Bachelor of Science in Emergency Health Sciences

Paramedics who have earned a paramedic certificate may choose to continue their education to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Emergency Health Sciences (EHS) offered by the Department of Emergency Health Sciences. This degree is only offered as an online program.  The baccalaureate degree offers additional opportunities in the field of out-of-hospital emergency health care in administration, teaching, or advanced level practice.

The objective of the baccalaureate program is to broaden the knowledge base and professional skills of emergency medical services (EMS) professionals who wish to pursue a degree that will help enable them to fulfill an advanced leadership role within the community. Additionally it will help provide them with an enhanced capability to facilitate in the delivery of EMS and emergency/community health services. The EHS degree provides graduates an opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to assume positions of responsibility in the Emergency Medical Services profession to political entities, educational institutions, and private enterprises. Generally, the EHS degree program provides graduates with information on how to manage and direct EMS organizations, deliver educational and regulatory information to varied communities of interest and students.  Additionally it may satisfy disaster management/planning requirements for municipalities as emergency managers.

All of the Emergency Health Sciences degrees help the graduate assume broader positions of responsibility in a variety of health care, research, business, community/educational settings, and to adapt to new rules precipitated by a changing health care delivery environment.

Admissions Requirements

Interested applicants should consult the department website for the most current modifications to these requirements, deadlines, and upcoming programs.

All applicants must meet the basic requirements for admission to the Department of Emergency Health Sciences. Admission to any EHS program does not guarantee eligibility for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians or certification by Texas Department of State Health Services.  

All application materials must be received by the Office of the University Registrar by the application deadlines listed below. Applicants are encouraged to seek advisement from the School of Health Professions Office of Admissions and Special Programs. 

Application Deadlines:

For B.S. in EHS Program:

    June 1 for August enrollment  (Fall semester, preferred)

    November 1 for January enrollment (Spring semester)

    April 1 for May enrollment (Summer semester) 

Applications for certificate and degree programs are reviewed as they are received. 

The B.S. in EHS is a degree completion program and the Health Science Center does not offer general education courses. Texas Core Curriculum courses must be obtained from other regionally accredited institutions.

Students are allowed to co-enroll in the program while working to complete Texas Core requirements but must have 70% of core complete including one English, Math and Science course for acceptance. Students must have all Texas Core courses completed no later than their enrollment for the final semester in the B.S. in EHS program.

  • English Composition I & II, 6 semester credit hours
  • U.S. History I and U.S. History II, 6 semester credit hours
  • Texas State & Local Government & U.S Government, 6 semester credit hours
  • Any Philosophy, Humanities, or Literature course, 3 semester credit hours
  • Any Creative Arts course in Art, Music, or Drama, 3 semester credit hours
  •  Any Social/Behavioral Science, 3 semester credit hours
  • College Algebra or higher, 3 semester credit hours
  •  Any 3 Science courses with Lab, 12 semester credit hours

​Additional Admission Requirements for the B.S. in EHS:

  • Current EMT-Paramedic Certification
  • Overall GPA of 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Completion of the Texas Common Application
  • Submission of official transcripts from each college and university currently or previously attended.  Applicants who are enrolled in college courses at the time of application should submit an official transcript showing courses in progress.  An updated transcript must be submitted upon completion of the courses.  Note: Transfer credits indicated on another school’s transcript are not accepted in lieu of submitting the original institution record for that coursework. Transcripts from institutions outside the United States must be submitted in the original language and must be accompanied by a NACES Members evaluation agency English translation.
  • International Applicants only: Submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores

Degree Requirements

The Bachelor of Science in Emergency Health Sciences curriculum consists of 124 semester credit hours, including the Texas Core Curriculum, an EMT-Paramedic certificate (minimum of 30 semester credit hours) and 52 semester credit hours of advanced courses completed online through the Health Science Center (the bachelor’s degree program is designed to meet individual students’ educational and career goals). Therefore, in consultation with the program director, the student may create an individualized curriculum of at least 52 semester credit hours in order to graduate.

The Paramedic certificate may be completed at other approved EMS education and training programs/facilities. Texas Core Curriculum courses must be completed at another regionally accredited college or university (see Admission Requirements for specific pre-requisites).

The Bachelor of Science degree is awarded upon the satisfactory completion of prescribed academic programs, recommendation of the Emergency Health Sciences faculty and certification of the candidate by the Dean and President to the Board of Regents. A candidate for graduation must have completed all courses at a satisfactory level and earned a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in the program.  Completion of the total unit requirement with passing grades does not necessarily assure candidates a recommendation for graduation.

Plan of Study (online program)

EMSP 3001Foundations of Emergency Health Sciences3
EMSP 3004Pharmacology 1 for EMS Providers3
EMSP 3006Electrocardiology in Emergency Health Science3
EMSP 3007Human Diseases3
EMSP 3013Professional Orientation and Legal Foundations3
EMSP 3031Directed Study1-4
EMSP 3100Orientation to Online Learning1
EMSP 3041Current Research In Emergency Health Sciences3
EMSP 4001Physical Examination and History Taking3
EMSP 4002Pathophysiology for EMS Providers3
EMSP 4003Flight Medicine3
EMSP 4004Management of Disasters and Hazard Materials3
EMSP 4005EHS Systems Management and Budget3
EMSP 4006Educational Issues in Emergency Health Sciences3
EMSP 4007Human Resource Development3
EMSP 4008Leadership Development3
EMSP 4011Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas3
EMSP 3014Interprofessional Health Care Teams3
EMSP 3015Multicultural Health3
EMSP 4023Mobile Integrated Healthcare Paramedicine3
EMSP 4012Pharmacology 2 for EMS Providers3
EMSP 4021Internship6
Total Credit Hours65-68

Objectives/Program Outcomes

Students graduating from the Department of Emergency Health Sciences program must meet the essential function requirements of the academic program and profession. The program consists of academic study and clinical experience. The student will possess the skills and attributes necessary to perform as a professional before graduation from the program.

Students who graduate from the Emergency Health Sciences programs will be able to:

  • communicate effectively, think critically, and assimilate into their community successfully
  • demonstrate personal behaviors and attitudes consistent with and appropriate to the delivery of out-of-hospital emergency medical care
  • meet the community’s need for advanced life support personnel in a variety of settings
  • work in various occupational settings relating to emergency health services
  • understand theoretical foundations of the profession, and
  • synthesize knowledge from the basic sciences, social sciences, humanities, and pre-hospital emergency science to conceptualize and resolve patient and health care delivery problems

Program Policies

Credit by Exam/Challenge Exam (BS-EHS)

A student may be eligible to earn credit for a course by passing the examination designated and administered by the department. 

The Department of Emergency Health Sciences offers two categories of students the opportunity to obtain academic credit by examination:

  • certified/licensed EMS personnel who completed EMT-Basic and/or Paramedic coursework for non-credit through the Department of EHS; and students admitted to the EHS Bachelor of Science degree program.

Previous professional employment can potentially be accepted for EHS clinical course credit. A student’s work experience will be reviewed on an individual basis by the course directors and the department’s academic team. If the student fails a challenge examination/evaluation, he/she may enroll in and attend the corresponding course only during regularly scheduled course offerings in order to receive credit.

Students who wish to obtain credit by examination should contact the Department of Emergency Health Sciences at (210) 567-8760 [Call: (210) 567-8760] for further information.

Program Costs

In addition to required tuition and fees, there are costs for textbooks, scrubs, and equipment. There are also costs for criminal background checks, immunization, and drug screens (if required by clinical facilities). The full-time clinical fieldwork experiences included in the curriculum may require that students relocate and/or travel outside of San Antonio for the duration of the rotations. Fieldwork expenses will vary according to individual arrangements depending on the cost of travel, temporary housing, maintenance of local accommodations, etc. Students are encouraged to budget for major expenditures that could be associated with these assignments.  Detailed information about program costs can be found on the Department of Emergency Health Sciences website.

Courses

EMSP 3001. Foundations of Emergency Health Sciences. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is an introduction to EMSP. This course surveys the history, evolution, theoretical concepts, and clinical methods and techniques that support the practice of EMSP.

EMSP 3003. Critical Care Medicine. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to provide advanced knowledge in critical care medicine. Topics will include monitoring technology, advanced procedures, diagnostic testing, and treatment of acutely critical patients.

EMSP 3004. Pharmacology 1 for EMS Providers. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to provide the learner with a fundamental knowledge of the actions and therapeutic uses of drugs. The topics covered will include basic principles of drug action, pharmacokinetics, autonomic and cardiovascular pharmacology, neuropharmacology, toxicology, endocrine pharmacology, and respiratory tract pharmacology. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 3006. Electrocardiology in Emergency Health Science. 3 Credit Hours.

A study of the fundamentals of electrocardiology, this course will emphasize the role of the 12-lead ECG in out-of-hospital medical care. The purpose of this course is to teach a systematic-analytical approach to rapid 12-lead interpretation. Topics begin with cardiac anatomy and physiology and progress to the level of recognizing the classic 12-lead and multi-lead ECG patterns. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 3007. Human Diseases. 3 Credit Hours.

This purpose of this course is to provide a foundation in basic disease conditions, pathophysiological process behind major diseases and their causes, definitions of disease, classifications of disease, and descriptions of diseases as they pertain to the emergency health sciences. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 3013. Professional Orientation and Legal Foundations. 3 Credit Hours.

This course provides the student with an overview of the legal foundations for Emergency Medical Services. Topics include concepts of malpractice, litigation, consent and refusal of medical treatment, advanced directives, patient confidentiality, and expert and factual witness preparation.

EMSP 3014. Interprofessional Health Care Teams. 3 Credit Hours.

Healthcare is a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous system involving groups and teams of professionals. In an effort to improve general patient population health, the overall health care experience, and reduce the per capita cost of care, this class will explore relational leadership that promotes interdisciplinarity, interprofessionalism, and productive teamwork. During this course, learners will review theories and rich references while participating in activities and stimulating discussions to think differently about their roles and styles as leaders or members of a team.

EMSP 3015. Multicultural Health. 3 Credit Hours.

Cultural competence is essential to healthcare professionals. Medical professionals interact daily with diverse groups of people. This course will focus on differences in cultural beliefs about health, wellness, illness, and death, as well as cross-cultural health models and effective communications with the goal of developing and evaluating health promotion programs within the community. Learners will participate in online activities, case studies, and activities.

EMSP 3031. Directed Study. 1-4 Credit Hours.

This course is available to the learner to allow for a voluntary course of independent study in a clinical/advanced provider concentration.

EMSP 3041. Current Research In Emergency Health Sciences. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is a seminar designed to encourage the learner to discover research and research trends in the field of EMSP. Basic concepts in research methods will be discussed. The learner will have the opportunity to discover methods, procedures, and ways of analysis for examining research.

EMSP 3100. Orientation to Online Learning. 1 Credit Hour.

A course designed to provide the student with necessary information, tools, and strategies to enhance and facilitate learning at a distance at the Health Science Center.

EMSP 4001. Physical Examination and History Taking. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to assist students in refining history taking, psychosocial assessment, and physical assessment skills. Emphasis is placed on detailed health history taking, differentiation, interpretation, and documentation of normal and abnormal findings. Learners are given the opportunity to study methods for understanding disease processes through proper techniques for eliciting a complete patient history and performing a thorough physical examination. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 4002. Pathophysiology for EMS Providers. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to introduce the student to pathophysiologic concepts related to altered biological processes affecting individuals across the lifespan. It includes basic mechanisms of disease, the immune response, and selected disorders of the following systems: neurologic, endocrine, reproductive, musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, hematologic, respiratory, urinary, and digestive.

EMSP 4003. Flight Medicine. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to provide the learner with general physics of flight as well as the effect that flight has on patients and equipment utilized in patient care. Additionally, general aviation guidelines and safety protocols will be introduced as well as the regulatory structure of flight medicine. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 4004. Management of Disasters and Hazard Materials. 3 Credit Hours.

This course discusses considerations of the theoretical and practical foundations necessary to manage multi-casualty and multi-agency incidents, including planning, response, triage, and scene control. Medical, surgical, mental health, and public health views are discussed along with the resolution phases of disaster.

EMSP 4005. EHS Systems Management and Budget. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to identify and discuss various forms and trends of EHS Systems management. From the volunteer service to the large, urban EHS system, the learner will have the opportunity to become familiar with the various aspects of America's EHS services. Budgeting and financial management skills and understanding necessary to manage emergency health systems will be emphasized.

EMSP 4006. Educational Issues in Emergency Health Sciences. 3 Credit Hours.

This course analyzes educational and training needs relating to EMS agencies. Principles of adult teaching and learning are presented.

EMSP 4007. Human Resource Development. 3 Credit Hours.

This course reviews the policies necessary to ensure that properly prepared and motivated personnel are available to carry out the mission and daily operations of an EMS organization and to gain a scholarly understanding of and familiarity with foundational HRD theory and research. Topics include methods of hiring staff, performance appraisal processes, legal requirements around health and safety, union matters, and sexual harassment in the workplace. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 4008. Leadership Development. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is a study and application of contemporary leadership theories and conceptual, skill-building, feedback, and personal growth approaches for the development of effective organizational leadership behaviors and practices. Open for Cross Enrollment on Space Available basis.

EMSP 4011. Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas. 3 Credit Hours.

Contemporary Ethical Dilemmas in Health Professions with special emphasis on out-of-hospital and EMS medical care. This course provides the knowledge necessary to understand ethical behaviors and decision-making in health care and is an introduction to various ethical-legal issues.

EMSP 4012. Pharmacology 2 for EMS Providers. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is designed to provide a fundamental knowledge of the actions and therapeutic uses of drugs. Topics covered include: fluid and electrolyte balance, bone and joint disorders, nutrition, infectious diseases, and cardiovascular and parasitic diseases. Online course. Note: EMSP 3004 Pharmacology I is not a prerequisite for this course.

EMSP 4021. Internship. 6 Credit Hours.

This course is a semester internship/capstone experience by arrangement.

EMSP 4023. Mobile Integrated Healthcare Paramedicine. 3 Credit Hours.

From managing chronic disease to providing preventive care to coordinating health services, the Mobile Integrated Healthcare Paramedic (MIHP)/Community Paramedic (CP) collaborates with a team of health care professionals to address health problems within their communities, reduce hospital readmissions, prevent unnecessary ambulance transports, and help patients manage their medical needs to achieve the best possible long-term outcome. The MIHP course will consist of lessons developed to equip experienced paramedics with the skills they need to succeed in a Mobile Integrated Healthcare program.