Respiratory Therapist

Respiratory Therapist

Associate in Applied Science (AAS)

On average, a healthy adult will breathe from 12 to 20 times per minute, and yet we rarely notice respiration—until our own is compromised. Breathing well is so crucial to patient care that all hospitals, nursing homes, and even home health care providers rely on respiratory therapists to save and improve patients’ quality of life.

A Closer Look

Respiratory therapists care for patients who have trouble breathing, often from a chronic respiratory disease such as asthma or emphysema. They also provide emergency care to patients suffering from heart attacks, drowning, or shock. Their patients range from premature infants with undeveloped lungs to elderly patients who have diseased lungs.

Respiratory therapists do everything from maintaining the airway during the management of trauma, to assisting with anesthesia for surgery or conscious sedation, to treating and educating patients in clinical settings.

What You'll Learn

The Respiratory Therapist program at Mid-State prepares students to evaluate, treat, and care for patients with cardiopulmonary problems. Successful graduates become licensed professionals working under medical direction, skilled in the therapeutic use of medical gases, humidifiers, aerosols, and other environmental control systems.

The program combines classroom instruction and clinical experience with actual patients and equipment at local hospitals and agencies. You’ll also study medication, life support, airway clearance therapies, pulmonary rehabilitation, airway management, and long-term home care. Travel is required.


  • Home Care Respiratory Therapist
  • Polysomnographer
  • Pulmonary Function Technologist
  • Respiratory Care Practitioner
  • Respiratory Therapist
  • Respiratory Therapy Educator

Your Instructors

The instructors in the Respiratory Therapist program bring the right balance of professional experience and teaching expertise to the classroom. Meet our full-time faculty!


Jamey graduated from Mid-State’s respiratory therapy program and came back to work with the next generation of respiratory therapy professionals. She holds a bachelor’s degree in career and technical education from UW-Stout and is pursuing a master’s degree in respiratory care from Northeastern University. She also serves as the district 2 representative for the Wisconsin Society for Respiratory Care.

“Our students bring a wealth of personal experience to the classroom. Each one enriches the learning environment and makes all of us better.”


Bill has participated in over 50 infant transports in his 25+ years as a respiratory therapist. Since 2007, he has served on the Respiratory Care Practitioner Examining Council in the Department of Safety and Professional Services. Bill has a master’s degree from Northeastern University and has taught in Mid-State’s Respiratory Therapist program for 20 years.

“Working with students is extremely enjoyable because their endless quest for knowledge is energizing. If you truly enjoy your job, time flies. Every day I spend with students flies by.”

Program Information Guide

See the printable Program Information Guide to learn about career pathways, transfer opportunities, program outcomes, and more.

Accreditation Information

Travel for this program is required. Respiratory therapists in Wisconsin and most states are licensed professionals. The Respiratory Therapist program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).

Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC)

1248 Harwood Road, Bedford, TX 76021-4244 • 817.283.2835 •


Catalog# Title Credits
Term: 1
10501101 Medical Terminology 3.00
10515100 Student Success in Respiratory Therapist 1.00
10515111 Respiratory Survey 3.00
10515171 Respiratory Therapeutics 1 3.00
10801195 Written Communication 3.00
10801136 English Composition 1 3.00
10806177 General Anatomy & Physiology 4.00
(17 Credits)
Term: 2
10515172 Respiratory Therapeutics 2 3.00
10515173 Respiratory Pharmacology 3.00
10515174 Respiratory/Cardiac Physiology 3.00
10806197 Microbiology 4.00
(13 Credits)
Term: 3
10515175 Respiratory Clinical 1 2.00
10801196 Oral/Interpersonal Communication 3.00
10801198 Speech 3.00
(5 Credits)
Term: 4
10515112 Respiratory Airway Management 2.00
10515113 Respiratory Life Support 3.00
10515176 Respiratory Disease 3.00
10515178 Respiratory Clinical 2 3.00
10515179 Respiratory Clinical 3 3.00
10809166 Intro to Ethics: Theory & Application 3.00
10809196 Intro to Sociology 3.00
10809122 Intro to American Government 3.00
10809172 Introduction to Diversity Studies 3.00
(20 Credits)
Term: 5
10515101 Respiratory Therapist Test Prep 1.00
10515180 Respiratory Neo/Peds Care 2.00
10515181 Respiratory/Cardio Diagnostics 3.00
10515182 Respiratory Clinical 4 3.00
10515183 Respiratory Clinical 5 3.00
10809198 Intro to Psychology 3.00
10809188 Developmental Psychology 3.00
(15 Credits)
Total Credits: 70