How to Find a Radiologic Tech School near Walsenburg Colorado
Congrats regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Walsenburg CO in order to train to be a radiology technician. But now that you have chosen to enter the satisfying field of healthcare, how do you undertake selecting the right college and program so that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified professional? And since most states do mandate that radiology technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you may need training to pass a licensing test. So it’s important that you research each of the colleges you are considering in order to evaluate each program. A number of prospective students begin by looking for technical schools or colleges that are within driving distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and often settle on the most affordable cost. But while expense and location should be considered, there are other important qualifiers also. For instance, you should find out if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you must ask the schools you are considering are provided later in this post. But first, let’s discuss what a radiology tech does and the degrees and education choices that are available.
Radiology Technician Job Summary
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. Irrespective of the name, each has the identical fundamental job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some elect to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for instance mammography. They may work in Walsenburg CO clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray tech might utilize 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 also routinely evaluate its functionality and safety. They are additionally required to keep detailed records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Walsenburg CO health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
Radiology Technician Degrees
The standard prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech program is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. 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 technicians, normally takes 18 months to 2 years to finish based upon the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to 4 years to finish and is more expansive in scope. The majority of students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that may be acceptable as well. One thing to consider is that Walsenburg CO radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may often be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which many colleges sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any certification or licensing requirements in Colorado or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
Once you have graduated from an Radiologist college, depending on the state where you will be employed you may need to be licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their criteria differ so check with your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the licensing application, but several accept additional alternatives for testing also. Some states also call for certification as a component of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Walsenburg CO employers favor hiring radiology techs that have earned certification so it may enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also demands re-certification every 2 years, which may be satisfied with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Tech Schools
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree colleges. So even though you can still earn your degree online, a substantial portion of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is often conducted in regional family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training may be attended in the comfort of your Walsenburg CO home. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically find that the online style of learning is much more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online colleges are frequently less costly than on-campus alternatives. Along with reduced tuition, expenditures for study materials and commuting can be reduced also. But just confirm that the online college you select is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured style of training, then an online degree may be the ideal choice for you.
Points to Ask Radiologic Tech Schools
When you have selected the type of degree that you want to obtain, you can begin the process of looking for and evaluating Walsenburg CO x-ray tech schools. You will also have to determine if you want to attend online classes or drive to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then of course the location of the school will be critical. The price of tuition and supplementary expenses will be an important factor as well. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you look at when evaluating schools? Well, you need to check out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these crucial details before you make your selection, we have compiled a list of questions that you need to ask the colleges you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? A large number of radiology technician schools have obtained some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still crucial to make sure that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly respected accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a rigorous evaluation of their instructors and educational materials. If the school is online it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides ensuring a superior education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not available for non-accredited schools. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Walsenburg CO health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry-level jobs.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out if the Colorado xray technician programs you are interested in have relationships with area hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent manner to get practical experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to fulfill the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Walsenburg CO health care community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help available? You will undoubtedly wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in a new profession can be difficult without assistance. Ask if the x-ray tech schools you are reviewing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good indication that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with Walsenburg CO healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the school they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Walsenburg CO residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even 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 normally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Walsenburg CO colleges you are looking at 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 converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program as well.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the x-ray tech school you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Walsenburg CO, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.
Why Did You Choose to Be an Xray Technician?When getting ready to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's helpful to review questions you could be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers often ask radiographer candidates is "What made you decide on radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming an Xray technician, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, along with a significant number of general interview questions, so you need to prepare a number of approaches about how you want to respond to them. Because there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down some ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to develop your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Enroll in the Best Radiology Technician College near Walsenburg CO
Selecting the right x-ray tech college is an important first step toward launching a rewarding new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs frequently stand for the greater part of the day and move and at times lift the patient to get the proper image. Candidates must also demonstrate a capability to pay close attention to detail and to observe the safety requirements developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the doctors and radiologists. Possessing social skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and deliver the best available care to patients. As we have covered in this article, there are several questions that you should ask each program you are considering prior to making your final decision. This is just as true whether you opt for an online school or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can assess and compare each college so you can focus your options before making your decision. And with the appropriate training and your motivation to succeed, you can achieve your goal to practice as a x-ray tech in Walsenburg CO.
Some Background on Walsenburg Colorado
Walsenburg is a statutory city that is the county seat and the most populous city of Huerfano County, Colorado, United States. The city population was 3,068 at the 2010 census, down from 4,182 in 2000.
Robert Ford, the assassin of outlaw Jesse James, operated a combination saloon and gambling house in Walsenburg; his home at 320 West 7th Street still stands.
A post office called Walsenburg has been in operation since 1870. The community was named after Fred Walsen, an early settler.
Walsenburg is mentioned in the famous Woody Guthrie song, "Ludlow Massacre". The song recounts an attack by the Colorado National Guard and armed Colorado Fuel & Iron Company camp guards on a tent colony of 1,200 striking coal miners and their families at Ludlow, Colorado, on April 20, 1914. Some two dozen people, including women and children, were killed. The town is also remembered in sports history due to a famous newspaper gaffe ("Will Overhead") after the 1933 Indianapolis 500.
Walsenburg is located in east-central Huerfano County, on the north side of the Cucharas River at the eastern edge of the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Interstate 25 runs along the eastern edge of the city, with access from Exits 49, 50, and 52. I-25 leads north 48 miles (77 km) to Pueblo and south 36 miles (58 km) to Trinidad. U.S. Route 160 passes through the center of Walsenburg, leading west across North La Veta Pass 72 miles (116 km) to Alamosa and south with I-25 to Trinidad. Colorado State Highway 10 leads northeast from Walsenburg 73 miles (117 km) to La Junta.
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