Surgical Technology First Assistant Certificate (STFAC)


First assistants and surgical assistants provide aid to help surgeons conduct a safe operation with optimal results for the patient. In addition to intra-operative duties, surgical assistants perform pre-operative and post-operative duties to facilitate proper patient care.

The Surgical Technology First Assistant certificate encompasses the basic elements of first assisting. Most of the courses are delivered online. However, some courses include simulated laboratory experiences on campus.

To be admitted to the certificate program, prospective students must meet these qualifications:

  • minimum of an associate’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, with completion of basic college-level science courses within the past seven years
  • certified as a Surgical Technologist (CST)
  • three years full-time experience in scrub and/or assisting, within the last five years
  • provide proof of current CPR Certification for Healthcare Providers, liability insurance, and updated immunizations.

Program Code



Employment Options

Representative Job Titles For Graduates

  • Surgical Technologist First Assistant

Graduate Starting Salary Projections

$41,790 annually

Employment Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, through 2022, surgical technology employment opportunities are expected to increase by 30% (Much faster than average).


Effective 2018-2019 academic year

Surgical Technology First Assistant Certificate (STFA)

Program Prerequisites: Associate’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university; certified as a Surgical Technologist, with three years full-time scrub and/or assisting experience within the last five years; CPR/BLS certified; and courses BIO 220 Microbiology, BIO 240 Pathophysiology, IM 100 Computer Literacy, and MCH 101 Medical Terminology 1.

Semester 1LecLabCredits
PST 135Disaster Preparedness for Healthcare Workers 202
STFA 150Perioperative Bioscience 303
STFA 155Principles of First Assisting 233
Semester 2  
STFA 161Surgical Specialties 1 707
STFA 181First Assisting Clinical 1 1122
Semester 3  
STFA 162Surgical Specialties 2 707
STFA 182First Assisting Clinical 2 1122
Total Credits:  232726

The letters G, B, and T (displayed after course titles or elective descriptions) identify types of courses required by the Ohio Department of Higher Education as part of an associate’s degree curriculum.
G = General Education course in this curriculum
B = Basic Skills course in this curriculum
T = Technical course in this curriculum


Program Chair
LaVon Moore, BES, AAS, CST
(513) 569-1673
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