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International Applicants

Graduates of foreign undergraduate and graduate institutions may apply to the PA Program. An international graduate, not also holding or completing an in-progress baccalaureate or higher degree from an institution of higher learning in the United States or English-speaking Canada, is considered an international applicant.

Interested applicants should first ascertain whether they meet our general admission requirements and that they would be eligible for PA licensure in their chosen state upon graduation.

Foreign Medical Graduates

We review applications from international medical graduates as we do all other applications. General admission requirements must be fulfilled, in addition to the criteria outlined below. Advanced standing in the PA Program will not be offered. Each state, the federal government, U.S. territories and other jurisdictions establish requirements that must be met before licensure as a PA may be granted. It is recommended that you investigate state and other requirements for PA licensure as you prepare to make application for future admission to a PA program. Licensure requirements are also subject to change.

Foreign Transcripts

CASPA will not accept, translate or verify transcripts from international institutions (except Anglo-Canadian). A course-by-course foreign transcript evaluation is required for all International coursework completed outside the U.S. or Canada. The foreign transcript evaluation must be submitted and received by CASPA by the September 1, 2024, 11:59pm Central Time application deadline.

An application will not be reviewed until all relevant foreign transcript evaluations have been received by CASPA.

A foreign transcript evaluation must be requested from an accredited credential evaluation service. Examples of such services may be found on the website of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services. Applicants should refer to the CASPA FAQ on submitting foreign transcripts.To fulfill Northwestern University PA Program degree requirements, the foreign transcript evaluation must indicate a U.S. degree equivalency of at least a bachelor's degree for the degree earned outside the United States or Canada. "First Professional Degree in Medicine" is equivalent to an MD in the United States and will fulfill the degree requirement. "Equivalent to four years of study in the United States" is not equivalent to at least a bachelor's degree and will not fulfill the degree requirement.

Credit Hours

At least 30 semester credit hours (or the equivalent quarter hours) must be completed at a regionally-accredited U.S. college or university. Coursework can be at the undergraduate or graduate level. The 30-credit requirement must be fulfilled by the time of enrollment, not at the point of application. Unmet prerequisite courses taken at a regionally-accredited U.S. institution will count toward this requirement. Coursework can be in any subject matter. Science coursework is encouraged, but not required, in order to fulfill this requirement.

Citizenship or VISA Status

Appropriate and current legal status with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is a prerequisite for enrollment and continued status as a student in the PA Program. Individuals who are not citizens of the United States must demonstrate acceptable immigration/visa status to appropriate Northwestern University authorities. Upon admission, international students may work with the Northwestern University Office of International Student and Scholar Services (OISS) to establish eligibility to matriculate to the University.


Official and valid TOEFL scores are required of all applicants who do not hold a baccalaureate degree or higher level degree from the US or Canada, regardless of the official language of the country of origin or the predominant language of attended educational institutions.

Please visit the Test Requirements section at the bottom of the How to Apply page of our website to understand our TOEFL minimum score criteria and policies, in full.

PDF Score Reports printed or received by mail are not recognized as official scores. Scores must be sent directly from the testing agency to School Code 4888. Official TOEFL score reports must be submitted and received by our Program by the September 1, 2024, 11:59pm Central Time application deadline.

An application will not be reviewed until qualifying TOEFL scores have been received by CASPA.

Please allow at least four weeks for scores to be received.

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