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Respiratory Therapy

Become a Respiratory Therapist

We are in the business of preparing some of the best Respiratory Care Practitioners in the nation.

The field needs motivated people who

  • want to help others as a health care provider
  • are mechanically inclined
  • have solid communication skills
  • think clearly under stress

Degree & Certificates

View list below for programs offered at Foothill. Then select program map for a possible schedule that fulfills program and college requirements.

For program requirements and full course listings, view degrees and certificates information.

Bachelor of Science

Associate in Science

Certificate of Achievement


New for Fall 2024 — Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Care (BSRC)

Application for BSRC Fall 2024 Program Now Open

The Respiratory Care baccalaureate degree program is intended for students who have completed an associate degree in the field of respiratory care, approved by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC) as a pathway to complete a four-year degree. Coursework offered fully online. Complete in one year.


Fall 2024 Associate in Science Program — Apply Now

Application period for fall 2024 open from Oct. 1—April 30.


What is Respiratory Therapy?

Our two-year Respiratory Therapy program can prepare you for employment in the exciting high-tech health care field of respiratory care.

Respiratory Therapists manage the ventilation of critically ill patients as well as provide acute and chronic care to patients with pulmonary disease.

Most work is performed in the hospital environment. Program graduates are allowed to take all national board exams. The Foothill College Respiratory Therapy Program has an excellent pass record for national board and state licensure examinations.


Respiratory therapists can specialize their work

  • Hospital staff respiratory therapist
  • Respiratory therapy management
  • Respiratory therapy education
  • Pediatric or neonatal respiratory care
  • Pulmonary function testing
  • Cardiac stress testing
  • Bronchoscopy assisting
  • Emergency respiratory care
  • Respiratory therapy home care
  • Pulmonary rehabilitation

Career Opportunities

The Foothill Respiratory Therapy Program prepares you for entry-level positions in the field, as a registry-eligible graduate therapist.

  • Jobs include hospital staff respiratory therapist and independent home care respiratory therapist.
  • The average annual salary for new graduates is approximately $90,000. The average annual salary for experienced registered therapists in the Bay Area is approximately $110,000 to $120,000. 
  • The average starting salary range was $40 to $60 per hour. Shift differentials and job duties can raise these salaries.
  • Therapists can choose to specialize in newborn, pediatric or adult intensive care depending upon where they are employed.
  • With experience, supervisory and educational opportunities are available.

Got Questions?

See our FAQs.

Learn More!

If you are interested in becoming a respiratory therapist, learn more. about our program at Foothill.


Application Process

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Health Sciences and Horticulture Career Support


Building 5200

Respiratory Therapy Quick View
Program: Respiratory Therapy
Degree/Cert: AS/Yes
Length: 2 years
Start/End: Sept/June
Number Accepted: 30
Application Window: October 1–April 30
Application Due: April 30
Prerequisites: Yes — See application.
Approx. Cost of Program: $4,500
National Lic./Cert.: Yes
State Lic.Cert.: Yes
Est. Annual Salary: $90,000-$120,000
Office: Building 5200, Room 5211 
Brenda Hanning, RRT, RCP
Program Director
Phone: 650.949.7466
Nancy Cheung, MPA, Division Dean
Health Science & Horticulture Division

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