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Course Descriptions

MSPAS 510
Human Anatomy I
In this course, the student will build upon his/her current knowledge base of human anatomy through an intensive laboratory phase with the use of pro-sections and gross anatomy dissections when applicable. The student will expand upon their knowledge of basic anatomical concepts. The student/s will develop, upon completion of this course, a vast knowledge in the understanding and application of human anatomy.
MSPAS 520
Human Physiology
The goal of this course is to provide an introduction to human physiology. The students learn to recognize and explain the basic concepts that govern each organ and organ system and their integration to maintain homeostasis. This course will focus on homeostatic control systems, function of individual organs and organ systems, and integration of organ systems in the intact organism.
MSPAS 530
Introduction to Patient Assessment
This course is designed to introduce students to patient history taking, documentation, and communication skills. The content includes medical vocabulary, professional conduct, patient interviewing, how to take and record medical history, and develop clinical reasoning based on the chief complaint. Students will begin using diagnostic equipment as they develop the skills needed to perform complete and focused physical examinations. Students will also receive OSHA and HIPAA training during the course.
MSPAS 540
Foundations to Clinical Medicine
This course provides an introduction to the clinical medicine courses. Students will build a foundation on pertinent topics discussed later in the didactic phase. Topics for the course will include the following: laboratory medicine, nutrition, medical terminology, basic pharmacology, basic imaging interpretation, and prescription writing.
MSPAS 550
Introduction to the PA Profession
This course provides an historical perspective of the physician assistant profession, as well as an investigation of current trends and issues. The course stresses the importance of biomedical ethics and professional responsibilities in relation to the physician assistant’s role as a health care provider. Content relating to physician assistant professional organizations, program accreditation, graduate certification and re-certification, employment considerations, and professional liability is included. This course also includes Service-Learning, an educational method in which the participants perform service work and actively learn from it.
MSPAS 501
Integration Seminar I
This course helps the student developing analytical skills to assess patient’s conditions and use clinical laboratory data to develop a differential diagnosis and treatment plan. Working as a group students learn to work through a case from diagnosis to therapy to expected outcomes. Case based integration is a longitudinal course (meaning that it runs concurrently with the system courses) during the second, third and fourth semester of the PA program. It consists of a series of small group case exercises and multidisciplinary conferences. This course integrates dermatology, HEENT, cardiology and pulmonology systems.
MSPAS 521
Medical Pathophysiology I
In this course, students learn integrative human physiology and pathophysiology involving concepts of the HEENT, dermatology, cardiovascular and pulmonary systems, with an emphasis upon homeostatic mechanisms and etiologies of disease. Students learn the interrelationships of function and dysfunction at the molecular, cellular, tissue, organ, and systemic levels.
MSPAS 531
Patient Assessment I
This course teaches foundational skills and techniques required to gather a complete medical history and perform a thorough physical examination. The course introduces the student to the practice of history taking and physical examinations of the skin, HEENT, lungs and heart. During the course, integration of the student’s knowledge of the structure and function of the human body is coupled with laboratory sessions emphasizing the proper use of diagnostic equipment and techniques for performing a comprehensive physical examination.
MSPAS 541
Clinical Medicine I
The purpose of the Clinical Medicine I course is to introduce the student to clinical conditions commonly encountered in practicing primary care medicine. Lectures will emphasize the epidemiology, pathophysiology, presentation, disease course, diagnostic, and treatment modalities of each medical topic. Topics for the course will include the following: dermatology, (HEENT), pulmonary and cardiology with EKG interpretation.
MSPAS 571
Pharmacology and Therapeutics I
In this course, the student will be introduced to pharmacodynamic, pharmacokinetic and pharmacotherapeutic principles that provide a foundation for the study of pharmacology and therapeutics. Combined lecture and active learning exercises are designed to develop the pharmacologic and therapeutic skills that a physician assistant will need to enhance patient care in clinical practice. Topics this semester will emphasize on the following areas: Dermatology, HEENT, pulmonary and cardiology diseases. Antibiotic coverage for specific illnesses will also be covered.
MSPAS 581
Health Care Issues I
In this course, physician assistant students will gain a greater appreciation for and comprehension of the socio-behavioral aspects of medical practice. Students learn effective counseling and preventive education strategies for enhancing treatment compliance, promoting positive health patterns, and enhancing positive response to illness.
MSPAS 591
Research, Epidemiology and Stats for the PA
In this course students receive instruction in research methods and application in the clinical setting. They integrate basic concepts of epidemiology and statistics as these concepts relate to medical practice. Students critically read published reports of clinical research and identify strengths and weaknesses in the structure and presentation of data and conclusions in those reports. They interpret and search evidence-based literature related to clinical problems encountered in physician assistant practice. Students will choose a proposal topic that will then be developed during the clinical year in the capstone I course. Students will be given the opportunity to select from a menu of possibilities. This includes the following: Quasi-experimental study with data gathering and analysis, case based study, evidence-based medicine project with comprehensive literature review, and community-based research.
MSPAS 502
Integration Seminar II
This course helps the student developing analytical skills to assess patient/s conditions and use clinical laboratory data to develop a differential diagnosis and treatment plan. Working as a group students learn to work through a case from diagnosis to therapy to expected outcomes. Case based integration is a longitudinal course (meaning that it runs concurrently with the system courses) during the second, third and fourth semester of the pa program. It consists of a series of small group case exercises and multidisciplinary conferences. This course integrates gastroenterology, nephrology, endocrinology, neurology, musculoskeletal, infectious disease, rheumatology and hematology oncology.
MSPAS 505
Medical Procedures and Surgery I
In this course, students employ knowledge, skills, and techniques learned in MSPAS 532-533 Patient Assessment I-II to evaluate surgical patients. Students learn to perform procedures such as hand washing, sterile technique, intravenous insertions, SQ and IM injection technique, suturing, wound care nasogastric tube placement and Foley catheter insertion.
MSPAS 522
Medical Pathophysiology II
In this course, students learn integrative human physiology and pathophysiology involving concepts of the renal, endocrine system, gastroenterology, neurology, infectious disease, hematology/oncology, rheumatology and musculoskeletal systems with an emphasis upon homeostatic mechanisms and etiologies of disease. Students learn the interrelationships of function and dysfunction at the molecular, cellular, tissue, organ, and systemic levels.
MSPAS 532
Patient Assessment II
In this course, the student will build on the knowledge and foundational skills and techniques learned in MSPAS 532 Patient Assessment I, in the performance of a thorough physical examination and medical history. The student will integrate the knowledge obtained in MSPAS 542 Clinical Medicine I with laboratory sessions emphasizing the proper use of diagnostic equipment and technique for performing a comprehensive physical examination. The course topics will include the endocrine system, gastroenterology, renal, infectious disease, hematology/oncology, rheumatology, neurology and musculoskeletal systems.
MSPAS 542
Clinical Medicine II
This course builds on the pathology of disease presented in MSPAS 542, Clinical Medicine I and continues with the presentation of the following systems: endocrinology, gastroenterology, neurology, hematology/oncology, infectious disease, rheumatology, musculoskeletal and renal systems. These disorders are presented by system and specialty as well as augmented with clinical therapeutics.
MSPAS 572
Pharmacology Therapeutics II
In this course, the student will build upon the knowledge and skills obtained in MSPAS 562, Pharmacology & Therapeutics I. Combined lecture and active learning exercises are designed to aid the student in demonstrating the pharmacologic and therapeutic skills that a physician assistant will need to enhance patient care in clinical practice. Topics this semester will focus on the following areas: renal, endocrine, gastroenterology, neurology, infectious disease, hematology/oncology, rheumatology and musculoskeletal systems. The student will use clinical literature and evaluate patient cases as they relate to pharmacology.
MSPAS 582
Health Care Issues II
In this course, students build upon concepts in patient care discussed in MSPAS 581 Health Care Issues by learning ethical concepts as they relate to practical decision-making and problem-solving. Students study risk management strategies and the legal definitions of, and their responsibilities toward, informed consent and confidentiality. Students examine health care policy, nationally and locally, as it impacts health care delivery, the practice of medicine as a physician assistant, and the socioeconomic factors pertaining to relevant health care decision making.
MSPAS 503
Integration Seminar III
This course helps the student in developing analytical skills to assess patient/s conditions with the use of clinical laboratory data to develop a differential diagnosis and treatment plan. Working as a group students learn to work through a case from diagnosis to therapy to expected outcomes. Case based integration is a longitudinal course (meaning that it runs concurrently with the system courses) during the second, third and fourth semesters of the PA program. It consists of a series of small group case exercises and multidisciplinary conferences. This course integrates special populations: women & men’s health, pediatrics, psychiatric, geriatrics.
MSPAS 506
Medical Procedures and Surgery II
This course is a continuation of MSPAS 505, Medical Procedures & Surgery I. Students will learn to perform procedures such as casting and splinting, surgical scrub, gloving and gowning, minor surgical procedures and chest tube placement, ET intubation as well as the principles of surgery, including pre-operative, intra-operative and post-operative care.
MSPAS 523
Medical Pathophysiology III
In this course, students learn integrative human physiology and pathophysiology involving concepts of the neuropsychiatric and genitourinary with an emphasis upon homeostatic mechanisms and etiologies of disease. Students learn the interrelationships of function and dysfunction at the molecular, cellular, tissue, organ, and systemic levels. In this course, the student studies the disorders and diseases of the following systems: psychiatry, preventive medicine, genetics, women and men’s health, pediatrics, geriatrics and complementary/ alternative medicine. These disorders are presented by system and specialty as well as augmented with clinical therapeutics.
MSPAS 533
Patient Assessment III
This course is a continuation of Patient Assessment II, MSPAS 533. Students will learn the components of a physical exam, recognize abnormal and normal findings, and communicate the information in written and oral forms. The following patient populations will be focused on during this course of study: pediatric, men and women’s health, psychiatric and geriatric related fields. Students must be able to demonstrate full physical assessments at the conclusion of this course. This course will also include an OSCE which the students will be required to pass before advancing to the clinical phase of this program. The students will be exposed to a real life clinical environment through a brief clinical clerkship experience as deemed appropriate/accessible.
MSPAS 543
Clinical Medicine III
This course builds on the pathology of disease presented in MSPAS 543, Clinical Medicine I and continues with the presentation of the following areas: psychiatry, preventive medicine, genetics, women and men’s health, pediatrics, geriatrics and complementary/ alternative medicine. These disorders are presented by system and specialty as well as augmented with clinical therapeutics.
MSPAS 544
Emergency Medicine
In this course, students learn treatment of trauma and medical disorders commonly presenting to the emergency department. Taught in a case-based format, the emphasis is on the priority of stabilizing patients with life-threatening trauma or illness and selecting appropriate diagnostic and therapeutic measures. Students are required to become ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) certified or recertified in anticipation of clinical rotations.
MSPAS 573
Pharmacology Therapeutics III
In this course, the student will learn the pharmacologic and therapeutic skills that a physician assistant needs to enhance patient care in clinical practice focusing on psychology, women and men’s health, alternative/complementary medicines as well as pediatric dosing and multi-drug management in geriatric patients. The student will use clinical literature to evaluate patients in relation to pharmacology.
MSPAS 600/605
Family Medicine I/II
The four week rotation provides practical experience in general primary care through outpatient medicine. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design, and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 610
Emergency Medicine
The four-week rotation provides practical clinical experience in emergency medicine. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 620/625
Internal Medicine I/II
The four week rotation provides practical clinical experience in internal medicine. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history, physical examination, treatment plan design, and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 630
Pediatrics
The four-week rotation provides practical clinical experience in pediatric medicine. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 640
Psychiatry
The four-week rotation provides practical clinical experience in psychiatric medicine. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 650
Surgery
The four-week rotation provides practical clinical experience in general surgery. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 660
Women’s Health
The four-week rotation provides practical clinical experience in women’s health. Students engage in all aspects of patient care, including history-taking, physical examination, treatment plan design and evaluation. Students’ application of patient and family education to treatment and preventive measures is emphasized.
MSPAS 670
Clinical Elective
The four-week rotation will allow the students to choose a specialized area of medicine to explore. Types of rotations can be areas of medicine such as cardiology, radiology, orthopedics, dermatology, plastic surgery, anesthesiology, physical therapy, CT surgery, occupational medicine, rehab medicine, etc. Instead of an EOR exam, the student will be expected to present a Medical Interest Presentation on a pre-approved topic.
MSPAS 680
Professional Development
This course will be held at the end of clinical year and will address the technical skills of PA practice and include training/workshops regarding credentialing, licensure, employment strategies and contract negotiation, professional curriculum vitae building, and malpractice issues. Interviewing skills will be taught and practiced in role playing activities. Networking with community health care and other affiliated professional resources will be continually emphasized. Also, included in this course will be participating in a PANCE review course. This will be a participatory grade meaning that the students receive credit in the course for partaking in the board review exercises. The student will be required to complete an online review course chosen by the program and submit both the self-assessment pretest and post-test results.
MSPAS 691
Capstone I
This course will build upon the concepts presented in the Research, Epidemiology, and Statistics course. The student will be required to develop a capstone project based upon the previously developed research proposal. The student will be required to incorporate evidence-based practice in the project and will formally present the findings to the University community during the capstone 2 course. This course takes place during the entire clinical year and involves students meeting with course coordinator and advisor periodically throughout the year.
MSPAS 692
Capstone II
This course provides each student the opportunity to present results of their individual Capstone project or research topic, to synthesize previous study and work experience, and to demonstrate an understanding of the program and profession's principles. Students must also demonstrate the knowledge and skills obtained during the program through successful completion of a summative evaluation (Objective Skills Clinical Evaluation) and a comprehensive written exam.

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