Drexel University PA Interview Questions

Advice & Insight From PA Application Specialists

General Interview Information

Each year Drexe will receive around 1780 applications, of whom only 77 are accepted. The average overall GPA is 3.63 and the average science GPA 3.57. Average patient contact hours are 3063. Drexel screens all applications to ensure that prerequisites are met, and that the application was complete by the September 1st deadline. These applications are then assigned to faculty members to be screened for interview. Applicants are reviewed for their ‘ability to handle the high demands of training, commitment to people-oriented service, and familiarity with the physician assistant’s role and the PA profession.’ These same objectives will no doubt be assessed at interview, along with communication skills.

Prerequisite courses are psychology, human anatomy and physiology, biology, microbiology, genetics, chemistry, and medical terminology.

You must additionally have accrued at least 500 hours of clearly documented volunteer work or paid hands-on patient experience.

Interview Format for Physician Assistant Studies at Drexel

Applicants who have been selected for interview will be emailed an invite. Interviews are held from June through to February, with between 20 and 25 invited per session. Interview days will run from 9am to 5pm, and consist of a writing sample, a presentation about the program, chat with the director of the program, lunch, the chance to meet with and discuss with current students, and one interview with two members of the faculty.

Key Dates

Drexel uses a rolling admissions process and emphasises that early applications are in applicants’ best interests. The official deadline for submitting your application is September 1st. Some applicants will be offered early acceptance shortly after their interview. All decisions will be made by the end of march.

Sample & Recent Interview Questions

We have used Drexel’s applicant guidelines to build out our recent and mock questions here, with the addition of a section on interpersonal skills.

Familiarity with the Role and Profession

  • What does a Physician Assistant do? How does their role and scope of practice differ to that of a doctor?
  • When did you first become interested in being a physician assistant?
  • How does a physician associate’s role differ from a nurse practitioner’s?
  • How long have PAs been practising in America?
  • Do you think that PAs should be awarded a doctoral degree, like MDs and DOs?
  • Can you tell me what managed care is, and describe how it has affected physicians and PAs?
  • What is a dependent practitioner?
  • How do you expect the roles and responsibilities of physician assistants change in the future?
  • What will you like least about practicing as a physician assistant?
  • Is it possible for a PA to work alone (independent of a physician)?
  • Have you got a specific area of healthcare that you are interested in?
  • What is the single most important element of a relationship between a PA and their physician supervisor?
  • How do PAs fit into our current healthcare model?
  • Are you more interested in becoming a surgical PA or a medical PA?
  • What do you think healthcare will look like in 50 years?
  • How are physician assistants regulated in the US?
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Commitment to Service

  • Tell us about a charity or volunteering role that you have taken on.
  • Why is it so important for those wanting to work in healthcare to have a wide range of experience in caring roles or in service to others?
  • What was the first volunteering or charity role that you took on in life?
  • Which one experience from your volunteering or charity work most informed your decision to become a PA?

Ability to Handle the Demands of Studying to Become, and Being, a PA

  • How will you adapt to the pressure of studying to become a PA?
  • How do you unwind and de-stress?
  • Are you prepared for the independent studying component of our program?
  • What has been the most demanding course that you have taken so far at college?

Interpersonal Skills

  • Explain the difference between empathy and sympathy.
  • Do you work well in a team in general? Can you give us an example of a team that you have worked or learned in?
  • Why are communication skills so important to those wanting to work in healthcare?
  • Please describe an ethical problem to me in simple terms that an 11 year old could understand.
  • What kind of teams do physician assistants work in?
  • Please think about an argument that you were involved in with a friend. How did you resolve this argument?
  • What attributes do you look for in a team member or colleague? Do you think that you have these attributes?
  • Are you a strong leader? How can you demonstrate your leadership ability to us?

Drexel University PA Interview Questions

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