Paramedic Studies at Washington Universities
Paramedic training programs in the state of Washington are most commonly found at community colleges and may result in either a certificate or associate's degree. Certificate and associate degree programs offer basically the same paramedic training and prepare students for the national licensure exam; however, 2-year degree programs also require completion of additional general education courses.
The following article contains more details about two of these schools and their paramedic programs. Read information about coursework and clinical experiences, and get facts about each school in the table.
- Spokane Community College offers two paramedic programs, one leading to an Associate of Science in Paramedicine and the other to a Certificate in Paramedicine. The college is located about four miles east of downtown Spokane.
- Tacoma Community College, found about four miles west of Tacoma's downtown area, also offers a certificate and associate's degree in paramedic studies.
Comparison of Schools
It is a good idea to take a close look at all that a school has to offer before deciding on a paramedic program. Below you will find helpful facts and statistics regarding each school's population, campus setting, retention and graduation rates, tuition and more.
|Spokane Community College||Tacoma Community College|
|School Type||4-year, public||4-year, public|
|Total Enrollment (2017)||10,014*||6,496*|
|Campus Setting||Midsize city||Midsize city|
|Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2017-2018)||$3,460 (in-state)*
| $4,146 (in-state)*
|% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017)||73%*||44%*|
|Acceptance Rate (2017)||N/A (open admissions policy)*||N/A (open admissions policy)*|
|Undergraduate Graduation Rate (for students who began in Fall 2011)||26% (16% transfer-out rate)*||25% (19% transfer-out rate)*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator.
Spokane Community College
Spokane Community College offers degree and certificate programs in over 120 different areas of study. The paramedic programs meet the requirements set by the Washington State Department of Health for Emergency Medical Technician - Paramedic education. Applicants to its paramedic programs must have a current CPR certificate and certification at the EMT-Basic or EMT-Intermediate level.
Certificate - Paramedic
Students who take the certificate program complete coursework that focuses on EMT training and skills, along with electives that enhance those skills, such as English, math, speech, science and chemistry. The program's goals are to create graduates who are able to assess and treat patients in emergencies, to provide life support and to teach patients how to prevent traumatic injuries.
Associates of Arts and Sciences (A.A.S.) - Paramedic
Students pursuing an associate's degree take core EMT classes as well as English, anatomy and physiology and other electives as determined by the student and course counselor. Graduates of this program often go on to work in fire departments, hospitals, police departments or other first responder agencies.
Tacoma Community College
Tacoma Community College has been offering degree, certificate and vocational training programs to Washington students for over 50 years. Its programs are available in more than 60 areas of study and include an Associate in Applied Sciences for aspiring paramedics.
Associate in Applied Sciences - Emergency Medical & Health Services
The AAS program covers the same paramedic classes as the certificate program. However, students must also meet the general education requirements of the institution by taking courses in sociology, psychology, public speaking and critical thinking. Students in the associate's program are required to complete clinicals, which include infield practicums and working in a hospital. In order to enroll in the program, applicants must be certified as EMT-Basic and have worked (either paid or volunteer) one year as EMTs.