Respiratory Care, AAS (RCT3) Degree

Campus Locations: Thomasville

The respiratory care program is a sequence of courses that prepare students for entry into respiratory care professional practice. Learning opportunities encompass general education courses in the arts and sciences in addition to occupation specific courses to facilitate the development of academic knowledge and professional competencies required for job acquisition, retention and advancement in the respiratory care profession. Graduates of the program receive the Associate of Applied Science degree in Respiratory Care, and eligibility to sit for the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) credentialing examinations. Detailed information outlining the NBRC credentialing examination(s) including application procedures, examination fees, the minimum cut-score requirements, and the continuing competency program are available in the NBRC Candidate Handbook at

Length of Program: Two (2) semesters of prerequisite courses and Four (4) semesters of occupational courses

Career Information: Respiratory therapists are members of a team of health care professionals working in a wide variety of clinical settings. Respiratory therapists provide a broad range of patient care which includes clinical decision making and patient education. The respiratory care scope of practice includes, but is not limited to the following basic competencies:

  • acquiring and evaluating clinical data
  • assessing the cardiopulmonary status of patients
  • performing and assisting in the performance of prescribed diagnostic studies
  • evaluating data to assess the appropriateness of prescribed respiratory care
  • establishing therapeutic goals for patients with cardiopulmonary disease
  • participating in the development and modification of respiratory care plans
  • case management of patients with cardiopulmonary and related diseases
  • initiating respiratory care protocols and modifying the respiratory care plan
  • initiating and conducting prescribed pulmonary rehabilitation
  • providing patient, family, and community education
  • promoting cardiopulmonary wellness, disease prevention, and disease management
  • promoting evidence-based practice by using established clinical practice guidelines and by evaluating published research for its relevance to patient care.

(Reference: CoARC Standards)

Program Goal: The goal of the respiratory care program at Southern Regional Technical College is to prepare graduates with demonstrated competence in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains of respiratory care practice as performed by registered respiratory therapists (RRTs).

Program Outcome: Graduates of the respiratory care program will obtain the NBRC’s Registered Respiratory Therapist credential. CoARC accredited programs are required to report assessment thresholds on the CoARC Annual Report of Current Status (RCS). Programmatic outcomes data are published by CoARC.

To verify the accreditation status of this program, access the CoARC-Accredited Respiratory Care Program Database.

Entrance Date: Prerequisite Courses open; however, all prerequisite/Competitive Admissions courses (BIOL 2113 – Anatomy and Physiology I, BIOL 2113L – Anatomy and Physiology Lab I , BIOL 2114 – Anatomy and Physiology II, BIOL 2114L – Anatomy and Physiology Lab II , CHEM 1151 – Survey of Inorganic Chemistry; CHEM 1151: - Survey of Inorganic Chemistry Lab; and a Degree level MATH course) must be successfully completed prior to competitive program admission deadline.

Program Admission: Fall Semester

Entrance Requirements: Entry into this program is based on competitive admissions criteria. Contact the program advisor or admissions for details. Completion of prerequisite courses does not guarantee admission into the program. For further details, Please see the Competitive Admissions Criteria. Click for Entrance Score Requirements.

Competitive Admissions: Fall 2021 Respiratory Care Admission Requirements

Age: Applicant must be 16 years of age or older.

Education: An applicant must be a high school graduate or the equivalent (GED). College transcripts will be evaluated on an individual basis.

Advisor: A Program Advisor should be consulted prior to enrolling in any course. An advisor will be assigned by admissions.

Additional Requirements: Pre-screening processes must be completed by all respiratory care students in order to be permitted to attend clinical rotations at the clinical affiliates. Pre-screening requirements and orientation sessions may vary among clinical affiliates and include: A physical examination, verification the student meets the same technical standards required of employees of the affiliates, immunization records, annual influenza vaccination while enrolled in the program, national criminal background check, and drug toxicology. A deadline for submission of all documentation to the director of clinical education will be provided on the first day of the semester of the first RESP course.

Students will be provided a Respiratory Care Program Handbook upon enrollment in the first Respiratory Care occupational course. The handbook provides details regarding all additional program requirements including tools, supplies, uniforms, clinical documentation requirements, completion of certification in the American Heart Association (ACLS, BLS), American Academy of Pediatrics (PALS), and Neonatal Resuscitation (NRP) courses, and the policy on RRT credentialing success.

Advanced Placement: Graduates of a former entry-level diploma program in respiratory therapy (prior to the 1997 national requirement for transition of all respiratory therapy programs to Associate degree) who aim to obtain the Associate of Applied Science degree in Respiratory Care must meet the following graduation criteria:

  1. Complete all application requirements for acceptance to the College.
  2. Schedule an advisement meeting with the program chair to request assistance with the process for requesting credit for previous training for the RESP occupational courses.
  3. Submit verification of an active RRT credential from the National Board for Respiratory Care (
  4. Complete all courses in Area 1: General Education Core courses with the minimum final course grade of “C” (reference course curriculum on the following pages).
  5. Schedule regular advisement sessions to review progress towards graduation.
  6. Schedule an advisement session for assistance with processing the request for graduation.

Note: Graduates of a former entry-level diploma program in respiratory therapy who do not have the RRT credential must complete all courses (Areas 1, 2, and 3) in the program curriculum.

Credentialing Requirements for Employment: The RRT credential is required for employment by all hospitals listed as clinical affiliates of the program in addition to the majority of hospitals in the region and state of Georgia.

State Licensure Requirements: Licensure requirements and application processes vary for each state. The program chair will assist graduates with accurate and timely completion of state licensure requirements. A national directory of state licensure agencies is provided at (reference state licensure).

Note: Individuals who have been convicted of a felony offense may be denied state licensure. Applications for state licensure are reviewed and approved by the governing agency for each state.

Professionalism: Students will become student members of the Georgia Society for Respiratory Care ( and the American Association for Respiratory Care ( The importance of professional growth and service to the community of interest, through community service projects will be emphasized throughout the program.

Program Final Exit Point: Respiratory Care, Associate of Applied Science Degree with eligibility to sit for the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) TMC examination.

Credits Required for Graduation: 81 minimum semester hour credits required for graduation.

Accreditation Information: The Respiratory Care Program is provisionally accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC). The program is classified by CoARC as an Entry into Professional Practice Program (CoARC program reference number: 200631). Graduates of the program are awarded an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree.

Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care
1248 Harwood Road
Bedford, Texas 76021-4244
Phone: 817-283-2835


Program outcomes are available at:

Books: $896.56
Fees: $326.00
Tuition: $1,500.00
Total: $2,722.56
Books: $473.80
Fees: $301.00
Tuition: $1,500.00
Total: $2,274.80
Books: $713.10
Fees: $916.00
Tuition: $1,300.00
Total: $2,929.10
Books: $170.00
Fees: $301.00
Tuition: $1,300.00
Total: $1,771.00
Fees: $351.00
Tuition: $1,000.00
Total: $1,351.00
Fees: $1,273.00
Tuition: $1,400.00
Total: $2,673.00
1: General Education Courses (16 Hours) 16
Area I: Language Arts/Communication (3 Hours) 3
ENGL 1101 Composition and Rhetoric 3
Area II: Social/Behavioral Sciences (3 Hours) 3
Area III: Natural Sciences/Mathematics (7 Hours)** 7
CHEM 1151 Survey of Inorganic Chemistry 3
CHEM 1151L Survey of Inorganic Chem Lab 1
Math 0001 One Degree Level Mathematics Course 3
Area IV: Humanities/Fine Arts (3 Hours) 3
2: Institutional Credit (3 Hours) 3
COLL 1500 Student Success 3
3: Occupational Courses (62 Hours) 62
BIOL 2113 Anatomy and Physiology I 3
BIOL 2113L Anatomy/Physiology Lab I 1
BIOL 2114 Anatomy and Physiology II 3
BIOL 2114L Anatomy/Physiology Lab II 1
BIOL 2117 Introductory Microbiology 3
BIOL 2117L Introductory Microbiology Lab 1
RESP 1110 Pharmacology 3
RESP 1120 Intro to Respiratory Therapy 3
RESP 1130 Respiratory Therapy Lab I 4
RESP 1193 Cardiopulmonary A & P 4
RESP 2090 Clinical Practice I 2
RESP 2100 Clinical Practice II 2
RESP 2110 Pulmonary Disease 3
RESP 2120 Critical Respiratory Care 2
RESP 2130 Mech Vent & Airway Management 4
RESP 2140 Adv Critical Care Monitoring 1
RESP 2150 Pulmonary Function Testing 1
RESP 2160 Neonatal Pediatric Resp Care 3
RESP 2170 Adv Respiratory Care Seminar 3
RESP 2180 Clinical Practice III 2
RESP 2190 Clinical Practice IV 2
RESP 2200 Clinical Practice V 3
RESP 2220 Clinical Practice VI 7
RESP 2270 Rehabilitation and Home Care 1
Program Chair

Respiratory Care Program Chair, School of Health Sciences


Respiratory Care Clinical Coordinator, School of Health Sciences

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