EMS Tips

Question: Tips for Tutoring Co-Workers

A reader asked for tips for informally tutoring co-workers. He is already an EMT-B and working on his EMT-I. He has co-workers that are in EMT-B class and they frequently asked him questions. He raised several concerns:

  • He used the AAOS book, they are using the Brady book
  • He has concerns about their low motivation for completing the course as it is a mandate
  • He is looking for resources and ideas to become an EMT instructor
  • He is considering an EMS administration or Fire Science associates degree

My response:
1. Instead of determining how the books are different learn and teach content that is within in the EMT scope in the National EMS Education Standards

2. The responsibility should be on the student for making sure they are learning and reinforcing knowledge that will help them meet their course requirements.

3. If I was helping others in my spare time and as a favor I would only help those that were interested in learning to and becoming EMTs. I have little to no interest helping those that are begrudgingly fulfilling a mandate. It all starts with them. If they want to succeed and be competent EMTs I am all for helping. If they want to do the minimum possible to simply get by they can very likely do that without me.

4. As for your own education/training:
a. Listen to the EMSEduCast – the podcast by and for EMS educators. More than 100 archived episodes at and iTunes

b. Any college degree is better than no college degree. I am not convinced an associates degree in EMS is as valuable as a degree in business, biology, or engineering. The average EMS career is less than 5 years. If you are hurt or burnt out and need to leave EMS you will likely have better career prospects with something other than an EMS or Fire science degree.

c. Become a member of the National Association of EMS Educators

d. Start teaching certification courses, such as CPR, BLS, PHTLS, etc. These courses are a great way to teach a lot of courses quickly and build your skill set.

Have you been in his situation? What are your tips for helping co-workers that are EMT class?


By Greg Friese

Greg Friese, Stevens Point, Wisconsin, is an author, educator, paramedic, and marathon runner.

Greg was the co-host of the award winning EMSEduCast podcast, the only podcast by and for EMS educators. Greg has written for,, Wilderness Medical Associates, JEMS Magazine, and EMS World Magazine, and the NAEMSE Educator Newsletter.