How Do I Become an EMT in Illinois?

The Rundown of EMT Certification in Illinois:

Prospective EMT candidates, who wish to get EMT certification in Illinois, must pass an exam organized by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). But, before this, they need to complete EMT training program from a state-approved training college or institute. EMT certification in Illinois is valid for a period of two years only.

In regards to the NREMT exam, the candidate must pass the written exam, which is a test comprising around 70-120 questions that are required to be answered in 2 hours duration. This is an adjustable difficulty computerized exam. The exam includes topics, such as airway management, ventilation, oxygen therapy, EMS operations, cardiology, health emergencies and general trauma. In the practical examination, a candidate’s capability to handle traumatic situations, such as fractures, bleeding, joint dislocations, etc., are tested. A candidate will also be tested on medical emergencies such as diabetic emergencies, strokes, cardiac arrest, etc. If a candidate fails in the examination, he/she can re-test for the next examination after 15 days. Six attempts can be made by the candidate to pass the exams successfully.

In case, you fail to renew your certificate before or by the expiration date, your certificate will be considered as involuntary inactive. If, after the expiration of the certificate, you fail to recertify it within 180 days, your certificate will get null and void, and you will have to undergo the entire certification cycle, again.

What are the Requirements to Get an EMT Certificate in Illinois?

  • The prospective applicant should not be less than 18 years of age.
  • A state-approved EMT training is a must to be passed by the candidate.
  • The applicant must also complete a state-approved CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation).
  • NREMT examination is mandatory to be passed by the candidate.
  • He/she should be mentally sound and physically strong.
  • EMT applicant in Illinois should be fluent in English.
  • He/she should pass a background check.
  • A proof of legal presence of the applicant in the United States should be submitted.

Clearing a practical exam, conducted by a state-approved program, and submission of the fee along with an application are some of the special requirements for certification.

What is the Process of Getting an EMT Certificate?

Step 1: Get Training

Students of Illinois must get trained as Emergency Medical Technicians from training schools that are authorized by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Step 2: EMT Exam and Application

EMT applicants in Illinois have two options to get certified. Under Section 515.530 (b) of the Emergency Medical Services and Trauma Center Code [77 III. Adm. Code 515.530 (b)], EMT professionals can either give State of Illinois Examination or National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) examination.

2a. State of Illinois Examination

Go to the website of ‘Continental Testing Services’ – Here, you can apply online, as well as make the payment for the exam.

‘EMS Systems Examination Application’ will guide you the ways of online application.

2b. NREMT Examination

  • Click on “Create New Account” and create a fresh account on the NREMT website.
  • Now, click on the option of “Create Initial Entry Application” and create an application.
  • Pay your application fee soon after finishing the online application.
  • Next, click on “Check Initial Entry Application Status” and check the status of your application and look for ‘Authorization to Test’ (ATT) Letter by going to the website and logging in your account by using the password and username.
  • If “Submitted” is visible beside the option of “Course Completion Verification”, this is the clue that the site has submitted the applicant’s details and is waiting for the approval of the course by the education program director.
  • If “Not Submitted” appears beside “Application Payment”, then you have to pay the fees before you receive your ATT Letter.
  • The link “Print ATT Letter” will appear if you have paid the application fee and the course completion is confirmed by your education program director.
  • Take out a printed copy of your ATT Letter, and then, decide a date of your NREMT exam with the help of instructions, provided on the letter.

The NREMT practical examinations are held by state-approved EMT training programs.

Illinois EMS Training Schools:

  • College of DuPage
    Address: 425 Fawell Boulevard, Glen Ellyn, Illinois- 60137
    Contact Number: (630) 942-2800
    Official Website:
  • College of Lake County
    Address: 19351 West Washington Street, Grayslake, Illinois- 60030-1198
    Contact Number: (847) 543-2000
    Official Website:
  • Illinois Central College
    Address: 1 College Drive, East Peoria, Illinois- 61635-0001
    Contact Number: (309) 694-5422
    Official Website:
  • Joliet Junior College
    Address: 1215 Houbolt Road, Joliet, Illinois- 60431-8938
    Contact Number: (815) 729-9020
    Official Website:
  • Moraine Valley Community College
    Address: 9000 West College Parkway, Palos Hills, Illinois- 60465-2478
    Contact Number: (708) 974-4300
    Official Website:
  • Southwestern Illinois College
    Address: 2500 Carlyle Avenue, Belleville, Illinois- 62221
    Contact Number: 618-235-2700
    Official Website:
  • Triton College
    Address: 2000 Fifth Avenue, River Grove, Illinois- 60171
    Contact Number: (708) 456-0300
    Official Website:
  • Waubonsee Community College
    Address: Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive, Sugar Grove, Illinois- 60554-9454
    Contact Number: (630) 466-7900
    Official Website:
  • Loyola University
    Address: 1032 West Sheridan Road, Chicago, Illinois- 60660
    Contact Number: 773-274-3000
    Official Website


Illinois EMT Contact Information:

Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466

Leave a Comment