Ace the Anesthesia Technician Certification Test with This Study Guide

The anesthesia technician certification test manual from ASATT is the best study resource available, as it is published by the same company that certifies anesthesia technicians.

Anesthesia technicians perform technical duties related to the administration of anesthesia to patients. The duties of an anesthesia technician typically include setting up equipment for anesthesia administration, sterilizing anesthesia equipment, ordering anesthesia supplies, inspecting anesthesia equipment for defects, maintaining anesthesia equipment, scheduling repairs for broken equipment, and assisting with the transportation and monitoring of patients. Some anesthesia technicians also assist in the placement of pressure monitoring devices and intravenous infusion lines. Obtaining an anesthesia technician certification is one of the best ways to improve your job prospects. Certification is available through The American Society of Anesthesia Technologists and Technicians (ASAAT). This guide will help you prepare for the anesthesia technician certification test so that you can become a certified anesthesia technician.

Eligibility Requirements

The ASATT anesthesia technician exam has several minimum eligibility requirements. To qualify to take the test, you must have two years of experience as an anesthesia technician OR have completed a two-year anesthesia technician training program. English proficiency, basic computer skills, and a high school diploma are also required. If you meet these requirements, download the candidate handbook (PDF format) and complete the application. You must submit the registration fee along with your application. If you are a member of ASATT, the fee is $275 ($400 for international members). The non-member fee is $400 ($500 for international non-members). When registering for the anesthesia technician certification examination, it is important to select a date that will work with your schedule. ASATT only allows an exam candidate to reschedule once before having to re-apply and pay another registration fee.

Exam Content

The anesthesia technician certification examination covers several subject areas related to this career. These topics include operating room tasks, anatomy and physiology, infection control techniques, airway management equipment, types of anesthesia, anesthesia machine and gas delivery, intra-operative complications, IV therapy, monitors and ancillary devices, and pharmacy. The exam consists of 100 anesthesia technician certification test questions, with 15 questions covering the operating room environment and 85 questions devoted to anesthesia-specific topics.

Studying for the Exam

When studying to become a certified anesthesia technician online, use the outline below to guide you. Review your textbooks or classroom notes, partner with others who are taking the exam, or create flashcards and other study guides to reinforce learning.

Operating Room Tasks

  • Patient/patient sample identification
  • Quality assurance
  • Anesthesia technician continuing education requirements
  • Patient transport
  • Operating room safety procedures
  • Electrical safety in the operating room
  • Disposal of contaminated materials
  • Quality control for the anesthesia clinical laboratory
  • Practice limitations
  • Positioning and use of monitoring devices
  • Privacy and patient confidentiality

Anatomy and Physiology

  • Normal physiological responses to anesthesia
  • Basic anatomy and function of the muscular, nervous, respiratory, skeletal, and vascular systems
  • Normal lab values related to anesthesia administration

Infection Control Techniques

  • Sterilization of reusable items
  • Arterial line insertion
  • Swan-Ganz line insertion
  • Central line insertion
  • Differentiating between steam, ethylene oxide, glutaraldehyde, and gamma radiation sterilization
  • Differentiating between sterilizing, high-level disinfecting, and cleaning

Airway Management Equipment

  • Basic procedures for maintaining airways
  • Devices used to maintain airways
  • Airway management using bronchoscopes, light wands, emergency intubation kits, and other tools
  • Identification of airway equipment and endotracheal tubes
  • Setting up ET tubes, breathing masks, and other equipment

Types of Anesthesia

  • Setting up basic supplies for anesthetic procedures
  • Differentiating between local and general anesthesia

Anesthesia Machine/Gas Delivery

  • Training requirements for equipment troubleshooting/usage
  • Attachment of CPAP and PEEP devices
  • Checking anesthesia machines according to FDA guidelines
  • Use of anesthesia instruments and equipment
  • Disposal of CO2 absorbent according to guidelines
  • Disassembly and reassembly of absorbers
  • Identification of gas cylinders
  • Interpreting manufacturer specifications for maintenance and servicing of equipment
  • Identifying volatile anesthetic agents
  • Setting up emergency ventilation, O2 transport systems, and breathing circuits
  • Replacing CO2 absorbers
  • Performing breathing circuit leak testing

Intra-operative Complications

  • Procedures for cardiac arrest and other emergencies
  • Differentiating between non-reportable and reportable events

IV Therapy

  • Procedures for establishing vascular access
  • Identifying infusion devices, IV catheters, internal jugular kits, and other supplies
  • Providing assistance with the check-in and check-out of blood products

Monitors and Ancillary Devices

  • Setting up transport monitors, blood pressure monitors, infusion pumps, temperature monitors, ECG, pulse oximeter, and other equipment
  • Procedures for non-invasive monitoring
  • Drawing blood samples
  • Assisting with the attachment of arterial lines to transducers
  • Setting up pressure lines and IVs


  • Identifying pharmaceuticals
  • Setting up pre-mixed solutions

Completing the Exam

The anesthesia technician certification exam is computer-based, so you will be working on a computer for the duration of the test. Before you begin the actual exam, you will be allowed to take a practice test. This test is designed to help you become comfortable with taking a test on the computer. The time you use to complete the practice test does NOT count against the time allotted for the actual exam. Once you begin the anesthesia technician certification test, you will have three hours to complete it. Clicking the “time” icon at the bottom of the computer screen will let you know how much time you have left.

If you have not yet met the eligibility requirements for this examination, see our anesthesia technician school directory for a list of programs available. The directory lists U.S. schools offering training for anesthesia technicians and technologists.

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