Surgical Technology Degree

Surgical Technology at Harper College

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  • Surgical Technologist

Prepare for a career in surgical technology with this 62-credit-hour degree program. Working closely with surgeons, surgical technologists provide ensure that the operating room is fully prepared with surgical instruments, properly functioning equipment and environmental conditions that maximize patient safety.

Take classes in human anatomy, medical terminology, human physiology, surgical pharmacology, surgical procedures, clinical applications and more. Students learn in Harper's new state-of-the-art Simulation Hospital.

This is a limited-enrollment program. Please review this program's admission criteria and process (see below).

AAS degree program requirements

This 62 credit-hour curriculum prepares the student for a career as a Surgical Technologist. Surgical technologists are integral members of the healthcare team, providing surgical care to patients in a variety of settings such as operating rooms and outpatient surgical centers. The surgical technologist works directly under the supervision of the surgeon during invasive surgical procedures to ensure that the operating room environment is fully prepared with surgical instruments, properly functioning equipment and environmental conditions that maximize patient safety.

Students will engage in clinical experiences built upon didactic instruction in healthcare sciences, technological sciences, patient care concepts, and surgical procedures. Because of the nature of clinical experiences, individualized instruction, and specialized technology/equipment, this program assesses a higher tuition rate for courses with the SUR prefix. Tuition for these courses is 200 percent of the standard tuition rate.

Surgical Technology is a limited enrollment program. For admission requirements, please contact the Admissions Outreach Office at 847.925.6700 or visit harpercollege.edu Students who apply for this limited enrollment program are obligated to meet current admission requirements and follow program curriculum as defined at the time of acceptance to the program.

PREREQUISITES:

A grade of C or better in all BIO and HSC courses is required.

Number Course Title Credits Category
BIO 160 1 4 Natural Science

Description: Introduces the anatomy of the human body; the following systems studied either regionally or systemically: integumentary, skeletal, articular, muscular, circulatory, lymphatic, nervous, respiratory, digestive, excretory, endocrine and reproductive. Includes some introductory histology. Specially designed for students in health careers, biology, and physical education. Strongly recommended preparation: One year of high school biology with a grade of C or better taken within the last five years, or BIO 110. (NOTE: Lab science credit.)

Prerequisite: Placement into ENG 101. ENG_Placement_Grid.pdf

ENG 101 3 Communications

Description: Emphasizes the writing of expository prose. Introduction to the critical reading of nonfiction prose. IAI C1 900

Prerequisite: ENG 100 with a grade of C or better. Other placement options. ENG_Placement_Grid.pdf ESL students need one of the following options: ESL 073 and ESL 074 with grades of B or better; ESL 073 and ESL 086 with grades of B or better; ESL 073 and ESL 099 with grades of B or better; ESL 073 with required writing placement test score; or ESL 074 with required reading placement test score.

HSC 112 2 Program Requirement

Description: Emphasizes the origin and the basic structure of medical words, including prefixes, suffixes, word roots, combining forms and plurals. Offers pronunciation, spelling, and definition of medical terms based on the body systems approach. Emphasis on rendering a professional vocabulary required for work in the health care field.

Mathematics2 3 Mathematics

FIRST SEMESTER:

A grade of C or better is required in all BIO and SUR courses.

Number Course Title Credits Category
BIO 161 4 Natural Science

Description: Emphasizes physiological principles at the molecular, cellular, tissue, organ and system level, as they pertain to the human organism. The following systems are studied in detail: skeletal, muscular, circulatory, nervous, digestive, respiratory, urinary, reproductive and endocrine. In this course, special applications will be made to meet the needs of students in health careers, biology and physical education.(NOTE: Lab science credit.)

Prerequisite: BIO 160 with a grade of C or better, or consent of instructor.

SPE 101 3 Communications

Description: Theory and practice of oral communications. Development of poise, confidence and skill in speech organization and delivery. Emphasis on frequent speaking, development of standards of criticism and selection and organization of material. IAI C2 900

SUR 100 1 Program Requirement

Description: Introduces the student to the role of the surgical technologist and the professional practice of surgical technology. Emphasizes professionalism, organizations, credentialing and employability skills such as effective communication and teamwork. Students will investigate ethical, moral and legal issues, and hazard preparations, risk management and organizational relationships within the healthcare facility.

Prerequisite: BIO 160 and HSC 112 with grades of C or better and admission to the Surgical Technology degree program.

SUR 101 2 Program Requirement

Description: Introduces basic concepts and skills in pharmacology and anesthesia related to surgical technology. Emphasis is given to classification, indications, interactions and adverse reactions of commonly used medications. Terminology, abbreviations, dosage calculation, and weights and measures associated with medication administration are presented. Students are also exposed to the principles of anesthesia administration and the biopsychosocial needs of the patient.

Prerequisite: BIO 160 and HSC 112 with grades of C or better, and admission to the Surgical Technology degree program.

SUR 110 3 Program Requirement

Description: Introduces the primary responsibilities of a sterile processing technician. Emphasizes preparation, distribution and storage of instruments, supplies and equipment; quality assurance; and inventory management. Teaches students how to minimize contagions and maintain healthy hospitals, while enforcing decontamination standards in a variety of clinical settings.

Prerequisite: BIO 160 and HSC 112 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 111

SUR 111 1 Program Requirement

Description: Provides supervised lab training applying the primary responsibilities of a sterile processing technician. Emphasizes preparation, distribution and storage of instruments, supplies and equipment; quality assurance; and inventory management. Teaches students how to minimize contagions and maintain healthy hospitals, while enforcing decontamination standards in a variety of clinical settings.

Prerequisite: BIO 160 and HSC 112 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 110

SECOND SEMESTER:

A grade of C or better is required in all SUR courses.

Number Course Title Credits Category
SUR 102 4 Program Requirement

Description: Presents fundamental principles and skills necessary for use of aseptic technique in surgical technology. Emphasizes the role of the surgical technologist including scrubbing and circulating duties, safety, ethical and legal considerations. Instrumentation for surgical procedures, equipment sterilization and maintenance are included in the course as well as pre-operative, intra-operative and post-operative preparations, and activities of the surgical technologist.

Prerequisite: BIO 161, SUR 100 and SUR 101 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 103

SUR 103 2 Program Requirement

Description: Applies knowledge gained in didactic coursework within SUR 102 (Fundamentals of Surgical Technology.) Students will apply theoretical knowledge in the performance of tasks performed by surgical technologists in perioperative care. Emphasizes equipment sterilization, maintenance, pre-operative preparations and the activities of the surgical technologist.

Prerequisite: SUR 100 and SUR 101 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 102

SUR 104 4 Program Requirement

Description: Introduces relevant anatomy and physiology, factors unique to surgical procedures, supplies, equipment and instrumentation needed for various surgical procedures. Content covers general, obstetric, gynecological and genitourinary surgical procedures. Focuses on perioperative care including diagnostic testing, pre-operative and immediate post-operative care.

Prerequisite: SUR 100 and SUR 101 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 105

SUR 105 2 Program Requirement

Description: Applies the principles and practice of basic surgical procedures during clinical rotations in affiliated hospitals. Focuses on knowledge, skills and professionalism necessary for perioperative case management, with an emphasis on the role of the circulator. Students will also encounter ethical, moral, legal and risk management issues as well as organization and relationships within the healthcare facility.

Prerequisite: SUR 100 and SUR 101 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 104

THIRD SEMESTER:

A grade of C or better is required in all SUR courses.

Number Course Title Credits Category
SUR 201 6 Program Requirement

Description: Examines advanced surgical procedures in relation to the physiological aspects of surgical intervention including ophthalmic; ear, nose and throat; oral and maxillofacial; plastic and orthopedic procedures. Focuses on knowledge of the involved anatomy, existing pathology, surgical hazards encountered, and a review of perioperative patient care.

Prerequisite: SUR 104 and SUR 105 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 202

SUR 202 5 Program Requirement

Description: Correlates the principles and practices of advanced surgical procedures to clinical performance in affiliating hospitals. Focuses knowledge, skills and professionalism necessary for successful implementation of safe patient care in an operating room. Students will encounter surgical procedures in otorhinolaryngology, orthopedics, oral and maxillofacial, ophthalmic, plastic and reconstructive surgery.

Prerequisite: SUR 104 and SUR 105 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 201

FOURTH SEMESTER:

A grade of C or better is required in all SUR courses.

Number Course Title Credits Category
SUR 203 4 Program Requirement

Description: Examines specialized surgical procedures related to peripheral vascular, thoracic, cardiac and neurosurgery. Includes knowledge of the involved anatomy, existing pathology, surgical hazards encountered, and a review of perioperative patient care.

Prerequisite: SUR 201 and SUR 202 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 204

SUR 204 6 Program Requirement

Description: Applies all knowledge learned while assisting the surgical team with the daily pre-operative and post-operative duties of a surgical technologist. Students will progress through increasingly complex first and second scrubbing surgical procedures as they move toward entry-level surgical technologist abilities.

Prerequisite: SUR 201 and SUR 202 with grades of C or better.

Corequisite: SUR 203

Humanities or Social and Behavioral Science+ 3 Humanities or Social and Behavioral Science

1 - Must be completed no earlier than five years prior to beginning the Surgical Technology program.

2 - MTH 101, MTH 103 or higher.

+ - Students need to choose a course to meet this requirement that also fulfills the World Cultures and Diversity graduation requirement. See full list of AAS General Education Electives.

Program learning outcomes

At the conclusion of the Surgical Technology program, the student will be able to:

  • Maintain an operating room environment that is consistent with aseptic standards and patient safety;
  • Describe and demonstrate the professional characteristics of the surgical technologist;
  • Analyze the principles of anesthesia administration and the proper use of medications and solutions within the surgical setting;
  • Identify appropriate pre- and post-operative surgical techniques involving general, obstetric, gynecological and genitourinary procedures;
  • Successfully engage in perioperative case management;
  • Perform the required duties of the Assistant Circulator role;
  • Identify appropriate pre- and post-operative surgical interventions that include ear, nose, throat, oral/maxillofacial, plastic and orthopedic procedures;
  • Identify appropriate pre- and post-operative surgical interventions for specialized procedures such as peripheral vascular, cardiac and neurosurgery.

Admission criteria and process

This program has selective admission requirements. Information provided on this page is subject to change.

Status Start Term Application Window
Open Fall 2018 (August 2018) Oct. 1, 2017–Aug. 10, 2018

Steps to prepare for application to this limited enrollment program:

  1. Attend an upcoming Surgical Technology Information Session
  2. Review Program and Policy Information
  3. Learn about Admission Requirements
  4. Apply

3 reasons a surgical technology career works for you

1) Surgical Technologists are allied health professionals who are an integral part of a team of medical practitioners, providing surgical care to patients. In 2021, all surgical technologists will need a degree credential to meet industry standards. 

2) They are in high demand and earn $40,000 to $45,000 a year.

3) You can choose to work in a variety of settings from hospitals and in-office surgery centers. And surgical technologists are needed in every city and region of the U.S. You can transfer your skills nationwide.

BONUS According to Forbes Magazine, "Most people think you need years of advanced schooling at the highest levels to work in an operating room. But here is a field that prepares people for critical roles in the operating room – helping people when they are at their most helpless."

Harper College prepares you for success

  • Get hands-on experience in a protected environment when you practice in the Simulation Hospital lab.
  • Gain real life experience through clinical assignments.
  • Work with expert, experienced faculty.

Our two-year degree program includes a balance of both classroom and clinical instruction. Onsite learning labs provide you with a state-of-the-art learning environment that prepares you for a variety of clinical settings. 

Resources

Next steps

For more information about this program, contact Admission Outreach at 847.925.6700, or submit a request information form. You can also apply online.