T Nation

EMT-B Class


So I am currently enrolled in college as a fire science major because my dream is to be a fire fighter. This summer, well tonight actually I start my EMT-B classes. I have heard mixed responses in this class from very hard to read the book and its very easy. I was just curious if there are any firefighters/EMT's/paramedics here that have taken the class? What's your take on it? Any helpful tips in completing the class successfully? Also it is an 8 week class so its pretty condensed 3 nights a week 4 hours a night. Thanks in advance for any help!


8 Weeks gives you plenty of study time. KEEP UP WITH THE BOOKS! Also, as much as it is pushed, people still fail to do this, read ahead! As long as you study, read ahead a little, and pay attention in the class you'll be fine. If you have any questions send me a PM and I'll help you with what I can.


2 months is pretty tight, alright.

I'd recommend getting the "Pocket Reference for the EMT and First Responder" by Brady Publishing. It's a condensed version of the book and a good buy even if you're using another book.

Does your class allow you to do ride alongs with fire departments or volunteer at hospitals? If so, take advantage of them. They're like field trips and are a big help in applying what you're learning.

A big help for me in studying for the class and state test was going to the library and getting the National EMT Registry Exam book. Some of the questions in the class quizzes/tests I took were confusing and the questions/answer key in the NEMT book were similar enough where I was able to figure out the reasoning behind the answer and apply it to the state test. Some of the questions were basically the same. I got a higher score than I otherwise could've thanks to that book.

And like ChosenOne said - keep up with the reading. It's easy to fall behind and you don't want to play catch up. Especially with a schedule like you have.


As stated, do your best to keep up with the pace of the course. There's nothing inherently difficult about the material you'll be responsible for -- it's the volume of material that causes problems for some.

Also become comfortable with active learning techniques, writing things out, flashcards etc. If you guys are responsible for being able to reproduce entire policies (base station contact, trauma/triage etc) like we are out here, there's no better way to study than simply writing it all out over and over.


hey man firefighting is an awesome job and 80% of all calls are ems. the emt class is not that hard but like the other posters have said, read the chapters ahead and ride along with the local fd or ambulance services, it will help you alot. if you have any questions just send me a message and good luck with your career.



Like the others have said keep up with your reading and be prepared! When in class or on ride alongs be a sponge, and by that I mean all eyes and ears. There is so much to information to soak in.

Also if you do your ride alongs with the fire dept keep one thing in mind. They guys your are with that day are where you want to be and may be sitting on the other side of a hiring board. If you go into their house and leave a bad impression it will be remembered trust me.

Let me know by PM what questions you have and I will be more than happy to help out. I've had my EMT-B since 95 (god that seems like a long time) and been a firefighter since 2001.


thanks all for the responses.

chosenone- im gonna keep you to that and when i come up with some questions ill be getting in touch with you ha

tech9- after the midterm we will have to clock 16 hours of clinical time in an ER and my teacher said he will give us info on how to do ride alongs if we would like, and after what you have said I will def take him up on that

chillain- i was thinking about doing flashcards for all the terms so ill start writing those up tomorrow and let you know how that goes

beachboi- i will contact you with any questions thanks for offerreing

also to all, i fully intend to keep up with my reading. I currently do not have a job so this is all i have, besides eat, gym, sleep. I have been trying to start up a company but feel i may fall behind on that, but it is what it is. Are any of you guys on an FD or just have taken the class for other reasons?


just saw you response lanche thanks.

so here comes another dumb question for a good ol 09er....how do you PM somebody?


On an FD started volly with one now paid with another.


i figured it out scratch that question.


im an engineer for a volunteer FD,work as a paid firefighter for Cal-Fire, and i also work as a paid EMT-B for an ambulance service


Don't overlook the importance of the practical application exams. Get comfortable laying hands on people for primary secondary assessments, etc. The books stuff is super important, but you have to apply that shit too.

I'm showing my age but 12 years ago when I first went through school we had a dude fail out because he just couldn't get comfortable in the mock scenarios and drills.

And stay in shape and stay well groomed (haircut, shave, clean clothes, etc) your reputation has already been established, trust me.


yeah i have my first practical a week from today. im about to leave for class now and today is basically going to be all hands on practice for the practical, i think ill be fine that stuff doesnt bother me too much. thanks for all the advice and ill keep you guys updated.


The written test is pretty damn easy. The practicals are the hard part. Practice them like its your job (cause it will be).


hey all thanks for all the helpful tips you have me. I passed my class with an A, and in about two weeks Ill be able to take the national registry and get my Illinois license. Thanks again.


Good job man, sounds like they'll be calling you an NREMT-B in short order.

Funnest job I've ever had. Have fun with it and good luck with your continuing goals.


thanks a lot chillain. hopefully i get to where i want to be quickly lol