Paramedic Requirements - Southwestern Illinois College

Application Requirements

Materials Needed to Apply

Students must submit an application for the Paramedic program to be considered for admittance.

Applicants must submit the following to the Enrollment Services Office:

1. Paramedic application
  • Applications are available between March 1 and June 1 each year for fall start.
  • Proof of completion of prerequisite courses/licensure/certification:
    • Biology
    • EMS 110 or equivalent
      • Prerequisite courses must have been completed within 10 years of June 1.
      • Grades earned must be at least a “C”. Higher grades earn more points toward application.
      • College course grades supersede high school grades.
      • The most recent grades will be used.Current IL EMT Licensure
    • Current IL EMT Licensure
    • CPR Certificate
  • Pre-Paramedic Admission Exam

Students have documented hours of ride time (500 – 1,000 hours) on an ambulance prior to submitting an application.

2. Official Transcripts

Southwestern Illinois College’s Paramedic program does not offer advanced placement.

3. Test Scores
  • Pre-Paramedic Admission Exam
  • All students must contact Academic Advising ( to determine placement testing needs. SWIC placement testing scores that show eligibility to enroll in ENG 101 and MATH 95. If placement test results are too low, students must complete required developmental courses prior to enrolling in ENG 101, BIOL 105 or MATH 95.

Prepare to Apply

1. Complete prerequisite courses/exams in biology, EMT, IL EMT Licensure and CPR Certification.
2. Fill Out the Planning Guide

Download the Paramedic Planning Guide to find out how to increase your chances of acceptance.

3. Understand that the Application Point System is Based on:
4. Meet with an Academic Advisor or Program Coordinator

Application Selection

Application Point System

Applications for the Paramedic program will be rated on a point system, with points based on:

Notification of Acceptance

Applicants will be notified of their status regarding admission as quickly as possible given the number of applications received, typically in July.

More Candidates than Seats Available

In the event there are more qualified applicants than spaces available in this program, those applicants who reside outside the SWIC district or in a district without a joint agreement for this program will not be eligible for consideration or admission. Resident status is determined by address on file with the Enrollment Services office by April1.

For a list of colleges that have joint agreements with SWIC, view the college catalog and search for Interdistrict Cooperative Agreements.

The admission procedures for the Paramedic program are in accordance with Illinois law. The law requires that programs not having sufficient space and resources to accommodate all applicants will accept those applicants best qualified, using rank, ability and achievement test scores as guides, with preference given to students residing within district. Out-of-district students will be considered as in-district status for this application process if their community college has an Inter-district Cooperative/Career agreement with SWIC. Search the college catalog for Interdistrict Cooperative/Career Agreements to see if your college is listed. To qualify for the application process, the student must submit paperwork from their home district to SWIC Enrollment Services by the application deadline. Contact the secretary of the Board of Trustees at your home district school to get the required paperwork.

Fewer Candidates than Seats Available

In the event that there are fewer qualified candidates than there are spaces available, applications will continue to be accepted until the program’s maximum capacity has been reached or until the first week of classes during the summer semester.

The college reserves the right to fill the program in those years when there are fewer applicants than spaces available by whatever means it deems necessary to assure both academic integrity and fairness in the selection process.

Additional Requirements

The following criteria are required of accepted applicants and all information will be explained in detail by the program coordinator or course instructors.

Orientation & Performance

Applicants accepted into the Paramedic program must attend all required orientation sessions and be able to perform the Paramedic Program Technical Standards with or without reasonable accommodations. Any applicants or enrolled students are encouraged to meet with the Disability & Access Center to discuss potential issues associated with meeting these requirements.


Students should be aware that health insurance is required during clinical education courses. Malpractice insurance is provided by the college through assessment of lab fees.

Graduation Requirements

Applicants admitted to the program must follow the requirements for graduation at the time they are admitted and must meet all course, program, degree and sequencing requirements as specified. Students are responsible for program policies as listed in the course syllabi. Students who fail to meet program specific requirements will be dropped from the program and may be required to re-apply and compete for admission in a succeeding year.

Medical Requirements

These requirements do not have to be fulfilled until they are explained by program personnel. Students accepted will be required to possess current CPR certification at the Healthcare Provider level, show proof of immunizations, TB test, physical examination, and verify health insurance coverage before beginning any clinical practicum. To request a medical and/or religious exemption, please contact the program coordinator.

Additional Courses

In addition to the EMS courses, students are required to enroll and successfully complete FS 280 – Hazardous Materials Awareness and FS 160 – Technical Awareness. Enrollment in these FS courses will be coordinated by the instructor and will require additional tuition and fees. Students may be required to provide prescribed personal protective equipment for fire science courses.

Background Check

Criminal background check, random drug test and name search on government registries that prohibit employment in health care professions are required prior to clinical experience courses.

Students with positive results on the drug test or listed on a prohibitory government registry will be dismissed from the program. If drug test results are positive, the student must provide proof of prescription in his or her own name in order to pass the drug test. Medical marijuana, which is not FDA approved, is also considered a positive drug testing result. Dismissal for positive criminal background check, drug test or listing on a government registry does not qualify students for refund of tuition or lab fees. Students who have concerns regarding their status with the above regulations are encouraged to discuss the matter with the program coordinator prior to seeking admission.