Frequently Asked Questions

Where is California Baptist University located?

California Baptist University is located in the City of Riverside, County of Riverside in Southern California, in an area known as the Inland Empire. Our beautiful 156.4-acre campus reflects its Southern California location with palm trees, mission-style buildings and their distinctive red roofs, a breath-taking view of the San Bernardino Mountains and many warm, sunny days. For more information go to About CBU.

What type of institution is California Baptist University?

California Baptist University is a Christian faith-based institution that offers undergraduate, graduate and one doctoral program of study. To learn more about CBU, please go to About CBU.

Do I have to be a Christian or a Baptist to attend CBU?


Is housing available on campus for graduate students?

No. Housing is available in the school's vicinity. Contact Residence Life for a listing.

What activities are available on campus?

For campus activities, please visit Student Life.

When do classes begin? 

Classes begin every September.

The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation - Provisional status to the California Baptist University Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies Program sponsored by California Baptist University. 

Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program's ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation-Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students. 

Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class.

When can I apply to the program?

Applications for the next class will be conducted through the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). The application cycle runs from July 1st, 2017 to November 30, 2017.

How long is the course of study?

The Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MSPAS) is an intensive 2-year long program consisting of one (1) year of didactic, followed by one (1) year of clinical education. 

Can I work while I am enrolled in the program?

Because of the fast pace and attendance requirements, it is recommended that students not work while enrolled in the program.

How many classes are admitted each year?

One (1) cohort of students will be admitted in September of each year.

What GPA must I have to apply to the program?

Applicants must have a minimum Overall GPA of 3.2, a Science GPA of 3.0, and a Prerequisite GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale to apply to the program.

Is there a time-limit on courses taken previously?

It is preferred that Science courses be taken in the past 5-7 years.

Is the GRE or MCAT required to apply to the program?

The GRE or MCAT is not required. Local testing in basic Math, English Comprehension, English Composition and Medical Terminology will be given during the time of the interview.

Is Healthcare experience required? 

1,000 volunteer/paid healthcare hours are required in order to apply. Must be verifiable. 

Are there preferences in the selection process?

Yes, the following are preferences:

  • California Baptist University graduates 
  • Students with an interest in serving in the Inland Empire and shortages areas in California
  • US citizens and legal permanent residents 
  • Applicants with a history of volunteer community service 
  • Applicants from underrepresented/underserved populations 
  • Applicants with an interest in global health engagement (providing service to medically disadvantaged populations)
  • Applicants with PA/MD/DO shadowing experience

How do I apply to the program?

Applications must be submitted through CASPA. 

If I meet the minimum requirements, will I be invited for an interview?

Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee an invitation for an interview or acceptance to the program. Only the most qualified candidates will be invited.

When will interviews begin?

For the entering class, interviews will begin in November 2017.

What are my chances of getting into the program?

The chances of getting into the program varies and depends on the characteristics of the applicant pool, such as the number of applicants, their GPA, backgrounds and the number of interviews.

Can I be admitted to the program while still completing prerequisites for my undergraduate degree?

As a general rule, all prerequisites must be completed by December 31st, 2017. In rare instances, an exceptional candidate may be invited for an interview while a course or two are in progress. The PA Admissions Committee is solely responsible for making this decision. Candidates in this category will have GPAs above 3.7, meet all or most of the preference items, and have provided exceptional service to CBU or the community. There is no guarantee that such candidates will be accepted to the program. 

Can prerequisites be waived?

Prerequisites may not be waived.

When will I be notified if I am accepted into the program?

Notification of acceptance to the program will be made by March 31st, 2018 by phone, with a follow-up notification by surface mail.

Does the institution provide assistance with Financial Aid?

Yes. To apply for financial aid, please contact CBU's Financial Aid office.


Does the physician assistant program provide grants or scholarships?

The Physician Assistant program does not provide grants or scholarships at this time.

What degree will be given upon successful completion of the program?

Graduates who successfully complete the program will be given a Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MSPAS) degree.

After program completion, is job search assistance provided?

As part of the program, CBU will provide information and workshops in the job-seeking process. The program will also provide leads to potential jobs, however, job-seeking is an individual process and CBU cannot guarantee that an employer will hire you.

How do I begin clinical practice?

Upon completing an ARC-PA Accredited program, graduates are eligible to sit for the professional board given by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). Upon passing the exam, candidates are given the designation of Physician Assistant –Certified (PA-C). The candidate may then apply for state licensure and for a DEA Certificate to prescribe controlled medication. The licensure process and requirements for each state vary and candidates must check with the Board of Physician Assistants in the state of planned practice for specific requirements.