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Oct 6, 2015
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Hello Everyone,

I have read an incredible amount of threads and posts about people from different backgrounds seeking advice on getting accepted into PA school. Unfortunately, I have not seen any threads in regards to Ex Sci students in particular seeking to get into PA school but with low grades. I was hoping that someone could give me some advice and be brutally honest in this scenario.

I'm currently in my mid-20s and have graduated with an undergraduate degree in exercise science with a focus in physical therapy. My long term dream for the future is to one day work as a physicians assitant in the orthopedic surgery (hence my background in Ex Sci with the focus in physical therapy). I have worked at a physical therapy clinic as an aide (+1000 hours paid that can be used as HCE), volunteered at an inpatient setting PT clinic (35 hours), and interned at an Equinox gym for personal training (250 hours).

I graduated with a 3.1 overall GPA. I have A's and B's in BIO, A&P I & II, Physics, Psych, Sociology, Stats, Kinesiology, Motor learning, Exercise Physiology, Medical Ethics, Exercise Prescription, and many other courses. However the courses that I screwed up in were my chemistry courses. I received a C in chem 1 on my first and only try, and received a D in chem 2 on my first try, and then a C on my second try. I received these grades due to family matters (my grandmother ended in the hospital twice due to a coma). The C's in chemistry really brought my GPA way down. Another thing that also dropped my GPA were some of the courses that I took my freshman year. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do back then, so I took some general courses that had nothing to do with exercise science when I declared it as my major later on.

I am missing Microbiology and Biochemistry which are two of the pre-reqs for some PA schools.

My Question:
My question is, what are my chances of getting accepted in PA school? Will taking Microbiology and Biochem and doing well in them boost my GPA/ chances of getting accepted? Should I retake my chem courses? I applied to a physical therapy assistant school and was accepted for this fall. If I decide to attend, will this make me more competitive and boost my chances of getting into PA school if I ace the program and gain additional health care expereince (HCE)? I would also be taking my microbio and biochem classes if I decide to take the PTA route. or would it be smarter to only take the two pre-req courses and then apply? I don't know if I'm taking a step backwards if I go for the associates degree in PTA and if it'll benefit me at all for the PA application process.