Is the TEAS a requirement for admission to the Respiratory Therapy Program?

Yes. Prior to admission, all students seeking admissions must complete the TEAS, which is a diagnostic readiness/assessment test (basic math, English, reading, and science) in addition to meeting the prerequisites and eligibility requirements for the program. Please note that results/scores of the assessment are not used to determine eligibility for the program.

What is the purpose of the TEAS (Test for Essential Academic Skills)?

Every college-level educational program begins with a solid foundation in Reading, Math, Science, and English and Language Usage. Your previous educational roles might have given you all the preparation you need. On the other hand, you might have just gotten by, or perhaps it has been quite a while since you had to tackle those subjects in school. The primary purpose of test implementation is to promote student preparedness, assist students in the successful completion of the Respiratory Therapy Program, and to ensure an increase in the number of highly qualified Respiratory Therapists in California. The results/scores of the TEAS will be utilized by Respiratory Therapy Counselors and Faculty Advisors to assist in developing a readiness and/or remediation plan in order to ensure your success in the program.

Who should take TEAS?

Students who have completed the Respiratory Therapy program application process and have been invited for admissions. Please note that scores on the TEAS do not implact your eligibility for admissions to the program, but may impact remediation activities required for re-entry if you should exit the program at any time.

When can I take the TEAS?

You will receive an invitation from the Respiratory Therapy program to take the assessment. The TEAS is offered on an invitation only basis to students approved for admissions to the program. If you have not received an invitation, do not register or send in test results.

What will the TEAS cover?

The TEAS or Test for Essential Academic Skills is an assessment of your abilities in four essential areas. It is a proctored, standardized assessment which takes approximately 3 1/2 hours to complete. It has four parts that ask you to answer multiple-choice questions covering the following:

  • Reading - 50 minutes

  • Math - 56 minutes

  • Science - 30 minutes

  • English - 65 minutes

What should I bring with me to the assessment?
  • Please bring a current Photo ID

  • Registration Confirmation Sheet

During administration of the test, examinees are only allowed to have the following:

  • Writing utensil

  • Scratch paper (will be provided)

Students may NOT have any of the following items during the test administration:

  • Food, drink, or candy

  • Textbooks or reference books of any kind

  • Sunglasses, hats, or a hood

  • Music (CD players, MP3 players, iPods, etc.)

  • Communication devices including cell phones, pagers, PDA, etc.

  • Calculators are NOT allowed

Where will the assessment be?

Testing is administered at Santa Monica College - Bundy Campus or East Los Angeles College.

How can I best prepare for taking the TEAS?

A good night's sleep before the test is the best way to prepare. Also, general preparation materials for any assessment of basic math, reading comprehension, English usage, and basic sciences should be sufficient for preparation. Test specific materials are available.

What is the format of the test?

It is a 3 1/2 hour, computer based, proctored, standardized assessment. It has four parts that ask you to answer multiple-choice questions covering the following:

  • Reading - 50 minutes

  • Math - 56 minutes

  • Science - 30 minutes

  • English - 65 minutes

I have my score report, but what does it all mean?

The Respiratory Therapy Program does not currently require a specific score on the TEAS. The TEAS results/scores are used by Respiratory Therapy Counselors and Faculty Advisors in assisting students to prepare and/or remediate for entrance into the program.

Anecdotal evidence has led the Respiratory Therapy Program to identify an overall score of 75% as satisfactory. Meaning that we believe a student scoring 75% or above will be academically successful in the Respiratory Therapy Program. Additionally, students scoring between 70% to 75% may experience some academic challenge with those scoring below 70% experiencing significant academic challenge.

What happens if I decide not to take the TEAS?

In order to remain in consideration for admission, students must complete a TEAS and submit scores to the program.

What if I have already taken the TEAS?

You may take the TEAS again at no cost, simply register for a testing date.

You may also request that your TEAS Transcript be sent to the Santa Monica College Respiratory Therapy Program ($20 fee). Transcripts are sent electronically from ATI testing to Dawn Murphy at Santa Monica College.

Request TEAS transcripts.

Results sent from individuals or organizations other than ATI testing are NOT accepted at Santa Monica College.

I have a bachelors or masters degree in another field, do I still need to take the TEAS?

Yes, regardless of prior education all prospective students seeking admission to the Respiratory Therapy Program must complete the TEAS prior to admission to the program.

I need to reschedule my test at SMC, what do I do?

Email Dawn Murphy at with your original assessment date stating that you will be rescheduling, then return to the Registration Page and select a different date.

When do I get my results and how do I send them to the Respiratory Therapy Program?

If you take the TEAS at Santa Monica College or East Los Angeles College through the Respiratory Therapy Program your results will be automatically available to you immediately after completing the assessment. The RT program is automatically provided an electronic copy by the testing company as well. Results are printed and placed in your file on the day of the assessment.

If I didn't get to see my results after the TEAS, how can I access them?

If you took the computer based version of the TEAS you may access your results at any time by logging into the testing website.

If I took my TEAS at SMC, how do I send my results to the program?

It is not necessary to have TEAS results sent if you took them at SMC or at East Los Angeles College through the Respiratory Therapy Program. The college is automatically provided an electronic copy by the testing company. Results are printed and placed in your file on the day of the assessment.

I can't take the test during any of the listed dates, what do I do?

Contact Dawn Murphy at or 310-434-3494.

If I had my results sent by the company, how will I know if you received the results of my test?

Contact Dawn Murphy by email to check on the status of your results.

If I need testing accommodations for a verified disability, what do I do?

Contact the Center for Students with Disabilities at your college, for more information regarding the procedure testing accommodations.