Academic Catalogs

Emergency Medical Services, Certificate of Specialization

Not Financial Aid Eligible
Banner Code: 1_CE_EMS

EMS certification is required to work for an ambulance service or in an emergency department and may be required for lifeguards, ski patrol and fire fighters. The EMS provides the care necessary to preserve life and to prevent disability among the acutely ill and the seriously injured and assist and communicate with other healthcare providers with a higher scope of practice.

The EMS must have basic knowledge of anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and sterile techniques. The course of study emphasizes treating traumatic injuries and medical emergencies, as well as treating minor disorders and emotional problems. Specialized areas include obstetrical and pediatric emergencies and extricating entrapped persons. Special emphasis is placed on proper patient moving techniques and transport to definitive and appropriate medical care.

Successful completion of the EMS course qualifies the student to sit for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians’ certifying examination, and therefore obtain EMS certification in any California County.

Program Outcomes

  1. The graduate of the Emergency Medical Services program will be prepared for entry-level employment as a professional and competent Emergency Medical Technician and meet the needs of the local health care community.
  2. The EMS certification course is a prerequisite for paramedic training. Job opportunities are good.

Certificate Requirements

Orange Coast College offers two types of certificate awards in career programs designed to prepare the graduate to enter a particular field of employment. At least 3 units in an advanced course from the certificate must be completed at OCC.

  1. Certificate of Achievement - 8 units or more in a state-approved program.  Certificates of Achievement are not automatically awarded. A petition must be filed in Enrollment Services or online at the beginning of the semester in which the student will be completing his or her final requirements.  The petitioning periods are listed in the Graduation Requirements section of this catalog. 
  2. Certificate of Specialization - 16 units or less in a locally approved program.  Certificates of Specialization are not automatically awarded, not printed on official academic transcripts, and there is no acknowledgment of completion given at graduation.  Please contact the division for details regarding the submission of petitions as procedures for each division vary.  Most division offices prefer that students complete all of the required courses and then provide a copy of the transcript while some divisions allow petitions for Certificates of Specialization before finishing.

Minimum Grade Requirement
In order to be awarded a certificate, students are required to obtain a grade of “C” or better in all program-required courses. Grades of “CR” or “P” will be accepted whereas “CR” or “P” meets the equivalency of a “C” or better. A list of certificate programs can be found in the Programs A-Z section of this catalog. Check with a counselor to determine the requirements for completion.

Program Recommended Preparation

Course Title Units
EMS A100Emergency Medical Responder4

Required Prerequisites

Course Title Units
Valid American Heart Association Healthcare Provider CPR
Course Title Units
Required Courses
EMS A150Emergency Medical Technician10
EMS A150LEmergency Medical Services Laboratory1
EMS A151Emergency Medical Technician Clinical 11
Total Units12

Emergency Medical Services Suggested Electives

Course Title Units
ALH A111Medical Terminology3
BIOL A221Anatomy-Physiology4
CMST A100Interpersonal Communication3