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> Archived Releases> 2009 Press Releases > PA Program Ranks Number One in National Test for 9th Straight Year
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“Success Fosters Success” in Top-Ranked DeSales University Physician Assistant Program

For the ninth consecutive year, the DeSales University Physician Assistant Program ranked first among 106 programs nationwide in the Physician Assistant Clinical Knowledge Rating Assessment Test, a national standardized examination. There were 35 DeSales students among 4,032 students from across the country who took the national test.

Students in the DeSales PA Program averaged a score of 170 against the national average of 140 on the Physician Assistant Clinical Knowledge Rating Assessment Test, a national standardized exam known as PACKRAT.

According to Christine Bruce, director of the DeSales PA Program, the high scores on PACKRAT is an indication that the program is doing an extremely effective job preparing the students for their role as physician assistants.

“The PACKRAT helps students prepare for the national boards. It measures core knowledge and presents case scenarios to help the students figure out what’s wrong with the patient,” said Bruce.

“The recognition awarded to the DeSales PA Program speaks to the strong tradition of excellence it has achieved,” added Bruce. “Students come to DeSales from across the country to study here and they perform very well. We have successful students and accomplished faculty. Success fosters success.”

PACKRAT is given to eligible students enrolled in a PA program at the end of their first or second years of professional phase training. The 35 DeSales students who took PACKRAT graduated from the PA program on August 15, 2009.

Taking PACKRAT helps students prepare for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination, which is the only exam given to graduating physician assistants. Graduates of a PA program must pass the certification exam in order to be eligible for licensure in all 50 states.

Graduates of the DeSales PA Program have garnered national recognition academically and professionally, since the program first admitted students in 1997. DeSales graduates average over 100 points per students, higher than the national average on the National Certification Examination.

In addition to its impressive test results, DeSales has the distinction of being the first school to win four National Medical Challenge Bowl competitions, including two back-to-back national titles (2008 and 2009).

Physician Assistants are licensed medical professionals who work under the supervision of licensed physicians. They practice in both general and specialty medicine and surgery, and perform routine duties normally reserved for physician.

Top-ranked DeSales is in competition with nationally and internationally known schools such as Duke, Yale, Stanford, Cornell, George Washington, Wake Forest, Midwestern, University of Nebraska and the University of Iowa. There are more than 140 Physician Assistant Programs in the nation, with 15 of those accredited programs located in Pennsylvania.

For more information, please contact Christine Bruce, program director of the physician assistant program at DeSales, at 610-282-1100 ext. 1474.


Press Release: PA Program Ranks Number One in National Test for 9th Straight Year | Posted on: 8/19/2009

For more info:
Tom McNamara, Executive D
irector of Communications
DeSales University | 2255 Station Avenue | Center Valley, PA 18034

610.282.1100 x1219 | Tom.McNamara@desales.edu

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