you learn with tuition fees paid by your employer
  • Designed in collaboration with our partner NHS Trusts in London
  • During the training you will rotate between different clinical specialties and areas of practice and develop a varied ‘portfolio’ career with a strong patient focus
  • Be placed on the Physician Associate Managed Voluntary Register (PMVR) at the Faculty of Physician Associates, Royal College of Physicians

This programme will prepare you to become a physician associate; a collaborative healthcare professional with a generalist medical education. In the UK, physician associates (PAs) work in a multidisciplinary team alongside doctors, surgeons, and GPs, providing medical care to patients in hospital and community settings.

The curriculum is aligned with both the needs of healthcare employers and the strategic aims of the NHS.

You will study through a mixture of modules, which will be taught in blocks on campus, via online learning, and work-based learning including clinical placements. You’ll be expected to gain competencies as outlined in the General Medical Council (GMC) curriculum.

As an apprentice, you will be working for 80% of your contracted week and your line manager will be expected to assign work to you that allows for the application of learning in the workplace and development of the Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours in the Apprenticeship Standard.

Years 1 and 2 will start with an induction week on campus, designed as an introduction to the curriculum, and you’ll complete two taught modules during each year of the programme. In Year 1, you’ll be introduced to the knowledge and skills fundamental to the practice of medicine, and in Year 2, you’ll build on this foundation to include specialisms such as women and children’s health, surgery and emergency medicine. In the final 6 months, you will complete a short piece of research that develops skills in evidence based medicine and quality improvement.

Students who successfully pass the final exams and are in good standing with no ongoing fitness to practice or other professionalism issues, are entered into the national licensing Physician Associate exam, which acts as the End Point Assessment for this apprenticeship. Successful completion results in the award of the degree apprenticeship and MSc Physician Associate Studies qualification.

During your studies you'll have access to support at every stage in your degree, including one-to-one academic guidance, tailored workshops, and external guest speakers.

Fees and funding

Your employer will pay your Queen Mary tuition fees, normally via the apprenticeship levy.

You will be employed by your NHS Trust in a suitable role and continue to receive a salary for your work during your apprenticeship.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    30 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Physician Associate Degree Apprenticeship team