What Are the Core Courses of Surgical Technician Degree Programs?
The core curriculum of an associate's degree program in surgical technology covers practical surgical tech skills as well as medical theory. Read this article to learn more about the classes you'd take to earn an Associate of Science in Surgical Technology.
Surgical Technology Degree Information
Earning an Associate of Science or Associate of Applied Science in Surgical Technology comes as the result of a 2-year degree program. Some schools require clinical practicum. The core academic courses of a surgical technician degree program can be generally divided into two categories: general medical theory and studies or applied medicine within the operating room.
Important Facts about Surgical Technology Degrees
|Prerequisites||High school diploma or GED; prerequisite courses in math, science and English may also be required; clean background check with no criminal convictions, drug testing|
|Programs||Beyond associate's degree programs, certificate programs are also available|
|Online Availability||Programs available in a hybrid format of online and on-campus training|
|Possible Careers||Surgical Technologists, Operating Room Technicians, Medical Sales Representative|
|Median Salary (2018)||$47,300 (for surgical technologists)|
|Job Outlook (2016-2026)||12% (for surgical technologists)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Courses in General Medical Studies
Much of a surgical technician degree program consists of general medical studies, teaching you about the human body, disease pathology, medical ethics and the like. Courses falling into this category include these:
- Anatomy and physiology gives you a clearer understanding of how the human body works.
- Medical terminology teaches you both the language used in surgery and the theory behind it (for instance, the meanings of medical prefixes and suffixes).
- Microbiology covers the mechanisms of disease, from bacteria to viruses, as well as how you can help prevent infection.
- Pharmacology will teach you about the different types of drugs used in surgery and emergency care, including dosage calculation.
Operating Room Studies Courses
The remainder of an associate's degree program in surgical technology will be practical instruction on how to act within the operating room itself. The following courses may be included:
- Safe patient care instructs you about the basic role of a surgical technician in the OR before, during and after surgery.
- Surgical procedures is a course, or course series, designed to teach you all about the surgery itself, from preparation to recovery. These studies could also address surgical instruments and equipment.
- Operating room technique is another course or course series, this time covering patient care, the prevention of contamination and the procedures used to keep the surgery safe and effective.
- Clinical internships provide students with the opportunity to apply methods and techniques they have studied throughout the curriculum in actual operating room settings. Under direct supervision, students could assist in all types of surgeries.