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Initial Provider and Refresher Frequently Asked Questions

Registration and Requirements

How do you register and what prerequisites and corequisites are required for each course?

There are several educational prerequisites that are necessary for admission into the EMS Education program. These prerequisites are essential for compliance with the DTCC EMS Education Plan approved by the North Carolina Office of EMS (NCOEMS) and NCOEMS pre/corequisite guidelines: NCOEMS Credentialing and Compliance Requirements. All prerequisites MUST be completed AND approved prior to enrolling in any EMS Initial course.

If documentation and prerequisites are not complete prior to the start of the course, you may be removed from the course and refunded the registration fees. Courses are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • Emergency Medical Responder Initial and Refresher Courses
  1. Basic Education Requirement: A high school diploma or transcript or GED results from ASSET, COMPASS, or TABE tests showing reading ability at the grade 10 level or higher must be submitted with registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript showing completion of high school/GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement. For more information regarding this requirement please see: NCOEMS requirements for MR students.
    This documentation may be submitted at time of course registration.
  • Emergency Medical Technician Initial and Refresher Courses
  1. Attend one of the mandatory information sessions for the provider level you wish to obtain. This session will provided you with an overview of all the remaining step of the registration process including information about prerequisites and corequisites requirements. Documentation must be submitted to Certified Background for EMT initial provider students and approved to secure a permanent seat in the course.
  2. Basic Education Requirement:A high school diploma or transcript or GED or results from ASSET, COMPASS, or TABE tests showing reading ability at the grade 10 level or higher must be submitted with registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript documenting completion of high school/GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement. For more information regarding this requirement please see:  NCOEMS requirements for EMT students.
  3. Proof of Vaccinations (Not required for Refresher Courses):TB skin test less than six months old or chest x-ray within the past two years and a Hepatitis B vaccination or declination form.

  • Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students
  1. Attend one of the mandatory information sessions for the provider level you wish to obtain. This session will provided you with an overview of all the remaining step of the registration process including information about prerequisites and corequisites requirements. Documentation must be submitted to Certified Background for Advanced EMT(Intermediate) or Paramedic students, and approved to secure a permanent seat in the course.
    Returning DTCC EMS students may upgrade their current Certified Background account from EMT to Advanced EMT (Intermediate) or Advanced EMT (Intermediate) to Paramedic If it has been more than one year from the time you established you Certified Background account you will need to pay the renewal fee for your previous account level.
  2. Basic Education Requirement: A high school diploma or transcript or GED or results from ASSET, COMPASS, or TABE tests showing reading ability at the grade 10 level or higher must be submitted with registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript documenting completion of high school/GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement.
  3. English Proficiency Requirement: Successful completion of an entrance exam assessing basic reading comprehension and English language writing skills on a post-secondary level. Examples of acceptable demonstration of this ability include placement into, or successful completion of, a college-level reading and English language writing course. Developmental or remedial courses will not satisfy this requirement.
  4. Mathematical Skills Requirement: Demonstration of mathematical skills at a minimum at the high school grade level. Examples of acceptable demonstration of this ability include successful completion of a MAT 060 course, or placement into a MAT 070 course, or successful completion of a college-level algebra course
  5. Anatomy and Physiology (may be a corequisite for AEMT): Proof of successful completion of college level Anatomy & Physiology or EMS 3000 prior to Paramedic course enrollment.
  6. Health Screening Packet (Not required for Refresher courses): All candidates for the advanced level courses are required to complete an EMS Program Health Screening packet found online at Certified Background.
  7. Proof of Vaccinations: Proof of vaccines or immunization include a TB skin test less than six months old or chest x-ray within the past two years, Hepatitis B vaccination or declination form, MMR vaccination, Varicella (Chicken Pox) titer or vaccination (Must have titer even if documented illness in records), Influenza vaccine for current flu season (If during flu session), and Pertussis (Whooping Cough) vaccination or booster within last 10 years. (Ensure you receive the Tdap or DTP booster, not Td.) :
  8. Additional Required Documentation:
    a. Current EMS Credential: Advanced EMT (Intermediate) course – Successful EMT course completion within the past 12 months, or proof of current EMT credential (NC or National Registry). AEMT to Paramedic Bridge course – Proof of current EMT credential (NC or National Registry) and successful Advanced EMT (Intermediate) course completion within the past 12 months, or Advanced EMT (Intermediate) credential (NC or National Registry).
    b. Current American Heart Association Healthcare Provider CPR card.

Registration Procedures

Once you complete the above prerequisites for the levels explained above and all documentation has been approved, you are eligible for registration. If documentation and prerequisites are not complete prior to the start of the registration end date, you will be removed from the course. The courses are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

Download the Public Safety registration form and complete as directed. Sign the form and bring it to the address below with check or credit card payment; or you may optionally mail, fax, or scan/email the form with credit card payment to:

Durham Technical Community College Orange County Campus
Attn: EMS Program Assistant
525 College Park Drive, Hillsborough, NC 27278
Fax to 919-536-7297 or scan/email to: ems@durhamtech.edu

Any form received with payment information will have all credit/debit card information destroyed upon successful payment processing.

  1. Many components of these courses contain questions relating Anatomy and Physiology to EMS. The online course utilizes Sakai for all the curriculum components and timed tests. High speed internet access is absolutely necessary.
  2. Download the Public Safety registration form and complete as directed.
  3. The registration end date is set one week prior to the course start. Courses failing to have 10 students enrolled by this date will be canceled.

  • Emergency Medical Responder Initial and Refresher Courses
  1. Documentation must be submitted prior registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Once you complete the prerequisites, you are eligible for registration. If documentation and prerequisites are not complete prior to the registration end date, you will from the course and refunded the registration fee. The course is filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
  2. Education Requirements: A high school diploma or transcript or GED or results from ASSET, COMPASS, or TABE tests showing reading ability at the grade 10 level or higher must be submitted with registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript showing completion of high school or GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement. For more information regarding this requirement please see NC OEMS requirements This documentation may be submitted at time of course registration.

  • EMT Refresher Courses
  1. Documentation must be submitted prior registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Once you complete the prerequisites, you are eligible for registration. If documentation and prerequisites are not complete prior to the registration end date, you will from the course and refunded the registration fee. The course is filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
  2. Education Requirements: A high school diploma or transcript or GED or results from ASSET, COMPASS, or TABE tests showing reading ability at the grade 10 level or higher must be submitted with registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript showing completion of high school or GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement. For more information regarding this requirement please see NC OEMS requirements This documentation may be submitted at time of course registration.

  • Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic Refresher Course
  1. Documentation must be submitted prior registration to secure a permanent seat in the course. Once you complete the prerequisites, you are eligible for registration. If documentation and prerequisites are not complete prior to the registration end date, you will from the course and refunded the registration fee. The course is filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
  2. Education Requirements: A high school diploma or transcript or GED. Proof of Associate degree or higher or a college transcript showing completion of high school or GED will be accepted in lieu of this requirement.

    Proof of college level reading comprehension and English language skills and high school grade level mathematical skills is also required. View the placement test section if you have not taken a college-level English and Math course. Take any necessary placement tests. The testing center provides you with the results of your tests. Unofficial transcripts may be submitted in lieu of this requirement.

    For more information regarding these requirements please see NC OEMS requirements for the Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students.

Can you register early?

Once the course schedule is available online, and you have attend the mandatory information session, you may register at any time prior to the registration end date.


Can someone else register you?

Anyone may register for you. The Public Safety registration form must be submitted for registration. Make sure that the person registering for you has the correct registration fees.


Transcripts and certificates

Does a transcript have to be official?

No. If you are getting a transcript from Durham Tech, please plan to get it 48 hours before general registration. Students should be aware that official transcripts may be requested at any time during enrollment.

How do you get a course completion certificate or unofficial transcript?

Course completion certificates for initial provider, refresher, and specialty courses are provided to students at the time of course completion.  For online specialty courses, course completion certificates are mailed to students at time of course completion. Course completion certificates are not issued for traditional or online EMS continuing education unless specifically requested by the student. Unofficial transcripts containing EMS courses will have the same information as individual certificates and also include previously completed courses displayed in a more condensed format.

For unofficial transcripts containing EMS courses and continuing education, please contact ems@durhamtech.edu and allow at least 48 hours lead time for the request.


Placement Testing

What is a placement test?

The COMPASS test is taken on the computer and assesses writing, reading, and basic math and algebra skills. The test is taken through the Testing Center and a Test Center schedule may be viewed on the website.

To determine placement test scores eligible for admission, please consult the links listed above in the prerequisites and/or corequisites for each EMS credential level.

Placement tests such as ASSET, TABE, and HOBET from other education institutions may be submitted for review. Scores for these exams must be delivered in a sealed envelope at time of registration are reviewed to determine if the student is eligible for registration or if the COMPASS test must be taken.


Do you have to take a placement test?

EMT and Medical Responder students must take the reading and math placement tests if they have not successfully completed high school or a GED. You may submit a transcript that indicates your ability to read at the 10th grade level at the time of registration for the EMT or Medical Responder course.

Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students must take the reading and math placement tests if they have not successfully completed college level English and high school grade level Math courses. You must submit a transcript that indicates you have placed into, or successfully completed, a college level reading and English language writing course and successful completion of a MAT 060 course or placement into a MAT 070 course at the time of registration for the Advanced EMT (Intermediate) or Paramedic course.

Where do you go to take the placement test (COMPASS, ASSET, TABE)?

The Testing Center is located on the Main Campus in the Phail Wynn, Jr. Student Services Center on the third floor, room 1302. COMPASS tests may be taken at the Orange County Campus on scheduled days and at the Northern Durham Center by appointment only.

WorkKeys Assessments and KeyTrain Practice exams can be taken at various locations in Durham and Orange Counties.  More information may be found by visiting the website or contacting Mary Moore at 919-536-7222 ext. 4014 or email moorem@durhamtech.edu.


Background Checks

Are you required to have a background check?

All Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students are required to have a background check for clinical rotations.  Durham Tech has contracted with a Certified Background to provide this service at a reasonable fee. Criminal background records from any other agency or entity are NOT accepted.

Positive criminal background reports do not disqualify students from attending classes at Durham Tech or the EMS program; however clinical sites reserve the right to deny students access to the clinical facility which may prevent completion of a course requiring clinical rotation. For more information and to complete a criminal background check follow the directions for Advanced EMT (Intermediate) or for Paramedic.

Students will not be able to register for Advanced EMT (Intermediate) or Paramedic without completion of all requirements listed with Certified Background.


What if your criminal background record has charges or convictions?

Durham Tech has an open-door policy; however, charges and especially convictions are reviewed by the clinical agencies according to the clinical contract. Agencies reserve the right to allow students to access the facility based on the information disclosed in the background check. This may prevent students from course completion due to inability to complete clinical requirements. In addition, the NC Office of EMS (NC OEMS) pulls the criminal background for each individual who takes the state EMS exam and determines if the individual is eligible for credential. Potential students with a criminal background history are advised to contact NCOEMS to inquire about eligibility prior to enrollment to ensure the credential may ultimately be obtained.


Textbooks and Materials

What books do you need?

  • EMT Spring 2014
  1. Brady Publishers. Mistovich, J. & Karren, K. Prehospital Emergency Care 10th ed. ISBN # 978-0-13-336913-7 (paperback)
  2. American Heart Association. BLS for The Health Care Provider ISBN # 978-1-61669-039-7 (required)
  3. FISDAP EMT Study Tools (Included as part of the course fee)

Additional books may be required. Please check www.efollett.com for the most current information.


  • Advanced EMT (Intermediate) – Fall 2014 – TBA

  • Paramedic Course
    Core textbooks required for the first class meeting; mandatory specialty course texts prior to related class date:
  1. McGraw Hill Publisher. Chapleau, Burba, Pons, Page. The Paramedic ISBN # 978-0-07-352071-1
  2. McGraw Hill Publisher. Hsieh, A & Boone, K. The Paramedic Companion. A case-Based Worktext ISBN #978-0-07-320532-8
  3. FISDAP Paramedic Study Tools
  4. Current Pharmacology textbook of your choice. (Bledsoe, B. Prehospital Emergency Pharmacology 7th ed ISBN 987-0-13-283454-4 recommended)
  5. PHTLS, 7th ed. textbook. ISBN 978-0-32-306502-3 (required prior to PHTLS course)
  6. Current Cardiology textbook including 12 Lead ECG of your choice. (Page, B. 12-Lead ECG for Acute and Critical Care Providers ISBN 978-0-13-022460-6 recommended)
  7. ACLS student manual, 2010 AHA Guidelines. ISBN 978-0-87-493496-0 (required)
  8. PEPP student manual - check back for 3rd edition closer to PEPP course date

Additional books may be required. Please check www.efollett.com for most current information.


  • Recommended Book for Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students
  1. Mosby’s Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Health Professions. ISBN# 0323035620 or comparable text.
  2. American Heart Association. 2010 Handbook of Emergency Cardiovascular Care for Healthcare Providers. ISBN # 978-1-61669-000-7.

  • Anatomy and Physiology for Paramedics
  1. Textbook Anatomy & Physiology for Emergency Care, 2nd Edition is required. By Bryan E. Bledsoe, Frederic H. Martini, Edwin F. Bartholomew, William C Ober, Claire W. Garrison, Pub. Date: Aug 2, 2007 by Prentice Hall. 978-0-13-234298-8 http://www.bradybooks.com/store/product.aspx?isbn=0132342987
  2. OneKey CourseCompass, Student Access Code Card, Anatomy & Physiology for Emergency Care, 2nd Edition can be purchased separately and is recommended. 978-0-13-158609-3 http://www.bradybooks.com/store/product.aspx?isbn=0131586092
  3. 1+2. The package is recommended and only costs $7 more Anatomy & Physiology for Emergency Care, 2nd Edition
    OneKey CourseCompass, Student Access Code Card, Anatomy & Physiology for Emergency Care, 2nd Edition 9780137145485 http://www.bradybooks.com/store/product.aspx?isbn=9780137145485

  • Instructor Methodoloy Course
  1. Cason, Foundations of Education: An EMS Approach, 2nd Edition ISBN 9781111134884

Purchase Books from:

Durham Technical Community College Bookstore, Phail Wynn, Jr. Student Services Center on the Main Campus or online at: www.efollett.com. Shipping is free for off-campus courses. Courses held at NDC, OCC, and OCSDC are considered off-campus courses.You may also try searching for books at: http://www.bookfinder.com/.


Minors taking EMS courses

For students who are under the age of 18 or are currently enrolled in high school and are considering enrollment in any EMS course, please complete the high school authorization form and submit the form along with your registration documentation.

Can a minor take an Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) or EMT course?

Anyone 16-1/2 years or older who meets the following criteria may register for the EMR or EMT courses:

  • Is currently enrolled in high school or GED program;
  • Has a letter of consent from a high school administrator;
  • Has completed the high school authorization form; and
  • Has met the identified prerequisites.

Students who are 17 years of age are eligible to take EMR and EMT state exams; however, NC Office of EMS (NC OEMS) holds the credential until the 18th birthday of the individual. It is advised for students who are awaiting their 18th birthday to take EMS continuing education to ensure adequate hours and courses have been taken to fulfill recredentialling requirements.


Grading and Dismissal Policies

What are the grading and dismissal policies for provider level courses?

Students are tested by principles consistent with national standards. Examples of evaluations used to grade students in these courses include the following: quizzes; exams; evaluation of practical skills which require physical demonstration of techniques and procedures taught; and effective evaluations to monitor students on soft skills consistent with employment in EMS If a student’s cumulative average drops below 80 percent, the student is dismissed and not allowed to continue in the course for the remainder of that semester. More information on grading and dismissal will be provided to you during your first class meeting.


State and National Registry Exams

Where do you take the state exam or National Registry exam and how much does it cost?

Since EMS students register themselves through the Credentialing Information System (CIS) website for the NC Office of EMS (NC OEMS) exams, the location, date, and time of the exam varies depending on the individual’s specific selection. There is no cost for this exam for students who complete a course in North Carolina.

The National Registry exam is also scheduled based on student selection, however there is a cost associated with this exam. Please visit the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) website for further information.


When can you take the NC OEMS State Exam and the National Registry Exam?

Successful completion of initial provider courses and refresher courses allows a student to be eligible to test with the NC State Office of EMS (NC OEMS) and the National Registry of EMT’s at all levels. Students have one year after the course completion date to take and successfully complete the NC OEMS state exam with up to three attempts. Students who do not successfully complete the exam within three attempts need to complete an entire initial provider course again. Students wishing to take the National Registry exam must register for the exam within two years after initial course completion. 

Students register for the NC OEMS exams individually once successful course completion has been documented on the CIS website. Students wishing to take the National Registry exam must first create a profile on the NREMT website and then wait for approval by the EMS program director. Once the National Registry profile has been created, please send an email ems@durhamtech.edu to request successful course completion to be approved on the National Registry profile.

Please note that course completion for all initial provider and refresher courses will not occur until all course documentation (including clinical documentation) has been returned to and reviewed by the EMS program administration.

If you still have questions, please call 919-536-7238, ext. 4214 or email ems@durhamtech.edu.


Registration Fees, Exemptions, and Other Costs

Open Registration

Once the course schedule is available online, and you have attend the mandatory information session, you may register at any time prior to the registration end date.


When are registration fees due?

All fees are due at the time of registration. For most courses, registration should be completed no later than one week prior to the course start date.

For provider level courses, all requirements must be met, including submission of required documentation, for students to be considered permanently enrolled in the course. Students who have not submitted all documentation may be taken out of the course and refunded if requirements are not met by the course start date. This also happens if a student who has all the required documentation is attempting to register prior to the course date. Students may register until all permanent seats are filled. Courses are canceled if less than eight students are registered one week prior to the course start date.

For specialty courses, registration must be turned in 72 business hours before the start of the course. Specialty courses with less than eight preregistered students are subject to cancellation and refund.


Which fees are exempt?

The tuition fee is exempt if a student is qualified. Other fees, if applicable, are one-time, non-refundable fees paid by all.

Exemption from the FISDAP fee can be proven by having an ALS FISDAP account with Durham Tech from a previous course.


Who is exempt from registration fees?

For all other EMT courses, North Carolina Public Safety Workers as defined by the N.C. General Statues are exempt from the registration fee. Proof of affiliation status must be submitted with the registration form. All others must pay the registration fee.

A letter from the student’s affiliated agency must be provided at the time of registration for any course. For courses that continue more than one semester (e.g. Paramedic), a letter must be provided at the beginning of each semester.


If an agency is paying for your course and books, what do you need to bring to registration?

Bring two copies of the letter authorizing payment to register. One copy is for registration and one copy is for the bookstore if the agency is paying for your books. You do not need to bring any money to registration if you are being sponsored by an agency.


Are there any other items that you need, and how much do they cost?

You will need a Durham Tech uniform for clinical and field internship time for all classes. The uniform and vendor for the uniform shirt is identified during the mandatory information session. Additional shirts may be purchased through a pre-selected vendor. The costs vary depending on quality and place of purchase for the rest of the uniform items. You will need to obtain a Durham Tech Student ID prior to beginning clinicals.

Criminal background checks are required for Advanced EMT (Intermediate) and Paramedic students prior to course registration.


Financial Aid

Is there financial aid available?

The Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Initial Provider course is eligible for Durham ConnectFunds and SECU Scholarship. The registration fee and required textbook if purchased from the DTCC bookstore are covered by the grant. Required textbooks that are not available at the DTCC bookstore are not covered by the grant. Learn more about the funds and if you are eligible.

If you are unemployed, you may qualify for financial aid under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) by calling 919-560-6880.