How to Find an X-Ray Technician Degree Program near Ridgefield Connecticut
Best wishes regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Ridgefield CT in order to become a radiology technologist. And now that you have made a decision to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you tackle choosing the right school and program so that you will obtain the appropriate training to become a skilled practitioner? And because the majority of states do require that x-ray technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you might require preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s important that you research each of the colleges you are looking at in order to compare each program. Many potential students begin by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within driving distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and usually settle on the lowest cost. But while expense and location should be considered, there are additional important qualifiers also. For example, you need to find out whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are reviewing are presented later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray tech does and the degrees and training options that are offered.
X-Ray Technician Work Summary
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, 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 objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some opt to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for instance mammography. They can practice in Ridgefield CT clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray tech may utilize include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers must care for their equipment and also routinely analyze its functionality and safety. They are additionally required to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Ridgefield CT health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Tech Degrees
The basic requirement for enrolling in an x-ray tech college is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among techs, usually requires 18 months to 2 years to finish based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to 4 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 as well. Something to consider is that Ridgefield CT radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can frequently be fulfilled by taking part in an externship program which many schools sponsor through local hospitals and clinics in their region. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must comply with any licensing or certification mandates in Connecticut or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiographer Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech school, depending on the state where you will be working you may need to become licensed. The majority of states do require licensing, and their prerequisites differ so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do mandate licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but several approve other alternatives for testing also. A number of states also require certification as part of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is optional. Having said that, many Ridgefield CT employers would rather hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also requires re-certification every other year, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Tech Schools
As a part of every degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical or lab training included in their course of study. This is no different for online degree colleges. So while you can still obtain your degree online, a significant amount of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an internship off campus. Practical training is usually provided in area hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. However the online segment of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Ridgefield CT home. Students who keep working while earning their degree often find that the online approach to education is far more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online colleges are generally more affordable than traditional alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenses for study materials and commuting can be lessened as well. But just be sure that the online college you pick is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online degree may be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Radiographer Schools
After you have decided on the type of degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of looking for and evaluating Ridgefield CT x-ray tech schools. You will also need to decide if you want to attend online classes or commute to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then naturally the location of the college will be relevant. The cost of tuition and secondary expenditures will be a material factor also. But along with location and cost, what else should you consider when evaluating schools? Well, you should check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these important details before you make your selection, we have compiled a list of questions that you need to ask the programs you are reviewing.
Are the Radiology Tech Colleges Accredited? Most xray technician colleges have acquired some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, it’s still imperative to verify 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). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a rigorous review of their instructors and course materials. If the college is online it might also receive 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. In addition to ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also help in acquiring financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And many Ridgefield CT employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry level jobs.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the Connecticut xray technician schools you are reviewing have associations with regional hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to receive hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a way to satisfy the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a secondary benefit, they may help graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Ridgefield CT healthcare community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help offered? You will most likely want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that initial job in a new profession can be challenging without support. Find out if the radiographer programs you are reviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Ridgefield CT healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Ridgefield CT residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to concern 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 decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Big 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 likely prefer a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Ridgefield CT colleges you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program as well.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the x-ray tech college you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Ridgefield CT, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Be an X-Ray Tech?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's a good idea to consider questions you may be asked. One of the things that interviewers typically ask radiographer applicants is "What compelled you to decide on radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not merely the private reasons you might have for being a radiology technician, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, in addition to a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should ready some ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
Select the Best X-Ray Tech College near Ridgefield CT
Selecting the best radiology tech school is a critical first step toward starting a fulfilling new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical condition. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the majority of the working day and move and sometimes lift the patient to get the correct image. Prospects must also demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. X-Ray 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 good work environment and deliver the best possible patient care. As has been discussed in this article, there are a number of questions that you should ask each program you are considering before making your ultimate decision. This is just as true whether you decide on an online program or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can analyze and compare each college so you can focus your choices before making your decision. And with the appropriate education and your dedication to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Ridgefield CT.
Some Background on Ridgefield Connecticut
Ridgefield is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. Situated in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains, the 300-year-old community had a population of 24,638 at the 2010 census. The town center, which was formerly a borough, is defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as a census-designated place.
Ridgefield was first settled by English colonists from Norwalk and Milford in 1708, when a group of settlers purchased land from Chief Catoonah of the Ramapo tribe. The town was incorporated under a royal charter from the Connecticut General Assembly issued in 1709. The most notable 18th-century event was the Battle of Ridgefield on April 27, 1777. This American Revolutionary War skirmish involved a small colonial militia force (state militia and some Continental Army soldiers), led by, among others, General David Wooster, who died in the engagement, and Benedict Arnold, whose horse was shot from under him. They faced a larger British force that had landed at Westport and was returning from a raid on the colonial supply depot in Danbury. The battle was a tactical victory for the British but a strategic one for the Colonials because the British would never again conduct inland operations in Connecticut, despite western Connecticut's strategic importance in securing the Hudson River Valley. Today, the dead from both sides are buried together in a small cemetery on Main Street on the right of the entrance to Casagmo condominiums: "...foes in arms, brothers in death...". The Keeler Tavern, a local inn and museum, features a British cannonball still lodged in the side of the building. There are many other landmarks from the Revolutionary War in the town, with most along Main Street.
In the summer of 1781, the French army under the Comte de Rochambeau marched through Connecticut, encamping in the Ridgebury section of town, where the first Catholic mass in Ridgefield was offered.
For much of its three centuries, Ridgefield was a farming community. Among the important families in the 19th century were the Rockwells and Lounsburys, which intermarried. They produced two Connecticut governors, George Lounsbury and Phineas Lounsbury. The Ridgefield Veterans Memorial Community Center on Main Street, also called the Lounsbury House, was built by Gov. Phineas Chapman Lounsbury around 1896 as his primary residence. The Lounsbury Farm near the Florida section of Ridgefield is one of the only remaining operational farms in Ridgefield.
In the late 19th century, spurred by the new railroad connection to its lofty village and the fact that nearby countryside reaches 1,000 feet (300 m) above sea level, Ridgefield began to be discovered by wealthy New York City residents, who assembled large estates and built huge "summer cottages" throughout the higher sections of town. Among the more noteworthy estates were Col. Louis D. Conley's "Outpost Farm", which at one point totalled nearly 2,000 acres (8.1 km2), some of which is now Bennett's Pond State Park; Seth Low Pierrepont's "Twixthills", more than 600 acres (2.4 km2), much of which is now Pierrepont State Park; Frederic E. Lewis's "Upagenstit", 100 acres (0.40 km2) that became Grey Court College in the 1940s, but is now mostly subdivisions; and Col. Edward M. Knox's "Downesbury Manor", whose 300 acres (1.2 km2) included a 45-room mansion that Mark Twain often visited.
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