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MSc Physician Associate Studies course preparation

To help you feel prepared for your postgraduate studies, we’ve gathered together a range of course-related activities including suggested reading, useful websites and some great things to do right now.

Important tasks

Health checks and DBS clearance are required for the programme. Please ensure you engage with these as soon as possible.

Your first week

It is really important that you fully enrol and attend the Induction programme. Key information about the course, such as accessing the Virtual Learning Environment (BlackBoard), timetables and some vital information preparing you for the programme will be delivered. During this period, the group will also be meeting together for the first time. You will get to meet fellow students as well as the academic staff. This is an important part of getting to know the programme, your fellow students and tutors, and will help you settle into university life here at Edge Hill.

As you are starting the Physician Associate course, it is recommended that you begin to explore the Faculty of Physician Associate website. There is a lot of useful information here about the role that you may find helpful at the start of your journey to becoming a qualified Physician Associate.

It is also worth looking at the GMC website and the upcoming regulation of Physician Associate by the General Medical council. As a team we will go through all of this when you start the programme.

Suggested materials

Scrubs will be provided by the University for the majority of placements, however some placements prefer you to wear your own clothes. This would include smart casual clothing and smart black trousers.

You will also need to have black shoes (black trainers are fine), for both clinical skills teaching and to wear during clinical placements.

More information regarding this will be given during induction week. There will be plenty of time to get this sorted once you start the programme.

Suggested reading

You’ll be given suggested reading lists for each of the themes when you begin the course. The vast majority of these you will be able to access in the library, or on-line via electronic copies.

To start with try exploring anatomy resources such as or tutorials on Khan academy to help prepare you for starting the course. For pre-reading go over the cell biology basics i.e. different types of cells, what are receptors as well as anatomical terms. This will help you when starting. Don’t worry if some of that seems overwhelming, we will provide support and go through it when you start.

Your programme structure

The programme is full time with a defined structure and set holidays. Please view your two year programme structure here.

Academic placements will be spent at the University. Clinical placements will be defined based upon learning need, and you will be expected to travel within reasonable distance.

Timetables will be released ahead of schedule, however whether on academic or clinical placements you will be expected to work a full time working week (i.e. 37.5 hours). Hours for the programme are based on this figure.

During academic placements, you will be given time for self directed study. Further information regarding this and the timetables will be discussed during induction week.

As you will see from the programme structure, there are predefined holidays. Students are expected to take their holidays during this time. Any additional leave should be discussed with the programme team.

Your clinical placements

The programme structure means that half of the course will be spent in clinical placement. Clinical placements will differ allowing you to explore clinical specialties and introduce you to the diversity of roles, contexts and patients.

You will be required to document and reflect on these placements and be introduced to the portfolio which is central to medical training and practice. Sessions will be provided in the programme on how to do this.

Students are expected to travel to placement within reasonable distance.

Meet your programme lead

Dr Sarah Lyon
Senior Lecturer in Medical Education
01695 657059

Sarah is a senior lecturer in medical education and your programme lead. She has developed and taught on a variety of clinical level 7 modules and Masters programmes, including Physician Associate programmes. She sits on the national Physician Associate Schools council and works closely with NHS England and other local Universities within the PA consortium.

Sarah has a keen interest in technology enhanced learning (TEL), including the development of eportfolios, and is the TEL lead for the medical school.

Research Interests:

Her research interests are in TEL, specifically focusing on the impact of Technology within clinical learning and eportfolios. She has a variety of peer reviewed publications and has presented at national and international conferences.