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Respiratory Care

Student with laptop

The Department of Respiratory Care operates two research labs, three teaching labs, and a four-bed sleep lab that is fully accredited to diagnose and treat patients suffering from sleep disorders. Students have access to internationally recognized faculty and the most up-to-date equipment to complement learning and research opportunities.

The master of science in respiratory care (MSRC) graduate will be a leader in acute care, specialty clinics, pulmonary rehabilitation, home care, and academic settings.

 Contact The Graduate College for general questions about getting started with your application, funding your degree, and more.
If you have program-specific questions after reviewing the program details, we encourage you to contact the following:

Graduate Advisor
Dr. Christopher Russian
Willow Hall (WILW), Room 214

“The Respiratory Care faculty are truly excited about offering a post-professional master’s degree to registered respiratory therapists in an effort to advance their knowledge, skills and careers in clinical practice, education, management and research.”

— Dr. Chris Russian, Ph.D., RRT, RRT-NPS, RPSGT, RST

Course Work

The 36-credit-hour non-thesis program consists of a core curriculum and a concentration in leadership or polysomnography. Students enrolled in the leadership concentration have the option to minor in polysomnography, completing a total of 48 credit hours. The core curriculum focuses on cardiopulmonary physiology, clinical practice guidelines/protocols, research methods/designs, patient education, academic leadership, and diagnostics/therapeutics. The leadership concentration focuses on financial theory, healthcare law, organizational behavior/theory, and financial management while the polysomnography concentration provides advanced study on sleep physiology, instrumentation, sleep staging, and diagnostics/therapeutics. The core and leadership courses are taught online. The polysomnography courses are delivered online and in a hybrid format with the option of face-to-face contact in a sleep clinic and campus laboratory. Full-time, non-minor students can complete the program in four semesters.

Degree Concentration Hours Thesis Option Minor Option
M.S.R.C. Leadership 36 Non-Thesis No minor
M.S.R.C. Leadership 48 Non-Thesis Polysomnography
M.S.R.C. Polysomnography 36 Non-Thesis No minor
Willow Hall building


Online Availability
The majority of the Polysomnography concentration and minor may be offered online while the Leadership concentration is offered completely online. If you are not a Texas resident and will not relocate, please visit the Office of Distance and Extended Learning. International applicants will not be eligible to receive a Form I-20 or DS-2019 for an F-1 or J-1 visa from Texas State and may review the eligibility requirements of enrolling in online programs and contact the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) with questions.

The department owns state-of-the-art equipment to conduct benchtop and clinical research on pulmonary function and mechanics, ventilator assessment, oxygen delivery, asthma management, aerosol deposition and sleep diagnostics.

Program Mission

The mission of the Department of Respiratory Care is directed toward advancing critical-thinking skills, developing competent professionals, and preparing graduates for cardiopulmonary, polysomnography, and leadership roles in various healthcare delivery systems. The curriculum is structured to encourage a lifelong habit of research advancement, continuing education, and professional skill growth. The vision of the Department of Respiratory Care is to produce quality graduates who meet the expectations of the communities of interest served by the program, to establish and maintain an excellent national reputation, and to be a leader in innovative educational endeavors in the profession.

Visit program website ›

Program Faculty

Faculty research interests provide students with a range of expertise. Clinical/technical interests include sleep disorders, ventilator machines, and anatomic flow dynamics of upper airways; other key research areas are more professional in nature, such as leadership and learning styles, best practices in distance education, stress management, and role ambiguity, and evidence-based practice in the clinical settings, helping students achieve a holistic, well-rounded education.

Meet our faculty ›

Career Options

  • faculty member in an academic institution
  • director of clinical education in a respiratory care program
  • program director of a respiratory care program
  • director/manager in a hospital respiratory care department or sleep lab
  • clinical specialist in a healthcare/equipment company
  • research scientist
  • research project manager
  • clinical educator for a hospital or respiratory care company
  • bedside clinician as a respiratory therapist or sleep technologist

Application Process

Step 1

Review Requirements

Application Deadlines

Deadlines U.S. Citizen International
Fall June 15 June 1
Spring October 15 October 1
Summer I April 15 March 15
Summer II No Admission No Admission

Application Deadline
This program has a flexible deadline, which means applications received after the posted deadline may be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis, with no guarantees for admission consideration.

Funding Information
The deadlines to apply for certain types of funding may be earlier than the deadlines above.

Decision Timeline
This program reviews applications on a rolling basis after the priority deadline has passed.

Application Requirements

The items required for admission consideration are listed below. Additional information for applicants with international credentials can be found on our international web pages.


  Review important information about the online application.

Application Fee(s)

  • $55 nonrefundable application fee
  • $90 nonrefundable application fee for applications with international credentials

  Review important information about application fees.

Transcripts & GPA

  • baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited university (U.S. Citizens)
    • International applicants not eligible for the NBRC RRT credential must have a baccalaureate degree in Respiratory Care/Therapy
  • a copy of an official transcript from each institution where course credit was granted
  • minimum 2.75 GPA in your last 60 hours of undergraduate course work (plus any completed graduate courses)

  Review important information about transcripts. Official transcripts, sent directly from your institution, will be required if admission is granted.

GRE Scores

  • GRE not required


  • proof of the RRT national credential administered through the NBRC (U.S. Citizens)
    • International students not eligible for the NBRC credential must complete their country’s credentialing exam, if one exists
  • resume/CV
  • statement of purpose indicating ability and interest in completing the degree program
  • three letters of recommendation from professionals or academics competent to assess your interest in pursuing a career or advancing in the field of study

  Review important information about documents.


Applicants are required to submit TOEFL, PTE, or IELTS scores that meet the minimum program requirements below unless they have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or the equivalent from a country on our exempt countries list.

  • official TOEFL iBT scores required with a 78 overall
  • official PTE scores required with a 52 overall
  • official IELTS (academic) scores required with a 6.5 overall and
    • minimum individual module scores of 6.0

  This program does not offer admission if the scores above are not met.

  Review important information about official test scores.