Skip to main content

Admission Prerequisites

The online application for the following Summer enrollment to the Pathologists' Assistant Program opens mid-August to mid-September each year.  If you don't see it within that time frame, please check back again soon.  Thank you!

Minimum standards for admission to graduate programs at the University of Maryland, Baltimore are specified in the Graduate School catalog. Applicants also must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Accepted applicants typically have competitive GRE scores and high undergraduate GPA. Strong preference is given to students who do well on the Verbal and Quantitative sections of the GRE, and have an Analytical Writing score of >4.5.In addition, the students’ undergraduate program must reflect the successful completion of at least one semester (3-5 credits) of the following coursework: biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry or biochemistry, microbiology, mathematics and English composition. The coursework must have been completed within the last nine years.


The mission of the Pathologists' Assistant Program ("Program") of the Department of Pathology ("Department"), University of Maryland School of Medicine is to graduate allied health professionals, qualified by academic and practical training to assist in providing service in anatomic pathology under the direction and supervision of an anatomic pathologist. It is the responsibility of the Department's Admissions Committee to select applicants who are well qualified and prepared to complete the required training and who are most likely to become skilled, effective Pathologists' Assistants. Applicants and enrolled students will be evaluated not only on their scholastic achievement and ability, but also on their character, and intellectual, physical and emotional capacity. Among the criteria for admission, matriculation, and progression is the ability to meet the Program's Essential Requirement Functions.

Admission to the Program is open to all qualified individuals in accordance with the 1973 Vocational Rehabilitation Act (29 U.S.C. §701 et seq.) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (42 U.S.C. §12101 et seq.).

Graduate education requires that the accumulation of scientific knowledge be accompanied by the simultaneous acquisition of skills and professional attitudes and behavior. The essential requirements presented in this document are pre-requisite for admission, academic advancement, and graduation from the Pathologists' Assistant Program. Students must be able to meet the following essential requirements, without accommodation or with reasonable accommodation.

The use of a trained intermediary is not acceptable in clinical situations. A student's judgment and skill may not be mediated by reliance upon someone else's power of selection and observation, or clinical ability.

Aptitudes, Abilities and Skills. A candidate for the Program must have aptitude and abilities, and must have or attain within a reasonable time after admissions, skills in five areas: observation; communication; sensory and motor coordination and function; conceptual, integrative and quantitative abilities; and behavioral and social attributes.

Observation. A student must be able to observe accurately at a distance and at close hand, and to describe anatomic features and the appearance of tissues. The student must be able to observe demonstrations and participate in experiments, examinations, dissections and processing of specimens. A student must be able to accurately perceive light and dark and differences among colors. The student must be able to use a variety of tools, equipment and chemicals as well as different types of equipment in order to consistently and accurately prepare specimens. Observation necessitates the functional use of the sense of vision and other sensory modalities.

Communication. A student must be able to communicate effectively with physicians, and other members of the health care team. Communication includes speaking and listening, reading and writing, in English. The student must be able to make accurate and appropriate entries in medical records, documents and reports, and to understand and implement instructions in a complete and timely manner working alone or with others. A student must be able to speak, hear and observe by sight in order to elicit information and describe characteristics appearance and detect and interpret sounds necessary to ensure safety in a clinical or laboratory facility.

Sensory and Motor Coordination and Function. A student must have sufficient sensory and motor function to execute movements reasonably required to conduct all phases of autopsy performance and dissection of surgical specimens. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium and accurate coordination of the senses of touch and vision. A student must be able to stand for long periods of time, lift heavy objects, carry heavy objects, pull, push, reach and bend while performing autopsy and dissection of surgical specimens. A student must be able to perform laboratory protocols, work with standard laboratory materials, reach and manipulate equipment and tools, and put on and remove personal protective equipment.

Intellectual, Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities. A student must be able to measure, calculate, reason, analyze, integrate and synthesize. Problem solving, a critical skill of the Pathologists' Assistant, requires all of these intellectual abilities. A student must be able to identify significant findings from examination and retain and recall information in an accurate and timely manner. A student must be able to comprehend three-dimensional relationships and understand the spatial relationships of structures. Good judgment is essential; a student must be able to identify and communicate their knowledge to others when appropriate.

Behavioral and Social Attributes. A student must possess the emotional maturity and health required for full use of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, and the awareness of the importance of the responsibilities of a Pathologists' Assistant. A student is expected to accept appropriate suggestions and criticism and to take corrective or remedial measure when appropriate. A student must act with integrity, concern for others and respect for the dignity of the profession.


The Program will provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities and to enrolled students with disabilities. The Program is not required to make, nor will it make, modifications that would fundamentally alter the nature of the admissions process or the educational program or provide auxiliary aids that present an undue burden on the Program. A student must be able to perform all of the Essential Requirements with or without reasonable accommodations to matriculate or continue in the program. The Office of Educational Support and Disability Services (ESDS) website contains all information and resources for requesting reasonable accommodations.  Applicants and students can also direct questions to:

Office of Educational Support and Disability Services
University of Maryland, Baltimore
SMC Campus Center
621 West Lombard Street, Suite 304
Baltimore, MD  21201
410-706-5889 (p)