Respiratory therapy degrees are challenging as well as rewarding, making respiratory therapy a great avenue to a fulfilling career in the health care field.

Most RT degrees consist of a two-year program with lecture-based classes mixed in with clinical training at hospitals, doctors' offices or pulmonary function labs. The two-year associate's degree, depending on the institution and the state, usually cost approximately $16,000.

Advanced Respiratory Therapy Degrees

Most places of employment only require an associate's degree, but attaining a bachelors degree will help separate you from the rest of the candidates applying for the position. Being that respiratory therapy is very competitive and flooded with applicants, getting the extra education will greatly help in the hiring process and specific job placement.

Certain institutions offer a masters degree in cardiopulmonary science, which is the highest level you can achieve for respiratory care. However, a high level degree does not guarantee the respiratory therapist is the most skilled. Hospitals mostly determine skill level based on, the amount of experience of the therapist and the level of certifications achieved.

Online Degree in Respiratory Therapy

For online RT degrees, there are programs in place that allow the student to interact with other classmates to complete various assignments. Even though the majority of the class is held online, there are clinical days that are held in the hospitals, labs, and doctors' offices. Each student must find a location that works for his or her schedule; usually there are only 1-2 clinical days a week. This clinical training helps each RT prepare for real life situations, fine tunes procedures, and familiarizes the student with medical equipment.

After you have obtained your CRT and RRT, you can specialize in many different areas like sleep studies, cath lab technician, or preceptor trainer. Overall respiratory therapy degrees are well worth the challenge and can prove to be a great asset for your future in the medical field.