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Mayo Clinic cardiovascular invasive specialist students attending a lecture

Student experiences

The curriculum for the Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program is taught in cooperation with Rochester Community and Technical College. The program requires full-time attendance.

For the first two semesters of the program, you take classes at Rochester Community and Technical College.

Areas of study include:

  • Cardiovascular anatomy and physiology and cardiovascular pathophysiology, which concentrate on the structures, functions, and disease processes of the heart
  • Angiography and interventional cardiology, which concentrate on the coronary anatomy and treatment(s) for diseases of the heart
  • Electrophysiology and cardiac pacing, which concentrate on the cardiac electrical system and its diagnosis and treatment
  • Advanced cardiac assessments (such as hemodynamics, coronary physiology, cardiac valve study, and congenital heart disease), which concentrate on in-depth cardiovascular anatomical and physiological data
  • Instrumentation, electronics, and X-ray basics, which concentrate on the radiation and electrical processing and safety in the clinical cardiovascular laboratory setting

Classroom learning

During the first nine months, you attend classes at Rochester Community and Technical College and start introductory specialty course work on the Mayo Clinic campus. The curriculum at Rochester Community and Technical College includes courses in the sciences, math, chemistry, and physics, as well as general education courses.

Hands-on clinical rotations

During the next 12 months, you are assigned full-time at the Mayo Clinic Cardiac Laboratory. You attend cardiovascular and invasive cardiology courses and gain experience through clinical practice. Clinical rotations are scheduled in several laboratories at Mayo Clinic beginning in the fall semester of the second year.


An off-site internship is required as part of the program curriculum. This is a time for you to put your new skills into action. The internship is four months long and happens during the final semester of the program. The internship takes place at an affiliated institution and requires 40 hours a week in a lab during this time. Students are responsible for room and board during their internship.

Course sequence

The program includes 22 general education credits taken at Rochester Community and Technical College and 41 Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program core credits taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences. You also must complete a CPR (American Heart Association format recommended) for health care provider course or Health 1110 before beginning the program.

Year 1

Year 1: Fall semester

Anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and physics are taken at Rochester Community and Technical College. CVIS 1010 is taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences.

Total 13
Biology 1217: Anatomy and Physiology I 4
Chemistry 1117: General, Organic and Biological Chemistry I 4
Physics 1103: Physics for the Health Sciences 3
CVIS 1010: Introduction to Cardiology 2

Year 1: Spring semester

Anatomy and physiology, English, and philosophy are taken at Rochester Community and Technical College. CVIS 1020 is taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences.

Total 13
Biology 1218: Anatomy and Physiology II 4
English 1117: Reading and Writing Critically I 4
Philosophy 1135: Bioethics (preferred) or Philosophy 1125: Ethics (alternative) 3
CVIS 1020: Introduction to Electrocardiography


Year 2

Year 2: Summer semester

All taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences:

Total 11
CVIS 2010: Cardiovascular Physiology & Pathophysiology 4
CVIS 2020: Invasive Cardiology I 5
CVIS 2060: Diagnostic Imaging & Fluoroscopy 2

Year 2: Fall semester

All taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences:

Total 14
CVIS 2030: Cardiovascular Pharmacology 2
CVIS 2021: Invasive Cardiology II 6
CVIS 2040: Clinical** 6

Year 2: Spring semester

All taken at Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences:

Total 12
CVIS 2070: Internship** 12

Academic hours: 16 hours equals one credit.

**Laboratory hours: 32 hours equals one credit; clinical hours: 64 hours equals one credit


For the majority of the classroom instruction and clinical rotations, your learning schedule includes eight-hour days five days a week.

Outside work

You may hold outside employment during the program if it does not conflict with class or study time. However, during the second year of the program, it is suggested to minimize outside work due to the time commitment and in-depth nature of the program. In addition, you cannot hold outside work as a cardiovascular technologist while training.

EP results in the Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist program

Facilities and faculty

Learn more about the facilities and faculty for the Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program.


Mayo Clinic's campus in Rochester, Minnesota, includes an extensive outpatient complex, Mayo Clinic Hospital — Rochester, and substantial research and education facilities.

This Mayo Clinic site is among the largest, most advanced medical centers in the world.

Mayo Clinic's Cardiac Laboratory contains the most advanced diagnostic and interventional cardiovascular equipment. As a Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program student, you actively participate in procedures and treatment modalities using this equipment.


The Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program draws its faculty from clinical, scientific and technical staffs of Mayo Clinic. Faculty members are chosen for their commitment to teaching as well as clinical practice or research. Many have published and lectured extensively and are highly regarded in their fields.

You have direct access to these individuals throughout your training. This allows you the opportunity to learn directly from some of today's best practitioners of invasive cardiology.

The faculty and staff at Rochester Community and Technical College are highly qualified and willing to provide individual attention. Instructors have access to advanced learning technologies, as Rochester Community and Technical College continues to strive to be a local and global leader in education.

Grading and evaluation 

Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences uses these evaluative tools: examinations, hands-on simulation to demonstrate mastery of skills, self-assessment exercises, and faculty reviews.

Our system of evaluation provides students and faculty with a comprehensive look at individual performance. This allows faculty and administrative staff to direct students who are experiencing academic difficulty to the appropriate support resources, including tutoring programs and counseling opportunities.

Graduation and certification

Upon graduating from the Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist Program, you receive a certificate of completion from Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences and an Associate of Applied Science degree from Rochester Community and Technical College. 

Graduates are eligible to take professional certification examinations given by the Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI). All graduates are eligible to sit for the Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist (RCIS) national board examination.