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Next Steps

The Northwestern University PA Program will send notification via email acknowledging receipt of your complete application once the required materials have been received:

Please allow up to 5 business days for application processing. Completed applications placed in queue for review by our admissions committee in the order that they achieve complete status.

Applicants are holistically evaluated on the basis of their individual merits. Admission decisions are based on the following criteria: academic record, patient care experience, health care experience, professional references (evaluations), written personal statement, supplemental application essay responses, awards, honors, publications, and all Experiences provided via the CASPA application (leadership, volunteer/community enrichment, PA shadowing, research, teaching, extracurricular, and additional professional experiences). Select applicants are invited to interview and their candidacy is further evaluated based on interview performance.

Understanding the Rolling Admissions Process

The Northwestern University PA Program employs a rolling admissions approach. Our interview season will start after our September 1 application deadline, however, in this approach, interviews are held and admission decisions are made while applications are still being reviewed. This is the "rolling" aspect of the process, in action.

Our process is specifically designed to minimize the impact of the timing of application submission on the opportunity for an applicant to receive an offer to interview, and subsequently, an offer of admission. As such, invitations to interview and offers of admission are made incrementally as the cycle progresses, ensuring that many opportunities remain after initial application review concludes.

While applications are reviewed in the order that they are received, all applicants who meet our minimum requirements will remain under consideration for the duration of the interview period and may be invited for an interview at any time during that period. 

In this rolling approach, the timeline between application submission and interview invitation can vary significantly for a given applicant. Thus, one applicant could submit their application in August and receive an invitation to interview in September, while another applicant could submit their application in May and receive and invitation to interview in December.

If not selected for an interview, applicants are notified at the conclusion of the interview season, typically in December.


Approximately 150 applicants are invited to interview with the Program during each admissions cycle. Interview invitations will be extended via direct email communication. 

For the 2024-25 application cycle, interviews will be held virtually via Zoom from September through December 2024.

The interview day will feature an information session, a group activity featuring an interactive Problem-Based Learning patient case, and several one-on-one interviews with PA Program faculty, alumni, and/or clinical partners.

The Program employs a traditional, conversational interview model. That is, we do not employ Multiple Mini Interviews (MMI).

A detailed schedule and additional important information will be provided to each candidate upon acceptance of an offer to interview.

Application Updates: Experiences

For a current patient care role, it is not necessary to provide newly accrued hour totals. 

For all applicants, patient care experience hours are automatically projected forward based on the date of CASPA application submission and the provided weekly hours. Applicants who start new positions or experiences or who wish to report significant updates to their weekly hours and/or professional responsibilities may do so via CASPA. Alternatively, updates and modifications to patient care positions and other experiences may be sent to

Updates may include:

  • Starting new or leaving old patient care positions
  • Significant changes in hours worked per week in existing patient care roles
  • Changes in responsibilities or duties within an existing patient care role
  • New volunteer, leadership, community service or shadowing experience
  • Newly acquired certifications or honors

Application Updates: Transcripts

We do not require applicants to send transcripts to our Program. We will work with candidates invited to interview in order to reconcile their updated and complete academic record.

Newly scheduled courses and received grades can be listed on CASPA via the Academic Update feature.

Offers of Admission

Offers of admission will be made to selected applicants after their interview.

Upon receiving an offer of admission, applicants must submit a non-refundable $1,000 deposit to secure their seat. This deposit must be received within 10 calendar days from the date of the offer letter.

The $1,000 deposit will be credited to the student's first trimester bill from Northwestern University in May of the matriculation year.

Upon acceptance of an offer of admissions, applicants will be subject to a criminal background check. Should the background check yield any criminal information, the offer of admission may be revoked.

Admitted applicants must fulfill Technical Standards, as listed in our Policies section.

Acceptance into the Northwestern University PA Program and successful completion of the program does not imply or guarantee that the student will be able to obtain state licensure upon graduation.

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