Surgical Technology | SKCTC

Surgical Technology

Support doctors and other medical professionals as an operating room technician. You’ll learn to prepare for and assist during surgeries as part of a healthcare team.

What is Surgical Technology?

Surgical Technologists are allied health professionals who are an integral part of the team of medical practitioners providing surgical care to patients in a variety of settings such as medical offices, out-patient clinics and the operating room.

The Surgical Technologist works under medical supervision to facilitate the safe and effective conduct of invasive surgical procedures. This individual works under the supervision of a surgeon to ensure that the operating room environment is safe, that equipment functions properly, and that the operative procedure is conducted under conditions that maximize patient safety.

Apply for the Surgical Technology Program

What are my career choices?

The surgical technologist works under medical supervision to facilitate the safe and effective conduct of invasive surgical procedures. This individual works under the supervision of a surgeon to ensure that the operating room environment is safe, that equipment functions properly, and that the operative procedure is conducted under conditions that maximize patient safety.

What are my degree, diploma, or certificate options?

Degrees and Transfer

  • Associate of Applied Science in Surgical Technology
  • Diploma: Surgical Technologist

Program information

A Surgical Technologist possess expertise in the theory and application of sterile and aseptic techniques and combines the knowledge of human anatomy, surgical procedures, and implementation tools and technologies to facilitate a physician's performance of invasive therapeutic and diagnostic procedures.

This program provides clinical experience built upon classroom instruction in the basic sciences, patient care, aseptic techniques and surgical procedures. Students enrolled in the Surgical Technology Program are required to achieve a minimum grade of "C" in each course.

Graduates of programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) are eligible to take the certifying examination offered by the National Board on Certification for Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA).

To be considered by the Selective Admissions Committee the following information is needed:

  • Students must be at least 17 years of age.
  • Students must
    provide verification of High School Diploma or its’ equivalent.
  • Application to SKCTC.
  • Application to Surgical Technology Program.
  • High School transcript or GED score report.
  • ACT, SAT, or college entrance exam scores.
  • Transcripts of all post-secondary education/training.
  • Meeting with Surgical Technology faculty for advising.
  • All prerequisites courses must be completed with a
    grade of “C” or greater.
  • Meet selective admissions committee requirements.
  • Attend one pre-admission conference each selective
    cycle.
  • Submit all requested documents as outlined in the Pre-Admission Conference/Open House by May 1st.

Note: CPR for Healthcare Provider with AED training course must be obtained prior to enrolling in the first Surgical Technology practicum course. Certification must be kept current throughout the Program.

The Surgical Technology program is a selective admissions program that is professionally accredited. The program prepares you to be part of a team of medical practitioners providing surgical care to patients in a variety of settings. The program provides clinical experience that builds on classroom instruction in science, patient care, aseptic techniques, and surgical procedures. Students who complete the program are eligible to take the certifying exam offered by the National Board Certification for Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. Use the contact info on this page to learn more. 

ARC/STSA OUTCOMES ASSESSMENT EXAM (OAE) PASS-RATE FOR SKCTC SURGICAL TECHNOLOGY

As part of being an accredited program thru Accreditation Review Council on Education in Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting, all accredited programs must publish the ARC/STSA approved Outcomes Assessment Exam (OAE) pass-rate from the program's Annual Report.

Licensure Pass Rate​:
 
Year Pass Rate

# of students passed/

total # of students

Class of 2018 57% 4/7
Class of 2017 100% 8/8
Class of 2016 90.9% 10/11
Class of 2015 81.8% 9/11
Class of 2014 60% 6/10

Attending a Pre-Admission Conference is part of the selective admissions process. Upcoming dates are to be determined.

General Education

  • BIO 137 Human Anatomy & Physiology I - 4 credits
  • BIO 139 Human Anatomy & Physiology II - 4 credits
  • ENG 101 Writing I - 3 credits
  • Quantitative Reasoning Course: MAT 110 or Higher - 3 credits
  • Social/Behavioral Sciences - 3 credits
  • Heritage/Humanities - 3 credits
  • Subtotal: 20 credits

Technical Courses

  • Digital Literacy (0-3 credits)
  • CLA 131 Medical Terminology from Greek & Latin (3 credits), OR AHS 115 Medical Terminology (3 credits), OR MIT 103 Medical Office Terminology (3 credits)
  • SUR 100 Surgical Technology Fundamentals/Theory (12 credits), OR SUR 109 Introduction to Surgical Technology (3 credits) AND SUR 110 Surgical Technology Fundamentals (9 credits)
  • BIO 225 Medical Microbiology (4 credits), OR BIO 226 Principles of Microbiology (3 credits), OR BIO 118 Microbes and Society (3 credits)
  • SUR 102 Surgical Technology Fundamentals Lab (3 credits)
  • SUR 202 Surgical Technology Advanced Theory (11 credits)
  • A total of 10 credit hours must be completed from the following practicum courses:
    • SUR 125 Surgical Technology Skills Practicum I (2-3 credits)
    • SUR 201 Surgical Technology Skills Practicum II (6-7 credits)
    • SUR 275 Surgical Technology Advanced Clinical Practicum (2 credits)
  • Subtotal: 42-46 credits
  • Total Credits: 62-66

Elective(s)

  • SUR 270 Pathophysiology for Surgical Technology (2 credits), OR MAI 200 Pathophysiology for Medical Assistants (3 credits)
  • BAS 120 Personal Finance (3 credits)
  • MNA 100 Medicaid Nurse Aide (3 credits), OR NAA 100 Nursing Assistant Skills I (3 credits)

Note

  • CPR certificate must be obtained prior to enrolling in the first Surgical Technology skills practicum course and must remain current throughout the Surgical Technology Program.
  • Digital literacy must be demonstrated either by competency exam or by completing a digital literacy course.

General Education

  • ENG 101 Writing I (3 credits)
  • BIO 135 Basic Anatomy & Physiology with Lab (4 credits), OR BIO 137 Human Anatomy & Physiology I (4 credits) AND BIO 139 Human Anatomy & Physiology II (4 credits)
  • Subtotal: 7-11 credits

Technical Courses

  • Digital Literacy (0-3 credits)
  • CLA 131 Medical Terminology from Greek & Latin (3 credits), OR AHS 115 Medical Terminology (3 credits), OR MIT 103 Medical Office Terminology (3 credits)
  • SUR 100 Surgical Technology Fundamentals/Theory (12 credits), OR SUR 109 Introduction to Surgical Technology (3 credits) AND SUR 110 Surgical Technology Fundamentals (9 credits)
  • BIO 225 Medical Microbiology (4 credits), OR BIO 226 Principles of Microbiology (3 credits), OR BIO 118 Microbes and Society (3 credits)
  • SUR 102 Surgical Technology Fundamentals Lab (3 credits)
  • SUR 202 Surgical Technology Advanced Theory (11 credits)
  • A total of 10 credit hours must be completed from the following practicum courses:
    • SUR 125 Surgical Technology Skills Practicum I (2-3 credits)
    • SUR 201 Surgical Technology Skills Practicum II (6-7 credits)
    • SUR 275 Surgical Technology Advanced Clinical Practicum (2 credits)
  • Subtotal: 42-46
  • Total Credits: 49-57

Electives

  • SUR 270 Pathophysiology for the Surgical Technologist (2 credits), OR MAI 200 Pathophysiology for the Medical Assistant (3 credits)
  • BAS 120 Personal Finance (3 credits)
  • MNA 100 Medicaid Nurse Aide (3 credits), OR NAA 100 Nursing Assistant Skills I (3 credits)

Note

  • CPR certificate must be obtained prior to enrolling in the first Surgical Technology course and certification must be kept current throughout the Program.
  • Digital literacy must be demonstrated either by competency exam or by completing a digital literacy course.
  • Students successfully completing SUR 109 and SUR 110 are not required to take a microbiology course for the diploma option. 

You can earn an associate in applied science degree in two years if you maintain full-time status.

This information should not be considered a substitute for the KCTCS Catalog. You should always choose classes in cooperation with your faculty advisor to ensure that you meet all degree requirements.

Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) - 9355 - 113th St. N, #7709, Seminole, FL  33775, (727) 210-2350

Accreditation Review Council on Education in Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (ARC/STSA) - 6 West Dry Creek Circle, Suite 110, Littleton, CO 80120, (303) 694-9262

National Board of Surgical Technologists and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) - 6 West Dry Creek Circle, Suite 100, Littleton, CO 80120, (800) 707-0057

Association of Surgical Technologists (AST) - 6 West Dry Creek Circle, Suite 200, Littleton CO, 80120,  (800) 637-7433

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ About the Surgical Technology Profession

Before a surgical procedure, the surgical technologist (ST) is responsible for ensuring all needed equipment and supplies for the specific procedure are available and ready for use by the surgeon. This includes testing and preparing equipment for use, ensuring the availability of all sterile supplies, and preparing the sterile environment so a surgical procedure can take place.

During a surgical procedure, and as a sterile surgical team member, one of the surgical technologist’s main responsibilities is to pass sterile instruments and supplies to the surgeon. This requires complete knowledge of the surgical procedure being performed and anticipation of the needs of the surgical team. The ST also assumes accountability, along with registered nurse, for all sponges, needles, and instruments used before, during, and after the procedure.

In addition, the ST may hold retractors, cut sutures, care for specimens, and assist in applying the sterile dressing. Surgical technologists must have good manual dexterity, be conscientious in a sterile environment, be emotionally stable, and have the ability to communicate effectively on many levels, including one-on-one and team interactions.

Because every little detail matters in the OR, not only do surgical technologists need to understand the surgical procedure being performed, they also need to anticipate both the patient’s and surgeon’s needs to ensure that each maneuver is performed as smoothly as possible. Knowledge of Surgical Anatomy and Physiology allows the ST to comprehend the surgical procedures. Infection Control practices such as Sterilization and Disinfection, and Aseptic Technique, are based on lessons in Microbiology. In order to ensure the safety of the patient, the student also studies surgical Pharmacology so as to assist the surgeon with medication administration. 

An ST can work in hospital operating rooms, ambulatory surgery centers, sterile processing departments, tissue banks, and private work with physician groups. 

A typical day for an ST starts at 7:00 a.m.* The ST and the nurse are assigned to a single operating room where a wide variety of surgical procedures may be scheduled. One day, for example, a patient may need their tonsils removed; another may arrive with a broken arm; later the Surgical Team may assist with the use of robots to remove a tumor from the lung.

*Shift start times vary

Surgery is a dynamic task in which the surgeon relies on well‐trained personnel to ensure everything is ready for the patient. Surgical technologists are an integral part of the operating room team and a have a tremendous impact on patient care and surgical procedures. Additionally, this is a satisfying, fun, interesting, and, at‐times stressful profession that offers job security and mobility. 

FAQ About the Surgical Technology program at SKCTC

The Surgical Technology program courses are ten-months, beginning every fall semester. Fall semester is from mid‐August to mid-December. Spring semester is from mid-January to the second week of May. Summer semester is from mid-May through the first week of June.

All semesters of the program meet Monday through Friday. Hours vary, but are usually 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Fall and spring courses consist of lectures, labs, and clinical rotations. The summer course consists strictly of clinical rotations.

Students are taught skills in the lab to prepare for clinical rotations. Examples include:  

  • Scrubbing hands & arms and putting on sterile gowns & gloves
  • Passing instruments and equipment
  • Handling supplies and medications
  • And much more.

During all clinical rotations, students perform actual surgical procedures alongside  surgeons.

The SKCTC Surgical Technology program complies with the “Surgical Rotation Requirements” established by the Association of Surgical Technologists (AST) Core Curriculum, sixth edition.

Students can expect to study 2 to 3 hours every day outside of class time.

The SKCTC Surgical Technology program offers an associate degree in Applied Science (AAS-ST). The pre-requisites include:

  • Human Anatomy I & II with a lab
  • English
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Medical Terminology
  • Microbiology
  • Digital Literacy
  • Heritage/Humanities
  • Social/Behavioral Science

*A more specific listing can be found in the KCTCS Course Catalog or discussed with an advisor.

In the selective-admission pool, applicants who have met all the prerequisites and earned a minimum grade of a “C” and maintained a minimum 2.0 GPA will be considered. Only complete applications will be accepted. 

We take no more students than we have hospital sites for training, usually 16. The remaining applicants will be added to an alternate list. 

Fees are subject to change. Students can expect to pay approximately $7,000 in tuition, fees, books, supplies, and certification exam fees.

Of course, the SKCTC Surgical Technology program is eligible for financial aid, grants, and scholarships. If you are eligible, the Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship will cover your tuition.

A male admissions advisor assits a male student.

 

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Applications are accepted up until May 1st of every year. Acceptance letters are sent at the beginning of June. 

Complete the online application today.

Based on the report published in 2020 from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for the Eastern Kentucky region, the median annual surgical technologist’s salary was $38,770 with the top 10% earning an average of $52,240 per year. 

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Program Contact

Rebecca Lawson

Surgical Technology

Program Coordinator

606-248-2117

rlawson0001@kctcs.edu