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Students interested in earning an education as an emergency medical technician (EMT) can choose from three schools offering certification preparation courses and associate's degrees. Although individuals can become EMTs by completing a course and passing a certification exam, an associate's degree program is typically completed to become a paramedic. All EMT and paramedic programs include hands-on and experience-based training in addition to classroom instruction and lab work. At least one bachelor's degree in emergency medical services is also available.
Flathead Valley Community College
Flathead Valley Community College is located in Kalispell and offers a 64-credit Associate of Applied Science in Paramedicine. The curriculum includes topics in anatomy and physiology, basic rescue skills and pharmacology. Students also complete ten credits of clinical work with ambulance services, firefighters and hospital departments. Graduates are eligible to test for NREMT certification (EMT-Paramedic).
Great Falls College - Montana State University
At Great Falls College MSU in Great Falls, aspiring EMTs can pursue an Associate of Applied Science program that has been approved by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (in partnership with the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions). Students have the opportunity to train in an ambulance and a simulated hospital.
The 65-credit associate's degree program, which has limited enrollment, prepares students for the NREMT certification exam. In addition to a 6-credit internship, requirements include courses in general education, cardiac and pediatric life support, pharmacology and trauma.
An EMT/Pre-Paramedic certificate of technical studies program is also offered. Completing this certificate will permit students to be able to apply to the associate's degree program.
Montana State University - Billings
Montana State University in Billings offers two programs in EMT training. Students with a National Registry Emergency Medical Technician card might be interested in the 72-credit Paramedic Associate of Applied Science. Coursework includes topics in anatomy and physiology, respiratory anatomy and pathology, cardiovascular disease and obstetrics. Students also learn to care for, transport and document ill and injured patients. In addition to classroom instruction and learning labs, degree requirements include an 8-credit internship and an NREMT exam lab.
Aspiring administrators also might be interested in the Bachelor of Applied Science with a concentration in emergency medical services management.
In Montana, emergency medical technicians must be licensed by the Board of Medical Examiners. Application requirements for candidates 18 years of age or older include a high school diploma or its equivalent, as well as a passing score on the NREMT (National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians) exam appropriate to their level of training.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||EMT Training Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)|
|Flathead Valley Community College||2-year, public; rural||Associate of Applied Science in Paramedicine|| $3,964 (in-district)
|Great Falls College - Montana State University||2-year, public; small city|| Associate of Applied Science in EMT Paramedic,
| $3,130 (in-state)
|Montana State University - Billings||4-year, public; midsize city||Associate of Applied Science in Paramedic,
Bachelor of Applied Science Degree with Thematic Concentration in Emergency Medical Services Management
| $5,808 (in-state)
Source: *NCES College Navigator