How to Pick a Radiologic Technician Degree Program near Phenix City Alabama
Best wishes regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Phenix City AL so you can train to be a radiology technologist. But now that you have made a decision to enter the satisfying field of healthcare, just how do you set about selecting the ideal college and program to ensure that you will get the proper training to become a skilled professional? And since the majority of states do require that x-ray techs become licensed, depending on where you subsequently work you might require preparation to pass a licensing exam. So it’s essential that you investigate each of the schools you are considering in order to compare each program. Most prospective students start by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and usually settle on the lowest cost. But while location and cost must be considered, there are additional important qualifications as well. For example, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internships. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are examining are provided later in this post. But first, let’s talk about what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and training choices that are offered.
X-Ray Technician Work Description
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiology technicians or radiographers. Irrespective of the name, each has the same primary job description, which is to employ imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some choose to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for example mammography. They can work in Phenix City AL clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist may 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 routinely analyze its performance and safety. They are also expected to keep detailed records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Phenix City AL medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Tech Degrees Available
The primary prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech school is to have received a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, usually requires 18 months to 2 years to finish based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to four years to finish and is more comprehensive in scope. Most students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate as well. Something to keep in mind is that Phenix City AL radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It can typically be fulfilled by participating in an externship program which a large number of schools offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must abide by any certification or licensing mandates in Alabama or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiographer Certification and Licensing
Once you have graduated from an x-ray technician program, based on the state where you will be working you may have to be licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but several offer additional options for testing as well. Some states also require certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is voluntary. However, many Phenix City AL employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it might enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Tech Schools
As a part of every degree program, x-ray tech schools will have clinical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is no different for online degree colleges. So while you can still earn your degree online, a considerable amount of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is usually conducted in regional family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Phenix City AL residence. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically discover that the online approach to learning is much more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online colleges are generally cheaper than traditional options. In addition to lower tuition, expenses for study materials and commuting can be decreased as well. But just be sure that the online college you choose is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less formalized style of training, then online classes may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Radiologic Tech Schools
When you have selected the type of degree that you want to obtain, you can initiate the process of locating and evaluating Phenix City AL x-ray tech colleges. You will also have to decide if you want to attend online classes or travel to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be relevant. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenses will be a material factor also. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you consider when comparing colleges? Well, you should check out if the schools are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these important details prior to making your selection, we have put together a list of questions that you must ask the colleges you are considering.
Are the Radiology Technician Programs Accredited? Most xray technician schools have obtained some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it’s still crucial to verify that the school and program are accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous assessment of their instructors and course materials. If the program is online it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. 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 obtaining financial assistance and student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And many Phenix City AL employers will only hire graduates of an accredited school for entry level jobs.
Are Internships Sponsored? Ask if the Alabama radiology technician colleges you are interested in have relationships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent manner to receive hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist students and graduates develop professional relationships in the Phenix City AL healthcare community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will undoubtedly wish to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that initial job in a new profession can be difficult without support. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are reviewing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good indication that the schools have substantial networks and good relationships with Phenix City AL healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they select will need to be within travelling distance of their Phenix City AL home. Individuals 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 concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Phenix City AL colleges you are considering what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program also.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the x-ray tech college you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in Phenix City AL, verify that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Radiologic Technologist?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's important to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the things that hiring managers typically ask radiographer candidates is "What made you select radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being an Xray technician, but additionally what qualities and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, as well as a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must prepare a number of ideas about how you would like to answer them. Since there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the abilities you have that make you an excellent X-Ray tech and the ideal choice for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down some concepts and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Select the Ideal Radiology Tech College near Phenix City AL
Selecting the ideal x-ray technician college is an important first step toward starting a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer should be in good physical shape. Radiology techs regularly stand for the majority of the workday and position and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Prospects must also demonstrate a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a productive work environment and furnish the best available care to patients. As has been discussed in this post, there are several questions that you need to ask each program you are looking at prior to making your ultimate selection. This is just as true whether you enroll in an online school or drive to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can assess and compare each program so you can narrow down your choices before making your final choice. And with the right training and your dedication to succeed, you can achieve your goal to work as a radiologic technologist in Phenix City AL.
Some Background on Phenix City Alabama
Phenix City, Alabama
Phenix City is a city in Lee and Russell counties in the State of Alabama, and the county seat of Russell County. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 32,822.
Phenix City lies immediately west across the Chattahoochee River from much larger Columbus, Georgia. Sometimes called Hub City, Phenix City is included in the Columbus, Georgia-Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area Columbus, Georgia metropolitan area, but a section is located in Lee County, and is, therefore, in the Auburn, Alabama metropolitan area.
In 2007, BusinessWeek named Phenix City the nation's #1 Best Affordable Suburb to raise a family.
Currently, the mayor is Eddie N. Lowe, the city's first black mayor elected by the public. The city manager, who holds the task of organizational matters, is Wallace Hunter.
Phenix City is located at 32°28′22″N 85°1′12″W / 32.47278°N 85.02000°W / 32.47278; -85.02000 (32.472822, -85.020121). It is the easternmost settlement in the state of Alabama as well as the Central Time Zone, but it uses the Eastern Time Zone, due to the city's proximity to the state of Georgia.
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