Bangor University

Bangor University

Physician Associate Studies

A Physician Associate (PA) is defined as someone who is a new healthcare professional who, while not a doctor, works to the medical model, with the attitudes, skills and knowledge base to deliver holistic care and treatment within the general medical and/or general practice team under defined levels of supervision. While Physician Associates are not meant to replace doctors, they are urgently needed to meet the increasing demand of a growing and ageing population combined with reductions in the medical workforce especially in the more rural areas of Wales. Working within teams, they would enhance patient care both in the community and hospital setting in a more efficient and relatively cost-effective manner. Graduates from this course will have a broad and relevant set of transferable skills with a focus on medical history taking, clinical examination, analysis of test results, clinical reasoning and diagnosis, and the development of evidence based patient management plans. In order to be eligible to sit the national Physician Associate examination, successful completion of 2 year PG Diploma in Physician Associate Studies is required. Welsh Government funding is available to cover fees and to provide some support for cost of living.

Entry requirements

Candidates should be of the required academic standard and be able to satisfy one of the following conditions: have been awarded an initial degree (2.1 or higher) by a recognised Higher Education Institution in medically-related life science subjects (see widening access section if you are interested but do not have a degree in these areas). Examples include: Medical Sciences; Biomedical Sciences or have a 2:2 in a life science degree with a higher degree in a relevant subject e.g. MSc Clinical Sciences be in possession of a non-graduate qualification that the University has deemed to be of a satisfactory standard for the purpose of postgraduate admission. International students must also have IELTS of 7.0 or above, with no individual score lower than 6.5.
Students will be interviewed prior to acceptance.

Widening Access: Applications are invited from all individuals with a strong interest in primary or secondary care. Applicants with a Higher Education degree outside the Life Sciences are expected to complete the Certificate in Medical Sciences (year 1 of the BMedSci B100 course) or Diploma in Medical Sciences (years 1 + 2 of the BMedSci B100 course) subject to their requirements. Having successfully completed this top-up qualification, graduates are eligible to apply for a place on the PG Physician Associate program. Risk assessments for disabled persons will be conducted on a case-by-case basis.

Course modules

The programme aims to give students a comprehensive knowledge of the concepts, principles and technologies used in clinical practice in the following areas:
cardiovascular system, respiratory system, gastrointestinal system, musculoskeletal system, eyes, female reproductive system, renal and genitourinary system, skin diagnostics and therapeutics, neurology.

Assessment methods

Teaching occurs via lectures, clinical placements, practical classes and group work including case-centred discussions often delivered by academic clinicians who hold joint University and Health board contracts. Students benefit from a high number of contact hours that includes utilisation of our state-of-the art teaching laboratories and simulation suite at the hospital. Academic assessment includes placement reports, observed clinical skills, MCQ and written exams.

Sponsorship information

Welsh Government funding is available to cover fees and to provide some support for cost of living.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
PgDip Part-time September 2016 - 2 years

Campus details

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Key information

School of Medical Sciences
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