Emergency Medical Services (ER)

Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)Accredited by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services

(Effective Fall 2019)

Paramedics are allied health professionals who provide patient care and transportation to critically ill and injured patients. Paramedics function as an extension of the emergency physician, providing care utilizing basic and advanced life support methods in the prehospital environment.
The Emergency Medical Services Major at Penn College includes extensive classroom, laboratory, clinical, and field coursework that exceeds the current National Education Standards for Paramedics. The program culminates in an Associate’s degree, which is the minimum education level required for promotion in many major EMS systems. Students who successfully complete this major become eligible to take the National Registry exam at the Paramedic Level to become certified as a paramedic.

Career Opportunities

Most paramedics are hired by private service, fire department, municipal/governmental, or hospital-based ambulance companies. Opportunities to specialize as a paramedic include tactical medicine with police departments, critical care inter-facility transport including aeromedical services, disaster management with technical rescue teams, primary health care within the federal prison system, and industrial medicine in the oil and gas industry. Advancement within the Emergency Medical Services profession includes administrative, governmental, public health, and education. Promotion often requires academic degree credentials.

Recommended High School Subjects

Students desiring to enter into the paramedic profession are strongly encouraged to complete the following courses while in high school: four units of anatomy and physiology (with lab), four units of English, three units of psychology, and three units of mathematics, including algebra and statistics.

Special Admissions Requirements

Anyone desiring entrance into this major must first gain admission to Penn College. Applicants who are accepted into the College will be placed in a pre-major status based upon pre-entrance testing and the requirements of the major. While in pre-major status, the students begin prerequisite course work that will prepare them for courses specific to the major. Pre-major students are then evaluated for acceptance into the major in June and August. Acceptance is based upon additional requirements beyond College admission and is explained in Paramedic Program Admission Requirements

Remediation Strategies

All entering students will be tested for English, math, and reading deficiencies. Students are expected to remediate any deficiencies as explained in this catalog (see http://www.pct.edu/catalog/PlacementTesting ).

Program Goals

A graduate of this major should be able to:
  • Demonstrate the ability to function as a competent, entry-level paramedic in the cognitive domain.
  • Demonstrate the ability to function as a competent, entry-level paramedic in the psychomotor domain.
  • Demonstrate the ability to function as a competent, entry-level paramedic in the affective domain.
  • Demonstrate appropriate critical thinking skills and clinical decision-making skills while treating critically ill and injured patients in lab, clinical, and field settings.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to evidence-based practice and lifelong learning.
  • Apply appropriate interpersonal skills when working with patients, family members/bystanders, colleagues, other healthcare providers, and members of the community.

Performance Standards

Students must earn a minimum grade of “C” in each aspect of their paramedic courses. Failure to do so will result in termination from the major. The following grading system is applied to all PMP courses in this major. There is no rounding of grades:

A = 90-100
B = 80-89.99
C = 75-79.99
D = 74.99 and below


Pre. Program Credits
PMP104 Credits Proven By Certification (EMT) 6  
First Semester Credits
FYE101 First Year Experience 1  
CSC124 Information, Technology, and Society 3  
ENL111 English Composition I 3  
MTR100 Medical Terminology Survey 1  
FIT Fitness and Lifetime Sports Elective 1  
BIO115 Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4  
Second Semester Credits
BIO125 Human Anatomy and Physiology II 4  
ENL121 English Composition II 3  
ENL201 Technical and Professional Communication 3  
PSY111 General Psychology 3  
SOC111 Introduction to Sociology 3  
MNA Math Elective (MTH124 or Higher) 3  
Summer Session Credits
PMP143 Fundamentals of Paramedic Practice 5  
PMP139 Introductory Clinical Practicum 1  
Third Semester Credits
PMP244 Medical Emergencies for the Paramedic 4  
PMP248 Cardiology and Pulmonology for the Paramedic 4  
PMP233 Paramedic Skills and Simulations Lab I 3  
PMP249 Intermediate Clinical Practicum 1  
Fourth Semester Credits
PMP261 Special Patient Populations for the Paramedic 4  
PMP262 Trauma and Advanced Operations for the Paramedic 4  
PMP263 Paramedic Skills and Simulation Lab II 3  
PMP259 Advanced Clinical Practicum 1  
Summer Session Credits
PMP270 Paramedic Field Internship 4  
PMP279 Application of Research in Pre-Hospital Medicine 2  Writing Enriched Requirement

MTH 150 or higher is suitable for students desiring continuation to bachelor's degree. PMP 104 requires current certification as an EMT from the state of Pennsylvania or the NREMT.

Additional Information

In addition to tuition, fees, textbooks, and other standard student costs, paramedic students will be responsible for additional costs to include (but not limited to): travel to clinical/field rotations, a complete medical examination, student malpractice insurance, health insurance, hospital and field uniforms, criminal record clearance, drug testing, and certification exams.

Notice of Conviction

Child abuse clearance and criminal background checks are required by some agencies involved in fieldwork and/or capstones. Agencies can bar students from their sites if a criminal record exists or a positive drug test is noted. By virtue of contract for Penn College students to be at clinical sites, agencies have the right to ask for random drug testing. Inability to gain clinical or fieldwork or intern education experiences results in inability to meet program objectives or outcomes. The Pennsylvania Department of Health advises that a drug abuse or criminal record can result in ineligibility to take the Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic certification exam, thereby limiting employment opportunities as a paramedic. For additional clarification, students can speak with the Program Director or the Dean of Health Sciences.


The Penn College Emergency Medical Services major is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (www.caahep.org) upon the recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions (CoAEMSP); Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, 25400 US Highway 19 N, Suite 158, Clearwater, FL 33763; 727-210-2350; www.caahep.org. To contact CoAEMSP: 8301 Lakeview Parkway Suite 111-312 Rowlett, TX 75088; 214-703-8445 or FAX 214-703-8992; www.coaemsp.org. The major is also accredited by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services.


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