FAQs

The following is a list of frequently asked questions for the BCS department.  Click on each question to reveal the answer.

I have questions about the At-Home Dissections for online Anatomy (BCS 165)

Will I have to store the specimens in my refrigerator?

Nope 🙂  The specimens are preserved and vacuum sealed, so they do not need to be refrigerated.

What do I do with the specimens after I dissect them?

The specimens can be thrown away in normal residential trash.

What if my dog easts my specimen?

You will receive instructions on how to keep specimens stored safety, but, you can learn about the potential safety concerns of the chemical used to preserve the specimens  here.

What if I am uncomfortable doing a dissection at home?

In our years of experience teaching this class, and in working with the Program Directors of the Health Sciences programs that require Anatomy as a prerequsite – we’ve determined that dissections are an essential component of the BCS 165 Anatomy class.  Dissections provide students with first-hand experiences that simply can’t be simulated and that are foundational to a career in health care.  As such, they are a required component of the course.  Please contact Dr. Vivian Elder if you have ethical or religious objections to dissection.

I am taking an online class because I don’t live near OTC, can the lab kits be shipped?

Yes!  Our friends at the OTC bookstore have put together this video to help walk you through the online ordering process, which includes the option to have your materials shipped to your location.

 

last updated 7/22/21

I have questions about the At-Home labs for Physiology (BCS 205)

Will I have to store the materials in a special way?

No, all of the materials you’ll use can be stored safely at room temperature.

What chemicals will I be exposed to?

The sensory lab supplies include common kitchen flavorings like vanilla and lemon.  The urine testing strips contain no hazardous chemicals (read more here).

What if I am uncomfortable doing a lab at home?

In our years of experience teaching this class, and in working with the Program Directors of the Health Sciences programs that require Physiology as a prerequsite – we’ve determined that some lab experiences are are an essential component of the BCS 205 Physiology class.  The labs you will be doing at home will provide you with first-hand experiences that simply can’t be simulated and that are foundational to a career in health care.  As such, they are a required component of the course.  Please contact Dr. Vivian Elder if you have ethical or religious objections to these procedures.

I am taking an online class because I don’t live near OTC, can the lab kits be shipped?

Yes!  Our friends at the OTC bookstore have put together this video to help walk you through the online ordering process, which includes the option to have your materials shipped to your location.

 

last updated 7/22/21

Why does my degree program say A.S. in BCS if I want to be a _______(nurse, dental hygienist, PTA, etc.)?

That can be confusing!  Let us do our best to explain:

Most Health Sciences programs are selective admission, which means you cannot be placed into your prospective program until AFTER you have been officially selected. In the meantime, prospective Health Sciences students are placed into the Biological Clinical Sciences (BCS) degree. This allows you to be degree seeking for the purpose of Financial Aid while you complete your preadmission requirements.

Do I need to complete the BCS degree before I am allowed to apply to an Health Sciences program?

No. You only need to complete the preadmission required courses for the particular program you’re seeking.

Select the particular program you’re seeking at the following link: Health Sciences Programs

 

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Do I have to take every class on my BCS degree program if I get accepted into my Health Sciences program?

No.  Once you are accepted into your Health Sciences program, you will have a new degree audit and a different list of classes to complete to earn your degree.

 

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If I were to complete the BCS degree, how will that help me in the job market?

It depends on what your potential employer is looking for:

  • Completing the BCS degree will NOT provide you with a specific healthcare related credential or certification that is recognized by employers.
  • But, completing the BCS degree will fulfill the requirement of any job that requires that you have an earned Associates degree.

 

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Does the BCS degree transfer to any bachelor’s program? If so, which?

The BCS degree is NOT intended to be a transfer degree:

  • it was not designed to mirror to the first 2 years of any Bachelor’s degree
  • there are no existing articulation agreements between OTC and any other institution for this degree

But, because many of the courses in the BCS degree are designated as MOTR courses, they are guaranteed to transfer to any Missouri public college or university to satisfy general education requirements. For more information please see OTC’s CORE 42 website.

Non-MOTR courses in the BCS degree may transfer, but you will need to confirm that with the institution you intend to transfer to.

 

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Do you know of any employers or positions that require the BCS degree?

No.  The BCS degree will not provide you with a specific healthcare related credential or certification that is recognized by employers.  If an employer requires you to have an earned Associate’s degree, the BCS degree will fulfill that requirement.

 

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Which classes should I take first?

Please see the Preferred Course Sequence or Course Pathway provided on the website of the Health Sciences program you are interested in pursuing.  Click on the “Health Sciences Programs” button on the Health Sciences website to find your program of choice.

As you plan your preadmission courses please be aware of the following prerequisites in BCS courses:

  • You must complete BCS 165 (Anatomy) with a C or better in order to register for BCS 205 (Physiology) and BCS 200 (Microbiology)
  • You must complete BCS 165 (Anatomy) & BCS 200 (Microbiology) & BCS 205 (Physiology) with a C or better in order to register for BCS 210 (Pathophysiology)

If you would like to discuss a waiver for any of these prerequisites please complete the Prerequisite Waiver Request Form.

NOTE: We also highly suggest taking BCS 102 (Navigating Bioclinical Science) in your first semester at OTC.  This course will help explore different careers in healthcare to be sure you are on a path that is a good fit for you. It will also help you hone your study skills and be sure you have a solid plan in place to apply to your Health Sciences program of choice.

 

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I want a career in health care, but am unsure about my specific direction. How can I find out more about the different health care career options that are out there?

No problem!  We suggest you take BCS 102 (Navigating Bioclincial Science) as early in your academic career as possible.

Topics covered in the course include exploration of both healthcare and non-healthcare careers, alignment of personal attributes with potential career choices, academic and career planning, and essential skills for success in college and beyond. By the end of the course a student should be able to make informed decisions on their academic and career options.

 

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How long will it take me to complete my program?

The BCS degree is designed so that a full time student can complete it in 2 years.

But, each Health Sciences program differs in length – so please see the website of the particular program you’re seeking at the following link:Health Sciences Programs

 

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What will it cost to complete the program of my choice?

Current information about the cost of the BCS degree can be found in the “Program Snapshot” section of the BCS degree page.

Current information about the cost of your Health Sciences program of choice can be found by selecting your program of choice from OTC’s Programs page (and then looking for the “Program Snapshot” section of the page).

 

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There are several anatomy and physiology courses (BCS 115, RST 105, and BCS 165/205) which sequence should I take?

Great question!  That can be confusing.. and your best plan is always to consult the preferred course sequence or degree audit of the program you are pursuing.  But,  here’s a quick overview of what type of student each of the courses IS and IS NOT intended for:

 

BCS 115 (Survey of Anatomy and Physiology)

  • IS a good choice for a student who wants a basic understanding of how the human body works, but does not intend to pursue a career in healthcare
  • IS NOT
    • a required preadmission course for any of OTC’s Health Sciences programs
    • a good choice for a student who intends on pursuing a career in healthcare

RST 105 (Cardiopulmonary Anatomy and Physiology)

  • IS a good choice for a student who has already completed both Anatomy & Physiology with a C or better, who wants to gain a deeper understanding of how the cardiac and pulmonary systems function
    • note: RST 105 is a required preadmission course for OTC’s RST program

BCS 165 (Human Anatomy) and BCS 205 (Human Physiology)

  • IS the appropriate sequence for a student who is interested in applying to most of of OTC’s Health Sciences programs
    • note: these courses are not required for the HIT or BHS programs
  • IS NOT the appropriate sequence for a student who intends on pursuing an advanced medical degree (such as an MD)
    • it is likely the AS.BIO, AS.CHM, or AS.PHR are a better fit for these students

 

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What is the employment outlook for a __________ (nurse, dental hygienist, MLT, etc.)

Current information on the employment outlook for any OTC program can be found by:

  • Locating the program on OTC’s Programs Page
  • Scrolling down to the “Program At a Glance” section
  • Clicking on the “More Careers” button

 

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What Health Sciences Programs does OTC offer?

Please visit OTC’s Programs Page to view all the certificates and degrees we offer – click on the the “Health Sciences” filter to view just the Health Sciences programs.

 

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What does bioclinical sciences mean?

The term “Bioclinical Science” (sometimes also referred to as Biomedical Science) is used to refer to science courses whose focus is only on the structure and function of the human body.  These differ from other science courses that can focus on other living and non-living things.

Typically students who are seeking to enter a healthcare profession that requires only a certificate or undegraduate degree take bioclinical science courses.  Students who are seeking to enter a healthcare profession that requires a graduate degree or post baccalaureate certification are typically required to take science courses from Biology, Chemistry, and Physics departments instead.

 

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Which of the BCS courses will transfer to MSU and other universities or allied health programs?

The following BCS courses are MOTR courses, which means they are guaranteed to transfer to any Missouri public college or university to satisfy general education requirements.  For more information please see OTC’s CORE 42 page.

  • BCS 102 – Navigating Bioclinical Science
  • BCS 115 – Survey of A&P
  • BCS 132 – Allied Health Nutrition
  • BCS 165 – Human Anatomy
  • BCS 210 – Pathophysiology

Courses that do not have the CORE 42 designation may still transfer. However, OTC encourages students to check the transfer equivalency website of the institution to which they plan to transfer in order to be sure.

 

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Can I take all of my required courses at one campus location? or online?

All required courses for the BCS degree are offered:

  • in a seated and/or hybrid format at
    • the Springfield Campus
    • the Richwood Valley Campus
  • online

The Table Rock Campus, and the Lebanon, Waynesville, Ft. Leonard Wood, and Republic locations offer some of the required courses for the BCS degree in a seated and/or hybird format.  Please see the course schedule for information on which classes are available for a given semester.

You should check with the Health Sciences program of your choice for more information and where/in what format their courses are offered.

 

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NOTE: Not all courses will be offered in all formats every semester.

Do I need to purchase all my materials before the first day of class?

Yes!  This is the best way to ensure that you start the semester on the right foot.

If you are unable to purchase the required materials before your first class, please contact your instructor as soon as possible to ask if any accommodations can be made.

 

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How many people are accepted into the _________ program?

Because cohort sizes can vary, the website and/or program director of your program of choice is your best resource for this type of question.

But, you can also to ask this question – and any others you have –  at a Health Sciences Program Informational Session.  Visit this page for more information and a schedule of these sessions.

 

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What does my GPA need to be to get into _________ program?

For the BCS degree:  you must maintain an institutional GPA of 2.0 (see Requirements for the Associate of Arts Degree for more information)

 

For your intended Health Sciences program, please select the particular program you’re seeking at the following link: Health Sciences Programs

 

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What are appropriate study and test-taking skills for these courses?

See the student resources tab on the BCS departmental website.  (Study Skills)

Are tutors available to help with these courses?

Yes! Free tutoring is available (both in-person and online) for:

  • BCS 165 (Anatomy)
  • BCS 205 (Phyisology)

Please see the OTC Tutoring website for specific information on location and availability.

 

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How do I find out who my advisor is and how do I go about setting up an appointment with them?

Please see the information under the “Advising at OTC” tab on the Student Advising Resources site for this answer and more information on advising at OTC.

 

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Can I take BCS 165 & 205 or BCS 200 & 210 or BCS 205 & 210 at the same time?

Typically, No.  However, if you have taken the class before or are already practicing in an allied health field you may complete the Prerequisite Waiver Form to be considered for a prerequisite waiver that would allow you to take both classes at once.

 

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How do I apply to my prospective program?

Check out the “Application Information” on the particular program you’re seeking at the following link: Health Sciences Programs

 

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How can I find out more information about my prospective program?

More Information

Select the particular program you’re seeking at the following link: Allied Health Programs

What should I do if I’m flunking a class?

If you are not doing well in a class because you are not understanding the course material, your best resources are:

  • your instructor – ask your instructor if you can meet with them to ask them any questions you have – be prepared with specific questions (don’t just say “I don’t understand anything”)
  • your course materials – your textbook and course canvas site have LOTS of helpful material like practice tests, end of chapter questions, etc.
  • the internet – believe it or not there are a lot of free quality resources out there, many students find videos especially helpful
  • tutors – OTC offers free tutoring for Anatomy and Physiology (see more information here)

 

If you are not doing well in a class because of life stressors, your best resources are:

  • your instructor – even through your instructor likely can’t provide any specific help, it’s always good to keep them in the loop if you are experiencing a rough patch
  • OTC’s free counseling –  learn more and schedule an appointment here
  • OTC’s Student Resource Guides – these can put you in touch with community resources that may be able to help

 

If you are not doing well in a class because of technology issues, your best resources are:

 

No matter what the reasons may be  – PLEASE reach out and let someone know you are struggling.  We are here to listen and to help!

 

last updated 7/22/21

Why do I have to become an LPN first? Can’t I just go straight to RN school?

Different Nursing programs have different preadmission requirements.  OTC’s RN program has a preadmission requirement of having an LPN credential.

You can look for other Missouri State Board of Nursing approved RB programs that may have different preadmission requirements by checking the ‘Education” tab,and then the “Table of Schools with Contact Information” link at this site.

 

last updated 7/22/21