Wallace State’s Health Science Division offers a variety of programs to prepare health professionals. Programs leading to the Associate in Applied Science Degree and certificates are available. The Health Science programs are designed to provide the highest quality education to students in order to meet the community’s need for quality health professionals.
Associate in Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.)
The primary intent of the Associate in Applied Science Degree is to fulfill occupational and terminal objectives. In order for a student to graduate with an A.A.S. degree, he/she must follow a prescribed program of study.
Each prescribed program of study that awards the A.A.S. is included in the College catalog. Although each program varies, the following standards are required as minimum degree requirements from the General Studies Curriculum in the Alabama College System.
|Area I: Written Composition I and II||3 - 6 Credit Hours|
|Area II: Humanities and Fine Arts||3 - 6 Credit Hours|
|Area III: Natural Science and Mathematics||9 - 11 Credit Hours|
|Area IV: History, Social, and Behavioral Sciences||3 - 6 Credit Hours|
|Area V: Maximum General Education Core Technical Concentration, and Electives||39 - 55 Credit Hours|
|Maximum Program Semester Credit Hours||76 Credit Hours|
|Semester Credit Hour Range by Award||60 - 76 Credit Hours|
The primary intent of health certificate programs is to fulfill occupational objectives for students who wish to enter the workforce upon graduation. For a student to graduate with a certificate, he/she must successfully complete the required program courses and meet the requirements below.
|Area I: Written Composition||3 Credit Hours|
|Area II: Humanities and Fine Arts||3 Credit Hours|
|Area III: Natural Science and Mathematics||6 Credit Hours|
|Area IV: History, Social, and Behavioral Sciences||0 Credit Hours|
|Area V: Health Concentration||18 - 48 Credit Hours|
|Maximum Program Semester Credit Hours||60 Credit Hours|
|Semester Credit Hour Range by Award||30 - 60 Credit Hours|
Short-Term Certificate Programs
The primary intent of short-term certificate programs are to fulfill basic occupational objectives or to provide specialty training/competencies for students who wish to enter a health field or advance in their current health career. The prescribed program of study is included in the College catalog. Although each program varies, the following standards are the degree requirements set by the Alabama College System. All students must successfully complete the program courses.
|Area I: Written Composition||0 - 3 Credit Hours|
|Area II: Humanities/Fine Arts||0 Credit Hours|
|Area III: Natural Science and Mathematics||0 - 3 Credit Hours|
|Area IV: History, Social, and Behavioral Sciences||0 Credit Hours|
|Area V: Health Concentration||23 - 29 Credit Hours|
|Maximum Program Semester Credit Hours||29 Credit Hours|
|Semester Credit Hour Range by Award||9 - 29 Credit Hours|
Admission to the College is required but does not guarantee admission to a health program as health programs have additional admission requirements that must be met. Individual program admission requirements are found under each program in this catalog. Please review the catalog to assure that you have fulfilled pre-requisite requirements for all courses in your chosen program. Health students are required to take the appropriate Math, English, and Reading Placement exams. Student scores on placement exams may dictate that additional classes be taken. These classes can extend the time required for program completion. When applying to a program, you should retain copies of the materials submitted as the originals become the property of WSCC upon submission.
Admission Appeal Process
Decisions on program admission are made based upon the data provided in the applicant’s college records and admission packet in compliance with the published program selection criteria. Every effort is made to make sure that program admission decisions are fair and based on the information provided by the applicant.
If an applicant has a valid reason to believe that an error has occurred, the applicant must make an initial contact within seven days of notification of an admission decision. Thereafter, each subsequent appeal, if any, must occur within a seven-calendar day increment after the respective decision is received by the applicant. If an applicant does not meet the deadline for appealing an admission decision, the right to appeal will be waived.
The applicant shall begin by stating either orally or in writing to the program director that the admission decision was made in error or is unfair and include the justification for the appeal. If the applicant and the program director cannot successfully resolve the concern, the applicant may then contact the Dean of Health Sciences. The applicant must appeal to the Dean by submitting the appropriate form (available from the program director) stating his/her concern with the admission decision and describing the prior discussion with the program director. Copies of documentation supporting the applicant’s claim shall be provided with the form. The Dean will review the applicant’s issue. The Dean shall have the authority to call in the program director or ask for the assistance of other WSCC faculty and staff or seek the opinion of an expert in the area under review.
If the applicant’s concern cannot be successfully resolved at this level, the applicant shall be given the opportunity to take the appeal to the Vice President for Students. Appeal information must be submitted on the proper form (available from the Dean of Health Sciences). Again copies of any documentation supporting the applicant’s claim shall be included. Once the Vice President for Students has completed the review of the admission decision, a written report describing his or her findings and conclusion will be provided to the applicant, the Dean of Health Sciences, and the Program Director. The decision of the Vice President for Students will be final and not subject to further appeal.
The administration and faculty of WSCC are committed to the health and welfare of students enrolled in allied health and nursing programs. Therefore, various immunization and medical requirements may be required prior to enrollment in a program/course (see individual program for more information).
Specific courses may require students to carry accident and malpractice insurance, which is available through the College. All health science programs require students to carry health insurance. A student will not be able to be placed in a clinical setting without valid proof of health insurance.
Students are required to travel to clinical sites, which may entail two (2) hours or more of driving. Housing, travel, parking, and meal expenses while at clinical are the responsibility of the student.
Reporting of Infectious Disease
The Alabama Infected Health Care Worker Management Act (Public Law 201-141) mandates that any health care worker who performs invasive procedures and who is infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or Hepatitis B (HBV) virus shall notify the State Health Officer, or his designee, of the infection. All Health Science Division students are required to follow this policy.
Drug and Alcohol Testing
Wallace State Community College supports the concept of a Drug Free Workplace (as defined by Public Law 100-690) and prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, possession or use of a controlled substance on any property owned, leased or controlled by the college or during any activity conducted, sponsored, authorized by or on behalf of Wallace State Community College. The college prohibits any form of on-campus (or campus affiliated) use and/or possession of illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia, or alcoholic beverage by students, which is in direct violation of local, state and federal law. Students found to be involved in any of these activities are subject to disciplinary action.
Education of health profession students at Wallace State Community College requires collaboration between the College and clinical agencies. Education of these students cannot be complete without a quality clinical education component. The College shares an obligation with the clinical agency to protect the agency’s patients to the extent reasonably possible from harm due to students who are under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol while in the clinical agency.
The College wishes to ensure that the health and safety of students and patients are not compromised and that clinical affiliation agreements exist to provide students with quality clinical education experiences. Therefore, it is the policy of Wallace State Community College that students enrolling in health profession programs submit to drug testing. This testing can be announced or unannounced and will occur upon admission and annually thereafter, for cause, or at random intervals. Full guidelines on the drug testing procedure are available from the College’s web site.
In establishing clinical affiliation agreements, healthcare educational programs are contractually obligated to comply with the requirements set forth by clinical affiliates. Student enrolled in health care educational program must conform to the rules, policies and procedures of the clinical affiliate in order to participate in clinical learning experiences. It is therefore the policy of Wallace State Community College Health Science Division that students enrolling in health profession programs submit to background checks.
The background checks will be conducted by a college-designated vendor according to program specific deadlines. Background checks performed by any other vendor or agency will not be accepted. Failure to provide full and accurate information when applying for the background screen may be grounds for disciplinary action. Students reinstated to a program after an absence from program coursework of one semester or more will have to repeat background testing. The student will be responsible for the cost of the background check.
If, while enrolled in any health program a student experiences a situation resulting in conversion of a negative background screen to a positive background screen, the student is required to immediately disclose this incident to their respective program director. Failure to disclose can result in program dismissal and college disciplinary action.
Students with a positive background check will be denied assignment to a clinical facility. Background checks which could render a student ineligible to obtain clinical learning experiences include, but are not limited to, certain convictions or criminal charges which could jeopardize the health and safety of patients and sanctions or debarment. Felony or repeated misdemeanor activity within the past seven (7) years and Office of the Inspector General violations will normally prohibit the obtainment of clinical learning experiences with clinical affiliate(s). Students who are unable to resolve a positive background check will be dismissed from the health care program. Positive findings on background checks can have licensure implications upon graduation from a health program. Full guidelines on background screening are available from the college website.
Appeal of Program Dismissal Based on Background Screening, Drug Testing Results, or Other Circumstances
Decisions on program dismissal are made in compliance with the published policies. Every effort is made to make sure that decisions are fair and based on the information provided in the report.
If a student has a valid reason to believe that an error has occurred, the student must make an initial contact within seven days of notification of the program dismissal decision. Thereafter, each subsequent appeal, if any, must occur within a seven-calendar day increment after the respective decision is received by the student. If a student does not meet the deadline for appealing, the right to appeal will be waived.
The student shall begin by stating orally and in writing to the program director that the decision for program dismissal was made in error or is unfair and include the justification for the appeal. If the student and the program director cannot successfully resolve the concern, the student may then contact the Dean of Health Sciences. The student must appeal to the Dean by submitting the appropriate form (available from the program director) stating his/her concern with the dismissal decision and describing the prior discussion with the program director. Copies of documentation supporting the student’s claim shall be provided with the form. The Dean will review the student’s issue. The Dean shall have the authority to call in the program director or ask for the assistance of other WSCC faculty and staff or seek the opinion of an expert in the area under review.
If the student’s concern cannot be successfully resolved at this level, the student shall be given the opportunity to take the appeal to the Vice President for Students. Appeal information must be submitted on the proper form (available from the Dean of Health Sciences.) Again copies of any documentation supporting the student’s claim shall be included. Once the Vice President for Students has completed the review of the dismissal decision, a written report describing his or her findings and conclusion will be provided to the student, the Dean of Health Sciences, and the Program Director. The decision of the Vice President for Students will be final and not subject to further appeal.
Health Science programs require specific essential mental and physical functions, which must be possessed to be successful students. In general, all health programs require:
- Visual acuity corrected to 20/20 and visual field perception to provide a safe environment for patients and coworkers.
- Hearing acuity corrected to no greater than a 40 db hearing loss at 1000 and 2000 Hz.
- Manual dexterity in fingering and grasping activities and the ability to perform repetitive fine motor actions.
- Gross motor ability to reach, stoop, kneel, stand, walk, and sit.
- Strength to lift at least 25 lbs. frequently and 50 lbs. occasionally.
- Verbal and written communication skills adequate to exchange ideas, detailed information and instructions to others accurately through spoken or written word.
Each health program has requirements specific to success in that program and profession. Some may be more strenuous than the general functions provided here. These are available in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Coordinator’s Office (256.352.8052) or by contacting the appropriate program director. It is the responsibility of the student to review the standards and, if required, meet with the ADA Coordinator to discuss them.
After their initial physical, a student who has a change in their health status due to serious illness, injury, surgery, childbirth, hospitalization, or other major health issue, must obtain a physician’s release and a newly completed Essential Functions form before they will be allowed to participate in clinicals.
Licenser and Certification of Health Professionals
Upon successful completion of the program of study, students are eligible to apply for their respective licenser and board examinations, if these are required to enter practice in their chosen areas. Students should be aware that final determination for eligibility to write the examinations is made by the licenser board after review of the candidate’s application – WSCC has no control over the decision of these entities. The following may affect your eligibility: conviction of a criminal offense; drug/alcohol abuse or treatment for dependency on alcohol/illegal chemical substances; arrest/conviction of driving under the influence of drugs/alcohol; treatment of mental illness, inclusion on a state or federal abuse registry, or disciplinary action by a licensing board or the military.
Students with questions regarding their eligibility are encouraged to contact the licensing/certifying board for clarification.
The Health Linkage Program allows students from other colleges and universities which do not offer health programs to begin their study at the linkage institution. Students then apply for entry into any of the health program options available at WSCC. Students interested in this program should contact the Health Linkage Program at WSCC (256.352.8306) or the Linkage Coordinator at respective linkage institutions. Colleges currently linked with WSCC:
|Bevill State Community College||
|Calhoun Community College||Dr. Ellie Meyer
P. O. Box 2216
Decatur, AL 35609
|Coastal Alabama Community College||
|Central Alabama Community College||Dr. Jennifer Steele
34091 US Highway 280
Childersburg, AL 35044
|Enterprise State College||
|Faulkner State Community College||
|Gadsden State Community College||
|Lawson State Community College||
Dr. Sherika Derico
|Northeast Alabama State College||
|Northwest-Shoals Community College||
|Shelton State Community College||