2 answers

what does it take to become a surgical tech?

Asked Viewed 43 times

how many years of school does it take? what do I need to get there #technology #medical #doctor

2 answers

Brian’s Answer


Hi Kamylie! It is often said that at the end of the day all we really have is our health and well being, so your interest in the medical field is great. It is an important area for all of society.

There are a few places I recommend you look for what it takes to become a Surgical Technologist and what you can expect in that field of work. The US News and World Report reference even shows you actual openings in the field so you can get a sense of which areas in the country may have the greatest need.

On being qualified for the job, they say "To get a job as a surgical technologist, you typically need a postsecondary certificate or associate degree. Accredited surgical technology programs are usually one to two years and are offered at community colleges, technical schools, colleges, universities and through the military. "

Brian recommends the following next steps:

  • Check out the US News and World Report complete writeup on being a Surgical Technologist: https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/surgical-technologist
  • Also see the Association of Surgical Technologists website: https://www.ast.org

Yeshaswini N’s Answer


4 Steps to Becoming a Surgical Tech

Step 1

Earn your high school diploma or GED

Before you can consider becoming a surgical tech, you’ll want to complete your high school education. All employers will require a minimum of a high school degree, and most will require further education beyond high school.

Step 2

Find the right surgical tech program

There are a plethora of surgical technologist programs available, but some will help you find a position faster than others. Surgical techs often earn an associate degree, either through community colleges or vocational schools. It’s a good idea to pick a program that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CCAHEP).

Step 3

Earn certification

Not all employers will require certification – however, certification will help separate you from other candidates. There are different certificates you can earn, but the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) recommends two: certification through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting and through the National Center for Competency Testing. It’s also a good idea to become CPR certified.

Step 4

Find a surgical technologist position

Surgical technologists are required in every state, but some states might have specific requirements. With an accredited degree and certification, most surgical techs should not have a problem being eligible for job positions across the country.

FAQ on Earning Your Surgical Tech Degree

  • 1. Are surgical technologist the same as surgical first assistants?
  • While the two positions are similar, surgical first assistants take on more responsibilities than surgical technologists. While surgical techs assist by preparing the surgery room, readying patients and assisting during the surgery, surgical first assistants will directly assist surgeons during a procedure.
  • 2. Can surgical technologists get promoted?
  • 3. Are continuing education credits required?
  • 4. Is a degree required to become a surgical tech?
  • 5. Do all surgical techs works in hospitals?

Surgical Tech Salary & Job Growth

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), surgical technologists made a median annual wage of $46,310 in 2017. The median wage ranged depending on where surgical techs worked; surgical techs in outpatient care centers earned a median of $48,900 while techs in dentists’ offices earned a median of $44,760. On the upper end, surgical techs earned a median of $67,000.

From 2016-2026, there is a projected employment increase of 12 percent – faster than the average occupation. The projected jump coincides with an aging population. Many people opt to get non-required surgeries, such as a knee replacement, that helps keep this position in demand. This makes a career as a surgical technologist a fairly secure position, both in the short and long term.