Surgical technicians may not get to share the spotlight too often, but they are an integral part of any surgical team and procedure. These individuals are in charge of keeping operating rooms sterile and organized before, while, and after medical procedures take place. They're also responsible for sterilizing surgical wounds and incisions, ensuring patients are clear from any fluids or materials that could cause infection.

Surgical Technologist Schools in Arkansas

Arkansas hosts a number of colleges and institutions allowing students to study toward becoming surgical technologists. The programs vary in length and intensity, and, while they all culminate in similar outcomes, they all offer different perks for students with different goals in mind.

  • Arkansas State University - Newport: Arkansas State University in Newport offers a 12-month certificate program in surgical technology. The program consists of 40 credit hours of study and clinical preparation. No prerequisite courses are needed, however students must submit their ACT and ATI - TEAS "V" scores, as well as be accepted to the university, to attend the program.

  • Baptist Health College - Little Rock: The certificate program at Baptist Health College in Little Rock is two semesters in length, with programs beginning in both January and July. Students enrolled in this program should expect to attend class or clinic full-time, Monday through Friday, for the duration of their studies.

  • North Arkansas College: North Arkansas College offers a 9-month program for those looking to get a jumpstart in their career as a surgical technologist. For students who have a little more time on their hands, the college offers a two-year Associate in Applied Science degree program, which can then be used to transfer for a four-year university.

  • Northwest Technical Institute: Northwest Technical Institute's program begins in the Fall of each year, and lasts for three semesters (Fall/Spring/Summer). Throughout each semester, students will have both classroom and clinical experiences to learn from. Cohorts average around 18 students per class, so students can expect a certain level of individualized attention throughout the program.

  • University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences: The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences offers two separate tracks for prospective surgical tech students. Those who wish to attend full-time can complete the program in two semesters, and those who can only attend part-time can do so in four. Either way, completion of the program culminates in the earning of an Associate of Science degree in surgical technology.

What to Expect from Arkansas Surgical Technologist Programs

All surgical technologist programs feature a mixture of classroom and clinical experience. Some of the programs require students to have a strong foundational knowledge of the medical field before entering, while others provide this education within the first semester of the program. On the clinical side, students will need to demonstrate proficiency in putting their knowledge into practice in real-world settings before earning their degree or certificate.

Toward the end of a program, or upon completion, students will also prepare to sit for an exam administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical First Assistants.

Arkansas Surgical Technologist License

Surgical technologists who have completed accredited programs within the state of Arkansas are not required to become licensed.

The NBSTSA does, however, recommend those in the surgical technology profession take the exam which will allow them to become certified nationwide. This will allow those who have yet to find work as surgical techs the opportunity to display their knowledge and abilities quickly and efficiently to prospective employers. Furthermore, those who become nationally certified will have a much easier time transferring to another state that may require in-state licensing.

Once certified by the NBSTSA, surgical technologists will need to renew their certificate every four years.

Resources for Surgical Technologists in Arkansas

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More Arkansas Surgical Technology Schools

Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/

School Name
Highest Award
Pine Bluff
Little Rock
Doctorate & First Professional
Fort Smith

Job Popularity in Metro Areas for Surgical Technologists

The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for Arkansas. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.

Metro Areas Rated for Popularity for:
Surgical Technologists

Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Surgical Technologists relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; O*NET® 22.1 Database, O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, onetonline.org

Metro Area
Annual Median Salary
Hot Springs50$38,360
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway350$41,890


  1. Arkansas State University - Newport - Surgical Technology, http://www.asun.edu/programs/surgical-technology, accessed October 19, 2016
  2. Baptist Health College - Little Rock - Surgical Technology, https://www.bhclr.edu/programs-of-study/surgical-technology/, accessed October 19, 2016
  3. National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting, http://nbstsa.org/, accessed October 19, 2016
  4. North Arkansas College - Surgical Technology, http://northark.edu/academics/areas-of-study/health-and-medical/aassurgicaltechnology, accessed October 19, 2016
  5. Northwest Technical Institute - Surgical Technology, http://www.nwti.edu/surgical-technology.html, accessed October 19, 2016
  6. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences - Surgical Technology, http://healthprofessions.uams.edu/programs/respiratorycareandsurgicaltechnology/surgicaltechnology/, accessed October 19, 2016
  7. US Bureau of Labor Statistics - Surgical Technologists, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/surgical-technologists.htm#tab-6, accessed October 19, 2016

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