Respiratory Therapy Program Associate Degree Major Requirements and Recommended Course Sequence.


(Major Code: 52150)


Classes begin with the Fall Semester of each year.


Fall Semester First Year Units
RESP 105 Cardiopulmonary Physiology and Disease Entities 4
RESP 108 Basic Respiratory Therapy Equipment, Procedures and Life Support Systems 5
RESP 112 Supervised Clinical Practicum I 1
RESP 114 Cardiorespiratory Pharmacology 2
Spring Semester First Year  
RESP 116 Assessment in Respiratory Care 2.5
RESP 118 Critical Care Life Support Equipment and Procedures 4.5
RESP 122 Supervised Clinical Practicum II 3
RESP 150 Neonatal-Pediatric Respiratory Care 3
Fall Semester Second Year  
RESP 201 Cardiopulmonary Pathology and Pathophysiology 4
RESP 208 Invasive and Noninvasive Cardiopulmonary Assessment 3.5
RESP 222 Supervised Clinical Practicum III 4
Spring Semester Second Year  
RESP 205 Professionalism and Career Preparation for Respiratory Therapy 3.5
RESP 232 Supervised Clinical Practicum IV 4
RESP 268 Home Care Laboratory Technique 1.5


  Plus prerequisites (BIOL 144, BIOL 145,BIO 152 and CHEM 115) 17
  Plus General Education and Elective Requirements 18




NOTE: Program requirements must be completed with a grade of "C" or better.


Associate Degree General Education Requirements:

In addition to the courses in the major, additional units in general education (GE) are required for graduation with the Associate in Science Degree. The Grossmont College Counseling Center will assist in identifying these general education courses. Note: All courses in the major must be completed with a "C" grade or better.


The Grossmont College Respiratory Therapy Program has strived to maintain flexibility to the student desiring the Associates Degree. To receive an Associate Degree, the student must complete General Education Requirements. The General Education Requirements are listed in the Grossmont College Catalog and should be reviewed prior to registration.


Although the Respiratory Therapy Program encourages completion of General Education Requirements during the course of study, it is also possible to complete these requirements prior to or after the course of study or during summer session. Please feel free to contact the Counseling Center for further information.


RT 105 - Cardiopulmonary Physiology and Disease Entities - Building on previous coursework, this course will elaborate on the specific concepts of normal cardiopulmonary anatomy and physiology. This semester stresses importance of cardiopulmonary anatomy, the process of ventilation, gaseous diffusion, gaseous transport to the periphery matching of ventilation and perfusion, acid base balance or imbalance and basic pharmacology. The dynamics of human physiological functions are studied in relationship to functional disease patterns. Special emphasis is given to the assessment of the physiological processes and the recognition of alterations in pathophysiology.


RT 108 - Basic Respiratory Therapy Equipment, Procedures and Life Support Systems - An introduction to the principles of equipment operation, equipment care and maintenance, basic therapeutic techniques as employed in care.


RT 112 - Supervised Clinical Practicum - Basic respiratory therapy procedures and general patient assessment are practiced in the general care environment. Included in the supervised experiences are laboratory and physical assessment, oxygen therapy, humidity and aerosol therapy and general medication delivery by inhalation.


RT 114 - Cardiorespiratory Pharmacology - This course is designed for the Cardiovascular Technology and Respiratory Therapy student. Major emphasis will be given to cardiac, cardiovascular, and pulmonary drugs. Specific drugs in these categories will be addressed in terms of action, indication, possible allergic reactions and contraindications.


RT 116 - Assessment in Respiratory Care - This course will examine the patient assessment process utilized in management of the patient with cardiopulmonary dysfunction. Development of skills for data collection and decision-making are refined through examination of case studies. Physical examination, respiratory physiology, pulmonary modalities, information gathering, decision-making and assessment of clinical situations is integrated in the management of the simulated pulmonary patient. Special emphasis is given to the assessment of the physiological processes and the recognition of patterns associated with pathophysiology.


RT 118 - Critical Care Life Support Equipment and Procedures - Advanced concepts of respiratory therapy equipment and therapeutic procedures, complex principles of equipment operation and care, quality control and advanced therapeutic techniques as employed in the critical care environment. Special emphasis is placed on life support systems. Variations in ventilation, oxygenation, and current weaning techniques are discussed for various disease entities.


RT 122 - Supervised Clinical Practicum II - General respiratory therapy procedures and pulmonary assessment are carried out in the acute care hospital environment. Included in the supervised experiences are small volume nebulizer therapy, chest physiotherapy, postural drainage, pressure therapy, inspiratory maneuvers, breathing exercises and airway care. Pulmonary assessment and pathophysiology are applied to modify appropriate patient care.


RT 150 - Neonatal Pediatric Care - Overview of fetal physiology, fetal monitoring, trauma to the neonate and neonatal management in critical care will be emphasized. Pediatric techniques utilized by the therapist are reviewed.


RT 201 - Cardiopulmonary Pathology and Pathophysiology - Introduction to basic respiratory pathology and resulting abnormal physiology. The role of the respiratory therapist in management of cardio-respiratory disease entities commonly found in the general care environment, in the intensive care unit, and in the home care setting is developed. Emphasis is placed on the pathological processes.


RT 205 - Cardiopulmonary Patient Management - Critical thinking and problem solving skills are refined for management of the cardiopulmonary patient from diagnosis through end-of-life care.  Specialties within the field of respiratory therapy as well as current events, controversies, and research are explored.  This is the capstone course for the Respiratory Therapy Program and each student will develop and present a final project, which includes a research paper, poster, and community presentation


RT 208 - Invasive and Noninvasive Cardiopulmonary Monitoring - This course is designed to provide theory and hands on practice in various means of monitoring the patient in the acute care setting. An introductory level of advanced modes of ventilation, principles of weaning from mechanical ventilation as well as monitoring the cardiovascular system with capnography, electrocardiography and hemodynamic monitoring in the critical setting will be presented.


RT 222 - Supervised Clinical Practicum III - Advanced respiratory procedures and therapeutic techniques are practiced in the critical care environment. Therapeutic management of critical pulmonary patients is practiced under direct instructor supervision. Assessment of patient pulmonary status by the student is required prior to the convening of clinical.


RT 232 - Supervised Clinical Practicum IV - Advanced cardiopulmonary specialties are practiced in the hospital environment. Advanced specialty techniques are practiced under direct supervision of specialty experts. Assessment of patient pulmonary status by the student is required prior to the convening of clinical.


RT 268 - Home Care Laboratory Techniques - The laboratory course will provide the student with the requisite technical rehearsal of apparatus utilized by patients in their home. This will include home oxygen therapy modalities, home sterilization techniques and home ventilator life support systems.