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Emergency Medical Technician Training in California

The state of California has roughly 40 schools that offer emergency medical technician (EMT) training programs. Get some information about the degrees and certificates, and see some quick facts for two of these schools to make an informed education decision.

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California Schools Offering Emergency Medical Technician Programs

Emergency medical training programs in California include both EMT certificates and paramedic associate's degree programs. These programs are typically offered by community colleges and are available at many schools throughout the state. After completing an EMT program, students are prepared to pursue necessary licensure or certification in this field. Two California colleges and their EMT programs are detailed below.

  • City College of San Francisco offers basic and advanced EMT studies resulting in certificates and 2-year degrees. The college is located about eight miles south of downtown San Francisco.
  • Moreno Valley College, based about 70 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, CA, provides EMT and paramedic studies at the certificate and associate's degree levels.

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Comparison of Schools

Whether you are seeking basic EMT or advanced paramedic studies, you might explore all factors of a school before choosing a program. In the table below you will find statistics and facts regarding each school's population, retention and graduation rates, tuition, financial aid availability and more.

City College of San Francisco Moreno Valley College
School Type 2-year, public 2-year, public
Total Enrollment (2014) 23,610* 8,731*
Campus Setting Large city Large suburb
Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2015-2016) $1,598 (in-state)*
$7,554 (out-of-state)*
$1,416 (in-state)*
$7,356 (out-of-state)*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2013-2014) 55%* 86%*
Acceptance Rate N/A (open admissions policy)* N/A (open admissions policy)*
Retention Rate (2013-2014) 70% for full-time students*, 38% for part-time students* 67% for full-time students*, 47% for part-time students*
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (for students who began in Fall 2011) 27% (15% transfer-out rate)* 23% (11% transfer-out rate)*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

City College of San Francisco

The City College of San Francisco offers emergency medical technician and paramedic certificate programs, as well as an associate's degree in paramedic studies. The programs are accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions (CoAEMSP) and prepare students for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) examinations.

Certificate of Accomplishment in Emergency Medical Technician

Students in this 4.5-month certificate program receive lecture and lab instruction in patient assessment, trauma management and basic life support. Students must also complete ten hours of field work. In total, the program consists of 13 credit-hours. Graduates are eligible to sit for the NREMT Emergency Medical Technician Basic Exam. Completion of the program and successful passing of the exam can lead to licensure by the California Emergency Medical Services Agency.

The college also offers a course for licensed emergency medical technicians needing continuing education training for recertification. This continuing education course is offered once each semester.

Certificate of Achievement in Paramedic

This program consists of 53 credits of advanced pre-hospital medical training, including cardiac arrest management, drugs and IV insertion, and nervous system disorders. Students must also complete an emergency medical services internship. Successful completion of the emergency medical technician certificate program and at least three months of experience in the field as an EMT is required for admission to the paramedic program. Graduates of the paramedic certificate program are eligible to sit for the NREMT Paramedic Exam and may apply for California state licensure as a paramedic.

Associate in Science in Paramedic Studies

Students in the paramedic training program can simultaneously fulfill the college's general education requirements and earn a paramedic associate's degree. To earn the Associate in Science degree, students must complete 60 total hours of study, including the credits earned from the paramedic certificate program. General education courses include the humanities, sciences and written composition.

Moreno Valley College

Moreno Valley College offers a certificate in emergency medical technician training, a certificate in paramedic studies and a paramedic associate's degree. All three programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs.

Certificate of Accomplishment in Emergency Medical Technician

Students in this full-time, year-long program receive training in patient assessment, emergency pharmacology, pre-hospital life support and pediatric life support. The last semester of the program consists of a field internship. The certificate of accomplishment awarded upon completion of the program is locally recognized; graduates are eligible to apply for licensure to work as emergency medical technicians with the State of California EMS Authority.

Certificate of Accomplishment, Emergency Medical Services: Paramedic

This 1-year certificate program is offered once a year and can only be attended full-time. Applicants to the program must possess valid EMT licensure and must have completed at least one year consisting of 2,000 hours of work experience. The paramedic certificate program includes a preparation class that takes place a month prior to the beginning of the first semester and approximately 50 hours of coursework during the subsequent semesters, which includes a 10-credit internship. Graduates of the program are awarded a locally recognized certificate of accomplishment and are eligible to apply for licensure with the State of California EMS Authority.

Associate in Science Degree in Paramedic

A student in the paramedic certificate program can obtain an associate's degree by completing both the paramedic certificate requirements and the college's general education requirements. The college requires 60 credit units of work in the sciences, humanities and languages for an associate's degree. In total, this degree consists of two years of study. The degree may be transferable to a 4-year university.

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