Compare Respiratory Therapist Schools

There are many respiratory therapist schools available with the professional educators and resources you need to prepare for a career in respiratory therapy.

Currently most respiratory therapists finish their training with an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree. However, the path you choose to take will depend on which programs are available to you, and what your career goals are.

Follow the steps below to compare program information from respiratory therapist schools in your area to decide which school works best for you. It is best to gather information from two to three schools for the most informative comparison.

How to Compare Schools

Step 1. Browse for Programs Enrolling Near You

The list below contains campus-based and online respiratory therapist programs currently accepting students nationwide. Browse to see what programs are in your area. (If you don’t see anything near you, you may check back again later, try the zip search to the right, or expand your search at our school database.)

Step 2. Request Information from Schools

We recommend gathering information from 2-3 programs to gain a sense of your options. However, program availability may be limited depending on your region.

Step 3. Compare Programs Side by Side

Once you’ve requested information from a few schools, use our downloadable school comparison sheet (PDF) to compare details such as tuition, program length, accreditation, and any certifications or specializations covered by the training. Seeing your options on paper is often the best way to identify the best program. Good luck.

Respiratory Therapist Schools Enrolling Now

Platt College

Find out where the future can take you with an outstanding college education. At Platt College, you’ll find the career-specific programs and training for the careers you really want. Come explore a variety of career paths that fit your lifestyle in a positive learning environment that combines real-world experience with small, private college instruction. Classes are conveniently scheduled during morning or evening hours to work around outside employment commitments. For working adults, Platt’s curriculum offers a way to continue earning a living while studying for a new career.

  • Los Angeles
  • Ontario
  • Associate of Science in Respiratory Therapy

Find schools by state…

About Respiratory Therapy Training Programs

Most respiratory therapists complete at least a 2-year associate’s degree program. However, in order to land a higher-paying job or advance further, it’s important to have graduated from a bachelor’s or master’s degree program. You will have to decide which respiratory therapist degree best suits your needs. Most respiratory therapist schools offer several degree options.

Associate’s Degree Programs

These training programs last around two years and cover foundation courses as well as basic core courses. Associate’s degrees provide the minimum training needed to succeed in the job market. See associate’s degree programs…

Bachelor’s Degree Programs

These four-year programs provide a higher level of education for respiratory therapists who plan to advance further in the field or pursue positions with more responsibility. They include foundation and general education courses as well as a complete selection of core courses, including electives. See bachelor’s degree programs…

Respiratory therapist training programs are designed to teach the specific tasks associated with typical respiratory therapist job duties. This includes the background medical expertise needed to perform a standard diagnosis on patient’s respiratory health, teaching patients how to treat their condition, and more.

Some of the general medical and science courses taken by respiratory therapy school students might include:

  • Microbiology
  • Anatomy
  • Physics
  • Pharmacology
  • Chemistry
  • Human Anatomy
  • Mathematics

In addition, you may also take part in training courses specific to the respiratory therapist career like:

  • Medical record-keeping and reimbursement
  • Diagnostic procedures and tests
  • Clinical practice procedures
  • Cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation
  • Patient assessment
  • Medical equipment usage

Respiratory Therapy School Accreditation

A good indication of quality when it comes to respiratory therapist schools is whether or not they are accredited. For a school to maintain its accreditation status, it must demonstrate a certain level of academic excellence. By attending an accredited respiratory therapist school, you can be sure your education meets the minimum standards required to enter this demanding field. Respiratory therapy schools are accredited by one of two agencies: the Committees on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).

Besides ensuring the quality of your education, graduating from an accredited respiratory therapist school is essential to obtaining a respiratory therapist license. All states besides Alaska require a license to begin working as a  respiratory therapist, so enrolling in an accredited school is important.

Before enrolling in one of these respiratory therapy schools, you can check to see whether or not it is accredited by one of the above agencies by checking the agency’s website.

After Graduating From a Respiratory Therapist School

Once you earn your degree from one of the respiratory therapy schools on your list and pass your licensing exam, you will be ready to find a job. Unless you have a master’s degree, you will most likely begin at an entry-level position at a hospital or other medical facility.

However, there are several ways you can increase your chances of finding a better position and obtaining a higher salary. You may continue your education at a respiratory therapist school, or even earn a certification. Respiratory therapy school representatives can provide more information about certification courses.

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