Cardiopulmonary Sciences, BS


The Bachelor of Science (BS) in Cardiopulmonary Sciences is a program designed for cardiovascular technologists and respiratory care professionals who want to advance their education.

Applicants should hold one of the following credentials:

  • Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) from the National Board for Respiratory Care
  • Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist (RCIS) or other registry level credentials from Cardiovascular Credentialing International
  • Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer (RDCS) from the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers.

On this foundation of skill, the proposed program will result in additional growth for professionals within the specialized area of Cardiopulmonary Sciences.

The program will provide cardiopulmonary professionals with a well-rounded general education in the arts and sciences as well as an advanced understanding in the Cardiopulmonary Sciences. The Cardiopulmonary Sciences BS provides career advancement for entry-level health profession practitioners. Students will develop management and leadership skills and gain a broader-based knowledge of healthcare delivery skills. The program offers a diverse population of students with innovative educational experiences and opportunities to meet the healthcare needs of the community they serve. The program provides a career and educational pathway for cardiovascular technologists and respiratory care professionals who have earned an Associate of Science degree in a related area or who hold comparable certification and licensure to treat patients.

Program Highlights

The BS in Cardiopulmonary Sciences program includes courses in professional issues, advanced pharmacology, diagnosis and intervention, patient management, research, legal and ethical aspects of healthcare, pathophysiology, leadership, and community health. Courses are offered in a blend of online and traditional formats to accommodate students' various schedules and learning preferences. Students may select from an array of electives to complement their learning. Courses are offered for full-time and part-time students. The program also provides an excellent basis for continued formal education at the graduate level in the medical, public health, and education disciplines.

Career Opportunities

Cardiopulmonary professionals will be able to further promote the expansion of services in their communities, such as diagnosis and treatment of cardiopulmonary and sleep disorders, health promotion and disease prevention, patient education, pulmonary rehabilitation, disease-specific case management, and life support outside of the intensive care unit. Changes in health care policy, regulation, and reimbursements have required professionals to adopt these expanded roles, work more independently in settings across the continuum of care, and collaborate as partners on the healthcare delivery team.

Admission Requirements: 

  1. Applicants must submit an application to the BS Program and be accepted to Florida SouthWestern State College. Official transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities must be sent directly to the Office of the Registrar.

  2. Applicants must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants must possess licensure, certification, or registration from the profession in which the applicant is practicing. Applicants should hold one of the following credentials:
    • Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) from the National Board for Respiratory Care
    • Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist (RCIS) or other registry level credentials from Cardiovascular Credentialing International
    • Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer (RDCS) from the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers.

  3. Applicants must have earned either:
    • An Associate in Science (AS) degree in either Cardiovascular Technology or Respiratory Care from any college or university accredited by a regional accrediting association as defined by State Board of Education rule, with a minimum of 60 credit hours earned. Current AS students are encouraged to apply for admission during the term in which they will complete their AS degree program/receive their required licensure.
      OR
    • A minimum of 60 credit hours, with all General Education and Electives met, may apply for admission. Students must possess licensure, certification, or registration from the profession in which the applicant is practicing as noted above.

BS Program Applicants with Associate or Baccalaureate Degrees

Students who transfer to Florida SouthWestern State College with a previous associate degree from a Florida College or baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university are considered to have met the General Education Core and Elective coursework (60 credit hours) of the degree. Students are permitted to complete any remaining Lower Division, Cardiopulmonary Sciences Program Specific Coursework while completing Upper Division, Cardiopulmonary Sciences Core Coursework.

Professional Credit for Previous College Level (1000-4999) Coursework

The Bachelor of Science in Cardiopulmonary Sciences is a degree completion program. A degree completion program is typically designed for a nontraditional undergraduate population such as working adults who have completed some college level course work but have not achieved a baccalaureate degree. Students in such programs may transfer in credit from courses taken previously and may receive credit for experiential learning.

Requirements to Enroll in Upper Division Cardiopulmonary Sciences Coursework (3000-4000 Level)

  1. Attend mandatory orientation session prior to enrollment in baccalaureate courses.
  2. Complete ENC 1101 Composition I, ENC 1102 Composition II, and one college level mathematics course with grades of “C” or higher.
  3. Students are permitted to complete all remaining General Education Core, Electives, Lower Division Program Specific, and Upper Division Cardiopulmonary Sciences Core coursework.

Priority Application Deadlines: 

Fall Semester Start - Application due by August 1
Spring Semester Start - Application due by December 1
Summer Semester Start - Application due by April 1

Graduation Requirements

  1. Students must satisfactorily complete 120 credit hours as outlined in the Cardiopulmonary Sciences BS Program of Study.
  2. To satisfy residency requirements, a minimum of 30 credit hours of Upper Division Cardiopulmonary Sciences Core coursework must be completed at Florida SouthWestern State College.
  3. Students must achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher.
  4. Students must earn a grade of “C” or better in all Upper Division Cardiopulmonary Sciences Core coursework.
  5. Students must complete the General Education Core and General Education Electives coursework, including assessment of General Education outcomes that are required by the College. Transfer courses will be reviewed for equivalency.
  6. Students must indicate their intention to attend commencement ceremony, by completing the Commencement Form by the published deadline

Foreign Language Competency Requirement

  • Two years of the same High School Foreign Language, or
  • Documented foreign language proficiency through testing, or
  • Two semesters of the same College Level Foreign Language (Level II proficiency), or
  • Level II proficiency - this criterion occurs when a student has completed the second course of a sequence of college foreign language without completing the first course. For example, if a student has successfully completed a college-level Spanish II but not Spanish I, then the student has met the Foreign Language Competency requirement.

Cardiopulmonary Sciences, BS Degree Program of Study (120 Credits)

General Education Requirements: 36 Credits

Refer to the FSW General Education Program Guide

COMMUNICATIONS CATEGORY: 9 Credits Required

  • ENC 1101 Composition I - 3 credits, writing intensive must complete with a “C” or better
  • ENC 1102 Composition II - 3 credits, writing intensive must complete with a “C” or better
  • Additional Communication General Education course - 3 credits

HUMANITIES CATEGORY: 6 Credits Required

  • Core Humanities General Education course - 3 credits
  • Writing intensive Humanities course, must pass with a “C” or better - 3 credits

SOCIAL SCIENCES CATEGORY: 9 Credits Required

  • Core Social Sciences General Education course - 3 credits
  • Writing intensive Social Sciences course, must pass with a “C” or better – 3 credits
  • Any Social Sciences General Education course - 3 credits

MATHEMATICS CATEGORY: 6 Credits Required

  • Core Mathematics General Education course – 3 credits
  • Any Mathematics General Education course - 3 credits

NATURAL SCIENCES CATEGORY: 6 Credits Required

  • Core Natural Sciences General Education course with Laboratory - 3 credits
  • Any Natural Sciences General Education Course with Laboratory – 4 credits

Program Specific Requirements: 19 Credits Required

The following coursework must be completed to meet the Florida Common Prerequisites for the Cardiopulmonary Sciences baccalaureate degree and may be fulfilled within General Education, Elective, or Lower Division studies.

  • BSC 1005C - General Biology 4 credits or BSC 1010 - Biological Science I 3 credits and BSC 1010L - Biological Science I Laboratory 1 credit
  • BSC 1085C - Anatomy and Physiology I 4 credits or BSC 1093C - Anatomy and Physiology I 4 credits
  • BSC 1086C - Anatomy and Physiology II 4 credits or BSC 1094C - Anatomy and Physiology II 4 credits
  • MCB 2010C - Microbiology 4 credits
  • SPC 1017 - Fundamentals of Speech Communication 3 credits or SPC 2608 - Introduction to Public Speaking 3 credits

Elective Courses: 32 Credits Required

  • Any 1000-4000 level courses – 32 credits

BS Cardiopulmonary Sciences Core Requirements: 33 Credits Required

  • HSC 4159 - Advanced Medical Pharmacology 3 credits
  • HSC 4555 - Pathophysiologic Mechanisms 3 credits
  • HSC 4652 - Health Care Ethics 3 credits
  • RET 4050 - Research Methods 3 credits
  • RET 4445 - Cardiopulmonary Diagnostics 3 credits
  • RET 4505 - Chest Medicine 3 credits
  • RET 4524 - Education in Community and Acute Healthcare Environments 3 credits
  • RET 4536 - Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation 3 credits
  • RET 4715 - Advanced Neonatal Medicine 3 credits
  • RET 4933 - Selected Topics in Cardiopulmonary Sciences 3 credits

Select One of the Courses Below: 3 Credits

  • HSA 3113 - Contemporary Issues in Health Care 3 credits
  • HSA 3430 - Health Care Economics 3 credits
  • HSA 4184 - Management Strategies of Healthcare Organizations 3 credits
  • MAN 3301 - Human Resources Management 3 credits
  • RET 4034 - Problems in Patient Management 3 credits
  • Any 3000 or 4000 level course with a HSA or HSC prefix




Program Contact Email Phone
Sindee K. Karpel, MPA, RRT, AE-C
Department Chair, Cardiopulmonary Sciences, BS Program
Professor, Cardiopulmonary Sciences Program, BS and Respiratory Care, AS Program
Tamra Pacheco
Instructional Assistant
239-985-3499
Ext. 11999
A-123


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