Surgical Technology, A.A.S.

Academic Programs

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Degree, Certificate or Diploma


Council Bluffs Campus

Program Information

The Surgical Technology Program is designed to prepare students to become skilled Certified Surgical Technologist. In the classroom and lab sessions you will learn Sterile Processing practices, sterile technique, operative procedures, human anatomy and physiology, and microbiology as applied to surgery. At the end of this program each graduate will take the National Certification Exam, those who pass earn the title of Certified Surgical Technologist.  

In the clinical portion of the program, you will practice under the supervision of a Physician and Surgical Technologist, functioning as a member of the surgical team. Iowa Western will also provide on site faculty at each clinical site. 

Upon graduation of this program, you will be prepared to accept employment as a Surgical Technologist. With the Spring 2022 Simulation Center upgrades to the Audio-visual technology and addition of VR surgical procedure capabilities and Simulated patients for surgical experiences during lab sessions; students in this program will benefit from state-of-the-art resources to attain their degree in this rewarding career field. 

The Surgical Technology program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), 1361 Park Street, Clearwater, FL 33756. Additional accreditation information can be found online at:

Job Outlook

597 Jobs (2020)

+5.4% Change from 2020-2025

Data is from the Omaha Metropolitans Area, and the seven counties in Southwest Iowa that Iowa Western serves

What will you do

This program is designed to place students into the workforce upon completion of the AAS degree. Surgical Technologists perform a variety of tasks in operating rooms before, during, and after an operation to assist the surgeon and other medical staff with surgery.  Job opportunities will be best for surgical technologists who are Certi­fied Surgical Technologist (CST).


  • Entry: $20.08
  • Average: $23.40
  • Experienced: $30.44

Career Examples

  • Surgical Technologists
  • Surgeons
  • Surgical Technicians
  • Certified Surgical Technologists
  • Physician Assistants
  • Physicians
  • Anesthesia Technicians
  • Orthopaedic Consultants

Program Prerequisites

BIO 168 - Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4.0 Credit(s)
HSC 113 - Medical Terminology 2.0 Credit(s)
MAT 743 - Technical Math 3.0 Credit(s)
ENG 105 - Composition I 3.0 Credit(s)
SPC 122 - Interpersonal Communication 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 15.0 Credits

First Semester

HSC 203 - Sterile Processing Fundamentals 5.0 Credit(s)
BIO 173 - Human Anatomy and Physiology II 4.0 Credit(s)
PSY 121 - Developmental Psychology 3.0 Credit(s)
MGT 195 - Workplace Empowerment 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 15.0 Credits

Second Semester

BIO 186 - Microbiology 4.0 Credit(s)
SUR 134 - Introduction to Surgical Technology and Anesthesia 3.0 Credit(s)
SUR 141 - Introduction to Basic Surgical Principles 6.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 13.0 Credits

Third Semester

SUR 215 - Basic Surgical Principles 5.0 Credit(s)
SUR 221 - Surgical Technology 4.0 Credit(s)
SUR 518 - Clinical I 5.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 14.0 Credits

Fourth Semester

SUR 320 - Advanced Surgical Technology 2.0 Credit(s)
SUR 524 - Clinical II 5.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 7.0 Credits

Total Semester Hours Required: 64.0


Program specific courses (HSC and SUR) must be taken in the order listed.

Students must earn a “C” or higher in all SUR, BIO, and HSC courses in order to graduate.


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Program Outcomes

Upon the successful completion of the program students will:

  • To prepare competent entry-level surgical technologists in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills) and affective (behavior) learning domains.
  • Utilize critical thinking and problem solving skills
  • Demonstrate the application of the principles of sterile techniques.
  • Apply a basic understanding of human physiology and surgical anatomy in the perioperative role of a surgical technologist.
  • Utilize appropriate medical terminology.
  • Demonstrate effective communication skills.

Program Disclaimers

  • Salary information from EMSI Analyst Database