Associate's Degree in Paramedicine: Program Overview

Oct 13, 2019

There are three levels of training available for aspiring EMTs: EMT-Basic, EMT-Intermediate, and EMT-Paramedic. An EMT-Paramedic program is designed to provide advanced training in emergency medical care leading to certification eligibility.

Essential Information

EMT-Paramedic training is most typically offered in programs such as Associate of Applied Science in Paramedic Medicine. Accredited associate's degree programs include a clinical or field experience that provides hands-on training in emergency medical techniques. Aspiring paramedics learn to make emergency patient assessments, provide cardiac life support, and offer medical disaster management services. Admissions may require students to hold an EMT-Basic or Intermediate certification. These programs can take between two to four years to complete.

Associate's Degree in Paramedicine Overview

Associate's degree programs in paramedic medicine are often offered in 2-year community colleges and 4-year universities, and have varying educational prerequisites. Some programs that combine EMT-Basic, EMT-Intermediate, and EMT-Paramedic training require only a high school diploma. Others require proof of certification. Most courses in an associate's degree program in paramedic medicine are practical, providing students with technical training in lifesaving techniques and pre-hospital patient care. Possible courses include:

  • Paramedic fundamentals, paramedic technology, paramedic field internship
  • Cardiac life support
  • Medication administration
  • Airway management and ventilation
  • Patient assessment, advanced emergency care
  • Human anatomy and physiology, electrophysiology

Employment Options and Salary Info

Paramedics and emergency medical technicians held more than 262,100 in May 2018 and are expected to see a 7% increase in employment from 2018-2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, The mean annual salary was $37,760 as of May 2018, states the BLS. Most paramedics are employed by ambulatory health service agencies, government agencies or general and surgical hospitals. Those states with the highest wages for paramedics and EMTs are Alaska, Washington and the District of Columbia.

Certification Options

All 50 states require paramedics to obtain licensure before working in the field. Requirements vary by state, but most require students to complete a state-recognized educational program such as an associate's degree in paramedic medicine. They also require clinical training.

Programs such as Associate of Applied Science in Paramedic Medicine prepare graduates to work as paramedics through courses and topics such as cardiac life support and medication administration, as well as hands-on internship opportunities.

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