In Tennessee, although there are 99 schools that are public and private not-for-profit, only twelve of them have paramedic programs and courses, nine of which are described in this article. 'Paramedic' is the highest level of training for emergency medical technicians (EMTs); as such, individuals must complete basic and intermediate training before pursuing a career as a paramedic. Paramedicine educational programs include training, certificate, and associate's degree programs, all of which include practicum or clinical requirements prior to graduation.
Chattanooga State Community College
A paramedic training program leading to an Emergency Medical - Paramedic Technical Certificate can be found at this community college in Chattanooga. Students spend 700 clock hours of this program in classrooms, with another 600 to 800 clock hours spent acquiring clinical experience. It takes roughly 3 semesters to finish this 44-credit-hour program. Additionally, there are nighttime and daytime course options available.
Columbia State Community College
Located in Columbia, this community college has a paramedic program leading to a Paramedic Technical Certificate that takes a year to complete. It offers didactic, clinical and practical training and instruction. In the summer semester of the program, students spend 240 hours in preceptor rides, while another 240 hours are spent in clinical environments during the remainder of the program. As part of the clinical rotations, students can get experience with intensive care units, emergency rooms, pediatrics, OB/GYN and cardiac units.
Dyersburg State Community College
Students at this school in Dyersburg can pursue an Paramedic Concentration Associate of Applied Science. This 60-credit-hour program consists of general education courses, 3 paramedic classes, a field internship and 2 clinical rotations. At the start of the program, students are required to complete an orientation designed to help them succeed in their coursework.
Jackson State Community College
This community college in Jackson is home to a paramedic technical certificate program. Field, clinical and classroom instruction make up the bulk of this 15-month program. Building on basic EMT skills, students can learn about ECG interpretation and monitoring, patient assessment, management of trauma and medical emergencies, defibrillation and endotracheal intubation.
Northeast State Community College
Paramedic certificates and associate's degrees are obtainable in Blountville at Northeast State Community College. The certificate program is roughly 38 credit hours long, while the associate's degree program requires students to complete 67 credit hours of courses. The core of the paramedic studies program at this school consists of 2 courses and 3 clinical practicums. The paramedic courses are 16-17 credits each. Other class topics related to the paramedic major include statistics and probability, physiology, anatomy and medical terminology.
Roane State Community College
Roane State Community College in Harriman has paramedic certificate program. The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs accredits the paramedic program at this school. The certificate program is composed of 42 credit hours.
Southwest Tennessee Community College
Certificate and associate's degree options are available for paramedic majors at Southwest Tennessee Community College in Memphis. Malpractice insurance must be obtained by paramedic students prior to enrollment. The 40-credit-hour certificate program consists of several paramedic courses as well as experiences with clinical rotations and ambulances. These same courses have to be taken in the associate's degree program along with coursework in humanities, social sciences, English and natural sciences.
Volunteer State Community College
Students can enroll in a technical certificate program for EMTs at Volunteer State Community College, located in the city of Gallatin. General enrollment is not available for this program, so students have to complete a special admission process and be selected for a personal interview. Prior to entering into the program, students must take classes that cover medical terminology, drugs and solutions. The paramedic coursework includes pharmacology, cardiac care, trauma emergencies and special populations.
Walters State Community College
Walters State Community College is in Morristown, and the school offers certificates and associate's degrees in paramedic technology. Fluid therapy, cardiovascular systems, dysrhythmia recognition and pharmacology are just a few of the topics covered in this school's paramedic curriculum. There are also courses on shock trauma, patient assessment, medical emergencies, obstetrics and behavioral stress. Trauma care, cardiac care and pediatric care are advanced topics also offered as part of this program.
After meeting the qualifications to become a licensed emergency medical technician IV, students have to complete a paramedic educational program that has been approved by Tennessee's Emergency Medical Services Board. From there, students must pass Board-approved written and practical licensing examinations and pass a criminal background check in order to become a licensed paramedic in the state of Tennessee. All of the schools profiled in this article are approved by the state Emergency Medical Services Board to offer paramedic training.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Paramedic Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)|
|Chattanooga State Community College||2-year, public; midsize city||Emergency Medical - Paramedic Technical Certificate|| $3,973 (in-state),
|Columbia State Community College||2-year, public; distant town||Paramedic Technical Certificate|| $3,919 (in-state),
|Dyersburg State Community College||2-year, public; distant town||Paramedic Concentration Associate of Applied Science|| $3,947 (in-state),
|Jackson State Community College||2-year, public; small city||EMT-Paramedic Technical Certificate of Credit|| $3,933 (in-state),
|Northeast State Community College||2-year, public; fringe rural|| Paramedic Certificate,
Paramedic Associate of Applied Science
| $3,936 (in-state),
|Roane State Community College||2-year, public; distant town||Paramedic Certificate|| $3,906 (in-state),
|Southwest Tennessee Community College||2-year, public; large city|| Paramedic Technical Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Emergency Medical Science - Paramedic
| $3,963 (in-state),
|Volunteer State Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Emergency Medical Technician Technical Certificate|| $3,925 (in-state),
|Walters State Community College||2-year, public; small city|| Public Safety - EMT - Paramedic Technical Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science - EMS - Paramedic
| $3,936 (in-state),
Source: *NCES College Navigator.