Polysomnographer Schools and Colleges: How to Choose

Dec 08, 2019

In order to become polysomnographic technologists, students should complete a certificate program or associate's degree program accredited by the Association of Polysomnographic Technologists (APT).

Polysomnographic technologists work with physicians to diagnose and treat patients with irregularities in sleep patterns. Polysomnography programs are available through 2- and 4-year colleges as certificate and associate's degree programs that prepare students for state and national licensing exams.

10 Polysomnography Schools

These schools offer training in polysomnography:

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition (2018-2019)*
Gannon University Erie, PA 4-year, private not-for-profit Certificate $32,136
Oregon Institute of Technology Klamath Falls, OR 4-year, public Certificate, Associate $10,118 in-state, $28,668 out-of-state
Loma Linda University Loma Linda, CA 4-year, private not-for-profit Certificate $34,012
Mercy College of Ohio Toledo, OH 4-year, primarily associate's private not-for-profit Certificate $15,240
Highline College Des Moines, WA 4-year, primarily associate's private not-for-profit Certificate, Associate $4,026 in-state, $4,462 out-of-state
Baker College of Flint Flint, MI 4-year, primarily associate's private not-for-profit Associate $9,800
Catawba Valley Community College Salisbury, NC 2-year, public Associate, Certificate $30,520
Central Georgia Technical College Warner Robins, GA 2-year, public Certificate $2,778 in-state, $4,914 out-of-state
Volunteer State Community College Gallatin, TN 2-year, public Certificate $4,522 in-state, $16,810 out-of-state
Pitt Community College Winterville, NC 2-year, public Certificate, Associate $1,930 in-state, $6,538 out-of-state

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Associate's degrees qualify students for entry-level work and can easily transfer toward a bachelor's degree in a health science field. In some cases, schools that offer both certificates and associate's degrees include more extensive course options, such as courses specific to the respiratory system. Additional considerations include:

  • When choosing between programs, students should consider their previous education. For instance, those who have already earned a bachelor's degree in the health sciences, or who hold the title of Certified or Registered Respiratory Therapist (CRT or RRT) may seek continuing-education coursework or post-baccalaureate certificates in polysomnography to prepare themselves for work in the field.
  • It is important for students to consider their educational and career objectives when choosing a program. For example, students who wish to enter the field at entry-level positions as quickly as possible may want to enroll in entry-level certificate programs. Those who want a more comprehensive education or plan to transfer credits toward a bachelor's degree in the future would do better to enroll in an associate's degree program.
  • Students with scheduling constraints and other commitments may look into distance learning options, such as online courses. Those holding full-time jobs may wish to avoid programs that require extensive overnight clinical experiences.
  • Students should learn more about the clinical experience opportunities offered through the program.

Certificate in Polysomnography

Certificate programs in polysomnography are designed for students coming straight out of high school and for students who are already working in the medical profession but are seeking further specialization. Prerequisites in biology, math and medical assistance may be required for admission to even an entry-level polysomnography certificate program. Clinical practicums are typically required.

Associate's Degree in Polysomnography

An associate's degree in polysomnography can lead to either entry-level work as a polysomnography technologist or to a bachelor's degree in a related field. General education requirements are mandatory as part of an associate's degree, including courses in human anatomy and psychology. Clinical training is also included.

For students who want to study polysomnography, programs are available at multiple levels and in several different formats. Students can choose a program that is consistent with their educational background, goals and scheduling needs.

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