In 1989, the Wayne State University Board of Governors approved the Pathologists' Assistant program. Our NAACLS accredited program, which is one of eleven in the United States and Canada, is the only one in Michigan and will be transitioning to a Master of Science in Pathologists' Assistant degree in the Fall of 2017, phasing out the present Bachelor of Science degree with the graduating class of 2018.  The current 2016-2017 application period will only accept candidates to the MS degree.

Upon committee selection and admission to the professional program, students will take one year of didactic course work that will emphasize the theory and application of anatomical, surgical and autopsy pathology.  Our program is further complemented by offering clinical training in an urban and community setting where surgical and pathology skills are emphasized and prepare graduates to assist pathologists in the examination, preparation, and performance of specific tests and procedures to tissue surgical specimens, as well as perform postmortem examinations. Our program provides their clinical training by cooperating with the Detroit Medical Center, Ascension-Crittenton, Beaumont, and Garden City hospitals, as well as the Wayne County Medical Examiner's Office.

This is a very competitive program accepting only 12-14 students per year depending available clinical affiliations. In reviewing complete applications, the Admission Committee will consider shadowing exposure in surgical/forensic pathology settings, work experience, letters of evaluation/recommendation, science grades/program pre-requisites, and overall GPA. Although academic achievement is important, knowledge of the profession, ability to communicate, and personal qualities of maturity, motivation, and integrity are equally important. Consequently, the Admission Committee will give great weight to evaluations from shadowing preceptors, faculty advisers and employment supervisors, as well as personal interviews in the selection of candidates. Final selection to the Pathologists' Assistant program is by committee interview, conducted by the Admission Committee to the program.

The professional curriculum has been arranged with the presumption that students will devote full time and energy to their college and university experience. Students are encouraged to limit their outside employment during the first professional year in order to benefit from the full complement of academic and cultural opportunities that are a vital part of higher education. Outside employment of any type or kind is strongly discouraged during the second professional year in the program.

Because of rapid changes in technology and in the methods and concepts of health care, students in the allied health programs must complete their pre-professional science credits within six years prior to admission to the professional program. Students who interrupt their academic program for academic or personal reasons will have to apply for reinstatement on an individual basis to have their performance evaluated. They may be required to pass examinations comparable to those given to current students at that level sought for re-entry into the program.

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution.
  • General Test of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) taken by the May 1st application deadline. No minimum score required for Fall 2017 applicants.
  • Minimum of 3.0 overall GPA and 3.0 GPA in the prerequisite coursework.
  • All pre-professional coursework must be completed with a grade of "C" or better.
  • All math and science prerequisite coursework must be completed by May 1st of the year of application.
  • All math and science prerequisite coursework must be completed within the last six years
  • All applicants must attend a minimum of one monthly Information Meeting at the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences within one year of application. For meeting details:
  • Two Shadowing Experiences in a Pathology Gross and one Shadowing Experience in a Medical Examiner setting

  Science Prerequisite Requirements

  • BIO 1500 Basic Life Diversity & Lab
  • BIO 1510 Basic Life Mechanisms & Lab
  • BIO 2200 Microbiology & Lab
  • BIO 2870 Anatomy & Physiology & Lab
  • BIO 2600 Cell Biology
  • BIO 3070 Genetics
  • CHM 1020 Survey of General Chemistry & Lab
  • CHM 1030 Survey of Organic/Biochemistry & Lab
  • MAT 1800 Elementary Functions

Non-Science Prerequisite Requirements

  • ENG 1020 Basic Composition (BC)
  • ENG 3010 Intermediate Composition (IC)
  • PHI 2320 Introduction to Ethics (PL)

How To Apply

Application DeadlineMay 1st. All applicants to the PA program must include the supporting documentation below to their college application. Completion of the prerequisites with the minimum requirements does not guarantee an interview or admission to the professional program. Incomplete applications will not be considered for admission. Application Checklist: All applicants must submit the following:

  • Completed Online College/Program Application.
  • Personal resume outlining your community or vocational activities, honors, employment, extracurricular and volunteer activities.
  • Professional statement.
  • Provide Plan of Work of prerequisite courses currently in progress or planned for Winter terms.
  • Transcripts from all colleges/universities attended.
  • Two professional recommendations 

Non US Citizen applicants must also include (this does not include Canadian students educated in Canada):

  • Course-by-course transcript evaluation performed by World Education Service (WES).
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).


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