How to Pick an Xray Tech Degree Program near Paramount California
Best wishes on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Paramount CA in order to train to be a radiology technologist. And now that you have chosen to enter the satisfying field of healthcare, exactly how do you go about choosing the ideal school and program to ensure that you will receive the proper training to become a skilled practitioner? And since the majority of states do require that x-ray techs become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you may need training to pass a licensing exam. So it’s essential that you assess each of the colleges you are considering in order to compare each program. A number of potential students start by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within driving distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and typically gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while cost and location need to be considered, there are other critical qualifications as well. For example, you should ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the schools you are reviewing are provided later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a radiology technician does and the credentials and education choices that are offered.
X-Ray Technician Job Description
There are multiple professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the same fundamental job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Many opt to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for example mammography. They can practice in Paramount 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 and also regularly evaluate its performance and safety. They are additionally required to retain detailed records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Paramount CA health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Offered
The standard prerequisite for enrolling in a radiology tech program is to have attained a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the choice to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among technicians, generally requires 18 months to two years to complete depending on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as 4 years to finish and is more extensive in scope. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional similar majors that are appropriate also. Something to bear in mind is that Paramount CA radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by taking part in an externship program which many colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you must comply with any licensing or certification mandates in California or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an X-Ray tech college, based on the state where you will be employed you might have to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their criteria differ so check with your state. Presently, all states that do require licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the licensing application, but several approve other options for testing as well. A number of states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is voluntary. However, many Paramount CA employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it may enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also requires re-certification every other year, which can be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online X-Ray Technician Schools
As a part 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 programs. So while you can still earn your online degree, a considerable portion of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an externship off campus. Clinical training is typically conducted in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online section of the training may be accessed in the comfort of your Paramount CA residence. Students who keep working while earning their degree usually find that the online approach to education is much more practical with their active schedules. Plus online programs are often less expensive than on-campus alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenses for commuting and study materials may be reduced as well. But just confirm that the online program you select is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online school may be the ideal choice for you.
Topics to Ask Radiology Tech Programs
After you have decided on the kind of degree that you would like to obtain, you can start the process of finding and assessing Paramount CA x-ray technician schools. You will also have to decide if you want to attend online classes or drive to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then naturally the location of the college will be important. The cost of tuition and ancillary expenses will be a material factor also. But in addition to cost and location, what more should you factor in when reviewing colleges? Well, you need to ask if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you learn some of these important details prior to making your selection, we have put together a list of questions that you need to ask the programs you are reviewing.
Are the Radiology Tech Schools Accredited? The majority of xray technician colleges have received some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Nevertheless, it’s still imperative to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly respected accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through an extensive review of their teachers and course materials. If the program is online it can 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 guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also help in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Paramount CA health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry-level openings.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the California xray technician colleges you are assessing have relationships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to obtain practical experience in a clinical environment, they are also a means to satisfy the clinical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Paramount CA health care community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will most likely want to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that first job in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Ask if the x-ray tech schools you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent sign that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Paramount CA healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they choose will need to be within travelling distance of their Paramount CA home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes 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 keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally 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 sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Paramount CA schools you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program as well.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the x-ray tech college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in Paramount CA, make certain that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option 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 may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Radiology Technician?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers often ask radiographer applicants is "What made you select radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not only the private reasons you might have for becoming an Xray technician, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to radiography, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you should prepare several strategies about how you want to answer them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the abilities you have that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Pick the Best Radiology Tech College near Paramount CA
Picking the ideal x-ray technician degree program is an important first step toward launching a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs often stand for the majority of the day and move and in some cases lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate a capability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the doctors and radiologists. Having social skills is a must in order to have a pleasant work environment and furnish the best possible patient care. As has been covered in this article, there are several questions that you need to ask each college you are assessing before making your ultimate decision. This is similarly true whether you opt for an online program or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can assess and compare each college so you can focus your choices before making your decision. And with the proper education and your dedication to be successful, you can realize your goal to practice as a radiographer in Paramount CA.
Some Background on Paramount California
Paramount is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. According to the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 54,098, down from 55,266 at the 2000 census. Paramount is part of the Greater Los Angeles Area; and is bordered by Compton and Lynwood to the west, South Gate and Downey to the north, Bellflower to the east and south, and Long Beach to the south.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Paramount has a total area of 4.8 square miles (12 km2), of which 4.7 square miles (12 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) (2.28%) is water.
The city today known as Paramount was originally identified in 1781 by Spanish settlers of New Spain. It was organized under two old Spanish Ranchos; on the west, Rancho San Pedro, and on the east, Rancho Los Nietos (now portions of the cities of Santa Fe Springs and Whittier). These ranchos were established under the Spanish Empire and granted by King Carlos III in 1784. In 1834, Rancho Los Nietos was partitioned into five smaller ranchos including Rancho Los Cerritos and Rancho Los Alamitos, which both encompassed parts of Paramount.
After the Mexican-American War California was ceded to the United States. The then-unincorporated community of Paramount was created in 1948 when the United States Postmaster General ordered the merger of the post offices of Hynes and Clearwater (Pitt 1997:381). The name was taken from Paramount Boulevard, the main north-to-south surface street extending through the city. The city officially incorporated January 30, 1957 following a successful "Save Paramount for Paramount" campaign to fight annexation by Long Beach, Bellflower, and South Gate.
While the Paramount economy was based largely on the hay and dairy industries, the high cost of land led to their local demise. The last Paramount dairy closed in 1977.
More Cities of Interest in California