What is a Certified Physician Assistant

A certified physician assistant works under the supervision of a physician to care for patients. Although they are not a doctor themselves, a certified physician assistant can still diagnose and treat basic illnesses. They can prescribe medication and order additional tests, such as X-rays, if they need more information to make a diagnosis.

For many patients, a certified physician assistant is their primary care provider, and they only see a supervising physician if they have a particularly complicated medical problem. Even then, a certified physician assistant is usually on hand to help develop treatment plans and assist with surgical procedures.

By definition, a certified physician assistant needs to get a certificate from the National Commission of Certification of Physician Assistants. They need to renew their certification every few years. Before getting certified, most physician assistants get a master's degree from a physician assistant program. They also have some hands-on medical experience through internships. It takes many years of hard work to become a certified physician assistant, but it pays off with an average annual salary of $143,430.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Certified Physician Assistant. For example, did you know that they make an average of $65.8 an hour? That's $136,869 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 31% and produce 37,000 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Certified Physician Assistant Do

There are certain skills that many Certified Physician Assistants have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Communication skills, Compassion and Detail oriented.

How To Become a Certified Physician Assistant

If you're interested in becoming a Certified Physician Assistant, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 43.9% of Certified Physician Assistants have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 42.8% of Certified Physician Assistants have master's degrees. Even though most Certified Physician Assistants have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Certified Physician Assistant. When we researched the most common majors for a Certified Physician Assistant, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Master's Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Certified Physician Assistant resumes include Associate Degree degrees or Doctoral Degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Certified Physician Assistant. In fact, many Certified Physician Assistant jobs require experience in a role such as Physician Assistant. Meanwhile, many Certified Physician Assistants also have previous career experience in roles such as Physician Assistant Student or Medical Assistant.

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Average Salary
$136,869
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
31%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
134,988
Job Openings
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Certified Physician Assistant Career Paths

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Top Careers After Certified Physician Assistant

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Average Salary for a Certified Physician Assistant

Certified Physician Assistants in America make an average salary of $136,869 per year or $66 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $204,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $91,000 per year.
Average Salary
$136,869
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Certified Physician Assistant Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Certified Physician Assistant. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Certified Physician Assistant Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Certified Physician Assistant resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Certified Physician Assistant Resume Examples And Templates

Certified Physician Assistant Demographics

Certified Physician Assistant Gender Statistics

female

64.4 %

male

33.2 %

unknown

2.5 %

Certified Physician Assistant Ethnicity Statistics

White

70.5 %

Asian

10.8 %

Hispanic or Latino

10.0 %

Certified Physician Assistant Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

59.7 %

French

8.1 %

Chinese

3.2 %
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Certified Physician Assistant Education

Certified Physician Assistant Majors

9.8 %

Certified Physician Assistant Degrees

Bachelors

43.9 %

Masters

42.8 %

Associate

6.5 %

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High School / GED
Associate
Bachelor's
Master's
Doctorate

Top Colleges for Certified Physician Assistants

1. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

2. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079

3. Yale University

New Haven, CT • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,430
Enrollment
5,963

4. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

5. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

6. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

7. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,104
Enrollment
7,089

8. Vanderbilt University

Nashville, TN • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,816
Enrollment
6,840

9. University of Florida

Gainesville, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,381
Enrollment
34,564

10. Tufts University

Medford, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,382
Enrollment
5,597
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Online Courses For Certified Physician Assistant That You May Like

Health After Cancer: Cancer Survivorship for Primary Care
coursera

This course presents basic principles of cancer survivorship to primary-care physicians. Developed by a team of experts in caring for cancer survivors, and narrated by a primary-care physician, this course provides practical tips and tools that can be easily integrated into medical practice. You will learn about the complex physical and psychosocial needs and concerns of the growing number of cancer survivors, along with the key role that primary care physicians have in guiding these patients ba...

Acute and Chronic Rhinosinusitis: A Comprehensive Review
coursera

Welcome to Acute and Chronic Rhinosinusitis: A Comprehensive Review This course, offered by the Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, is designed to inform primary care physicians and general otolaryngologists, as well as nurses, physician assistants and medical assistants, about the differences between acute and chronic rhinosinusitis and how to distinguish and treat them. It is also applicable to individuals who wish to broaden the...

Transgender Medicine for General Medical Providers
coursera

The course is a comprehensive set of didactic lectures surveying fundamentals of transgender medical and surgical treatment. The material is meant to provide the student with core knowledge that is essential for current primary care providers caring for transgender patients. There are 10 modules led by the expert clinical faculty from the pioneering Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery, located within the Mount Sinai Health System and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New Yor...

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Top Skills For a Certified Physician Assistant

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 14.5% of Certified Physician Assistants listed Patient Care on their resume, but soft skills such as Communication skills and Compassion are important as well.

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