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    Harding University
  Aug 17, 2022
2022-2023 Academic Catalog 
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2022-2023 Academic Catalog

Department of Cardiac Function and Interventional Technology

Programs of Study Faculty Website

Program Description

Harding is proud to establish the first Cardiac Function & Interventional Technology (CFIT) master’s program. In this program, students will be trained by credentialed faculty, industry personnel, as well as clinical partners for the dynamic and technical cardiac device field.

The CFIT program is part of the College of Allied Health and offers a Master of Science degree. The curriculum is an intensive 10-month education program including 36 credit hours of coursework, hands-on laboratory training, and clinical experiences, with a focus on cardiac rhythm management (CRM) and electrophysiology (EP). For more information view our website, email, or call 501-279-4908.

The CFIT Student General Handbook contains a comprehensive description of all policies and procedures that apply to our students.


The mission of the program is to instill essential knowledge, skills, and dispositions for successful careers, and servant leadership in cardiac device interventional technologies with an emphasis on cardiac rhythm management and electrophysiology.


The CFIT program is an integral part of Harding University and embraces the goals outlined in the University’s statement of mission and goals. The goals of the CFIT program are for graduates to:

  • demonstrate the skills necessary to practice and support contemporary entry-level cardiac rhythm management and electrophysiology therapies in a safe, ethical, and responsible manner.
  • demonstrate cultural sensitivity in interactions with patients, employers, and others with whom they interact.
  • demonstrate the skills required for professionalism and life-long learning.


As this is the first degree-based program in cardiac interventional technology there is no established accreditation.

Admission Requirements

All applicants must:

  1. Possess a bachelor’s degree which has been completed at an institution within the United States accredited by an agency nationally recognized by the US Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Official transcripts showing conferment of degree must be provided prior to matriculation into the Program.
  2. Meet all general requirements for admission to, and agree to abide by all policies and procedures for, graduate programs at Harding University. Graduate students at Harding are expected to maintain the highest standards of morality, integrity, orderliness, and personal honor. Harding University reserves the right to refuse admittance or dismiss any student whose lifestyle is not consistent with the Christian principles that this University represents.
  3. Have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4-point scale. The program may consider applications with a cumulative undergraduate GPA below the required 3.0 if it is clear that there is strong evidence that the applicant has demonstrated current academic success. All such reviews are performed at the sole discretion of the Program.
  4. Complete the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test within 3 years prior to matriculation. The GRE requirement is required for all applicants.
  5. Maintain current CPR certification.

Prerequisite Coursework

Prerequisite courses must be completed at an institution within the United States accredited by an agency nationally recognized by the US Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation with an average GPA of 3.0 on a 4-point scale, with no course grade below D.

Courses Credits (semester hours)
Human Anatomy with lab¹ 4
Human Physiology with lab¹ 4

Introductory or survey courses are not accepted.

¹A combined full-year Anatomy and Physiology I and II with labs will meet this requirement. Equivalent work experience may be considered, at the discretion of the program faculty.

Transcripts documenting the completion of all coursework (including prerequisites) must be provided.

Only one prerequisite course may be left for completion the spring semester prior to matriculation into the program. All matriculating students must receive their bachelor’s degree no later than the end of the summer term prior to matriculation.

CLEP and Advanced Placement Courses: CLEP examination credit may not be used to meet the prerequisites. Advanced Placement (AP) credit may be used to satisfy prerequisite coursework provided that the AP credit is accepted by the applicant’s institution and is posted on the applicant’s official academic transcript.

All applicants who meet the minimum requirements will be considered for an interview regardless of their major area of study.

Submission of a completed application does not guarantee an interview, selection, or admission into the CFIT program. The program is seeking applicants who are well prepared for the rigors of the academic curriculum and the clinical training of the program.

International Students

The TOEFL is required of all incoming international students. Students who (1) speak English as a second language, and have (2) not previously completed an undergraduate degree from an institution within the United States accredited by an agency nationally recognized by the US Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation must meet a minimum score on a nationally recognized test of English language proficiency such as the TOEFL or IELTS. However, in lieu of these exams, professional programs in the health sciences may assess such students with an interview and/or a writing exam. An iBT Score of 80 with a Speaking Sub-scale 27 is the required minimum score.

Minimum TOEFL scores acceptable for admission to the university are 550 (paper-based test), 213 (computer-based test), or 79 (internet-based test). The minimum IELTS score is 6.0. Scores must not be older than two years prior to the date of application to the university. Please note that individual programs may have more stringent minimum requirements.

While this is acceptable for admission to the University, the CFIT Program requires a bachelor’s degree completed at an institution within the United States accredited by an agency nationally recognized by the US Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation prior to matriculation into the program.

Program Requirements

  1. Technical Standards: All applicants must meet the minimum technical standards for admission to the Harding University CFIT Program. These technical standards require demonstrated aptitude in diverse skills and abilities related to observation, intellect, physical manipulation, communication, and interpersonal skills.
  2. Ethical Standards: A candidate must demonstrate the highest level of professional demeanor and behavior, and must perform in an ethical manner in all dealings with peers, faculty, staff, and patients.
  3. Health Requirements: Applicants selected for admission to the program must provide evidence of good health, of no communicable diseases, and of required immunizations and screenings prior to matriculation on forms provided. Students are required to maintain personal health insurance. Immunizations and screening tests are required as follows:
    • Hepatitis A Vaccine
    • Hepatitis B series and titer (this can take up to six months to complete)
    • Two MMRs
    • A 1-time booster of Tdap within past 10 years
    • Positive varicella titer OR a series of 2 immunizations
    • A two-step PPD skin test performed within four months prior to matriculation
    • Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis
    • Polio Vaccine
    • Meningococcal Vaccine
    • COVID-19 Vaccination OR religious/medical exemption
    • Flu Shot
  4. Liability Requirements: Each student must carry liability insurance coverage, which is included in tuition costs.
  5. Travel Requirements: Since portions of the program will require travel to various locations; all students are required to have access to a motor vehicle, a valid driver’s license, and auto liability insurance.
  6. Clinical experiences entail travel to clinical sites. CFIT students are responsible for all costs associated with travel to clinical experiences. Transportation and food are the most common out-of-pocket expenses. Accepted students are required to attend all orientation sessions scheduled by the program.
  7. Background Check Requirements: Matriculation and continued enrollment in the CFIT program is contingent upon a completed Criminal Background Check with acceptable results. Failure to consent to a criminal background check; refusal to provide necessary information to conduct a background check; failure to provide additional information wherein an investigation is warranted; and failure to comply with the investigatory procedures when a cause for further action is warranted will result in disciplinary action up to, and including, withdrawal of a conditional offer of acceptance, refusal of admission, or dismissal from the CFIT program.
  8. Some students may also be expected to submit to random drug testing required by clinical practice sites and/or the program. These additional costs will be the responsibility of the student. Criminal background checks and drug screen tests are common pre-employment procedures.
  9. Other: The CFIT program has a cohort tuition for each entering class. The tuition costs will remain the same throughout the duration in the program. As a private institution, there is no difference in tuition costs for in-state/out-of-state students. The program will cover lab supplies and insurance costs. The student will be responsible for the University technology fee each term, books, laptop computer and required software, and medical equipment, graduation, and post-graduation expenses.

Further Program Requirements

In order to complete the CFIT master’s degree, a student must register for and pass each course set forth in the program’s curriculum. Normal program progression is sequential enrollment in all program classes both semesters, beginning in fall and successfully meeting all course and program objectives Spring semester.

In addition to the University requirements regarding good academic standing at the graduate level, to remain in good academic standing in the CFIT program, a student must maintain the following:

  1. A current and cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.
  2. A grade of C or higher in all courses*.
  3. A total cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for graduation.
  4. Satisfactory evidence of good interpersonal relations and professional conduct.
  5. Adherence to Harding University’s Code of Conduct.

*Course Remediation: Course remediation may be available to students who earn a D grade. The course coordinator will create a remediation plan that will include the remediation activity, an assessment method, the benchmark for successful remediation, and a timeframe for completion. If the student successfully completes remediation, the course coordinator will change the student’s final grade to a C for the course. No grade higher than a C can be achieved with remediation. If upon re-assessment the student’s performance falls below a minimally acceptable level, a grade of D or F will be issued.

Application Procedure

  1. Complete the online application.
  2. Request official transcripts* be sent directly from previous institutions to
    *Note: Harding alumni and current students do not need to request Harding transcripts as they are on file.

  3. Submit the following:
    1. Two letters of recommendation 

    2. A resume

    3. A personal statement (400-500 words)

    4. CPR certification

Questions may be directed to or 501-279-4908.

Submission of a completed application does not guarantee an interview, selection, or admission into the CFIT Program.

Application Review and Selection for Interview

Each new class matriculates in the fall term. The CFIT application cycle begins in the fall and ends on April 1 of the year preceding the August start date. Applicant interviews and candidate selection occur between January and May of each year.

We will begin the interview process as applications are received from GradCAS. Interviews will be offered to qualified applicants prior to the application deadline and student positions will be offered on a rolling admissions basis. Early application is strongly encouraged. Some student positions will remain available through the last interview date. The admissions committee reviews all completed applications for admission. Applications will be reviewed for traits of a competitive applicant who will be invited for an interview. These traits include but are not limited to:

  • Meets or exceeds the minimum academic requirements
  • Has sought out opportunities to gain knowledge of and commitment to this career path
  • Has strong letters of reference
  • Provides a letter of interest in the cardiac device industry

Competitive applicants will be invited to attend a personal interview that affords the faculty an opportunity to further review the applicant’s credentials. Applicants are expected to demonstrate maturity, personal initiative, a basic understanding of the cardiac device industry, and good communication skills.

Selection and Notification for Admission

The number of applicants recommended for acceptance will be determined annually by the CFIT program admissions committee.

After interviews are completed, interviewees will be informed about their status via email. Based upon a review of the applications and interviews, the admissions committee may recommend one of the following:

  1. Acceptance: Accepted students will be notified by email. All acceptance will be conditional, contingent upon completion of the criminal background check with acceptable results. Individuals who have not completed all prerequisites or graduated will have these additional contingencies added to their conditional acceptance, pending verification of completion of the required coursework and/or graduation.
    • An advance tuition deposit of $500 is to be returned with an anticipated turnaround of approximately two weeks from the time of the student offer.
  2. Hold: Some applicants who do not receive an offer of acceptance prior to the final selection of candidates will be placed on hold status. These applicants will continue to be eligible for positions in the program until final selections are made.
  3. Admission Alternates: At the conclusion of the interview season, some applicants will be ranked as alternates and will be notified of their admission status on or before the program’s annual fall start date. Applicants not admitted from the alternate list must reapply if they wish to be considered in subsequent years.
  4. Non-Acceptance: Some applicants may be notified of non-acceptance at any time in the process. Applicants wishing to be considered in a subsequent year must reapply, and must satisfy all admission requirements for that year.

All program decisions are final.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Financial aid information can be obtained at or by calling 501-279-4257.

Accepted students who are non-US citizens will be required to submit documentation of financial ability to pay all expenses for the first year of study to the CFIT program and demonstrate adequate coverage for health insurance in the United States. A copy of the student’s status with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) must accompany this. Status is demonstrated through the presentation of the I-20, I-94, and Visa.

Academic Requirements:

A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 and successful completion of both semesters of academic coursework is required.

Students must earn a grade of a C or higher in all courses in the professional curriculum in order to progress to the final semester. Failure to earn a grade of C or higher in any course in the professional curriculum will result in dismissal from the CFIT professional program due to academic deficiency.

Academic Warning:

Status of warning students of declining academic performance. Student is given written notification but the status is not entered on the student transcript.

  • Student receives below C on any major exam or project

Academic Probation and Dismissal:

The purpose for placing a student on Academic Probation is to encourage the student the opportunity to improve academic status and encourage successful progression through the graduate program.  A student is placed on academic probation with any of the following:

  • His/her cumulative GPA is below 3.0 at the end of the first semester
  • A grade of D is earned before remediation in any academic course in the first semester

A student is dismissed from the program with any of the following:

  • if he/she receives F in any class
  • if remediation does not result in raising course grade to C

Remediation consists of the course coordinator creating a remediation plan that will include a remediation activity, assessment method, benchmark for successful remediation and a time frame for completion. If the student successfully completes remediation, the course coordinator changes the student’s final grade to C for the course. No grade higher than a C can be achieved with remediation. If upon reassessment, the student’s performance does not result in a C, then the student will not be allowed to continue in to the 2nd semester.

When the student raises the cumulative grade above 3.0, he/she will be removed from Academic Probation and will return to Good Standing. 

Non-academic Suspension:

Excessive absence or tardiness; violation of technology (eg. cell phone/smart watches/iPad) policy; repeated violations of the dress code; violation of professional or ethical behavior.




Kenneth R. Turley, Ph.D., FACSM, CCES
     CFIT Director

Assistant Professors:

Tristan Pendergrass, M.B.A., FHRS, CCDS, CEPS


    Master of Science