Program start: Fall
Program length: 4-8 quarters
Number of students each start: Varies
Applications deadline: Continuous
Notes: Personal interview required for admittance. Orthotic/Prosthetic AAS degree = 2 years. Orthotic Certificate = 1 year. Prosthetic Certificate = 1 year.
Students may enter the orthotics and prosthetics program during the fall quarter. Students usually finish the program two years from the starting date. Orthotic and prosthetics classes are not offered during the summer. While there are no prerequisites required, general education courses run concurrently with the orthotic and prosthetic courses. This program has a selective entry process with an individual interview required along with a completed application.
This program is taught in a competency-based format in which each student works with reasonable independence utilizing numerous learning resources, and individual and group instruction. Competency-based learning allows students to progress as they learn mastery of academic content and fabrication techniques.
Orthotic and Prosthetic Lab
The orthotic and prosthetic lab has 9,000 square feet of space, including individual workstations for 32 students. Surrounding the main lab space are multiple rooms filled with specialized tools and equipment. The adjoining 1,200-square foot classroom is used for lectures and guest speaker presentations. To learn more about the lab, visit out Orthotic and Prosthetic Lab page.
Following three quarters of formal classroom training, students participate in a five-week technical practicum experience to practice fabrication skills under the supervision of a certified orthotic or prosthetic practitioner. The technical practicum may occur in Spokane or another city.
Orthotic and prosthetic technicians are master craftspersons who work on their feet all day. They must be able to use their arms and hands in a wide range of motions, including balancing, pushing, pulling, bending, stretching, and grasping, etc. of various materials and using power and hand tools. Fine and gross motor coordination and dexterity are essential requirements for any student considering this program. Individuals considering this career should carefully investigate the physical demands required of orthotic and prosthetic technicians.
Success in the Program
To be successful, you must be able to work independently from written instructional textbooks. While prior experience is not required, successful students typically have developed skill in the use of hand and power tools and possess fine-motor hand skills. You must also be able to demonstrate the ability to work safely with a wide range of power tools and will be required to pass a safety clearance check on power equipment usage. Anyone who cannot meet these requirements will be considered unqualified to continue in the program.