Fire Science Technology and Emergency Medical Technician

    This program follows the standards of training according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1001, Standard for Firefighters, and the National Standard Curriculum for Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).  At age 18, you could be licensed as an EMT – and be on your way to Paramedic school and/or basic Firefighter certification.

    What will my classes be like?

    The Fire Science program includes safety, fire behavior, rescue/extrication techniques/hydraulics, communications, ladders, ropes & knots, extinguishment, SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus), and equipment use/maintenance.

    Emergency medical training includes Emergency Medical Responder (First Responder Defibrillator), Health Topics/First Aid, Healthcare Provider CPR, and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). You must meet the necessary age (at least 18 years old), be proficient in specific skill sets,  and meet state/industry requirements in order to challenge the state or national EMT licensing exam.


    You will participate in practical experiences in the classroom-including live “cell burns” and the opportunity for clinical rotations in emergency rooms, fire department ride-alongs, and assisting TCD’s First Aid Provider with actual calls on campus.


    You will gain the experience, training, and confidence to transition from our classroom to a job on a Basic Life Support ambulance, or into a college classroom or paramedic school. In addition, you have the opportunity to receive up to 19 hours of college credit at College of DuPage, which is nearly a third of the way to an associate’s degree!

    Course Goals/Objectives

    Provide real-life and classroom education, experience and opportunities for students interested in careers in Firefighting, EMT, Paramedicine, dispatching, and other military and governmental careers.  Goals and objectives are established in the curriculum, and are aligned to Common Core Standards.

    Course Outline

    First year students receive instruction in (FRD), Health Care Provider CPR, Fire Science Orientation, and Emergency Medical Responder. The classes are taught in the semesters indicated below:

    Semester 1:  Emergency Medical Responder class will be taught along with the American Heart Association CPR for Healthcare Provider class.  Each week we will cover 1-2 chapters in the textbook and evaluate students on the corresponding practical skills. Chapter tests will be given weekly and there will be modular exams given throughout the course that will cover multiple chapters.
    Semester 2:  Introduction to Fire Science covers chapters from the IFSTA Essentials textbook.  The Hazardous Materials class will also be completed during the first semester. Each chapter will be completed over a period of one week with continual reinforcement of practical skills throughout the year. 

    First year students who meet requirements have the opportunity to job-shadow with firefighters on shift at local fire departments.

    Second year students spend their year in the Emergency Medical Technician curriculum. Students will be given vocabulary tests, exams/quizes, homework, and writing assignments. Included are on-line quizes and tutorials. Students will also be taught weekly skill sets, and will be tested on several psychomotor skills prior to class completion. Additionally, students who meet academic requirements will complete clinical rotations in local hospital emergency rooms, and/or ride time on fire department ambulances. Students often complete field trips to disaster drills/dispatch agencies.

    Students will also complete portfolios, which include resume, personal statement, and any earned certificates and licenses. The year wraps up with mock crash scenarios, including an aero medical evac helicopter landing on the campus of TCD. Here, students have the opportunity to apply critical thinking skills, learned psychomotor skills, and cognitive knowledge to real-life scenarios.  

    Assessment Standards/Grading Practices

    Students are graded on the following criteria:

    ·        Attendance

    ·        Safety

    ·        Accuracy

    ·        Initiative

    ·        Cooperation

    ·        Dependability

    ·        Homework

    ·        Written tests

    ·        Practical tests


    A, B, C, D, F grades are given for each area. Students need to make every effort to complete assigned work and complete all chapter and modular tests.


    College Credit Opportunities

    The following college level classes are taught in the Fire Science Technology program. Those students who successfully pass the classes will earn college credit through the College of DuPage as specified below:

    Fire Science         1100       Intro to Fire Science (3 credit hrs.)                                 

    Fire Science         1150       CPR-Basic Life Support (1 credit hr.)                                            

    Fire Science         2283       Emergency Medical Responder (5 credit hrs.)             

    Fire Science         2271       Emergency Medical Technician (10 credit hrs.)             


    Field Experiences/Competitive Opportunities:

    Students are offered field experience, which can include: clinical rotations in local hospital emergency rooms, cardiac cath lab observations, ride time on a fire department ambulance, and job shadowing with firefighters at local fire departments.

    The TCD Fire Science Technology program has developed strong partnerships with local fire departments, ambulance providers, dispatch agencies, and branches of local government. Students can gain even more extracurricular experiences by joining a local fire department Explorer Post. Here, students train at the firehouse under direct supervision of professional firefighters.

    Graduates of the TCD Fire Science Technology program generally have a clear and distinct advantage over most applicants who apply for fire department employment, paramedic school, or college: students at TCD are taught by instructors who are licensed,  professional , and seasoned firefighter/paramedics.  Additionally, students have earned college credit (a third of the hours required for an Associates Degree), have had opportunites for significant field experience, and are armed with a professional portfolio which includes their personal statement, resume, certifications, and licenses earned within the 2 year program.

    College and Career Pathways

    Students who meet specified psychomotor skills and academic requirements are eligible to take a licensing exam to become an Emergency Medical Technician. An EMT license is required to gain entry to paramedic school.  Students who receive licensure are often hired by BLS ambulance companies, and while working in the field, students apply for acceptance to paramedic school.  Most students take classes at a local college to complete their associate's degree while awaiting acceptance to paramedic school, while others elect to attend a four-year college and earn a BS in Fire Science Management and/or Paramedicine.  College of DuPage, in partnership with Western University and SIU, now offers students a “2 +2” program to earn a BS degree. See http://www.cod.edu and go to Fire Science for more details.


    For sample occupations and post secondary educational requirements, visit:

    www.careertech.org and click on “CareerClusters & Pathways

    Placement Guidelines/Recommendations

    We are confident that the Fire Science Technology experience is a positive and productive learning opportunity for DuPage County students. With this in mind, the following academic guidelines are recommendations intended to assist in scheduling students for success.

    If a student considering Fire Science Technology has questions about one or more of these guidelines, contact a guidance representative from the home high school to clarify individual situations.

    If a student is considering Fire Science Technology, second year students (or first year seniors) taking the EMT (FS 2271) class must satisfy a reading test and writing essay in order to qualify for college credit. These assessments are administered through the College of DuPage.  Any student with an ACT score of 20 or SAT of 950 or higher satisfies both the reading and writing compass test requirement.  Additionally, any student who has successfully completed the EMR class with an 80% or above, automatically satisfies the reading and writing pre-requisite for FS 2271 at College of DuPage.


    In order for students to be eligible to take the EMT licensing exam, the student must maintain an 80% academic average, successfully complete required clinical time, successfully pass all required skills, and miss no more than 20 days of EMT classroom instruction at TCD.  The student must pay a $75 fee on-line to take the National Registry EMT Licensing Exam; or a $45 fee to take the State Exam.

    Academic Readiness

    Mathematics:  Algebra skills (integrated –examples include friction loss calculations and drug dosaging/drip calculations).

    Reading/Writing: Reading for comprehension and narrative writing are key players for student success. Students complete several writing assignments, integrated into the curriculum (examples include patient care reports, fire reports, and research writing)

    Attendance:Students are evaluated on attendance considering the number of skill sets that must be mastered to successfully complete the program.

    Professional Skills

    Fire Science Technology students are also expected to effectively display the following attributes:

    Students work in squads, and are guided in leadership, time management, team building, and critical thinking skills, which are important for success in this career path.  Students who possess a strong personal desire to pursue this career path generally do well, and report experiencing a high level of personal accomplishment and satisfaction.

    Students are prepared to accomplish the following specific skill sets: basic firefighting operations, rescue, command and communications, (written and radio), scene size-up and safety, CPR, and emergency medical assessments and treatment.