Schools for Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialists

A certification exam is offered by Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) for individuals who wish to become registered cardiovascular invasive specialists (RCIS). Students may qualify to become registered cardiovascular invasive specialists through CCI by completing a number of programs, including health science, engineering or nursing, with a focus in an area such as cardiovascular technology, invasive cardiology or vascular technology.

How to Select a Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist School

Cardiovascular invasive specialists assist doctors with invasive heart procedures and tests. Individuals aspiring to become registered cardiovascular invasive specialists can find education programs at community colleges, technical schools, teaching hospitals and 4-year universities. Most employers prefer or require candidates to complete certification. Qualifications for the examination are available at the official CCI website.

Further considerations for students in this field:

  • Associate's and bachelor's degree programs can both qualify graduates to enter directly into the field, but bachelor's degree programs typically offer more extensive clinical experiences and a broader range of coursework.
  • Associate's and bachelor's degree programs are more widely available in an invasive cardiovascular specialty and may be preferable to programs in general cardiovascular technology.
  • Certificate programs are commonly offered as continuing education options and could be preferable to students with work experience or who hold an associate's or bachelor's degree and are in need of specialization.
  • Experience or certification in additional aspects of the field could be professionally beneficial; there are multiple opportunities for specialization through courses in fetal, pediatric and adult echocardiography or vascular technology
  • Distance education options through online courses and lectures may be available at some schools, particularly in programs designed as continuing education experiences for employed students, such as certificate and bachelor's degree programs; however, students should keep in mind that some courses, as well as hands-on clinical experiences, typically require physical attendance.

Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program Overviews

Certificate in Cardiovascular Technology

Certificate programs in cardiovascular technology rarely offer an invasive specialization but can still qualify students for RCIS certification. These programs may take two or more years to complete, including coursework and clinical experiences. Courses often include:

  • Cardiovascular and vascular sonography
  • Analysis of diseases and disorders
  • Medical devices
  • Pathophysiology
  • Instrumentation

Associate's Degree in Invasive Cardiovascular Technology

Associate's degree programs in invasive cardiovascular technology include coursework and clinical experiences. Because programs require general education courses and basic science courses such as anatomy, physiology and medical terminology, students may transfer easily from associate's degree programs to bachelor's degree programs. Associate's program courses include:

  • Catheterization
  • Electrophysiology
  • Cardiac pacing
  • Angiography
  • Heart disease

Bachelor's Degree in Invasive Cardiovascular Technology

Bachelor's degree programs can be completed in four years. They include general education courses and clinical experiences. They also commonly require internships. A senior project may also be mandatory for completion. Courses at this level are commonly broader in range, including topics such as:

  • Echocardiography
  • Non-invasive and invasive cardiovascular techniques
  • Vascular technology
  • Principles of medical imaging

10 Schools With Invasive Cardiovascular Technology Programs

College/UniversityInstitution Type
Bunker Hill Community College2-year, Public
City College of San Francisco2-year, Public
City Colleges of Chicago - Harry S. Truman College2-year, Public
El Centro College2-year, Public
Florida SouthWestern State College4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Florida State College at Jacksonville4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Grossmont College2-year, Public
Harrisburg Area Community College - Harrisburg2-year, Public
Santa Fe College4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Tulsa Community College2-year, Public

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