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Nov 30 2017

Paramedic Schools in Arizona with Program Options

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Essential Information

A wide range of schools in Arizona offer paramedic training programs. Students may choose to earn a certificate, associate’s degree or complete an EMT-to-Paramedic training course. Certificate programs and the training course require applicants to already be certified as emergency medical technicians (EMTs) at the basic level or higher. Degree programs vary: some include basic EMT training in addition to classes in paramedicine. All paramedic programs include clinical or practicum requirements.

Arizona Western College

Yuma -based Arizona Western College offers students the opportunity to train to become paramedics at its EMT – Paramedic Academy. Successful completion of the 45-credit hour program results in an occupational certificate. Applicants to the program must be over the age of 18, have a high school diploma or GED, and be CPR certified. A grade of 80% of better must be earned in each of the three paramedic courses for students to qualify for certification examination at program end by the NREMT.

Central Arizona College

Currently certified EMTs may be interested in Central Arizona College’s National Registry EMT to Paramedic course, located at the school’s Superstition Mountain Campus in Apache Junction. The almost year-long course encompasses almost 1,250 hours of education. Applicants must have a year of working experience as an EMT, pass a background check, and complete an evaluative interview process including a written and practical exam as well as an oral interview. Once the paramedic coursework has been completed, students may complete general education coursework requirements to earn an associate’s degree. Graduates of the program are eligible to take the NREMT paramedic certification test at their own expense.

Chandler/Gilbert Community College

Students attending Chandler/Gilbert Community College in Chandler may choose to earn an Associate in Applied Science degree in Emergency Response and Operations. The degree has five tracks available including paramedicine (Track II). Students applying to the paramedicine track of the degree program must be certified as an EMT – B or have successfully completed the coursework necessary to be eligible for certification. The 60-credit hour degree program requires that all courses must be passed with a grade ‘C’ or better. Additional paramedic training courses are occasionally offered by the college on an as needed basis in cooperation with organizations within the EMS field; some of these courses are open to students outside the groups. Graduates of the program are eligible to take the required certification exams.

Glendale Community College

Located in the city by the same name, Glendale Community College offers the choice of a certificate and a degree program for currently certified EMTs interested in becoming paramedics. The certificate of completion in paramedicine is a 43.5-45.5 credit hour program. A paramedic education program leading to an Associate in Applied Science in Emergency Response and Operations degree program will be offered to 24 students beginning in Summer 2013. The program requires four semesters (one summer, two fall, one spring) to earn more than 50 credit hours of core classes. In addition to didactic instruction and lab skills practice, students must complete a minimum of 96 clinical hours and 432 vehicular experience hours. Successful completion of either program render a student eligible to sit for the NREMT paramedic certification exam.

Mesa Community College

Nestled in its namesake city, Mesa Community College (MCC) offers both a paramedic certificate of completion program and an Associate in Applied Science, Emergency Response and Operations (Paramedicine) degree program. Applicants to both programs must be CPR and EMT – B certified or have completed the coursework required to take the basic EMT certification exam. The certificate program requires the completion of a minimum of 43.5 credit hours and the degree program is a 60-credit hour program. In addition to classroom-based instruction, both programs include practicum requirements. Almost all (95%) of MCC students pass the NREMT certification exam the first time they take it and the college has a 100% cumulative examination pass rate.

Paradise Valley Community College

The paramedic training programs at Phoenix -based Paradise Valley Community College are designed to meet the needs of paramedics serving within the fire science division of the EMS field. The paramedic certificate of completion program is available in two formats: a traditional format and an online hybrid format. Within the traditional format, classes are held three days a week, January through November, and the first seven months of the program are dedicated to didactic instruction. Beginning in July, students are assigned a personal schedule to serve hours in the field, gaining experience in both clinical and vehicular settings. The hybrid program runs from August to June, with students attending online sessions two days a week, and meeting in person one day a week (Saturdays).

Phoenix College

Phoenix College, located in its namesake city, offers a certificate and a degree program to students studying to be paramedics. By completing a minimum of 43.5 credit hours of coursework, paramedic students can earn a certificate of completion in paramedicine. An Associate in Applied Science in Advanced Emergency Medical Technology (Paramedic) degree program is earned following the completion of 60.5 credit hours of classes. Prerequisites for both programs include the basic EMT certification course. Students must earn a grade ‘C’ or better in all program courses. Both programs include practicum requirements in addition to didactic instruction. The college catalog does not specify that program completion will earn certification eligibility.

Pima Community College

Pima Community College, based out of Tucson. offers an Associate of Applied Science in Paramedic degree. Students must earn 76-78 credit hours to earn the A.A.S. and classes take place two days per week. Applicant requirements include an ALS entrance exam, a practical skills evaluation, an oral interview, and a drug screening. Prerequisites include currently certification as an EMT – B, a minimum age requirement of 18 years, and CPR basic life support certification. Total program costs are estimated to be $5,669.30. In addition to didactic instruction and distributive education (research paper and medical terminology) students must complete at least 504 hours in clinical and vehicular rotations to earn their awards and eligibility to take the NREMT certification exam.

paramedic level; students are responsible for scheduling and paying for the exam following program completion.

Yavapai College

Located in Prescott. Yavapai College offers both a paramedicine certificate program and an Associate of Applied Science in Paramedicine program. The certificate program requires the completion of 43 credit hours and the A.A.S. is a 62-credit hour program. The core coursework for both programs is identical; students earning an A.A.S. must complete general education classes in addition to paramedicine coursework. Both programs have an admission process additional to that required for the college; students must speak with an academic advisor for specific requirements.

Career Requirements

To gain certification to serve as a paramedic in Arizona, a person must provide to the Arizona Department of Health Services’ Bureau of Emergency Medical Services Trauma System a copy of his registration with the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) showing certification at the paramedic level. Additional requirements by the state include a criminal history application and proof of ability to legally work in the US (such as a passport or birth certificate).

The following is a comparison table with schools’ settings, tuition costs, and award titles.

School Comparison: At a Glance

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