Physician Associate Studies

Physician associates

RCSI Campus Open Event

The next RCSI physician associate studies open event will take place in person at the Albert Lecture Theatre, RCSI Dublin and online on 20 June 2024.

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What you will study

The integration of theory and practice is deemed fundamental to clinical learning.

The theory is delivered via blended learning with a mix of lectures, small group tutorials and problem-based learning at RCSI’s St Stephen’s Green Campus. Your clinical experience will be in both hospital and community attachments.

Throughout the programme, there is a focus on patient care, working across healthcare environments, and the variety and scope within your role as a PA.

The Physician Associate Studies programme is run over two full calendar years with a total of 30 days annual leave, dispersed throughout. Due to clinical rotations and academic commitments, there is no summer break as in some other RCSI Postgraduate programmes.

2023 term dates

Physician Associate Studies - Year 1 PDF | 80.7 KB Physician Associate Studies - Year 2 PDF | 79.9 KB


Foundations of Clinical Medicine This module explores the foundations of clinical medicine using a systems approach and includes anatomy dissection and prosection. You will need to draw on your previous science/health sciences qualification to relate to the underlying pathology and microbiology of diseases.
Clinical Medicine and Practice The focus of this module is the application of theory to practice. Emphasis is placed on ensuring your competency in clinical skills and in using a problem-solving, decision-making approach in case-based learning. You will participate in small group clinically-based simulated scenarios in RCSI’s state-of-the-art simulation centre.
Pharmacology and Therapeutics PAs need to have detailed knowledge of pharmacology and the related clinical sciences to work as part of a multidisciplinary team. This knowledge applied in the clinical domain will enhance your ability to assess and manage patients/clients presenting with acute health problems and/or complex long-term conditions.
Personal and Professional Development The aim of this module is to develop your self-awareness and leadership skills, to equip you to work as part of a multidisciplinary team. It will include an understanding of human factors in patient safety such as clinical judgement, the development of clinical expertise and underlying causes of medical error.
Evidence-based Practice in Healthcare (dissertation) PAs are involved in evidence-based practice on a day-to-day basis, whether it is part of a team implementing a change, or as a professional leading an initiative. Your dissertation will focus on a quality improvement project plan which will have an impact on patient outcomes.
Clinical Practice You will complete up to 50 weeks of clinical practice during the programme (across Year 1 and 2) with a minimum number of weeks in areas including general medicine, community medicine, general surgery, specialty medicine and an elective rotation of your choice.