Taught course

Physician Associate Studies

University of Leeds · School of Medicine

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Entry requirements

The Physician Associate Studies course has a considerable amount of pure and applied science and therefore it is important that our students join us with a fundamental science background in order to cope with the demands of the course. Typical entry requirements include:

  • Bachelor degree with a minimum 2:2 (hons) in health-related science or equivalent qualification. For example, but not limited to- Biomedical Sciences, Biochemistry, Medical Genetics, Anatomy and Human Biology and Radiography.
  • We will consider alternative academic qualifications on a case-by-case basis. Upon enquiry we will explore the science content of your degree/alternative academic qualifications. We may ask for details of your course content.

We encourage applications from candidates already working in healthcare and can demonstrate/evidence (usually through continuing Professional Development – CPD) the ability to study at Masters Level. This will apply to candidates who have not studied in the last 5 years.

Ideally, you should have recent experience of volunteering or employment in a healthcare setting/environment. However, we are also looking for transferable skills from other similar activates, such as paid employment.

Due to the limited biology content, a number of Nursing Degrees are not appropriate for consideration for entry onto the course. If in doubt, please email the Admissions Team with details of the modules and content of your degree.

If English is not your first language, you will need a recognised English Language qualification to be admitted onto the MSc Physician Associate course.

English language requirements: IETLS 7.5 overall with 7.5 in Spoken English. The language requirements are higher than the University's requirements and are specified in line with the medical undergraduate course. The expectation is that Physician Associates will require a similar command of English.

Health and Disclosure and Barring Service Screening

Before starting the Physician Associate Studies course all successful applicants will also need to pass health and criminal record screening.

The University has a policy statement on students with criminal records. Read the current Criminal Records policy and Guidance for Applicants with Criminal Convictions here. For the vast majority of students who are resident in the UK the record will be checked via the Disclosure and Barring Service.

For students who do not have a 5 year UK address history: The DBS check can only include background checks on your time in the UK. If you have been resident in the UK for less than 3 years, then a criminal record check from your home country is required in addition to the UK DBS check. This may be referred to as a "Certificate of Good Conduct" (CoGC), but the name varies.

Any offer of a place to study Physician Associate Studies course is conditional upon a satisfactory confidential occupational health assessment, which will include a health questionnaire, and if necessary further telephone consultation and/or an appointment with an occupational health clinician. Screening for serious communicable disease, (Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV, tuberculosis (TB)) and a review of immunisation needs will also be arranged before beginning the course.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.5 overall, with no less than 7.5 in spoken English. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Months of entry


Course content

Physician Associates are medically trained, generalist healthcare professionals, who work alongside doctors and provide medical care as an intergral part of the multidisciplinary team. Physician associates are dependent practitioners working with a dedicated medical supervisor, but are able to work autonomously with appropriate support.

Do and be more

The Physician Associate plays an important role in the diagnosis, treatment and management of patients. They work within a defined scope of practice and their roles and responsibilities include:

  • Take medical histories
  • Perform physical examinations
  • Request and interpret diagnostic tests
  • Diagnose illnesses
  • Manage patients with long term illnesses
  • Perform diagnostic and therapeutic procedures
  • Develop and deliver appropriate treatment and management plans
  • Health promotion and disease prevention advice

Currently, Physician Associates are not able to prescribe or request X-ray/imaging examinations due to the profession currently not being regulated. However, in July 2019 it was announced that the GMC will be the future regulator.

More information can be found on the Faculty of Physician Associate website.

Why consider being a Physician Associate?

As a Physician Associate, you will work with a range of healthcare professionals to provide health and social care to a diverse patient population. This will require you to have excellent communication and interpersonal skills to be able to respond and adapt to different situations, be an effective team player with problem-solving skills and have a commitment to providing healthcare that is underpinned by the NHS Constitutional values.

The MSc in Physician Associate Studies is an intensive and challenges 2-year course that will require commitment, discipline and good organisational and time-management skills to be able to juggle the demands of your academic studies with your clinical placements. You will be encouraged to be an independent autonomous learner who can devise your own learning and support strategies.

The Faculty of Medicine and Health is a major international hub for research and education. This course has been carefully developed to address local demand. It will equip you for clinical practice, with early clinical exposure and cadaveric anatomy. New technologies will enhance your learning.

You will have close support from personal and academic tutors throughout the course, whilst also developing your independent learning and research skills.

  • You will be taught by leading professionals, whose teaching is underpinned by world-leading research

  • Our students benefit from a diverse range of placements within Yorkshire and Humber, including major teaching hospitals, district general hospitals and general practices.

  • Technology is embedded in our course and we continue to invest and innovate. Read more in Technology Enhanced Learning.

  • Our students are well supported through personal tutors, course tutors, support staff and peer mentoring.

  • You will have the opportunity to work with students from other healthcare related professions.

The Physician Associate Studies students work with patients and carers from the Patient Carer Community (PCC). The members of the PCC support the teaching throughout the curriculum, through small group sessions in communication skills, workshops and assessments.

Students also undertake training in basic ultrasound techniques and will have the opportunity to complete the Resuscitation Council’s Immediate Life Support course.

More information

After successfully completing this programme you must take the national qualifying examination (which you are prepared for throughout the course) in order to be entered on the voluntary national register (UKFPA) to practise as a Physician Associate.

More information can be found at the Faculty of Physician Associate website.

The University does not cover the cost of these exams.

Fees and funding

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    full time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

School of Medicine Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0)113 343 0806