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Requirements For Paramedic School

Before you start paramedic school, there are skills, facts, and personality traits you'll need to have. Not everyone is cut out for this type of fast-paced work, where your actions can be the difference between life and death. Look over these paramedic education requirements: It’s a good test to see if this is the right path for you to head down.


For all levels of EMTs—EMT, AEMT, or paramedic—you'll need to be at least 18 years old and have your high school diploma or GED.


You'll need to pass a physical test as well as test negative for tuberculosis and Hepatitis B. Depending on your state, you may also need to pass a criminal background check.

What EMTs Must Learn

EMTs and paramedics perform many of the same duties, so you'll be required to know how to treat general trauma wounds and other common emergencies (heart attacks, strokes, unexpected births, etc.) You'll learn more about how to assess the severity of the patient's wounds and practice life-saving practices like CPR and compression. This is generally done through a two-year program, which you can find in your local community college or even before you graduate through your high school.

What AEMTs Must Learn

The training to become an advanced emergency medical technician (AEMT) will teach you more advanced techniques of basic concepts you already know. These courses will also take you through how to administer IVs and other types of treatments including reading heartbeat patterns. There's a large gap between states on how much additional training hours you'll need (30-350 hours) . The good news is there should be accelerated courses offered for areas where you need the most education, so you still have the option of beginning work quickly.

What Paramedics Must Learn

Paramedics receive the most training. You will learn medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, and psychology, and you will likely take general education courses as well. You’ll need about two years to complete your education, and you’ll do it at a community college or technical school. Expect to complete on-the-job field training, which will be valuable real-life experience.

A Clear Head

After school, you'll need to take the certification test for your specific level and comply with all the renewal requirements. Don’t just rely on your passing grade; take what you've learned and the feedback given to you by instructors in order to self-assess where you stand. Likely, you wouldn't have completed EMT training if you didn't feel that you could cut it as a paramedic, but it can often take time to see where your strengths lie.

How well do you do work under extreme pressure? How steady are your hands when you have to administer fluids to someone? Do you get a rush of pleasure or fear when you hear the emergency notification? A paramedic is the first line of defense for someone who's gone through an extreme situation, so confidence without arrogance is a requirement for success.

Paramedics also need to have the will to learn more when new advances are made in the medical field as well as make relationships with the right people. Technology innovations will continue, so understanding how things change within the field will allow you to be that much more successful in your career choice.

Back To The Beginning

Don’t let reading about your entire career training at once overwhelm you; if this is what you want to do, then you will be able to complete your education one step at a time. Take it slow, and build on your knowledge with each lesson. Rely on the help of teachers, classmates, and family—they want to see you do well. A great career will be yours sooner than you feel possible!

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