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In less than two years, you could prepare for a career as a Registered Respiratory Therapist in California.

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At a Glance

  • Earn an Associate of Science degree in Respiratory Therapy in as few as 19 months

  • Prepare for credentialing  exams*

  • Conveniently offered at five campuses

  • Affordable tuition varies, learn more now.

About the Program

What Does a Respiratory Therapist Do?

Respiratory therapists help patients who have breathing problems. On the job, respiratory therapists perform many duties, including:

  • Sample arterial blood for blood gas analysis
  • Perform pulmonary function testing
  • Develop or modify respiratory care plans
  • Provide life support measures
  • Deliver respiratory medications and gases

What Will I Learn

Upon completion of our respiratory therapist program, the successful student will be able to:

  1. Perform clinically as a competent advanced-level Respiratory Therapist
  2. Exemplify critical thinking and judgment skills
  3. Demonstrate personal and professional behavior consistent with a Respiratory Therapist
  4. Earn Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), Pediatric Advanced Life Support Provider (PALS), and Neonatal Resuscitation Provider (NRP) certifications
  5. Become a Registered Respiratory Therapist
  6. Characterize the philosophies of lifelong learning and professional growth by participating in continued education and community outreach
  7. Demonstrate the social skills, professional appearance, attitudes, and behavior that employers expect of all SJVC graduates
  8. Relate and apply concepts of communication, reasoning, critical analysis, ethical behavior, and appropriate interpersonal interaction to situations in his or her career and personal life.

Career Opportunities

If you’re looking to jumpstart your career, respiratory therapy is a good field to consider—especially if you live in California. California had one of the highest employment levels for respiratory therapists in May 2020 (for detailed regional information please visit

Respiratory Therapist Classes Near Me

SJVC’s Respiratory Therapy Associate of Science degree program is available at the following campuses:

Cost & Financial Aid

Education is the most important investment you can make in your future. There is a financial plan available for everyone, including a broad range of financial assistance options. Visit SJVC’s Net Price Calculator to get personalized information on college costs and financial aid. Check out SJVC’s academic catalog to learn about program costs by campus and credential level. You also can talk to an Admissions Representative to discuss the costs of the respiratory therapist program, and schedule an appointment with an experienced financial aid officer.  Student loans, grants, and scholarships are available to those who qualify.

Accreditation and Approvals

The Respiratory Therapy program at the following SJVC campuses has been granted continuing accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (

Campus CoARC Program Number
Bakersfield 200425
Ontario 200495
Rancho Cordova 200518
Temecula 200607
Visalia 200389


Institutional Accreditation

San Joaquin Valley College is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), 985 Atlantic Avenue, Suite 100, Alameda, CA 94501, (510)748-9001.

The WSCUC is an institutional accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education.

State Approvals


SJVC is a private institution and is approved to operate as an accredited institution by the California Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE). Approval to operate means that SJVC has been found in compliance with the standards set forth in the California Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009 (as amended) and Title 5, Division 7.5, – Private Postsecondary Education of the California Code of Regulations. As a prospective student, you are encouraged to review this catalog prior to signing an enrollment agreement. You are also encouraged to review the School Performance Fact Sheet, which must be provided to you prior to signing an enrollment agreement.

A student or any member of the public may file a complaint about this institution with the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education by calling (888) 370-7589 or by completing a complaint form, which can be obtained on the Bureau’s internet website (

View additional State Approvals for SJVC.

Outcomes Data

The CoARC accredits respiratory therapy education programs in the United States. To achieve this end, it utilizes an ‘outcomes based’ process. Programmatic outcomes are performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the educational goals of the program are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented.

To view outcomes data, please visit:

Read Our Career Guide On Respiratory Therapy

Respiratory therapists care for individuals affected by respiratory diseases, like asthma and COPD, and other causes of breathing difficulties.

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*SJVC prepares students to take appropriate certification and licensure exams related to their individual majors. The College does not guarantee students will successfully pass these exams or be certified or licensed as a result of completing the program.