Skip to content
Phone 800-985-7215 800-985-7215
(888) 905 1161 (888) 905 1161

Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Care Online

Finish your bachelor's degree quickly and affordably online while developing the advanced clinical practice attributes necessary for career advancement as a respiratory therapist.

01/02/24 Next Application Due Date
01/08/24 Start Classes
Now lower tuition to make your undergraduate journey even more affordable! $275 per credit hour with Path to Success Scholarship*

Program Overview

Read about our online B.S. in Respiratory Care program

$275 Per Credit Hour*
As few as 12 months Program Duration
30 Credit Hours

The Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Care (BSRC) online program from Northern Kentucky University, one of fewer than 20 bachelor's-level accredited degree advancement programs in the U.S., is designed for the Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) professional with an associate degree in respiratory care. This online program enables you to advance your credentials as a respiratory care practitioner, keeping up with evolving industry trends and increasing your earnings potential. The American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) has set a goal for 80% of respiratory therapists to have, or be working toward, a bachelor's degree by 2020.

In this unique bachelor's degree online program, you will enhance your foundational skills in healthcare research and management, health informatics, pathophysiology, and advanced critical care. The curriculum features research-based capstone courses tailored to a focus area of your choice and pertinent to your worksite.

In this online B.S. in Respiratory Care program, the overarching goal consistent with CoARC standards is to "provide graduates of entry into respiratory care professional practice degree programs with additional knowledge, skills, and attributes in leadership, management, education, research, or advanced clinical practice both to meet their current professional goals and to prepare them for practice as advanced degree respiratory therapists." This goal is met by having students meet the following programmatic student learning outcomes:

  • Professional Attributes:
    Students will demonstrate a high level of responsibility, ethical practice and behavior, awareness and responsiveness to diversity, and strict adherence to legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Interpersonal and Inter-professional Communication:
    Students will demonstrate the ability to communicate, at the appropriate level, with patients, families, the public, and healthcare professionals in both written and oral forms.
  • Practice-based Research:
    Students will demonstrate an ability to produce evidence-based research in their area of professional interest.
  • Professional Leadership:
    Students will demonstrate, in an effective and ethical manner, the ability to lead a group of professionals promoting best practices and patient advocacy.

Credit for prior learning acknowledges your experiences and can save you time and money on your degree.

You might be closer to graduation than you think!

Have questions or need more information about our online programs?


Discover the value of our low-cost tuition

The BSRC online program offers the same affordable, pay-by-the-course tuition to in-state and out-of-state students. All fees are included in the total tuition cost. Financial aid may be available for those who qualify.

Tuition breakdown:

$275 Per Credit Hour*
$8,730 Total Tuition

View full tuition breakdown

Program Per Credit Hour University Fee Per Credit Hour Total Program with Fee
BSRC $475 $16 $14,730
Program with Path to Success Scholarship and Locked-In Tuition* $8,730

*Tuition shown is for the 30 credit hour program and does not include any additional courses that may be needed to meet the requirements for a bachelor's degree, such as general education.

*The Path to Success Scholarship with Tuition Lock is available to first-time NKU OnlineA students only; existing students may not participate. The Scholarship is comprised of savings off the original price of $475, for a $275 per-credit-hour tuition rate, bringing the total cost to $291 per credit hour, including the activity fee. The Scholarship cannot be combined with any other offer and is not available for the RN to BSN online program. Students who step out of the program for more than a year (thus requiring a new application) will no longer receive the $275 tuition lock; instead, they must pay the tuition or scholarship rate available at the time of new enrollment. Excludes some program-specific fees that will be divided and assessed by credit hour based on the number of hours taken.

Tuition and fees subject to change at any time.

COARC logo

The Bachelor of Science Respiratory Care Degree Advancement Program (CoARC program number 510011), at Northern Kentucky University in Highland Heights KY holds Provisional Accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (, until continuing accreditation has been awarded.


Add these key dates to your calendar

The BSRC is delivered in a convenient online format, with 7-week courses that start six times a year. View the calendar to find the best start date for you and be sure to note corresponding deadlines.

Now Enrolling:

01/02/24 Apply By
01/08/24 Start Classes

View full calendar

Session Program Start Date Application Deadline Document Deadline Registration Deadline Tuition Deadline Last Class Day
Summer 1 05/08/2023 04/26/2023 05/01/2023 05/04/2023 05/08/2023 06/23/2023
Summer 2 06/26/2023 06/14/2023 06/19/2023 06/22/2023 06/26/2023 08/11/2023
Fall 1 08/21/2023 08/09/2023 08/14/2023 08/18/2023 08/21/2023 10/06/2023
Fall 2 10/18/2023 10/05/2023 10/10/2023 10/13/2023 10/18/2023 12/08/2023
Spring 1 01/08/2024 01/02/2024 01/04/2024 01/05/2024 01/08/2024 02/23/202$
Spring 2 03/11/2024 02/29/2024 03/04/2024 03/08/2024 03/11/2024 04/26/2024

Ready to take the next step toward earning your degree online from Northern Kentucky University?


See how to apply for a bachelor's in respiratory care

The admission process is the first step toward earning your BSRC online from NKU. Requirements for admission include:

Official transcripts of all coursework from accredited institutions
Associate degree from a CoARC-approved respiratory care program
Minimum 2.5 GPA on cumulative undergraduate coursework

View full admission requirements

BSRC Online Admission Requirements

  • Complete online application and pay $40 non-refundable application fee
    • If you are an NKU alumni or active/veteran military member, your application fee will be waived
  • Current Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) credential from The National Board for Respiratory Care (NBRC)
  • Associate degree from a CoARC-approved respiratory care program
  • Minimum 2.5 GPA

Applicants must meet all eligibility requirements for admission into NKU (refer to current NKU catalog); in addition to the program curriculum, students must meet the university Foundation of Knowledge requirements. All academic work must be evaluated by the NKU Admissions Office and the Respiratory Care Program Director.

Official documents may be mailed or emailed to:

Northern Kentucky University
Office of Admissions
Lucas Administrative Center
400 Nunn Drive
Highland Heights, KY 41099

[email protected]

Have a question? Call us at 800-985-7215.


Take a look at the online curriculum for the respiratory care bachelor's program

For the BSRC online program, you must complete the required core courses (30 credit hours) as well as general education courses for a total of 120 credit hours. The 120 hours may come from a combination of previous transfer credits (from an associate degree) and/or general education courses completed as corequisites with the online core courses. All courses are seven weeks in length.

Expand All [+]

Students must take the following courses:

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Basic applied management functions in the healthcare setting; personnel and patient scheduling; purchasing procedures; budget and quality improvement process; organization relationships and authority.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

This course is an overview of the research process for healthcare professions; historical development of research in healthcare; role of research in scientific advancement of healthcare; development of ability to critique clinical healthcare studies.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

This course covers advanced respiratory critical care skills including, but not limited to: advanced mechanical ventilation, invasive and noninvasive airway management, waveform analysis and application, critical care procedures and diagnostics, medical critical care issues, and traumatic critical care issues.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

This course is an introduction to concepts and trends in the health informatics field, both locally and nationally. Several areas will be introduced that will provide baseline knowledge for a health informaticist.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Focus on competencies for RRT practicing in the critical care setting; administration of specialty gases, advanced airway management and ventilation techniques; recognition of mechanisms of respiratory failure; end of life care; disaster preparation; anticipation of care based on pharmacologic agents, and other diagnostic procedures.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Concepts and applications related to advanced assessment procedures for patients with respiratory impairment; pulmonary rehabilitation, home healthcare, health assessment, smoking cessation, and health behavior and promotion.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Characteristics and learning styles of diverse populations of healthcare learners are examined. A variety of teaching methods that can be utilized by healthcare providers to promote optimal learning in different education settings including the online environment are presented and analyzed.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students will review the delivery of healthcare to chronically ill patients with lung and heart disorders with emphasis on respiratory care; patient case reviews will utilize a multidisciplinary approach to case management and responsibilities unique to the respiratory therapist.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 1.5 (Repeatable for total of 3)

This course includes experiences in a chosen focus area (clinical, education, administrative, or population-based). This experience will culminate in a capstone project in the form of research or other scholarly activity that articulates the design, organization, statistics, and data analysis used; includes an oral and written presentation of the project.

Students must choose one of the following:

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Role of the older adult in society; promotion of health, support of continued learning, right to peaceful death. Theories of aging and ethical/legal concepts. Includes experiences with the older adult in the community, acute and long-term care settings.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Discussion and research related to current issues and problems related to health care professions.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

An overview of the U.S. healthcare system, both past and present, coupled with an in-depth analysis of modern trends and those expected in the future; Evaluation of the current status of our healthcare system with emphasis on cultural diversity and competency.

Duration: 7 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

This course discusses the core to every organization-its people. Specific focus on interface between humans and organizations, ethical and legal responsibilities, attracting, developing, and retaining organizational members with competencies for success in global, virtual, diverse, and innovative organizations. Other themes: leader’s role in championing continuous learning/development, forming psychological contracts.

Request Information
*All fields required.
or call 800-985-7215 800-985-7215
By submitting this form, I am providing my digital signature agreeing that Northern Kentucky University (NKU) may email me or contact me regarding educational services by telephone and/or text message utilizing automated technology or a pre-recorded message at the telephone number(s) provided above. I understand this consent is not a condition to attend NKU or to purchase any other goods or services.