Respiratory Therapy (9340)

Respiratory therapy involves preventive, diagnostic, rehabilitative, and intensive-care therapy for patients with current or potential cardiopulmonary problems.

Respiratory therapy, as a clinical discipline, has grown rapidly and has become an essential contributor to healthcare. Technological advancements and increased longevity combined with harmful effects caused by air pollution and hazardous occupations have created an increased demand for respiratory care practitioners.

Lakeland's Respiratory Therapy degree program provides a sound preparation for the registry examination and therapist employment.  Students in the program will have a wide variety of clinical experiences in several affiliated hospitals, long-term care facilities, and other community-based respiratory care providers.

Students must be admitted to the Respiratory Therapy program to enroll in RESP courses. Other courses may be taken prior to admission to the program.

All students enrolled in a nursing or allied health program/certificate must complete a criminal background check. In accordance with clinical site requirements, students with a criminal record may be ineligible to participate in a clinical course/rotation/practicum. Delays, for any reason, in obtaining background results may cause an interruption in the clinical rotation sequence or inability to complete program requirements. Additional background screening may be required by individual facilities.

Drug testing may be requested in accordance with clinical affiliation requirements and/or for patient/student health and safety.

A minimum GPA of 2.0 and a "C" grade or higher is required in all respiratory therapy and general education courses as listed in the curriculum guide for the AAS degree in respiratory therapy. Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grades may not be used to fulfill health program requirements.

Admission Procedures

Students must meet specific admission requirements for this program. Listed below are requirements for admission to the Respiratory Therapy Program:

Option 1: High School Option

This option is for current high school seniors or high school graduates who apply to the program within two years of high school graduation.

  • Complete college application(s).
  • Composite score of 21 or higher on the American College Test (ACT) or combined score of 940 on the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT).
  • Place into MATH 1330 Statistics for the Health Sciences or higher or pass MATH 0850 Beginning Algebra.
  • Complete high school algebra, chemistry, and biology with a "C" grade or higher.
  • An overall high school GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent.
  • Meet with a counselor to review program prerequisites and requirements.

Upon successful completion of the above criteria, the applicant will be admitted into the program. 

Option 2: College Option

This option is for students who do not qualify for admission under Option 1.

  • Complete college application(s).
  • Submit high school transcript as well as any college transcript(s).
  • Passing score of 55 or above on the pre-admission test.
  • Meet with a counselor to review program prerequisites and requirement.
  • Students must have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher in program applicable courses. The following courses, or equivalent courses from other regionally accredited colleges, must be completed with a combined minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher and a “C” grade or higher.

NOTE:  The pre-admission test, MATH 1330 Statistics for the Health Sciences or equivalent, and BIOL 2210 Anatomy and Physiology I may be taken a total of two times each. 

NOTE:  Students must meet one of these requirements to take BIOL 2210 Anatomy and Physiology I with a "C" or higher:

  1. High school biology within last five years and high school chemistry.
  2. High school biology within last five years and CHEM 1100 Elementary Chemistry I: Intro to Inorganic Chemistry.
  3. BIOL 1200 Fundamentals of Biology for the Health Technologies

Option 3: Advanced Education Option

Students pursuing this option must have an Associate of Applied Science degree in Nursing or Allied Health, an Associate of Science degree, or a bachelor's degree to be waived from the pre-admission testing. All other Option 2 requirements apply.

Note: Students planning to transfer to a four-year college are encouraged to take ENGL 1120 English Composition II and COMM 1100 Effective Interpersonal Communications in addition to the following requirements.

Plan of Study Grid
First SemesterCredit Hours
BIOL 2210 Anatomy and Physiology I 4
ENGL 1110
English Composition I (A) 1
or English Composition I (B)
FYEX 1000 First Year Experience 1
RESP 1100 Fundamentals of Respiratory Therapy 4
RESP 1200 Cardiopulmonary Physiology 3
 Credit Hours15
Second Semester
BIOL 2220 Anatomy and Physiology II 4
Select any Mathematics course from MATH 1330 or higher 2 3
RESP 1300 Cardiopulmonary Therapeutics 5
RESP 1400 Pharmacology 2
RESP 1500 Cardiopulmonary Pathology 3
 Credit Hours17
RESP 1600 Advanced Diagnostics 5
RESP 1800 Introduction to Pediatric Respiratory Therapy 2
 Credit Hours7
Third Semester
PSYC 1500 Introduction to Psychology 3
RESP 2100 Mechanical Ventilation 7
RESP 2200 Hemodynamics and Electrocardiography 3
 Credit Hours13
Fourth Semester
BIOL 2700 Microbiology 4
RESP 2300 Long Term Care and Rehabilitation 6
RESP 2400 Advanced Therapeutics 3
 Credit Hours13
 Total Credit Hours65

English course selection is based on placement test results (ENGL 1111 English Composition I (B) is 4 credits, only 3 credits apply to the degree).


Students planning to transfer to a four-year college should take a sequence of math as advised by their counselor.

Technical course
This course is designated as a technical course in the program. Students must earn a "C" grade or higher in the course to fulfill the college's graduation requirements policy.