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Associate of Applied Science Degree in Respiratory Care

The Associate of Applied Science Degree in Respiratory Care degree program provides a quality Advanced-Practitioner respiratory care education to the geographically large and rural service area of East Tennessee. The program prepares individuals to apply to become registered respiratory therapists. Upon completion of the program, graduates are eligible to take the credentialing examinations offered by the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) to become registered respiratory therapists.

The program's minimum expectations are 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).

The Walters State Community College Respiratory Care Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (Program number 200550)

CoARC accredits respiratory therapy education programs in the United States. To achieve this end, it utilizes an 'outcomes based' process. Programmatic outcomes are performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the educational goals of the program are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented.

A.A.S in Respiratory Care Curriculum and Admissions Requirements

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Respiratory Care: What is it?


You can live without food for weeks. You can live without water for days. But if you are deprived of air, you will die within minutes. In terms of life or death, breathing is your most important need.

Many people have trouble breathing. Because of a serious disease or accident, many people have impaired or non-functioning lungs. Respiratory Practitioners are the health care specialists who evaluate and treat patients with breathing disorders.

YOU can make the difference!

The need for Respiratory Care Practitioners is expected to grow above the national average for all job growth. As the number of elderly persons grow, the need for respiratory care will increase as well.

The respiratory care profession has a bright future with a great job outlook and opportunity for advancement. Once you enter the profession you can specialize in an area such as neonatal care, cardiopulmonary support, helicopter transport, critical care, education or management.


If you want to join this exciting field, you must be sensitive to those who have serious physical impairments. You must work well as a member of a team. The ability to pay close attention to detail, and follow instructions independently are prerequisites for practitioners. Since some of the work therapists do center on the equipment you use, you should have an interest in the mechanics of medical technology.

If you want to be a respected, essential member of a health care team who treats patients from newborns to the elderly, work with advanced technology and sustain lung and breathing activity, then consider Respiratory Care as a profession dedicated to saving and sustaining life!

Mission Statement

The mission for the Respiratory Care Program is to provide excellent Respiratory Care education for our students. The combination of classroom instruction, laboratory, and clinical teaching in local hospitals provides each student with the knowledge and skills to become a safe, proficient respiratory therapist. The experienced faculty give students an excellent education and prepares the students for their careers as registered respiratory therapists.