Physician Assistant Programs in Maryland

Residents of Maryland can apply to one of four in-state master’s degree programs to become a Physician Assistant – Towson, Frostburg State University, and the University of Maryland campuses in Baltimore and Eastern Shore. Between these and online offerings that can be completed in the comfort of home, Maryland residents have options to choose from when looking for PA programs that don’t require them to relocate!

Online PA Programs vs On-Campus Programs in Maryland

Whether an on campus or online physician assistant program is better depends on what is best for you. Some people learn better when they need to attend class in person, while some people benefit more from an online learning environment. Some online programs offer more flexibility than an on campus program, which may be necessary when fitting a physician assistant degree program into a full schedule. Whenever you evaluate any kind of PA program, make sure to look carefully into how it is scheduled and how the coursework is delivered.

Last Updated: 1/22/21

On Campus PA Programs in Maryland

Maryland has a few options for on campus programs, all of which require students to report to campus frequently to attend class. Additionally, there are clinical requirements that students must complete to earn a PA degree – for on campus programs these requirements are typically completed at a placement site in the community of the university. On campus programs offer structure through the fact that they always require students to show up at specific times. They also allow for more peer to peer interaction, outside of the classroom due to geographic location (some online programs have become very effective at facilitating peer to peer connections in the virtual classroom).

Not interested in on campus learning? An online program might be for you.

Online PA Programs

Online programs simply require you to be near your laptop to complete coursework, whether that is at specific times or whenever works best for you depends on the program. Your clinical requirements may typically be completed in your own community, you should always look into how the programs you are interested in can help you secure placement sites. In terms of flexibility, at the very least online programs eliminate commute, and at the very most they allow you to complete your work at any time that works best for you.

Hybrid PA Programs in Maryland

There are currently no hybrid programs being offered in the state of Maryland. A hybrid program splits coursework requirements between campus and online.

Physician Assistant Program Online Learning Formats

There are two ways in which online coursework is delivered, sometimes programs deliver a program by mixing both formats:

  • Synchronous – students learn at the same time (in sync) through live lectures, chats, or other interactive formats. Lectures may be done via live video streaming.
  • Asynchronous – students learn on their own time.

How Long do Physician Assistant Programs in Maryland Typically Take to Complete?

A PA master’s program for those who are not currently physician assistants typically takes two and a half to four years to complete (PA programs are approximately 27 months, according to American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA)). For those who have an undergraduate degree and are already practicing as physician assistants, a bridge program may take less time.

Online Physician Assistant Programs Available to Maryland Students

The following online physician assistant programs are available to students in Maryland. Note that some of these options are bridge programs for current PAs:

Fully online PA programs

If you wish to become a PA, here are eight physician assistant programs that are completely online. Some require you to be online at scheduled times for certain classes, discussions or exams; others do not. Some also require you to be NCCPA certified in order to apply.

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

1ARC-PA probation is a temporary accreditation status for programs that are making substantial progress toward all accreditation standards but need more time to become compliant.

2ARC-PA provisional means that a program has the plans and resources needed to meet all accreditation standards but has not yet enrolled students; or that a program is demonstrating progress toward the standards as it prepares for its first graduating class.

Hybrid physician assistant programs

Here are three hybrid physician assistant programs, all of which require a combination of online and on-campus work. 

School Degree level Live classes On-campus requirements Length of program Accreditation
Miami Dade College


MDC-PA, M.H.Sc. Some All clinicals are in Florida 27 months ARC-PA accreditation
University of North Dakota MPAS Some 15 weeks 24 months ARC-PA accreditation

On Campus PA Programs in Maryland

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

Program City Time to Complete GPA Requirement
Frostburg State University Frostburg 24 months 3.0
Towson University Towson 26 months 3.0
University of Maryland – Baltimore Baltimore Unknown Unknown
University of Maryland – Eastern Shore Princess Anne 28 months Unknown

General Tips on How to Become a Physician Assistant in Maryland

To become a physician assistant in Maryland, here are some common steps. Be sure to check with the state licensing agency for specific state requirements:


  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 Maryland Board of Physicians 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 Maryland 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, make sure to check out Maryland’s state board for exact requirements.