Frequently asked questions

How long is the program?

Our program is two years in length. It runs from the first week of May (Spring/Summer semester) and ends 23 months later.  The first year is considered the academic year of the program and includes lecture and laboratory coursework. The second year of the program is the professional year when clinical practicums take place.

How do I apply to the program?

You can find the application by going directly to the Graduate School and completing the online application by uploading the required documents. Learn more at:

Are there scholarships available?

A number of WSU scholarships are available to students in their second year of the program.  In addition, the AAPA and ASCP organizations also offer scholarships that can partially fund your education.

How much does the program cost?

Graduate tuition is established yearly by the Wayne State University Board of Governors. The WSU Pathologists' Assistant (PAA) program is a 77- credit hour graduate program, of which 44 credits are in the first year and the remaining 33 credits in the second year. For more information about tuition, review Wayne State University tuition information

How many applications do you receive each year?

Each year the number of applications varies, but in general we receive 50-120 applications per year.  We then interview 20-30 candidates and select 12-14 students for that year's cohort, and 2-3 alternates on the off-chance a candidate drops off.

Does the program have an admissions fee?

Yes, once a candidate is offered a seat in the program there is a $500 deposit fee. The deposit is applied directly to the student's tuition after they start the program. The deposit can be made online with a credit card or an electronic check, or with a paper check or money order.

Does the program have rolling admissions?

No, we do not have rolling admissions.

What is the deadline for application to the program?

The application due date is January 15 for admission to the Spring/Summer semester, which begins in May of that same year.

What is the daily schedule like for students in the program?

The first-year course schedule traditionally involves courses Monday through Friday each semester. Although the length of time spent in the lecture hall and in the laboratory is not a full eight-hour day, certain days will begin as early as 8 a.m., while others will end as late as 9 p.m.

The clinical year schedule spans 42-48-weeks, Monday-Friday, with full eight-hour days.

Can I continue to work at my job while enrolled in your program?

Students are strongly encouraged not to engage in employment for the duration of the program. Due to time commitments and scheduling, students enrolled in the Pathologists' Assistant program are not excused from program classes or clinical obligations because of full, part-time, or contingent employment. All classes and program-sponsored/authorized activities are mandatory.

How many clinical sites do you have?

The program has eighteen (18) clinical sites.

Will I have to find my own clinical placements?

No, the program places students in all of their in-state and out-of-state clinicals.

How many weeks will I be placed in clinicals?

The clinical year is comprised of 42-48 consecutive weeks with the week of Christmas off. Students will rotate between 7-12 different clinical sites which run, consecutively, from 1 to 12 weeks each.

Can I choose where and when to do my clinical rotations?

No. Students are randomly placed in their clinical practicums by our computerized clinical dashboard management system. 

Where can I learn more about the profession?