How to Pick a Radiologic Tech College near Bridgeport Connecticut
Congrats regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Bridgeport CT in order to learn to be a radiology technician. But now that you have chosen to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, exactly how do you set about choosing the right school and program so that you will receive the proper training to become a skilled practitioner? And since most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently practice you might require preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s essential that you research each of the schools you are looking at in order to evaluate each program. Most students begin by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and typically settle on the most affordable cost. But while expense and location must be taken into account, there are other critical qualifiers as well. For instance, you must find out whether or not the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the colleges you are reviewing are provided later in this post. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and training choices that are offered.
Radiology Technician Occupation Summary
There are several professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, each has the identical primary job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some elect to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for instance mammography. They may work in Bridgeport CT clinics, hospitals, family 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 care for their equipment plus frequently evaluate its functionality and safety. They are additionally expected to retain in-depth records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Bridgeport CT medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Technician Degree Options
The standard prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech school is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the choice to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among technicians, usually takes 18 months to 2 years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate also. One thing to keep in mind is that Bridgeport CT radiographer programs have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their curriculum. It can often be satisfied 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 one of the degree programs, you must comply with any certification or licensing mandates in Connecticut or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an Radiologist college, depending on the state where you will be practicing you may need to become licensed. The majority of states do require licensing, and their criteria differ so contact your state. Presently, all states that do mandate licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but a number offer additional options for testing also. A number of states also call for certification as part of the licensing process, otherwise it is optional. Having said that, many Bridgeport CT employers favor hiring radiology techs that are certified so it may enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also calls for re-certification every 2 years, which can be satisfied with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Tech Degrees
As a component 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 even though you can still obtain your degree online, a considerable portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a school lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is usually provided in local hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. However the online segment of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Bridgeport CT home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree often discover that the online approach to learning is far more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online schools are often less costly than conventional alternatives. In addition to lower tuition, costs for commuting and study materials can be reduced also. But just confirm that the online college you choose is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less formalized type of training, then an online school may be the best option for you.
What to Ask Radiology Tech Schools
After you have chosen the type of degree that you want to earn, you can initiate the process of searching for and assessing Bridgeport CT x-ray technician schools. You will also have to decide if you prefer to attend online classes or drive to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be critical. The price of tuition and secondary expenses will be a determining factor as well. But along with cost and location, what more should you factor in when reviewing schools? Well, you need to ask if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these crucial details prior to making your decision, we have put together a list of questions that you should ask the colleges you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Tech Schools Accredited? Most xray tech colleges have obtained some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still important to make sure that the school and program are accredited. Among the most highly regarded accrediting agencies 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 a rigorous examination of their teachers and educational materials. If the program is online it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides ensuring a premium education, accreditation will also help in acquiring financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of Bridgeport CT employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry level openings.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the Connecticut xray tech schools you are reviewing have partnerships with local clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a means to fulfill the clinical training requirement for most programs. As a secondary benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Bridgeport CT medical community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will probably want to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that initial job in a new field can be difficult without support. Find out 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 an excellent sign that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Bridgeport CT healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Bridgeport CT residence. Those who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally 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 sort of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Bridgeport CT colleges you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the radiology tech program also.
Does the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the radiographer school you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in Bridgeport CT, check that they are available. 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, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Radiologic Technologist?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's important to reflect on questions you could be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask radiographer candidates is "What made you decide on radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not merely the private reasons you might have for becoming an Xray technician, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to radiography, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare some strategies about how you would like to answer them. Since there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the talents you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the leading candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
Enroll in the Right Radiology Technician Program near Bridgeport CT
Enrolling in the appropriate x-ray technician degree program is a crucial first step toward initiating a satisfying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs typically stand for the greater part of the working day and move and in some cases lift the patient to get the correct image. Candidates must also show a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to observe the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having social skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and deliver the best possible patient care. As we have discussed in this post, there are several questions that you need to ask each program you are reviewing before making your final decision. This is equally true whether you enroll in an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can analyze and compare each school so you can focus your options and make your final choice. And with the right training and your motivation to be successful, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Bridgeport CT.
Some Background on Bridgeport Connecticut
Bridgeport is a seaport city in the U.S. state of Connecticut. It is the largest city in the state and is located in Fairfield County at the mouth of the Pequonnock River on Long Island Sound. Bridgeport had a population of 144,229 during the 2010 Census, making it also the 5th-most populous in New England. It is bordered by the towns of Trumbull to the north, Fairfield to the west, and Stratford to the east. The Greater Bridgeport area is the 48th-largest urban area in the United States. Located 60 miles from Manhattan and 40 miles from the Bronx.
Bridgeport was inhabited by the Paugussett Indian tribe at the time of its English colonization. The English farming community became a center of trade, shipbuilding, and whaling. The town incorporated to subsidize the Housatonic Railroad and rapidly industrialized following the rail line's connection to the New York and New Haven railroad. Manufacturing was the mainstay of the local economy until the 1970s.
The showman P.T. Barnum was a resident of the city and served as the town's mayor in the late 19th century. Barnum built four houses in Bridgeport, and housed his circus in town during winter. The first Subway restaurant opened in the North End section of the city in 1965. The Frisbie Pie Company was located here, and Bridgeport is credited as the birthplace of the Frisbee.
Industrial restructuring and suburbanization caused the loss of many jobs and affluent residents, leaving Bridgeport struggling with problems of poverty and crime. In the 21st century, conversion of office and factory buildings to residential use, and other redevelopment is attracting new residents.
The first documented English settlement within the present city limits of Bridgeport took place in 1644, centered at Black Rock Harbor and along North Avenue between Park and Briarwood avenues. The place was called Pequonnock (Quiripi for "Cleared Land"), after a band of the Paugussett, an Algonquian-speaking Native American people who occupied this area. One of their sacred sites was Golden Hill, which overlooked the harbor and was the location of natural springs and their planting fields. (It has since been blasted through for construction of an expressway.) The Golden Hill Indians were granted a reservation here by the Colony of Connecticut in 1639; it lasted until 1802. (One of the tribe acquired land for a small reservation in the late 19th century that was recognized by the state. It is retained in the Town of Trumbull.)
More Cities of Interest in Connecticut