AHA Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) – Update Course

Course Specifications:

Course Number:


Course Length:

Full Course Time: Approximately 15 hours 20 minutes – $267.00 / per student
(Includes Book)

Course Description:


The AHA’s ACLS Update course builds on the foundation of lifesaving BLS skills, emphasizing the importance of continuous, high-quality CPR. Reflects science and education from the American Heart Association Guidelines Update for CPR and Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC).


Course Objectives

  1. Basic life support skills, including effective chest compressions, use of a bag-mask device, and use of an AED
  2. Recognition and early management of respiratory and cardiac arrest
  3. Recognition and early management of peri-arrest conditions such as symptomatic bradycardia
  4. Airway management
  5. Related pharmacology
  6. Management of ACS and stroke
  7. Effective communication as a member and leader of a resuscitation team

Target Student:

The goal of this program is to provide students a valuable and enjoyable hands-on training experience. 

The fundamental objective is to use a simple, practical approach to help students develop necessary knowledge, skills, and confidence to provide and direct lifesaving interventions as a lead emergency medical responder. 

Course Content:

Lesson 1: The ABCDs of Emergency Cardiac Care

  1. Identify the risk factors for coronary artery disease.
  2. Define “cardiac arrest” and “sudden cardiac death.”
  3. Identify and describe the links in the Chain of Survival.
  4. Name four heart rhythms associated with cardiac arrest.
  5. Differentiate “shockable” cardiac arrest rhythms from “nonshockable” cardiac arrest rhythms.
  6. Identify the components of advanced cardiac life support.
  7. Describe the phases of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
  8. List the purpose of components of the primary and secondary surveys.
  9. Explain advanced directives and do not resuscitate (DNR) orders.

Lesson 2: Airway Management Oxygenation and Ventilation

  1. Name the major structures of the respiratory system.
  2. Describe the oxygen liter flow per minute and estimated oxygen percentage delivered for each of the following devices:
    • Nasal cannnula
    • Simple face mask
    • Partial nonrebreather mask
    • Nonrebreather mask
    • Venturi Mask
  3. Describe the steps in performing the head-tilt / chin-lift and jaw thrust without head-tilt maneuvers for opening the airway.
  4. Relate mechanism of injury to opening the airway.
  5. Describe correct suctioning technique and complications associated with the procedure.
  6. Describe how to correctly size and insert and oral airway and a nasal airway.
  7. Describe the indications for positive-pressure ventilation.
  8. Describe the oxygen liter flow per minute and estimated inspired oxygen concentration delivered for a pocket mask and bag-mask device.
  9. Describe how to ventilate a patient with a bag-mask using one and two rescuers.
  10. Describe the signs of adequate and inadequate bag-mask ventilation.
  11. Describe the advantages and disadvantages associated with the use of an automatic transport ventilator (ATV) and a flow-restricted, oxygen-powered ventilation device.
  12. Describe the indications, advantages, and technique for advanced airways including Combitube, laryngeal mask airway (LMA), and endotracheal (ET) tube.


Lesson 3: Rhythm Recognition

  1. Name the primary branches of the right and left coronary arteries.
  2. Describe the two types of myocardial cells and the function of each.
  3. Describe the significance of each waveform in the cardiac cycle.
  4. Describe the normal duration of the PR interval and QRS complex.
  5. Describe at least two methods of determining heart rate.
  6. Name the primary and escape pacemakers of the heart and the normal rates of each.
  7. Define the absolute and relative refractory periods and their location in the cardiac cycle.
  8. Describe the electrocardiogram (ECG) characteristics of narrow-QRS tachycardias.
  9. Describe the ECG characteristics and wide-QRS tachycardias.
  10. Describe the differentiation of right and left bundle branch block (BBB) using lead V1 or modified chest lead (MCL1)
  11. Describe the ECG characteristics of irregular tachycardias.
  12. Describe the ECG characteristics of sinus bradycardia, junctional escape rhythm, and ventricular escape rhythm.
  13. Describe the ECG characteristics of first-, second-, and third-degree atrioventricular (AV) blocks.
  14. Name and describe four dysrhythmias that may be observed during cardiac arrest.
  15. Describe the appearance of the waveform on the ECG produced as a result of atrial pacing and ventricular pacing.

Lesson 4: Testing Station / High-Quality BLS

Lesson 5: Testing Station / Airway Management

Lesson 6: Technology Review

Lesson 7: Team Dynamics and Megacode

Exam: Megacode Test