Those in Indiana have several institutions in the state that they can attend to earn a physician assistant’s degree. These include Butler University, Franklin College, Indiana State University, Indiana University, Trine University, University of Evansville, University of Saint Francis, and Valparaiso University. Not only are there these options, there are also several online options available. This guide will help you review which programs are available to you.


Online PA Programs vs On-Campus Programs in Indiana

When it comes to online vs on-campus physician assistant programs, it is all about finding the programs that will best fit your unique needs. Many physician assistant students are busy and need flexibility, which can often be achieved through an online program which can cut commuting time and maybe even allow you to complete classwork on your own time. Other students may not feel they learn as well if they are not in a traditional classroom setting, or may just prefer that setting for the experience of meeting peers in person. Know what is important to you and use that to help make your decision.

Last Updated: 2/18/21


On Campus PA Programs

On campus PA programs offer the traditional campus experience to students. You attend classes at a university during set class times each week. The university will set you up with clinical placement sites in the community so that you can complete your clinical requirements. The nature of on campus programs is in general very structured since students need to all be in the same room for class to occur. On campus programs also allow for students to connect with their peers in real life.

There are also two kinds of online programs that aspiring PAs can apply to:


Online PA Programs

With online PA programs, coursework is entirely online. Students can save commuting time and potentially create their own schedule. Clinical work is typically completed at placement sites in one’s own community, but you will want to make sure the program you attend has the ability to place you locally. Occasionally, online students may need to go to campus for a couple of hands on sessions or meet and greets, but often no more than a few times throughout the program.


Hybrid PA Programs

If you are looking for the benefits of online learning but don’t want to completely lose the on campus experience, hybrid programs are an option because they simply combine both kinds of learning. If you do not live near a hybrid program, you might need to relocate in order to attend class.


Physician Assistant Program Online Learning Formats

There are two types of online programs:


  • Synchronous – Students must log on at specific times to attend class or complete real time assignments, either through chats, live video conferencing, or other media
  • Asynchronous – Students log in on their own time to complete coursework. Any lectures will be pre recorded.


How Long do Physician Assistant Programs Typically Take to Complete?

A Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) degree 2.5 to 4 years typically to complete and PA programs are approximately 27 months, according to American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA). Some of this time will be dedicated to classwork, while other parts of the program will be dedicated to clinical requirements. Some students earning their PA master’s already work as PAs, these students would enroll into special bridge programs, which take less time to complete.


Online Physician Assistant Programs Available to Indiana Students

The following online physician assistant programs are available to students in Indiana. Please note, however, that students should be sure to check each program to make sure the program is able to operate in Indiana. In addition, note that some of these are bridge degrees for current PAs in need of their master’s.

School Degree level Live classes On-campus requirements Length of program Accreditation
Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences


Doctor of science in physician- assistant studies (DScPAS) No None 3 years, but accelerated program is two years ARC-PA accreditation
Pace University


MPAS for already- certified PAs No None 12 months N/A (program for already certified PAs)
Touro College


MPAS for already- certified PAs No None 12 months N/A (program for already certified PAs)
University of Nebraska – Medical Center


MPAS for already-certified PAs, or MPAS/MPH dual No None Five semesters N/A (program for already certified PAs)
University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley


MPAS for already- certified PAs No None 28 months N/A (program for already certified PAs)
University of Wisconsin – Madison


MPAS Some First summer semester / 12 weeks 36 months ARC-PA accreditation

On Campus PA Programs in Indiana

The following physician assistant programs can be found on Indiana campuses. There are campuses all over the state.

Program City Time to Complete GPA Requirement*
Butler University Indianapolis 24 months 3.2
Franklin College Franklin 25 months 3.0
Indiana State University Terre Haute 27 months 3.0
Indiana University Bloomington 27 months 3.0
Trine University Angola 29 months 3.0
University of Evansville Evansville 28 months 3.0
University of Saint Francis Fort Wayne 27 months Unknown
Valparaiso University Valparaiso Unknown Unknown

*Note: The source of the GPA requirement data is the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA)’s directory.


General Tips on How to Become a Physician Assistant in Indiana

To become a physician assistant in Indiana, here are some common steps:

  1. Earn your Physician Assistant Degree – This will take you about two to three and a half years. Look for physician assistant programs accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) to ensure you meet certification requirements in the future.
  2. Pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE) – You can learn more about the PANCE on our guide to becoming a physician assistant.
  3. Get Licensed – Check with the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency as early as possible to make sure you are on track to meet all current requirements for licensure. According to the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA), licensure in Indiana requires graduation from an accredited physician assistant program and passage of the PANCE exam. Current certification by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) is not required. This is a high-level overview, but please make sure to check out Indiana’s state board for exact requirements.