How to Choose an X-Ray Technician School near Claremont California
Best wishes regarding your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Claremont CA so you can learn to be a radiologic technician. But now that you have made a decision to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, exactly how do you tackle selecting the right college and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified practitioner? And considering that most states do require that x-ray techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently practice you may need preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s imperative that you assess each of the colleges you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. Many prospective students begin by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and usually settle on the most affordable cost. But while cost and location should be taken into consideration, there are other important qualifications as well. For example, you must ask whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are examining are presented later in this article. But first, let’s talk about what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and education choices that are available.
X-Ray Technician Career Description
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 identical principal 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 the treatment of cancer. Many choose to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for instance mammography. They can work in Claremont CA clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician might utilize 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 plus routinely analyze its performance and safety. They are additionally expected to retain detailed records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Claremont CA medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Tech Degrees
The standard requirement for enrolling in a radiology tech college is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the option to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among techs, usually takes 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to 4 years to complete and is more extensive in nature. Most students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate also. One thing to keep in mind is that Claremont CA radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by participating in an externship program which a large number of schools sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their region. Once you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any certification or licensing requirements in California or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-Ray Tech Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an x-ray technician school, depending on the state where you will be employed you might need to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their criteria differ so contact your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but several accept other alternatives for testing as well. A number of states also call for certification as a component of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, many Claremont CA employers will only hire radiology techs that are certified so it may enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also calls for re-certification every two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technician Classes
As a part of every degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have clinical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree programs. So although you can still obtain your online degree, a significant amount of the training will be completed either in a school lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is typically carried out in local hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. However the online segment of the training can be attended in the comfort of your Claremont CA home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree typically discover that the online approach to learning is far more convenient with their hectic schedules. Plus online schools are frequently cheaper than conventional options. In addition to lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting may be decreased as well. But just confirm that the online college you pick is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less structured style of training, then an online degree may be the right choice for you.
Questions to Ask Radiographer Colleges
When you have chosen the type of degree that you want to obtain, you can start the process of searching for and assessing Claremont CA x-ray tech colleges. You will also need to decide if you prefer to attend online classes or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then naturally the location of the college will be critical. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenses will be a determining variable also. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you look at when evaluating schools? Well, you should check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these crucial details prior to making your selection, we have compiled a list of questions that you need to ask the programs you are considering.
Are the Radiology Technician Programs Accredited? Most radiology technician schools have acquired some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still imperative to verify that the program and school 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). Schools earning accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone an extensive examination of their instructors and course materials. If the college is online it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Claremont CA employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry level positions.
Are Internships Sponsored? Inquire if the California radiology technician programs you are assessing have relationships with regional hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent way to get hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for most programs. As a secondary benefit, they can help graduates and students form professional connections in the Claremont CA medical community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will undoubtedly want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in a new profession can be difficult without help. Find out if the radiographer programs you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good sign that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Claremont CA healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their students are highly regarded and sought after.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the school they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Claremont CA home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Claremont CA schools you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the x-ray technician program as well.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the x-ray tech college you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Claremont CA, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Decide to Be an X-Ray Tech?When getting ready to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's important to consider questions you might be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers often ask radiographer applicants is "What compelled you to decide on radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming a radiology technician, but additionally what qualities and skills you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to radiography, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must prepare some strategies about how you want to respond to them. Considering there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the abilities you have that make you an excellent X-Ray tech and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
Enroll in the Ideal X-Ray Technician College near Claremont CA
Choosing the best radiology tech degree program is a critical first step toward initiating a satisfying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs frequently stand for the majority of the day and position and sometimes lift the patient to get the correct image. Prospects must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to observe the safety requirements designed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and provide the best possible patient care. As has been discussed in this report, there are a number of questions that you should ask each college you are assessing prior to making your ultimate decision. This is similarly true whether you opt for an online school or travel to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can analyze and compare each college so you can narrow down your options and make your decision. And with the appropriate education and your commitment to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiologic technologist in Claremont CA.
Some Background on Claremont California
Claremont (/ˈklɛərmɒnt/) is a city on the eastern edge of Los Angeles County, California, United States, 30.3 miles (48.8 km) east of downtown Los Angeles. It is in the eastern San Gabriel Valley, at the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, and has a population, as of the 2015 United States Census estimate, of 36,283 people.
Claremont is known as the home of the Claremont Colleges and other educational institutions, and for its tree-lined streets with numerous historic buildings. In July 2007, it was rated by CNN/Money magazine as the fifth best place to live in the United States, and was the highest rated place in California on the list. It was also named the best suburb in the West by Sunset Magazine in 2016, which described it as a "small city that blends worldly sophistication with small-town appeal." Due to its large number of trees and residents with doctoral degrees, as well as its proximity to the renowned Claremont Colleges, it is sometimes referred to as "The City of Trees and PhDs."
The city is primarily residential, with a significant portion of its commercial activity located in "The Village," a popular collection of street-front small stores, boutiques, art galleries, offices, and restaurants adjacent to and west of the Claremont Colleges. The Village was expanded in 2007, adding a controversial multi-use development that includes a cinema, a boutique hotel, retail space, offices, and a parking structure on the site of an old citrus packing plant west of Indian Hill Boulevard.
Claremont has been a winner of the National Arbor Day Association's Tree City USA award for 22 consecutive years. When the city incorporated in 1907, local citizens started what has become the city's tree-planting tradition. Claremont is one of the few remaining places in North America with American Elm trees that have not been exposed to Dutch elm disease. The stately trees line Indian Hill Boulevard in the vicinity of the city's Memorial Park.
The Claremont Institute, a conservative think tank, is located in nearby Upland, CA. The city hosts several large retirement communities, among them Pilgrim Place, the Claremont Manor and Mt. San Antonio Gardens.
More Cities of Interest in California