Master of Science in Respiratory Care

Pursue Your Calling to Save and Improve Lives

Are you called to a career in respiratory care? Samford University’s Master of Science in Respiratory Care program is built on a faith-based foundation of high quality instruction that cultivates the mind to discover knowledge and rightly apply it to save and improve the lives of others. The full-time, five semester program prepares you to be a respiratory therapist for the assessment, treatment and care of patients with heart and lung problems. In addition to hospital-based care, you will also be prepared to assist in the prevention of cardiopulmonary disease and the management, care and rehabilitation for patients with chronic disease.

Coursework focuses on equipping you to handle diverse challenges and be adept at making decisions to lead and serve effectively. We use interprofessional education experiences with students and faculty from other health care disciplines for workplace preparedness and our clinical partners offer a variety of clinical exposure that is unmatched by any other school in the state.

Why Samford?

  • Highly educated and experienced faculty who are readily available to you
  • Diverse clinical rotations in major health care facilities throughout the Birmingham metropolitan area
  • Departmental academic adviser and health professions adviser
  • Medical mission trip opportunities
  • Modern curriculum that keeps pace with the changing health care needs and advances.


Graduates are prepared to sit for specialty national board exams and apply for state licensure to practice as a respiratory therapist. Respiratory care graduates can also pursue advanced degrees such as professional doctoral and medical doctor degrees.

Goal 1. To prepare graduates with demonstrated competence in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains of respiratory care practice as performed by registered respiratory therapists (RRTs).

  1. Upon completion of the program, graduates will demonstrate professional behavior consistent with employer expectations as respiratory therapists.
  2. Upon completion of the program, students will demonstrate the ability to comprehend, apply, and evaluate clinical information relevant to their role as respiratory therapists.
  3. Upon completion of the program, students will demonstrate technical proficiency in all the skills necessary to fulfill their roles as respiratory therapists.

Goal 2. To prepare leaders for the field of respiratory care by including curricular content that includes objectives related to acquisition of skills in one or more of the following: management, education, research, clinical practice (which may include an area of clinical specialization).

  1. Upon completion of the program the students will be successfully integrated into leadership roles in respiratory care such as supervisors, managers, directors, and clinical specialists in the areas of adult critical care, pediatric critical care, neonatal critical care, pulmonary function technology and cardiopulmonary diagnostics, polysomnography, pulmonary rehabilitation, and disease management.

In addition to these competency goals, the program seeks to:

  • Prepare respiratory therapists for clinical practice.
  • Provide leadership training in the areas of management, supervision, education and research.
  • Develop clinical specialists in the areas of adult critical care, pediatric critical care, neonatal critical care, pulmonary function technology and cardiopulmonary diagnostics, polysomnography, pulmonary rehabilitation, disease management, and other clinical areas, as needed.
  • Prepare future faculty for college and university-based respiratory care educational programs.
  • Develop individuals who can formulate appropriate questions, organize and test hypotheses, and apply research results to the practice of respiratory care.
  • Prepare clinical practitioners with knowledge and skills in basic and clinical sciences.
  • Prepare leaders, who are able to plan, develop, and deliver high quality, cost-effective health care services.
  • Equip graduates to be independent learners who are able to fulfill their spiritual vocation in their professional occupation.

Admission Requirements

  • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university (degree in any field) or be in the senior year of undergraduate study. A completed bachelor’s degree is required prior to enrollment, as evidenced by a final official college/university transcript. Applicants may receive a “conditional” acceptance with a letter from the university registrar stating they have completed the requirements for the degree. The conditional status is removed once an official transcript is received.
  • Cumulative GPA minimum of 3.0 (4-point scale).
  • Minimum of B letter grade in all prerequisite courses from a regionally accredited college or university; these include:
    • Microbiology with lab (4 credits)
    • Physics with lab (4 credits)
    • Anatomy (4 credits)
    • Physiology (4 credits)
    • Chemistry with lab (4 credits)
    • Statistics (3 credits)
    • [Recommended: Immunology (4 credits)]
  • GRE within the past five years with minimum scores of: Verbal: 153; Quantitative: 144; Analytical: 4.0. Submit scores to Samford 1302.
  • 8 hours of documented shadowing observation with a respiratory therapist in a hospital setting.
  • Three letters of reference submitted through the application system. The three required letters of recommendation should be from 1) a current or previous professor, 2) a work supervisor, 3) respiratory therapist.
  • International applicants or American citizens who learned English as a second language must score at least 550 (paper), 213 (computer) or 80 (Internet) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). We cannot issue an I-20 for this program at this time.
  • Exceptions to any admission requirement will be handled on an individual basis.
  • If accepted, a non-refundable deposit of $500 is required to secure admission into the program. This deposit is applied to the first semester’s tuition.

Admission Process

AHCAS Application: Open
AHCAS Deadline: May 1, 2018
Entry Month: August

The steps below outline the application process for the Master of Science in Respiratory Care program. To apply, you are required to submit both an application through Allied Health Centralized Application System (AHCAS) as well as a Master of Science in Respiratory Care Supplemental Form.  Before starting these applications, we recommend that you complete the following checklist:

  • Obtain student copies of your college transcripts to assist you in completing the coursework section for the application. You will need a transcript from every university attended.
  • Create an application account at AHCAS.  Once the account is created, an instruction manual can be found under the “?” icon on the top right of the page. The AHCAS system simplifies the process of applying to respiratory care programs. Compete one application and send it along with other information to our centralized service. The AHCAS system will verify your application for accuracy, calculate your GPA and send your materials to the Master of Science in Respiratory Care graduate admissions department.
  • Request official transcripts from each institution attended by using the transcript request form located in the application.
  • Complete the form, submit it to the registrar's office of each institution attended and instruct them to enclose the form with your official sealed transcript. Transcripts must be sent to the AHCAS Transcript Department.

                 AHCAS Transcript Processing Center
                 P.O. Box 9127
                 Watertown, MA 02471

  • The AHCAS system only accepts official transcripts sent directly from the registrar's office only. Please send transcripts as early as possible and no less than four to six weeks before the application deadline due to the time needed to verify your application.
  • Pay the initial service fee of $95 when submitting the AHCAS application.
  • Submit three letters of recommendation from 1) a current or previous professor; 2) a work supervisor or manager; and 3) health/medical professional
  • The references should attest to the applicant's academic ability and potential.
  • Please fill out all sections of the application.
  • Submit official test scores to Samford University – Code:  1302.
  • An invitation to complete the video interview will be sent once the application has been received through AHCAS.
  • If accepted, a nonrefundable deposit of $500 is required to secure admission into the program.  This deposit is applied to the first semester's tuition.
  • The preferred browsers for AHCAS are Google Chrome or Firefox.  If you need any assistance, please contact AHCAS technical support team at 617-612-2883 or email


Samford University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The Samford University Respiratory Care program, B.S. and M.S. degrees, CoARC program numbers 210620 and 200620 respectively, in Birmingham, AL, hold Provisional Accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care ( This status signifies that a program that has been granted an Approval of Intent has demonstrated sufficient compliance to initiate a program in accordance with the Standards through the completion and submission of an acceptable Provisional Accreditation Self Study Report (PSSR), completion of an initial on-site visit, and other documentation required by the CoARC. The conferral of Provisional Accreditation denotes a new program that has made significant progress towards meeting the Standards of Accreditation. The program will remain on Provisional Accreditation until achieving Continuing Accreditation. It is recognized by the National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC) toward eligibility to the Respiratory Care Credentialing Examination(s). Enrolled students completing the program under Provisional Accreditation are considered graduates of a CoARC accredited program. 

Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care
1248 Harwood Road
Bedford, Texas 76021-4244
(817) 283-2835

Plan of Study

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and Fees
Master of Science in Respiratory Care, per credit each semester/term $813
Application fee $100
Campus life fee, per semester $25
Technology fee, per semester $175
ESS one-time fee $50

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