So you have made the decision to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Brewton AL in order to become a radiology technologist. And now that you have chosen to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you set about picking the right school and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a skilled practitioner? And because the majority of states do mandate that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently practice you might need training to pass a licensing examination. So it's imperative that you research each of the X-ray technician schools you are considering so that you can compare each program. Most prospective students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within driving distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while location and cost need to be considered, there are additional important qualifications also. For instance, you must find out if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internship programs. These inquiries and others you should ask the X-ray Tech schools you are reviewing are provided later in this post. But first, let's explore what a radiology technician does and the degrees and training choices that are offered.
Radiology Technician Work Description
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be called radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, they all have the same fundamental job description, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some choose to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, such as mammography. They may work in Brewton AL clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician might work with include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or "CAT" scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to take care of their equipment and also routinely evaluate its performance and safety. They are additionally expected to keep complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Tech Degree Options
The basic prerequisite for enrolling in an x-ray tech college is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor's Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among techs, usually takes 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor's Degree will take longer at as much as four years to finish and is more expansive in scope. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that may be acceptable as well. One thing to keep in mind is that radiographer schools have a practical training or lab component as part of their curriculum. It may often be satisfied by participating in an internship program which a large number of colleges sponsor through local hospitals and clinics in Brewton AL or their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any certification or licensing mandates in Alabama or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an Radiologist program, depending on the state where you will be employed you might have to become licensed. The majority of states do require licensing, and their criteria differ so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but a number approve additional options for testing also. Some states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, if not it is voluntary. However, many healthcare employers will only hire radiology techs that are certified so it might increase your career options in and around Brewton AL to earn certification. ARRT's certification program involves graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also demands re-certification every two years, which can be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Tech Schools
As a component of every degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is no different for online degree schools. So although you can still earn your online degree, a considerable amount of the training will be completed either in a college lab or in an internship off campus. Practical training is usually carried out in Brewton AL family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online segment of the training can be accessed in the privacy of your home. Students who continue working while earning their degree often find that the online approach to learning is far more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online programs are frequently less costly than traditional alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials may be decreased also. But just make certain that the online college you enroll in is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then online classes may be the ideal choice for you.
Topics to Ask Radiographer Colleges
After you have chosen the kind of degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of locating and assessing x-ray technician colleges near Brewton AL. You will also need to determine if you want to attend classes online or drive to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the school will be critical. The cost of tuition and secondary expenses will be an important variable also. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you factor in when evaluating schools? Well, you need to ask if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these important details before you make your decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you need to ask the colleges you are assessing.
Are the X-Ray Tech Programs Accredited? The majority of radiology technician schools have received some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, it's still crucial to verify that the school and program are accredited. One of the most highly respected accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools earning accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their teachers and course materials. If the college is online it might also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with guaranteeing a quality education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And many Brewton AL health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry-level jobs.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the radiology technician programs you are interested in have partnerships with area hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to receive practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a way to fulfill the clinical training requirement for most programs. As an ancillary benefit, they can help students and graduates form professional connections in the Brewton AL medical community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will most likely wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that first job in Brewton AL in a new profession can be difficult without assistance. Find out if the x-ray tech schools you are considering have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good indication that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the college they select will need to be within travelling distance of their Brewton AL residence. Those who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Brewton AL schools you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the radiographer college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Brewton AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Choose the Right Brewton X-Ray Tech Training
Enrolling in the right x-ray technician college is a critical first step toward launching a fulfilling new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs regularly stand for the majority of the day and move and at times lift the patient to get the proper image. Candidates must also demonstrate an ability to pay strict attention to detail and to comply with the safety requirements designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the doctors and radiologists. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and furnish the best possible care to patients. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of questions that you should ask each college you are assessing before making your final selection. This is just as true whether you enroll in an online school or drive to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can evaluate and compare each college so you can focus your choices and make your final choice. And with the proper training and your commitment to be successful, you can realize your goal to work as a X-ray tech in Brewton Alabama.