UC Davis provides the only programs in the nation where family nurse practitioner and physician assistant students learn together to practice collaboratively with clinicians in a variety of clinical settings. When UC Davis first offered postgraduate certificate programs to prepare both family nurse practitioners and physician assistants more than 40 years ago, a dual-track program was offered to nurses to prepare simultaneously for both professions. Due to accreditation-limited enrollment and the need to ensure all physician assistant seats are filled by physician assistant students, the dual-track option is offered on a space-available basis only.

The dual-track option is determined annually on a space-available basis with no space expected in the near future. If the dual track option is offered, applications are announced after students complete at least one year of the family nurse practitioner program.

Students who wish to apply for this track must first be accepted into the family nurse practitioner program. The dual-track program is nine quarters in length. Upon completion of the dual-track program, graduates earn Master of Science — Nurse Practitioner Degrees in Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership as well as certificates in physician assistant studies. Dual-track students are then eligible to complete the nurse practitioner certification exam and the physician assistant licensing exam.

Application requirements

  • All applicants must be current graduate students within the nurse practitioner program who wish to simultaneously pursue a physician assistant license.
  • All applicants must complete and submit the Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant Dual-Track Program application form.
  • Results of the dual-track program applications are announced during the first year of the nurse practitioner program.

Program requirements

Students in the dual-track program must complete an additional quarter and follow the physician assistant track (27 months for the physician assistant program instead of 24 months for nurse practitioner program) to meet both the nurse practitioner and physician assistant education requirements. This includes additional supervised clinical practice rotations in emergency medicine, in-patient medicine and surgery.

Students must also maintain adequate academic and professional progress, including achieving a G.P.A. of 3.0 on all required coursework.