Respiratory Therapy Program

Breathing easily and fully is one of the basic pleasures of being alive. -Alexander Lowen, Physician, Psychotherapist and Author

What is Respiratory Therapy?

Respiratory Therapy encompasses the analysis, diagnosis and treatment of a variety of conditions and diseases related to pulmonary (lung) and airway functions, including asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, lung cancer, pneumonia and sleep apnea. Respiratory Therapy is also involved in the treatment of premature infants born with underdeveloped lungs and the monitoring of hospital patients on life support. In addition to their work in health care settings, Respiratory Therapists also educate patients and families on how to properly use and maintain breathing treatments and machines, including ventilators, at home.            

Macomb’s Respiratory Therapy Program  

In Macomb’s Respiratory Therapy Program, you will spend the first year on Macomb’s Center Campus, taking lecture and lab courses. You will learn about oxygen therapy, resuscitation and airway management, and how to draw, analyze, interpret and evaluate arterial/venous blood-gas and electrolyte data for the development of a treatment strategy.  You will study the different types of mechanical ventilation and their effects on the infant, pediatric and adult patient. In the second year of the program, you will put the knowledge and skills you learned into practice during clinical internships conducted at hospitals and home health care agencies.  The program concludes with a comprehensive review to help you prepare for the National Board for Respiratory Care certification and registry examinations.

Respiratory Therapy Courses at Macomb

In the Respiratory Therapy Program at Macomb, you will take a variety of courses specific to your selected major, including:

  • General Microbiology or Pathogenic Microbiology
  • Human Physiological Anatomy
  • Clinical Cardiorespiratory Physiologic Anatomy
  • Physiochemical Basis of Respiratory Therapy
  • Respiratory Therapy Procedures 1 & 2 Lecture & Laboratory
  • Cardiopulmonary Pathology
  • Cardiopulmonary Pharmacology
  • Pediatric/Neonatal Respiratory Care
  • Clinical Internship 1-5
  • Mechanical Ventilation Lecture & Laboratory
  • Acid-Base Electrolyte Balance & Advanced Diagnostics
  • Advanced Concepts in Respiratory Care
  • Certification & Registry Review

Outcomes Data* from 2015 CoARC Annual Report of Current Status (RCS) for entry into Respiratory Care Professional Practice Programs

100% 100.0%

*Program outcomes data which includes, attrition, job placement,  Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT) success, Registered Respiratory Therapist ( RRT) success, overall graduate satisfaction, overall employer satisfaction, and on-time graduate rate for  Macomb Community College may be viewed  at the following site:

The data there is from a 3-year rolling average.


The Associate of Applied Science Degree in Respiratory Therapy is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC), 1248 Harwood Road, Bedford, TX 76021-4244.  CoARC’s phone number is 817.283.2835.

Career Opportunities with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Respiratory Therapy

With an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Respiratory Therapy, you will be qualified for a position as a respiratory therapist.   

Transfer Pathways to a Bachelor of Science Degree   

The credits earned in Macomb’s Respiratory Therapy Program transfer to many colleges and universities in Michigan and across the United States.

If you intend to transfer and pursue a bachelor’s degree, speak with a Macomb counselor or academic advisor as soon as possible after you have applied to Macomb to plan the best pathway.

How do I find out more about Macomb’s Respiratory Therapy Program?

For more information about the Respiratory Therapy Program at Macomb, contact Dr. Richard Zahodnic, 586-286-2033.

Essential Functions for the RSPT Student

Academic Calendar