How to Find a PA to Shadow – Physician Assistant Shadowing Tips

If you’re considering becoming a PA, you’ll often find that many programs require a certain amount of patient contact or shadowing experience. Patient contact experience often comes from shadowing working Physician Assistants, so the most important step is finding and securing a shadowing opportunity. As you may know, PAs can be very busy people when on the job, but the overwhelming majority love talking about their profession and answering questions- you just need to find a time when they can talk!

So how does one go about finding a PA to shadow?

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Your Panel Uses These Three Criteria To Judge Your PA School Interview Performance

With any task, performing to the best of your ability is much easier if you know what criteria you’re being judged against. Having an idea of what your interview committee is looking for during your interview can help you prepare more efficiently and answer questions in a more effective way. Think about it- it’s much easier to get a high score on a test if you know how you’re being scored, so why not apply this to your interview? Read more »

Overcome PA School Interview Anxiety: Become an Agent of the SHIELD Technique!

Applying to become a PA can be a very stressful process. Between researching schools, writing your personal narrative, getting your application materials together, and making sure you have enough patient contact experience, you’ll have suffered through enough stress before you even step foot into your interview.

The stress felt prior to the interview room can be a bit easier to manage because you’re not necessarily put on the spot. Yes, you have a great deal of preparation to do and a lot of work ahead of you, but the stress can be managed on your own time. On interview day, the stress you feel must be dealt with and suppressed in that very moment, so it makes dealing with the stress all the more difficult.

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Finding Ways To Make PA School More Affordable

Higher education is an investment, and one that doesn’t come cheap. For most, finding a way to afford their education is difficult and requires assistance from multiple sources. Regardless, finding a way to pay for PA school shouldn’t deter you from applying to your top PA programs.

Other than applying to the top 10 most affordable PA programs, here are a few resources you can use to help you afford your education.

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Getting The Most Out Of Your PA School Personal Narrative

Your personal narrative is arguably one of the most important aspects of the entire application process. Without a compelling, unique, and well written personal narrative, you may not even get a shot at interviewing with your potential PA programs. Think of it as the ultimate sales pitch- you want it to be clear, concise, but really drive home the points that argue why you’d be an exceptional PA.

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7 Tricks To Answer Behavioral Questions at your PA School Interview

During your interview process, you’ll undoubtedly be asked behavioral questions. The goal of questions like these is to flesh out examples of skills, characteristics, and experiences that directly relate to your value as a potential PA student.   These questions are vital because they give your interviewers clear, concrete examples of who you are as an individual, so you’ll want to make sure your answers are not only full of detail, but clear and concise.

It’s important to note that nothing sets you up for success like prior preparation. Taking the time to go over the most common behavioral questions asked during an interview is a great place to start practicing. On top of prior preparation, you’ll easily be able to answer any behavioral question thrown at you by using the following tricks.

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What to Look For in a PA Program

When choosing the best PA program for you, it may be hard to weed through all the choices. The stress of figuring out which programs you’re a strong candidate for may obscure the fact that you should be looking for the right school that fits your needs. If you’re too focused on being a perfect applicant, you may end up applying to a program that doesn’t end up serving your best interests.

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How to get patient contact experience for PA school

If you’re racking your brain to come up with direct patient contact experience, stop for a second and consider all of the direct experience you get just through the Excell Pre PA Assistant Clerkship program!

Not only do you get over 200 hours of real-life patient experience over the course of your clerkship, you’ll come out the other side being able to speak directly to your role as a patient advocate and liaison. By the time you’re done, you’ll have developed skills in bedside manner, gotten direct patient interaction, detected and resolved patient quality of life issues, worked as a liaison between patients and staff, experienced being part of a healthcare team, and more!

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PA School narrative: How to frame your weaknesses as strengths

As you write your personal narrative, you’ll need to portray yourself as honestly as possible. This means that, while you get to praise yourself by pointing out the key abilities and characteristics that make you a stand-out physician assistant, you may also need to address your weaknesses. While you might be reluctant to pinpoint something that could harm your chances of being the optimal candidate, weaknesses can be an outstanding way to frame your strengths- you just need to know how to present them.

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Are your answers as strong as your application?

A strong answer to an interview question can take many shapes and forms, but it should always have a significant impact. In most situations, the interview committee is looking for a strong answer rather than an answer that’s necessarily right or wrong (unless the question is purely fact-based, then you’ll want to make sure your answer is correct). Regardless, crafting a strong answer comes from preparation and attentiveness.

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