How to Become an EMT


EMTs, or emergency medical technicians, work in first-response situations including responding to 911 calls, providing basic medical treatments and helping in medical emergencies. Since they’re vital to society, EMTs are always in high demand. Whether you want to become an on-call EMT to assist your community or you want to become a full-time paramedic, these are the steps you’ll need to follow.

Basic Training

First, you will need to complete basic training such as obtaining CPR certification and completing a one- or two-year program through a community college or university. CPR certification is relatively simple to achieve since organizations like the American Red Cross hold classes regularly. The postsecondary EMT education is more involved and includes courses on how to treat and transport patients. For those who can’t attend physical classes, online EMT courses are a great option.


To become a practicing EMT, you will also need to pass an exam to become certified. To take the exam, you will have to first complete the state-approved training program, as previously mentioned. While some states use their own exams, most accept the NREMT exam. You can take the exam through a state office or training site, and you can take the exam up to six times until you pass.

Advanced Training

If you’re interested in becoming a more advanced EMT or a paramedic, there are many options for further education and training. To become a more experienced EMT, you’ll have to do internships in real-life settings like emergency rooms, giving you the option of taking the advanced NREMT exam. You may also want to enroll in an associate degree program to enhance your knowledge of the field. This would be necessary to become a paramedic since paramedics administer more advanced services to patients.

Aspiring to become a certified EMT is an honorable and achievable goal. As long as you undergo the proper training, you’ll soon be confident in your skills and ready to help out your community.

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