How to Choose a Radiology Tech Program near Addison Alabama
Congratulations regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Addison AL so you can become a radiology technician. But now that you have decided to go into the satisfying field of healthcare, exactly how do you undertake choosing the ideal school and program to ensure that you will receive the proper training to become a skilled practitioner? And because most states do mandate that x-ray technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you might need preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s essential that you research each of the colleges you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. Most prospective students start by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while location and cost must be taken into account, there are additional important qualifiers as well. For instance, you must find out if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they offer internship programs. These inquiries and others you should ask the colleges you are evaluating are presented later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and education options that are offered.
X-Ray Tech Occupation Summary
There are multiple professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, each has the same major job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many opt to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for example mammography. They may practice in Addison AL clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray tech might work with include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers must maintain their equipment and regularly analyze its functionality and safety. They are also expected to retain detailed records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Addison AL medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Tech Degree Options
The primary prerequisite for enrolling in a radiology tech program is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among techs, usually requires 18 months to 2 years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to four years to finish and is more comprehensive in scope. Most students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are acceptable as well. Something to consider is that Addison AL radiographer colleges have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may typically be satisfied by participating in an internship or externship program which many colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in their region. Once you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you must abide by any certification or licensing mandates in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-ray Technician Certification and Licensing
Once you have graduated from an X-Ray tech program, based on the state where you will be working you may need to be licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites differ so check with your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but several approve additional options for testing also. A number of states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, if not it is voluntary. However, many Addison AL employers prefer to hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could increase your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an accepted program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also calls for re-certification every two years, which can be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technologist Programs
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical or lab training included in their course of study. This is no different for online degree colleges. So while you can still earn your online degree, a considerable portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Clinical training is typically performed in regional family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training can be attended in the comfort of your Addison AL residence. Students who continue working while earning their degree often discover that the online style of education is far more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online schools are generally less expensive than conventional options. Along with reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials may be reduced also. But just be sure 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 formalized type of training, then an online degree may be the ideal choice for you.
Topics to Ask Radiographer Colleges
When you have selected the type of degree that you want to earn, you can initiate the process of locating and evaluating Addison AL x-ray technician colleges. You will also have to determine if you prefer to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then of course the location of the college will be important. The price of tuition and secondary expenses will be a material factor also. But along with location and cost, what else should you look at when comparing colleges? Well, you need to ask if the colleges are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you find out some of these crucial details before you make your selection, we have put together a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are assessing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Programs Accredited? The majority of xray technician schools have acquired some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it’s still important to make sure that the program and school are accredited. One of the most highly respected accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous examination of their instructors and educational materials. If the program is online it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial aid and student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Addison AL health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry-level positions.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the Alabama xray tech colleges you are reviewing have associations with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great means to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to satisfy the clinical training requirement for most programs. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Addison AL medical community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance available? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that first job in a new field can be challenging without assistance. Find out if the x-ray tech schools you are reviewing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with Addison AL healthcare employers. It also confirms that their students are highly regarded and sought after.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the college they select will have to be within travelling distance of their Addison AL home. Those who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to 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 back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Addison AL colleges you are reviewing what the typical teacher to student 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 speak with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the x-ray tech program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the x-ray tech program you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in Addison AL, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Become an X-Ray Tech?When getting ready to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's important to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that interviewers typically ask radiographer prospects is "What drove you to select radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for being an Xray technician, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to radiography, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you need to prepare a number of approaches about how you want to answer them. Given that there are numerous variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the talents you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the best candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down several ideas and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Ideal X-Ray Tech Program near Addison AL
Enrolling in the appropriate x-ray tech degree program is an important first step toward beginning a fulfilling new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the majority of the working day and move and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Prospects must also show a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to observe the safety requirements developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a pleasant work environment and provide the best possible patient care. As has been discussed in this article, there are several questions that you should ask each school you are looking at before making your ultimate selection. This is just as true whether you decide on an online program or drive to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can assess and compare each program so you can narrow down your options before making your decision. And with the proper education and your commitment to be successful, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Addison AL.
Some Background on Addison Alabama
Addison is a town in Winston County, Alabama, United States. It incorporated in December 1949. At the 2010 U.S. Census, it had a population of 758, up from 723 in 2000.
Addison is located at 34°12′0″N 87°10′40″W / 34.20000°N 87.17778°W / 34.20000; -87.17778 (34.200042, -87.177851).
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 3.5 square miles (9.1 km2), all land.
As of the 2010 Census Addison had a population of 757. The population was 99.1% white, 0.1% black or African American, 0.1% Asian, 0.7% from two or more races and 0.4% Hispanic or Latino of any race.
As of the census of 2000, there were 723 people, 315 households, and 219 families residing in the town. The population density was 205.7 people per square mile (79.5/km²). There were 339 housing units at an average density of 96.5 per square mile (37.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 99.45% White, 0.14% Black or African American, 0.14% Native American, 0.14% Asian, and 0.14% from two or more races. 0.14% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
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