The Respiratory Care program is part of BGSU Firelands.

Two students in the Respiratory Care program.
  • Available at Firelands Campus
  • Available at Firelands Campus

Associate of Applied Science in

Respiratory Care

The Associate of Applied Science in Respiratory Care program is designed to prepare students for practice in respiratory care. Theory, laboratory and clinical experiences provide students with the skills to work as a respiratory therapist in a wide variety of clinical settings evaluating, treating and managing patients of all ages with respiratory illnesses and other cardiopulmonary disorders. Respiratory therapists provide patient care, which includes clinical decision-making and patient education.

  • Setting: Full-time, hybrid program with in-person, online, and clinical courses
  • Prerequisites required: 2.5 GPA or higher, completed CHEM 1090/1100, BIOL 3140/3150, BIOL 3310, BIOL 3320 and math (MATH 1150 stats or MATH 1220 algebra)
  • Adjectives for a successful student: Motivated, flexible, enthusiastic

Prepare to apply

Students must apply by April 1 for admission consideration. Late applications may be considered if there is an open slot.

  1. Apply here for admission to the college.
  2. Complete and submit the Respiratory Care Program admission application and return it to program director Carol Puder by email:
  3. Choose to attend classes at our base program at BGSU Firelands, or at our satellite program offered through the University Partnership at Lorain County Community College.  All admitted cohorts will start in the fall semester.

Quality hybrid classroom experiences

Students take a combination of in-person, online, and hybrid classes. Each hybrid course meets one hour per week in-person, with the remaining instruction completed online. All in-person components for classes are scheduled for the same day each week, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with an hour lunch break. The remaining instruction is delivered asynchronously online.    

Clinical rotations start in the spring semester of the second year, and they continue for three consecutive semesters (spring, summer, and fall). Generally, students attend clinicals two days per week at various locations for either an eight- or 12-hour shift.  Students will rotate throughout various clinical sites throughout the year. Potential clinical sites range from Cleveland to Toledo. Your assigned locations will depend on your current home location. 

Students can obtain a limited permit to practice respiratory care from the State Medical Board. This allows students to work part-time as a student respiratory therapist while completing the program.

Graduates have employment opportunities in hospitals, clinics, long term care, home care, sleep lab, and specialty areas including neonatal/pediatric critical care, cardiac/pulmonary rehabilitation, pulmonary function testing and disease management.

Students can expect to:

  • Learn to operate life support ventilators 
  • Perform learned skills on real hospital patients 
  • Complete clinical rotations for three consecutive semesters 
  • Gain a skillset to help save lives in emergency rooms and critical care areas  
  • Become hirable for virtually any hospital or health care facility with a respiratory department

Program Goal Statement:

To 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)

Learning Outcomes: Graduates from our program should be qualified to:

  • Identify, evaluate, apply, and integrate fundamental knowledge of respiratory care as well as advanced concepts in adult, pediatric, and neonatal patient care into the diagnostic assessment, management, and treatment of patients. 
  • Demonstrate competency in the clinical procedural skills associated with the role and scope of practice of a respiratory care professional. 
  • Exhibit the set of professional behaviors expected of a respiratory therapist.

Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care

The BGSU Firelands Respiratory Care Associate degree program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care. The BGSU Firelands program number is 200339 and the LCCC satellite program number is 300009. Program student/graduate outcomes can be found at CoARC accredits respiratory therapy education programs in the United States. To achieve this end, it utilizes an ‘outcomes based’ process. Programmatic outcomes are performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the educational goals of the program are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented. Programmatic outcomes data reported on the CoARC website include: 3-year time period being reported; RRT credentialing success; Achievement of the high cut score on the TMC Exam; Retention; Job placement; Overall Graduate Satisfaction; Overall Employer Satisfaction; Total number of program enrollees; Total number of program graduates; Maximum Annual Enrollment.

BGSU Firelands Nursing Skills Lab

Carol Puder

Director, respiratory care

Message from the director: The respiratory care program at BGSU Firelands is well respected across Northern Ohio and health care facilities actively recruit our students for employment. Respiratory care is a specialized profession treating patients with cardiopulmonary diseases across all areas of the hospital including the emergency room and critical care areas. Respiratory therapists can also specialize in many areas including neonatal/pediatrics, long-term care, sleep lab, pulmonary rehab, and pulmonary function testing. Students complete clinical requirements at award-winning medical facilities throughout northern Ohio including Cleveland Clinic, MetroHealth, University Hospitals and Mercy Health among many others. Graduates are eligible to sit for the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) examinations to become a Registered Respiratory Therapist and are also able to pursue a graduate degree.

Updated: 05/29/2024 08:37AM