Skip to main content

MSc/PG Dip Physician Associate Studies

This intensive two-year clinical course prepares you to work as a Physician Associate (PA) in the NHS and is open to applicants with a first-degree in a health or science-related subject.

  • Delivery:
    Full time according to Funding Council definitions

Why study MSc/PG Dip Physician Associate Studies at BU?

  • PAs are healthcare professionals who work to a medical model alongside doctors in hospitals or GP surgeries
  • This course will prepare you to take a medical history, examine patients, diagnose common problems, perform procedures, and recommend treatment
  • The Department of Health is committed to increasing the number of PAs in the NHS, particularly in general practice, so employment is highly likely after graduating
  • Newly built skills facilities include simulated hospital wards and community home settings, allowing you to learn and practise various procedures safely
  • With a blend of theory and practice, you’ll spend a minimum of 1,400 hours in a range of clinical placements such as hospitals, general practice and other community services
  • Assessments will be used to consolidate learning throughout the course and in preparation for the National Examinations for Physician Associates.  

Find out more about the content of this course.

The course follows the National Physician Associate Curriculum. It is represented on the National Physician Associate Schools Council and is currently undergoing General Medical Council validation. 

For more information about PAs, please see the Faculty of Physician Associate website

Key information

Next start date:

September 2022, September 2023


Bournemouth University, Lansdowne Campus


PG Dip and MSc: 2 years full-time

Required subjects:

Health or Science subject

Entry requirements:

A Bachelors Honours degree with 2:1 or equivalent in a required subject. 

Required subjects: Health or Science related subject, e.g.: Biology, Physiology, Neuroscience, Biological Science, Microbiology, Anatomical Science, Physiotherapy, Diagnostic Imaging, Radiotherapy, Paramedic Science, Audiology, Nursing, Operating Department Practice, Optometry, Biomedicine, Biomedical Sciences, Medical Science, Clinical Psychology, Pharmacy, Sports Science.

If English is not your first language, you will need IELTS (Academic) 7.5 with a minimum of 7.0 in writing, speaking, listening and reading, or equivalent.

For more information check out our full entry requirements.

Please note that due to Health Education England (HEE) funding, applicants must have UK home status to be eligible to apply for this course.

How to apply

You can apply for a MSc/PG Dip Physician Associate Studies through UCAS by clicking on the ‘apply now’ button.

How and when to apply

Entry requirements

Costs and fees

To be eligible for the postgraduate loan and Academic Scholarship you must enrol onto the full MSc route. The PG Dip route does not currently qualify for the loan and the scholarship.

Health Education England has agreed a single, national funding model for Physician Associates. Both MSc and PG Dip students will receive a training grant of £5000. This payment will be made at £2500 per annum, paid via Bournemouth University. The training grant can be used against course fees, placement travel, or similar costs incurred during the programme.


PAs are healthcare professionals who work to a medical model alongside doctors in hospitals or GP surgeries. Their role includes examining patients, diagnosing common problems, performing procedures, and recommending treatment.  

The Department of Health is committed to increasing the number of PAs in the NHS, particularly in general practice. In Dorset, there is a need for additional healthcare staff in acute hospitals and GP surgeries and it is expected that PAs will be part of the solution to this workforce shortage, so employment is highly likely after graduating. A typical starting salary for PAs is over £30,000. 

Our staff

On this course you will be taught by staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the unit. This could include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners and research students, many of whom are actively engaged in research and/or professional practice which is integrated into the teaching of this course. Please note that teaching staff can change.

Course changes

What our students and graduates think

Alexander Marc Smith-Vidal, Physician Associate Student

Physician Associate Studies is a fantastic opportunity for graduates to become healthcare professionals, helping to diagnose and treat patients. Early clinical exposure is what makes this course so unique and allows students to maximise their learning.

Sushila Roka, Physician Associate student

I have always envisioned myself to be a part of the NHS to help contribute towards the society and people in need. The role of Physician Associate allows me to achieve this as I will work as a healthcare professional to help diagnose and manage patients.

Statistics shown throughout this page are taken from Unistats and BU institutional data unless otherwise stated.