How to Choose an X-Ray Tech College near Granada Hills California
Congrats regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Granada Hills CA in order to learn to be a radiology technician. But now that you have made a decision to go into the satisfying field of healthcare, just how do you set about picking the ideal school and program so that you will get the proper training to become a qualified practitioner? And because most states do mandate that x-ray technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you might require preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s essential that you assess each of the colleges you are considering in order to evaluate each program. Many potential students start by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within driving distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and often settle on the lowest cost. But while location and cost should be taken into consideration, there are other significant qualifiers as well. For instance, you must find out whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the colleges you are considering are provided later in this post. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray technician does and the degrees and training choices that are offered.
Radiology Tech Career Summary
There are multiple professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. Regardless of the name, each has the same primary job function, which is to employ imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Many choose to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for example mammography. They may practice in Granada Hills CA clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician may work with include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to maintain their equipment and routinely assess its performance and safety. They are also expected to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Granada Hills CA medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Technician Degrees Available
The primary prerequisite for enrolling in a radiology tech college is to have received a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the option to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among techs, generally takes 18 months to two years to finish 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 additional similar majors that may be acceptable as well. Something to consider is that Granada Hills CA radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can frequently be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which many colleges offer through local clinics and hospitals in their region. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must comply with any licensing or certification requirements in California or the state you will be working as applicable.
X-Ray Tech Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an Radiologist program, depending on the state where you will be practicing you might have to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites vary so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do mandate licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but many approve additional alternatives for testing as well. A number of states also require certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is voluntary. Having said that, many Granada Hills CA employers would rather hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could increase your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also requires re-certification every two years, which can be satisfied with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online X-Ray Technologist Programs
As a component of any 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 although you can still earn your degree online, a significant portion of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is usually provided in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online segment of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Granada Hills CA residence. Students who keep working while obtaining their degree often discover that the online style of learning is far more practical with their active schedules. Plus online schools are generally less costly than traditional options. In addition to reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials may be reduced also. But just make sure that the online program you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less formalized style of training, then online classes may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Radiographer Schools
Once you have selected the kind of degree that you would like to obtain, you can begin the process of looking for and assessing Granada Hills CA x-ray technician schools. You will also have to determine if you want to attend classes online or travel to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be relevant. The price of tuition and supplementary expenditures will be a determining variable as well. But in addition to cost and location, what more should you look at when reviewing schools? Well, you should ask if the schools are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these important details before you make your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you should ask the schools you are considering.
Are the Radiology Tech Programs Accredited? The majority of radiology tech colleges have obtained some form 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 regarded accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through an extensive examination 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 organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also assist in obtaining financial assistance and student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of Granada Hills CA health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level positions.
Are Internships Offered? Find out if the California radiology tech schools you are reviewing have relationships with area hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to obtain practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Granada Hills CA health care community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will probably want to secure employment quickly after graduating, but getting that first job in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are interviewing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good sign that the schools have substantial networks and good relationships with Granada Hills CA healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will have to be within driving distance of their Granada Hills CA residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of person that likes to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Granada Hills CA colleges you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the radiology tech program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the x-ray tech program you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in Granada Hills CA, make certain that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Desire to Become an Xray Technician?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's important to review questions you may be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask radiographer applicants is "What made you decide on radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the private reasons you might have for being a radiology technician, but also what characteristics and skills you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating exclusively to radiography, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to organize some approaches about how you would like to address them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you along with the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down a few ideas and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Choose the Best X-Ray Tech School near Granada Hills CA
Selecting the best x-ray tech school is a crucial first step toward launching a satisfying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs typically stand for the greater part of the day and move and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Prospects must also demonstrate a capability to pay close attention to detail and to adhere to the safety requirements developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing interpersonal skills is a necessity in order to have a productive work environment and provide the best available care to patients. As has been discussed in this post, there are a number of questions that you should ask each program you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision. This is similarly true whether you enroll in an online program or drive to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can assess and compare each college so you can focus your choices and make your final choice. And with the appropriate training and your commitment to be successful, you can achieve your goal to work as a x-ray tech in Granada Hills CA.
Some Background on Granada Hills California
Granada Hills, Los Angeles
Granada Hills is a lightly populated, highly diverse and high-income neighborhood. It is a suburban residential community in the San Fernando Valley portion of the city of Los Angeles.
There is an active sports program and a range of city recreation centers. The neighborhood has fourteen public and seven private schools.
The community began as dairy farm and orchard known as the Sunshine Ranch which grew apricots, oranges, walnuts and beans. Vestiges of former citrus groves can still be seen in orange, lemon or grapefruit trees in many residential yards. In 1916, the San Fernando Valley's first oil well was drilled in what is now Granada Hills. The oil well was located at the northern tip of Zelzah Avenue. Granada Hills was founded in 1926 as "Granada;" the "Hills" portion of the name was added 15 years later.
Granada Hills is located at the foothills of the Santa Susana Mountains, north of North Hills, Northridge, west of Mission Hills and Sylmar, and east of the Porter Ranch neighborhoods of Los Angeles. The Ronald Reagan Freeway–Route 118 runs through its southern area.
More Cities of Interest in California