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DMSc Coming to the University of Nebraska Medical Center

The University of Nebraska Medical Center will soon start accepting applications for its inaugural Doctor of Medical Science (DMSc) program. 

According to the University, the Doctor of Medical Science is a post-professional doctorate “designed to enhance a practicing PA’s career options within the field as well as to expand their level of clinical practice.” 

UNMC’s DMSc will be the 17th Doctor of Medical Science program designed for physician associates (PAs). We count 4 other non-DMSc doctorates designed for practicing PAs including the DScPAS, DPAS, and DPA. 

UNMC DMSc: A Welcome Edition

According to Kendra Schmid, PhD, assistant vice chancellor of academic affairs and executive associate dean of graduate studies, “This new degree is recognized as an important way for PAs to further their training and enhance the health care workforce.” 

Dele Davies, MD, the senior vice chancellor for academic affairs and dean for graduate studies also supports the new DMSc program: “UNMC is already a national leader in training physician assistants, and the addition of the Doctor of Medical Science degree allows us to again lead in training practicing PAs who aspire to be leaders in influencing the health care system to positively impact patient care.”

Like most DMSc programs, UNMC’s offerings will be fully online and can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. Students are allowed up to five years to complete the program but full-time students may complete the DMSc in as little as four semesters or 16 months.

24 of the 40 credit hours will be didactic coursework and the remaining 16 credit hours will come from clinical experiences completed in the student’s own community.

The Didactic DMSc Curriculum

  • Health Care Systems Theory and Practice for the Advanced PA – 3 Credits
  • PA Leaders & Their Organizations: Navigating Complexities in Healthcare Sys – 3 Credits 
  • Quality Improvement in Advanced Physician Assistant Practice – 3 Credits 
  • Application of Research and Statistical Methods to the Advanced PA Practice – 3 Credits 
  • Capstone Project I for the Advanced Physician Assistant Practice – 2 Credits
  • Capstone Project II for the Advanced Physician Assistant Practice – 2 Credits
  • Capstone Project III for the Advanced Physician Assistant Practice – 2 Credits 
  • Health Security and Medical Operations for Advanced PA Practice – 3 Credits
  • Interprofessional Global Health – 3 Credits

The clinical curriculum will be composed of four Field Placement courses, worth 4 credits a piece. 

The University of Nebraska Medical Center Doctor of Medical Science program is expected to enroll 20 full-time and 30 part-time students over the first few years. Classes begin in August 2024.

DMSc students must identify a collaborating physician to serve as a clinical preceptor. At $710 per credit hour, the UNMC DMSc will cost ~$28,000 not including books and fees. 

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