Curriculum: Degree-completion BS Program for RRTs

The curriculum for this program includes 17 credit hours of core courses. Students then select from a specific set of program electives (see below) to fulfill at least a total of 30 credit hours of course work in respiratory care. Upon acceptance, students work with an advisor to organize a study plan based on a chosen clinical specialty area the serves as the student's final capstone project.

Clinical specialty areas: neonatal critical care, pediatric critical care, adult critical care, pulmonary rehabilitation, pulmonary function laboratory, polysomnography, hyperbaric therapy, respiratory care management, and respiratory care education.

To qualify for graduation, all students must achieve a C or better on all course work in this program. A minimum 120 total hours college credit are required to earn a bachelor's degree. Previous course work in respiratory care can transfer to this program; a fee applies for each course transferred to KU.

The course schedule follows a typical semester and is designed to be delivered at an organized and manageable pace. Tests are scheduled during selected weeks in the course and may be taken at the convenience of the student during that week. The schedule of courses will become available on the first day of the semester.


1. Core Courses

2. Capstone Projects

Students take both of the following courses in his or her chosen specialty area. These are capstone courses that, when successfully completed, conclude the bachelor's degree program, They must be taken in the sequence below and students must have at least one year of RRT experience prior to enrolling.

  • RESP 671 Clinical Specialty Projects I (6)

  • RESP 672 Clinical Specialty Projects II (6)

3. Program Electives

Note: some of the following courses are required for certain clinical specialty areas. Enrollment options vary by semester; these courses are not available every semester.

  • RESP 400 Advanced Critical Care (4) offered fall and spring semesters

  • RESP 401 Neonatal Respiratory Care (4) offered fall semester only

  • RESP 402 Pulmonary Rehabilitation (3) summer and fall semesters

  • RESP 425 Advanced Critical Care Procedures (2) fall and spring semesters

  • RESP 661 Management Principles in Health Care (3) fall semester only

  • RESP 662 Education Principles in Health Care (2) spring semester only


Course Descriptions

RESP 400 Advanced Critical Care (4). This course focus is on the advanced medical and respiratory care of the critically ill adult patient. Emphasis is placed on cardiopulmonary assessment and treatment of trauma, post-surgical, cardiac and renal patients. Students enrolled in this course will concurrently receive instruction in advance cardiac life-support. Prerequisite: Senior year standing or permission of instructor.

RESP 401 Neonatal Respiratory Care (4). This course is designed to provide the student with an introductory knowledge of fetal and newborn cardiorespiratory anatomy, physiology, development, pathophysiology and care. Prerequisite: Senior year standing or permission of instructor.

RESP 402 Pulmonary Rehabilitation (3). This course focuses on the interdisciplinary approach to the rehabilitation of the adult pulmonary patient. Emphasis will be placed upon the multidisciplinary assessments, treatments and therapeutic techniques that the pulmonary rehabilitation team provides. The course, in conjunction with a specialty practicum, is designed to prepare the respiratory therapist for practice in a rehabilitation speciality. Prerequisite: Senior year standing or permission of instructor.

RESP 405 Ethics, Law and Health Care (2). This course will provide a forum for discussion of current ethical, legal and professional issues. We will refer to historical and emerging controversies in health care and society that influence the patient-patient care giver relationship. The method of instruction will primarily be student presentation and classroom discussion of current issues. Prerequisite: Senior year standing.

RESP 425 Advanced Critical Care Procedures (2). This course affords the senior respiratory care student with the opportunity to practice advanced evaluative and procedural skills in the intensive care setting. Emphasis is placed on quantitative assessment techniques, refinement of monitoring procedures, and interpretation of data. Prerequisite: RESP 375 or equivalent.

RESP 661 Management Principles in Health Care (3). Introduction to basic principles of management and their application in the current healthcare environment. Course content includes: management theory, scope of management, quality issues, budgeting, personnel issues, and evaluation and application of management concepts. This course is required for several programs in the SAH. Prerequisite: Senior year standing or permission of instructor.

RESP 662 Education Principles in Health Care (2). An introduction to basic principles of education and their application to the current health care environment. Course content includes information on designing a lecture or course for the classroom, as an in-service or in a continuing education program. It focuses on assessing educational needs, organizing instruction, instructional methods and evaluation. Prerequisite: Senior year standing or permission of instructor.

RESP 668 Research in Health Care  (3). This course is designed to provide the participant with an introduction to research skills culminating in a group proposal of a bench study or chart review. Students will learn how to identify a research question and conduct a proper literature search in order to write a study proposal. The proposal will consist of the following: 1) background and introduction, 2) significance, 3) research design, 4) statistical analysis, discussion and conclusion, and future direction. All sections of the proposal will be developed through a series of progress reports with the aid of a faculty adviser. Students will work in groups to develop a research question about his or her daily practice that can only be answered by conducting research. This course will include discussions of the types of research data and the structure of a research manuscript. Students will have opportunities to read, interpret and analyze research reports and practice writing critical evaluations of the literature as it applies to the student's research question. Prerequisite: RESP 660 Statistics for Health Professions

RESP 671 Clinical Specialty Projects I (5). Designed to have the student demonstrate competency related to clinical processes in an advanced practice area (neonatal critical care, pediatric critical care, adult critical care, pulmonary rehabilitation, pulmonary function laboratory, polysomnography, hyperbaric therapy, respiratory care management or respiratory care education). Students develop clinically-related projects in the areas of quality improvement, health care organizational structures and current processes in patient management. Specialty section must match the specialty selected for RESP 672. Prerequisite: RESP 400, RESP 401 and RESP 402. Permission of specialty section instructor required. Online degree-completion students must enroll in the Specialty Section in which they have the most clinical experience and expertise. The section must be the same for RESP 671 and RESP 672.

RESP 672 Clinical Specialty Projects II (5). Designed to have the student demonstrate competency related to clinical processes in an advanced practice area (neonatal critical care, pediatric critical care, adult critical care, pulmonary rehabilitation, pulmonary function laboratory, polysomnography, hyperbaric therapy, respiratory care management or respiratory care education). Students should select the specialty section that reflects their area of expertise. Prerequisite: RESP 400, RESP 401 and RESP 402. Permission of specialty section instructor required. Online degree-completion students must enroll in the Specialty Section in which they have the most clinical experience and expertise. The section must be the same for RESP 671 and RESP 672.


Optional Elective

(This course is not required for degree.)

RESP 490 Special Studies or Projects in Respiratory Care (1-9). This course involves individual study, research or projects in the field of respiratory care under instructor guidance. Written reports and periodic conferences are required. Content and unit credit will be determined by student-instructor conference and/or departmental conferences. This course may be repeated for a maximum of twelve credits. Prerequisite: Admission to the respiratory care program and consent of instructor.

Last modified: Apr 10, 2014
ID=x10700