CoARC granted approval of intent on 12/17/21. Final accreditation pending

Missouri Western offers a Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy.  Respiratory Therapy focuses on prevention, diagnosis, treatment, management and rehabilitation of patients across the lifespan experiencing breathing and/or other cardiopulmonary issues.  Respiratory Therapists work in hospitals, nursing homes, offices, sleep labs, rehabilitation facilities and even patients own homes.  The program is governed by the Commission on Accreditation of Respiratory Care (CoARC).  Visit the CoARC website to obtain more information about Respiratory Therapy.

A respiratory therapist is a specialized health care practitioner trained in critical care and cardio-pulmonary medicine in order to work therapeutically with people suffering from acute critical conditions, cardiac and pulmonary disease. Respiratory therapists graduate from a college or university with a degree in respiratory therapy and have passed a national board certifying examination. The NBRC (National Board for Respiratory Care) is the not-for-profit organization responsible for credentialing the seven areas of Respiratory Therapy in the United States.

Those seven areas of Respiratory Therapy include, as of December 2017: CRT (Certified Respiratory Therapist), RRT (Registered Respiratory Therapist), CPFT and RPFT (Certified or Registered Pulmonary Function Technologist), ACCS (Adult Critical Care Specialist), NPS (Neonatal/Pediatric Specialist), and SDS (Sleep Disorder Specialist).

Respiratory therapists work in hospitals in the intensive care units (Adult, Pediatric, and Neonatal), on hospital floors, in Emergency Departments, in Pulmonary Functioning laboratories (PFTs), are able to intubate patients, work in sleep labs (polysomnography) (PSG) labs, and in home care specifically DME (Durable Medical Equipment) and home oxygen.

Respiratory therapists are specialists and educators in many areas including cardiology, pulmonology, and sleep therapy. Respiratory therapists are clinicians trained in advanced airway management; establishing and maintaining the airway during management of trauma, and intensive care.

Respiratory therapists initiate and manage life support for people in intensive care units and emergency departments, stabilizing, treating and managing pre-hospital and hospital-to-hospital patient transport by air or ground ambulance.

In the outpatient setting respiratory therapists work as educators in asthma clinics, ancillary clinical staff in pediatric clinics, and sleep-disorder diagnosticians in sleep-clinics, they also serve as clinical providers in cardiology clinics and cath-labs, as well as working in pulmonary rehabilitation.

For more information please visit the Be An RT website.

Why be a Respiratory Therapist?

See what these professional Respiratory Therapists have to say:
Be An RT – It’s A Solid Career
MWSU nursing students learning CPR

Students who choose this bachelor degree program will have no more than 6 years from admission or subsequent declaration to meet the requirements listed below. If certification, accreditation or statutory requirements change and additional requirements become effective during this time, the new requirements take precedence. 

Note: Students pre-admitted into the bachelor degree program (pre-major) have three years to meet admission requirements before moving to the overall 6 year time-frame allowed to complete the program requirements. 
General Studies
ALH 320Community and Public Health3
ALH 330Introduction to Epidemiology and Biostatistics3
EXS 304Physiology of Exercise3
EXS 400Advanced Cardiovascular Exercise Physiology3
EXS 451Research Methods in Allied Health Professions3
or SWK 470 Program Evaluation
PTA 251Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation2
RES 250Concepts of Respiratory Therapy3
RES 300Cardiopulmonary Assessment3
RES 310Respiratory Clinical Practice I3
RES 315Respiratory Diagnostics I3
RES 325Pharmacology for the Respiratory Therapist3
RES 360Respiratory Clinical Practice II3
RES 400Mechanical Ventilation4
RES 410Respiratory Clinical Practice III4
RES 415Respiratory Diagnostics II3
RES 425Neonatal Respiratory Care2
RES 430Pediatric Respiratory Care2
RES 460Respiratory Clinical Capstone4
RES 470Senior Seminar - NBRC Prep2
RSM 300Philosophy and Leadership in Recreation and Sport Management3
SWK 365Death And Dying3
Support Courses
ALH 106Medical Terminology2
BIO 101Principles of Biology4
BIO 250Anatomy and Physiology5
BIO 251Medical and Public Health Microbiology4
BIO 375Pathophysiology4
CHE 101Introductory Chemistry4-5
or CHE 111 General Chemistry I
PHL 230Ethics3
or PHL 231 Healthcare Ethics
or PHL 232 Business Ethics
PSY 101General Psychology3
PSY 240Life-Span Developmental Psychology3

Program Graduation Requirements

  1. Earn a grade of C or higher in all major coursework.
  2. Earn an overall GPA of at least 2.0 and a major GPA of at least 2.0.

University Graduation Requirements 

  1. Earn a minimum of 120 credit hours (100 level and higher, maximum of 6 CED credit hours applicable).
  2. Earn a minimum of 30 credit hours in upper-division courses.  Lower-division transfer courses accepted as meeting upper-division departmental course requirements cannot be used to fulfill this requirement.
  3. Earn 30 of the last 45 credit hours at MWSU in institutional coursework (exclusive of credit by examination).
  4. Participate in required departmental and campus wide assessments. 
  5. Fulfill the Missouri Constitution requirement.
  6. Successfully pass the Missouri Higher Education Civics Achievement exam. 

CoARC granted approval of intent on 12/17/21. Final accreditation pending

The Respiratory Therapy (RT) program has a selective entrance policy.  Application to the program is made separately from application for admission to Missouri Western.  Applicants must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • The applicant must apply and be admitted to MWSU.
  • The applicant must have a minimum overall GPA of 2.5.
  • Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) test score of 58.7% (academic preparedness category of proficiency) or above is required.
  • The applicant must have completed or be currently enrolled in all general studies and RT support courses (and earn a grade of C or higher in  each support course, as well as MAT 110, MAT 112, or MAT 116).

Taking and passing prerequisite courses does not assure acceptance into the RT program.  A completed application and current transcript must be submitted to the Department of Health Professions by May 15th for a candidate to be considered for admission.  Instructions for the TEAS test can be found on the department webpage.

Declaration Forms & Sample Degrees