Explore Online Surgical Tech Programs

Surgical technologists, or surgical techs, are an important part of the surgical team. They have very specific training in human physiology, medical technology, and surgical procedures. They assist other members of the team, in particular surgeons, and maintain the operating room. They work with patients, transporting them and prepping them for operations. It is a job with a lot of room for advancement and expansion of skills. It requires a unique educational background. There are many programs available at technical schools, community colleges, four-year colleges, and universities. If you are already working or donít know how you will pay for your education, you might consider exploring online surgical tech programs as well as traditional brick and mortar schools.

Online surgical tech programs have their advantages over traditional campus schools. Online programs, in general, provide students with more flexibility in terms of scheduling. Many classes, and the coursework that accompanies them, are available at all hours and can be completed in your own time. Working students, students with children, or students who have trouble commuting may find this option appealing. Price is another factor that makes online surgical tech programs appealing. The dollars spent per credit for online programs are quite similar, in fact, between online and traditional schools but savings from an online degree result from the fact that courses can be completed remotely, saving students money on transportation, meals, and housing. If you do not need to be on campus, you do not have to live close by. These advantages are offset by some disadvantages. Some students prefer being advised and taught in person as opposed to remotely. They gain comfort and even learn better from the personal touch. Also, some employers are slow to recognize the growing reputation of online schools and their degree holders.

Online surgical tech programs offer the same degrees and certificates as traditional ones. Associateís degrees are offered in surgical tech through a variety of educational establishments. These programs generally take around two years to complete. Some schools offer certificates and diplomas in a shorter span of time, as little as nine months, but these are usually open to people who already have a degree in a related field. Surgical techs can receives a designation of CST (certified surgical technologist) by following a prescribed educational path, gaining appropriate work experience, and passing a national exam. Employers favor CST holders because of the imprimatur of competence and quality the designation confers. Most certificate and degree programs help their graduates earn CSTs, but it is something to consider when exploring online surgical tech programs.

Online surgical tech program students will find themselves pursuing a similar course of study to their campus-going counterparts. Students must have a strong knowledge of anatomy and physiology, as surgeons and others will refer to various areas of the body that need to be prepped for surgery. There are also courses in medical terminology so that surgical technologists can follow the orders of senior staff regarding prepping and delivering tools. There will also be coursework on procedures that surgical technologists follow. Safety requirements will be covered so that surgical techs can protect their patients and themselves form infection or trauma. Surgical procedures, from incision to suturing, will be given an overview. Other topics, such as pharmacology, may appear in the course list. Even online surgical tech programs include clinical classes. Candidates must travel to hospitals, clinics, or other health institutions to view operations in progress and get their hands on equipment under the supervision of medical professionals and professors.

Last Updated: 05/22/2014