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Frequently Asked Questions About The Respiratory Care Program






1.       What is the employment outlook?

Employment opportunities in the Central Florida area are good.  For those who are willing to relocate, opportunities statewide are better and a nationwide are best.

2.       What salary can I expect?

The range of salaries for entry-level graduates in the area currently is $24.00 to $29.00 per hour.  The starting salary may also vary with individual health care facilities and locations.  Many institutions are willing to pay re-location fees and shift/weekend differential.

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 7:00AM to 7:00PM or 7:00PM to 7:00AM.  For those employed in clinics, rehabilitation units, physician offices, or home care settings, regular day hours are subject to employer.

4.       What are the program hours?

The first year – Fall and Spring semester is classroom based and is comprised of the major foundation courses and runs from 9:00AM to approximately 3:00PM Monday through Wednesday.  The Summer semester, classes are usually held on Monday or Wednesday 9:00AM to 3:00PM and clinical rotations begin 2 days each week for 8- or 12-hour shifts, depending on location assigned.

The second year – Fall and Spring semester includes classes on Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:00AM to approximately noon and clinical rotations 2 days each week for 8- or 12-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 Respiratory Care Program courses.

5.       How much does the program cost?

At $102.40 per semester hour ($398.66 for out-of-state fees), the tuition for this 76-hour program is $7,782.40 for in-state and $30,298.16 for out-of-state.  Tuition may increase subject to Florida legislative action.  Approximately $3,000.00 additional is required for books, uniforms and supplies, FDLE/FBI background screening, lab fees and professional memberships & certifications. 

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

Yes!  You are required to take and pass the Therapist Multiple Choice Exam upon graduation to obtain certification (CRT) and be eligible for license.  The exam is owned and administrated by the National Board for Respiratory Care.  Within 3 years, you must also take and pass the Clinical Simulation Exam to obtain national registry credential (RRT).  All examinations are timed, and computer based. 

Graduates of the Respiratory Care Program at Daytona State College are prepared and eligible to take the National Board for Respiratory Care Therapist Multiple Choice (TMC) and the Clinical Simulation Exam (CSE)

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

Yes!  Most states require license to work as a respiratory therapist.  Chapter 468 of the Florida Statutes requires that all respiratory care practitioners in the state of Florida possess and maintain a current license.  The issuance of a license is dependent upon passing the board exam and having a background criminal check done. The procedure for application is reviewed before graduation. 

The requirements for FL license can be reviewed here:    Florida Board of Respiratory Care

It is unknown whether DSC AS Respiratory Care degree meets eligibility requirements for licensure in states other than FL.  Graduates wishing to re-locate to another state are encouraged to consult with the state licensing agency in that state to determine state licensing requirements.  State licensing contacts are available at Respiratory Therapist State Licensure Contacts.  State license application varies by cost and some states require specific continuing education courses prior to application.  All states that require license accept the same national board exam results. 

Many states are moving towards accepting only the RRT credential as entry-level for obtaining license. 

Some states, along with the support of our national organization (AARC) are moving to a bachelor’s degree requirement to obtain license, but none have passed this legislation to date.

8.       Is the program accredited?

Yes!  Our program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care.  Accredited programs have met the minimum accreditation standards set by the professional organization and undergone a rigorous voluntary peer review process.  Information can be found at:  CoARC

9.       What courses are required?

Currently the pre-requisites before entering the program are:

BSC1085C (Human Anatomy & Physiology I with lab)

ENC1101 (College Composition)

MAC1105 (College Algebra)

Co-requisite courses can be taken at any time prior to or during the program course of study.

10.   What are the co-requisite courses?

BSC1086C (Human Anatomy & Physiology II with lab)

PSY1012 (General Psychology)

MCB1010C (Microbiology with lab)

PSC1121 (Physical Science)

Humanities Core


11.   Does this AS degree program articulate with a BS program in Respiratory Care?

Yes!  We have an articulation agreement with Valencia College BS in Cardiopulmonary Sciences degree.  With this AS degree, you are guaranteed acceptance. 

12.   Is Clinical training required in this program?

Yes!  Approximately 720 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 healthcare settings.

13.   If I have previous college courses, will they count towards graduation from this program?

Transcripts from a previous college must be submitted to and reviewed by the DSC Admissions department.  This department will determine if the courses are transferable for credit and can be applied towards this Associate of Science Degree.  You may be asked for catalog or course descriptions from your previous classes.  Respiratory specific courses will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis for consideration.  A student must be leaving their current respiratory program in good standing to be considered as a transfer student into our program. 

14.   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.  This is an annual requirement and will be repeated at least one time during the length of the program.  Instructions will be provided. 

15.   What immunizations and health records are required?

These are not due until just prior to clinical rotations. 

The immunizations required are:               MMR

                                                                                Hep B (you can decline, but it is highly suggested to do)

                                                                                Varicella or history of chicken pox


                                                                                TB testing (yearly)

                                                                                Flu shot (during Fall clinical rotations)

You may need to obtain childhood records of immunization or have titers done at your physicians’ office or the local health department.

16.   Are there any other required certifications?

Yes!  A current Basic Life Support (BLS) card is required prior to entering clinical activity.  This must be issued by American Heart Association or American Red Cross. 

17.   When may I start the program?

All cohorts are admitted starting courses in the Fall semester.

Applications are accepted year-round, but the deadline to apply for Fall semester is June 30. 


Requirements to apply:                  Completion of pre-requisite courses with a grade C or better

                                                           Minimum overall GPA of 2.5

                                                           Official transcript evaluation by DSC

                                                           Letter of interest in Respiratory Care


Be advised that application submission does not guarantee admission. 

It is your responsibility to check email often for communications about acceptance.



Rev 10/20

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Daytona State College 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, Florida 32114 (386) 506-3000

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Last updated: 2020-10-09T14:47:07.903Z