Respiratory Care

The Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in Respiratory Care degree provides education in patient services to assess, provide treatment, perform diagnostic procedures, and teach patients that have cardiovascular and pulmonary problems. Curriculum includes experiences in the hospital critical care, trauma, emergency departments, and operating rooms, patient's home, physicians' offices, and out-patient clinics in preparation for employment. The program focuses on principles for respiratory therapists to utilize advanced technology in life support systems, administer medications, and perform many techniques to assist patients in the healing process.

Successful completion of the AAS degree in Respiratory Care enables the program graduates to take the National Board of Respiratory Care (NBRC) Therapist Multiple-Choice (TMC) Examination and Clinical Simulation Examination (CSE). Passing both of these exams is required to earn the RRT credential and make the graduate eligible to obtain their license to practice professionally.

The AAS degree may be transferred to a university or college applied science program or other degree program in health science or a related field.


Details iconImportant information you’ll need when applying for admission:
Field of Interest: 
Health Sciences
Associate Degree
Academic Plan Code: 
Total credits required: 
Effective term: 
Fall 2021
Admission criteria

1. Formal admission to the program is required.
2. Background check requirements: Admission to an Allied Health program requires that students be in compliance with the Maricopa County Community College District Background Check Standards. Upon conditional program enrollment, the student must comply with all requirements of the MCCCD Background Check Policy.
3. Clinical health and safety requirements must be met. Upon conditional program enrollment, the student must comply with all requirements of the MCCCD Clinical Health and Safety Policy.
4. Inability to comply with background check requirements and/or clinical health and safety requirements at the start of classes or during the program will result in cancellation of enrollment.

Academic Plan: 
Respiratory Care (DEG)

Students must earn a grade of C or better for all courses required within the program.

Students must complete the following general education courses or be in the last semester of course work prior to formal application to the program: BIO160 or (BIO201 and BIO202); CHM130; CHM130LL; CRE101 or equivalent; ENG101 or ENG107; HCC/RES109 or CPR certification; MAT12+ or higher-level algebra course.

Required courses
Course #Course TitleCredits
HCC/RES109CPR for Health Care Provider (0.5) OR
American Heart Association Health Care Provider CPR certification (0) 0-0.5
RES118Vascular Access for Clinical Practice1
RES130Respiratory Care Fundamentals I4.5
RES131Infection Control for Respiratory Care1
RES133Respiratory Care Clinical Seminar2
RES134Respiratory Care Pharmacology I2
RES136Applied Biophysics for Respiratory Care3
RES140Respiratory Care Fundamentals II5
RES142Respiratory Care Clinical I4
RES144Introduction to Mechanical Ventilation1
RES220Respiratory Care Fundamentals III4.5
RES224Pathophysiology for Respiratory Care2
RES226Respiratory Care Clinical II4
RES230Respiratory Care Fundamentals IV4.5
RES232Respiratory Care Clinical III4
RES235Respiratory Care Pharmacology II2
RES240Respiratory Physiology3
RES270Neonatal and Pediatric Respiratory Care2
RES280Respiratory Care Review2
RES291Respiratory Care Advanced Life Support1
RES292Respiratory Care Pediatric Advanced Life Support1
Restricted Electives
Course #Course TitleCredits
Optional: Students seeking university transfer may select zero (0) to eight (8) credits from the courses below:
HES100Healthful Living3
MAT150College Algebra/Functions5
General education requirements
General Education RequirementCredits: 26-35
General Education CoreCredits: 12-17
First-Year CompositionCredits: 6
ENG101First-Year Composition (3) OR
ENG107First-Year Composition for ESL (3) AND
ENG102First-Year Composition (3) OR
ENG108First-Year Composition for ESL (3)
Oral CommunicationCredits: 3
Any approved general education course from the Oral Communication area except COM225 Public Speaking.3
Critical ReadingCredits: 0-3
CRE101College Critical Reading and Critical Thinking
or equivalent as indicated by assessment (0-3)
MathematicsCredits: 3-5
MAT120Intermediate Algebra (5) OR
MAT121Intermediate Algebra (4) OR
MAT122Intermediate Algebra (3) OR
Equivalent course OR Satisfactory completion of higher-level algebra course3-5
Students considering university transfer should take:
MAT150College Algebra/Functions5
General Education DistributionCredits: 14-18
Humanities and Fine ArtsCredits: 3
Any approved general education course in the Humanities, Arts and Design area.3
Recommend a 3-credit Humanities, Arts and Design [HU] general studies designation meeting the Awareness Area [C], [G], and/or [H]. See the AGEC Matrix for course designations.
Social and Behavioral SciencesCredits: 3
PSY101Introduction to Psychology3
In addition to PSY101, students considering university transfer should take HES100 in the Restricted Electives area.
Natural SciencesCredits: 8-12
BIO160Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology (4) OR
BIO201Human Anatomy and Physiology I (4) AND
BIO202Human Anatomy and Physiology II (4)4-8
CHM130Fundamental Chemistry3
CHM130LLFundamental Chemistry Laboratory1
  • Prepare graduates with demonstrated competence in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains of respiratory care practice as performed by registered respiratory therapists (RRTs). (RES130, RES140, RES220, RES230, RES280, BIO160, BIO201, BIO202, CHM130, CHM130LL, HCC/RES109, PSY101, (COM), (CRE), [FYC], MAT12+)
  • Demonstrate assessment and evaluation of the patient in keeping with the application of appropriate care that aligns with established hospital regulations and standards. (RES142, RES226, RES232, RES240, CHM130, CHM130LL)
  • Utilize technology in the management of patients. (RES118, RES133, RES142, RES144, RES220, RES226, RES230, RES232, MAT12+)
  • Demonstrate the ethical and professional standards expected of respiratory care professionals. (RES118, RES130, RES131, RES133, RES134, RES136, RES140, RES142, RES144, RES220, RES224, RES226, RES230, RES232, RES235, RES240, RES270, RES280, RES291, RES292, [HU])
  • Communicate information regarding clinical status to appropriate members of the health care team. (RES130, RES140, RES142, RES220, RES226, RES230, RES232, RES240, (COM), [FYC])

At Maricopa, we strive to provide you with accurate and current information about our degree and certificate offerings. Due to the dynamic nature of the curriculum process, course and program information is subject to change. As a result, the course list associated with this degree or certificate on this site does not represent a contract, nor does it guarantee course availability. If you are interested in pursuing this degree or certificate, we encourage you to meet with an advisor to discuss the requirements at your college for the appropriate catalog year.