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PA Schools that don't require the GRE

By Clay Walker - Apr 15, 2020

PA Schools that don't Require the GRE

For pre-PA student in their undergraduate studies, there are 3 letters that can, in some instances, seal the fate of getting into a physician assistant school, or what physician assistant program might accept you.  These letters are G, R, and E.  Yes, the Graduate Record Examination has been the mainstay examination that undergraduate students are looking into taking in order to get into PA school.


Today we are going to talk about GRE requirements for PA programs, in addition to competitive GPA’s for PA school. Additionally, we will discuss, what physician assistant programs do not require you to take the GRE.  So, let’s get started!


What is a good GRE score?


When you are going to apply to PA school, you want to be the most attractive applicant on paper.  Part of this is the GRE score.  When looking at averages, the 50th percentile for accepted applicants to physician assistant school on the GRE is the following:

  • Verbal
    • 155-161
  • Quantitative
    • 153-158
  • Analytical Writing
    • 0-4.5

Again, these are just average numbers, students will get into physician assistant school with lower as well as higher scores than noted above.  But ultimately the entire person and applicant are what will make a good PA student.

Other factors to consider when applying to physician assistant school include your GPA, volunteer activities, clinical experience and your references!


What GPA is needed for PA School?


Depending on which physician assistant schools that you are applying to, your criteria or cut off for how high of a GPA that you need will vary. 


Accepted Students 

Statistics have shown that the average cumulative undergraduate grade point average for those students accepted to physician assistant programs is around 3.49. 

  • The average CASPA science GPA for accepted students was found to be 3.36
  • The average nonscience grade point average was found to be 3.56.

First Year Student Accepted

Student’s Not Accepted – Statistics

Now let’s look at the opposite.  Those students who were not accepted to physician assistant school, it was found that their average cumulative grade point average was 3.16.


Of course, just because an applicant may have a lower grade point average, does not deem them to not be a strong applicant.  Other factors including:

  • The applicant’s clinical experience
  • Standardized test scores
  • Personal Statement
  • How well they interview

Also play into this as well. 


The big thing to remember is that programs will look at the applicant as a whole, not just based upon one single number.


What PA School’s Do Not Require the GRE?


Before looking at this list, in my mind probably like most students, I figured that there were only a few physician assistant schools nationwide that did not require you to take the GRE for admission to PA school.


However, there are actually several PA school that you can be accepted to without taking the GRE.  The following is a list of programs that do not require this examination, actually 118 of them:



Whew, that was a lot of programs!  If you look a little bit more, there are 39 programs in the United States that do not require the GRE or TOEFL as well.  So, if you are in a situation where you might not have the most competitive GRE score, and are concerned that you might not get into PA school due to this, one of the above schools might be a good option perhaps!


Applying to PA School

As mentioned earlier, the application process of getting into physician assistant school looks at a myriad of things, including things like the GPA and GRE for a lot of PA programs, but also volunteer work and experiences prior to applying to PA school.

For more information on how to get into PA school and applying to PA School, see these articles!

As always with any questions, always feel free to reach out to us at team@medgeeks.co!  Until next time!


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