EMT-Basic Classes and Schools

Find out about the classes required in an EMT-Basic program. Get information about admissions requirements to these programs along with typical job duties and responsibilities. Schools offering Fire & Emergency Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

EMT-Basic is the entry-level certification for emergency medical technicians (EMTs). EMT-Basics provide the first line of response to emergency situations.

Responsibilities Respond to emergency calls, assess medical conditions of patients, work to stabilize them, transport them safely and quickly to medical facilities, etc.
Schools Technical and community colleges, universities, hospitals
Classes Patient assessment, anatomy, physiology, cardiac care, respiratory emergencies, transportation, wound/fracture care, use of emergency equipment

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Do EMT-Basics Do?

EMT-Basics are qualified to respond to accident scenes and care for patients as they are transported to hospitals. As an EMT-Basic, you would work under the supervision of paramedics and more highly trained EMTs, assessing the medical conditions of your patients while working to stabilize them until they receive further medical care. You would also respond to a wide range of emergency situations, including respiratory problems, heart attacks, childbirth or injuries.

How Do I Begin My Training?

EMT-Basic training programs are most commonly offered at technical and community colleges, though they can also be found at universities or hospitals as well as organizations such as the Red Cross. These programs are available as single courses designed to prepare you for certification, as well as certificate and diploma programs that can be completed in as little as one semester. Most courses consist of at least 200 hours, combining classwork and field internships.

You can also complete EMT-Basic courses as part of longer diploma or associate degree programs designed to prepare you to become a paramedic. EMT-Basic courses are offered numerous times a year, and many schools offer daytime, evening and online course options.

Some schools that offer EMT-Basic courses and diploma or certificate programs include:

  • Wake Technical Community College
  • Central Piedmont Community College
  • George Washington University
  • Coastal Carolina Community College
  • Stanly Community College
  • University of Texas San Antonio
  • Crafton Hills College

What Are the Admission Requirements?

To be admitted into an EMT program, most schools require that you are at least 18 years old, possess a high school diploma and can pass a criminal background check. You might also need to meet specific health requirements, such as having particular vaccinations, and may need to have taken college placement exams. Prior to or by the end of the program, you will also need to be CPR certified. When choosing a school, you should remember that the National Registry of Emergency Technicians (NREMT), the certifying organization for EMTs, requires that you complete a state-approved course or program to be eligible for certification (www.nremt.org).

What Classes Will I Take?

Classes at the EMT-Basic level teach you skills in emergency care. You will learn how to apply emergency skills and provide basic life support to patients through a combination of coursework and experience in the field. The curriculum focuses on basic skills like:

  • Patient assessment
  • Cardiac care
  • Managing respiratory emergencies
  • Patient transportation
  • Wound/fracture care
  • Using emergency equipment

Upon successful completion of the program, you must pass written and practical examinations administered by your state licensing agency or the NREMT. You will then be eligible to apply for certification by the NREMT as an EMT-Basic.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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