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Frequently Asked Questions About The Respiratory Care Program


Dear Applicant:


Respiratory Care practitioners work with patients who may have a variety of lung and/or heart disorders. Although most respiratory care practitioners work in hospitals, other employment opportunities are available. There are also excellent opportunities in home care and cardiopulmonary rehabilitation. Respiratory care personnel perform a variety of therapeutic, diagnostic and patient management duties. Students are also trained in the management of life support systems and the development of patient care plans for both short term and long term care. The profession continues to advance towards critical care modalities, patient case management and the role of physician extenders.

Individuals who wish to enter this field must enjoy working with people and also must be sensitive to the physical and psychosocial needs of the patient. The respiratory care practitioner must be able to follow instructions, develop critical thinking skills, and be a good team worker. In addition to a thorough understanding of human anatomy and physiology with emphasis on the cardiopulmonary system, a background in science and mathematics is essential to student success. The operation of highly technical and often computer assisted medical devices requires mechanical ability and a high degree of manual dexterity. Graduates of this program are eligible for credentialing by the National Board for Respiratory Care and for licensure in the state of Florida.

Any student considering ultimately advancing to the bachelor degree is strongly encouraged to take MAC 1105 and MCB 1010.
These choices will enable the graduate, along with their AA degree, immediate transferability to a BS in Cardiopulmonary Sciences.

Enclosed are an application and other information that describe this Associate of Science (AS) Degree program curriculum and objectives.  For additional information you may contact me at (386) 506-3759 or Melissa Brown, Academic Advisor at (386) 506-3052 or

Application deadline will now be the last Wednesday of May each year for the incoming Fall cohort.
Interviews and selections will be completed by end of June each year.





Melanie McDonough, MS, RRT

Assistant Chair/Program Director

Respiratory Care Program






1.   What is the employment outlook?


Employment opportunities in the greater Daytona Beach area are good.  For those who are willing to relocate, opportunities statewide are better and nationwide are best.


2.   What salary can I expect?


The range of salaries for entry-level graduates in the area currently is $16.00 to $17.00 per hour.  The starting salary may also vary with individual health care facilities and locations.


3.   What are the typical working hours for this profession?


Those employed in a hospital setting may expect a variety of shifts and hours.  Currently, most hospitals in the area work on a 12-hour shift basis, usually 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM or 7:00 PM to 7:00 AM.  For those employed in clinics, rehabilitation units, or home care settings, regular day hours are 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM or 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM.


4.   What are the program hours?


The first year: Fall semester: is classroom based and is comprised of the major foundation courses and runs from 9:00 AM to approximately 3:00 PM Monday through Thursday. For the Spring Semester: classes are taught Monday through Thursday from 9:00 AM to approximately 3:00 PM. For the Summer Semester: classes are taught on Monday or Wednesday, for 6 week summer semester from 8:00 to approximately 4:00 and Clinical rotation begins 2 days per week for 8 hour shifts, for 10 week semester.

The second year of the program: Fall and Spring semesters include classes on Monday and Wednesday for 3 hours and clinical rotations 2 days a week for 8 hour shifts.

**Days and Times are subject to change

General education courses must be taken during hours that do not conflict with the normal sequence of the Respiratory Care program.


5.   How much does the program cost?  What about books, lab fees?


At $104.48 per semester hour ($406.80 for out-of-state fees) the tuition for this 76 hour program is $7,940.00 (30,916.00 for out-of-state fees). (Tuition may increase subject to Florida legislative action) Approximately $800.00 additional is required for books, uniforms and supplies such as a stethoscope.


6.   Must I pass a board exam upon completion of this program?


Yes!  You are required to take and pass the national entry-level examination upon graduation from the program to be eligible for licensure.  You also must within 3 years take the national Registry Examination subsequent to passing the entry-level examination.  All examinations are computer-based.  Procedures for application and taking the examinations will be explained during the program.


7.   Is a state license required to work in this occupation?


Yes!  Chapter 468 of the Florida State Statutes requires that all respiratory care practitioners in the state of Florida possess a current occupational license.  The procedure for an application and licensure will also be discussed during the course of the program.  The issuance of a license is dependent upon passing the different levels of board examinations.  A background criminal check is conducted prior to a license being granted.


8.   What courses are required?


Currently the pre-requisites are BSC1085 and BSC1085L (Human Anatomy & Physiology I and Lab), ENC1101 (Introduction to Composition), and MAC1105 (College Algebra).  It is suggested that the general education requirements listed on the program guide be taken prior to entry into the program. 


9.   Is clinical or externship training required in this program?


Yes!  Approximately 600 hours of clinical training are included in the two-year program.  During this time, students work with patients (adult, pediatric and newborn) in a variety of health care settings.


10.  If I have previous college courses, will they count towards graduation from this



Transcripts from previous colleges must be submitted to the Admissions Department at, DSC, where the Record’s Department will determine the courses/credits, which are transferable towards the Associate of Science degree.  You may also be asked for catalog or course descriptions from your prior college in some cases.


11.   FDLE (Florida Department of Law Enforcement) Level II Background Screening


            Once provisionally accepted to the program students will be required to complete a

             Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) Level II Background screening to

             include Fingerprinting and Drug Testing, with a cost of approximately $90.  Instructions

             will be provided once a Student is provisionally accepted into the program. Background check and drug screening will also be required again during the second year of the program for all students.


12.  When may I start the program?


Applications are accepted throughout the year for the program which begins in the Fall semester (August).  Program selection is based on the following criteria:


  • Minimum Cumulative 2.5 GPA or better
  • Completion of the prerequisite courses:

BSC1085 and BSC1085L (Human Anatomy & Physiology I and Lab)

ENC1101 (Introduction to Composition)

MAC1105 (College Algebra)

  • Attendance at a program information session (TBA)
  • Interview with Program Director and the Director of Clinical Education
  • Brief written statement (1 page) explaining your interest in Respiratory Care
  • At least 18 years of age by the second semester of the program


Applications are reviewed in June for the upcoming Fall program.


Anyone not meeting the above criteria will not be considered.  Please be advised that application submission does not guarantee program acceptance.


Tentative Two-Year Schedule of Respiratory Classes



Course Title

Sem. Hrs


Start Time

End Time

 Fall 1st year






RET1026 & L Basic Equipment 3 M 9:00 am 12:50 pm
RET1025 & L Principles 4 T 9:00 am 1:50 pm
RET1485 CP A&P 4 R 9:00 am 12:50 pm
Spring 1st year          
RET1265 & L Mechanical Vent 4 M 9:00 am 1:50 pm
RET 1295 Chest Medicine 3 T 9:00 am 11:50 am
RET1264 & L Adv. Equipment 3 W 9:00 am 12:50 pm
RET2350 CP Pharm 4 R 9:00 am 11:50 am
Summer 1st year          
RET1450 (6 weeks) Basic Mon 3 M 8:00 am 3:50 pm
RET1874 (10 weeks) Clinical I 4 Varies Varies Varies
Fall 2nd year          
RET2244 Life Support 3 M 9:00 am 11:50 am
RET2714 Neo/Peds 3 W 9:00 am 11:50 am
RET1875 Clinical II 4 Varies Varies Varies
Spring 2nd year          
RET2876 Clinical III 4 Varies Varies Varies
RET2934 Seminar 3 W 9:00 am 11:50 am

Class days and times are subject to change at the discretion of the program director




                                   Essay (submit with your application)

Please use this page or separate sheet to explain your interest in Respiratory Care:





Rev 8/17

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Last updated: 2017-08-23T17:14:09.153Z