How to Pick a Radiology Technician Degree Program near Auburn University Alabama
Congratulations on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Auburn University AL in order to train to be a radiologic technologist. But now that you have chosen to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you set about choosing the right college and program so that you will get the proper training to become a skilled practitioner? And because most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, depending on where you subsequently practice you may need training to pass a licensing test. So it’s imperative that you investigate each of the colleges you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. A number of prospective students begin by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and typically settle on the most affordable cost. But while cost and location must be taken into account, there are other critical qualifiers as well. For instance, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools are accredited, 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 talk about what a radiology tech does and the degrees and training choices that are available.
X-Ray Tech Job Description
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiology technicians or radiographers. Regardless of the name, each has the identical major job description, which is to use imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some choose to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for example mammography. They may work in Auburn University AL clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician might work with 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 assess its performance and safety. They are also expected to keep in-depth records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Auburn University AL health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Technician Degree Options
The standard requirement for enrolling in an x-ray tech school is to have received a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among techs, normally requires 18 months to two years to complete based upon the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to 4 years to complete and is more expansive in scope. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that may be acceptable also. One thing to bear in mind is that Auburn University AL radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as part of their curriculum. It may often be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which many schools sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you must comply with any certification or licensing requirements in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an x-ray technician program, based on the state where you will be employed you may have to become licensed. The majority of states do require licensing, and their requirements vary so check with your state. Presently, all states that do require licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but several offer additional alternatives for testing as well. A number of states also require certification as part of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Auburn University AL employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also requires re-certification every two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technologist Degrees
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree colleges. So while you can still obtain your online degree, a large portion of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an externship off campus. Clinical training is usually carried out in area hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. However the online portion of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Auburn University AL home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree usually discover that the online style of education is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online schools are frequently less costly than conventional options. Along with lower tuition, costs for commuting and study materials can be lessened also. But just be sure that the online college you select is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online degree may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Radiologic Tech Colleges
Once you have decided on the kind of degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of locating and assessing Auburn University AL x-ray tech schools. You will also need to determine if you want to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then naturally the location of the school will be critical. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenditures will be a material variable as well. But in addition to cost and location, what more should you consider when reviewing schools? Well, you should check out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these crucial details prior to making your decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the schools you are considering.
Are the Radiology Technician Schools Accredited? Most radiology tech colleges have received some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still imperative to verify that the school and program are accredited. One of the most highly respected accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through an extensive assessment of their instructors and educational materials. If the school is online it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets online or distance learning. All accrediting organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides ensuring a superior education, accreditation will also help in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of Auburn University AL employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level positions.
Are Internships Offered? Find out if the Alabama xray technician programs you are reviewing have partnerships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to obtain practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a means to fulfill the clinical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Auburn University AL medical community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help available? You will most likely wish to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that initial job in a new field can be challenging without help. 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 substantial networks and good relationships with Auburn University AL healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the Program Located? For many students, the school they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Auburn University AL home. Students 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 concern. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Auburn University AL colleges you are looking at what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the x-ray tech program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the radiographer program you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Auburn University AL, make sure that they are offered. 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 procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Want to Become a Radiologic Technologist?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's helpful to review questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask radiographer prospects is "What made you pick radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not just the private reasons you may have for becoming an X-Ray tech, but also what qualities and talents you have that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, in addition to a significant number of typical interview questions, so you must ready a number of ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down a few concepts and anecdotes that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Pick the Right X-Ray Tech School near Auburn University AL
Enrolling in the appropriate x-ray tech school is a crucial first step toward initiating a gratifying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs regularly stand for the greater part of the working day and position and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show an ability to pay close attention to detail and to comply with the safety requirements designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the doctors and radiologists. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best available care to patients. As has been discussed in this article, there are several questions that you should ask each college you are looking at before making your ultimate decision. This is just as true whether you enroll in an online program or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can analyze and compare each college so you can narrow down your options before making your final choice. And with the appropriate education and your dedication to succeed, you can accomplish your goal to practice as a radiologic technologist in Auburn University AL.
Some Background on Auburn University Alabama
Auburn University (AU or Auburn) is a public research university in Auburn, Alabama, United States. With more than 22,000 undergraduate students and a total enrollment of more than 28,000 with 1,260 faculty members, Auburn is the second largest university in Alabama. Auburn University is one of the state's two public flagship universities.
Auburn was chartered on February 1, 1856, as East Alabama Male College, a private liberal arts school affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. In 1872, under the Morrill Act, it became the state's first public land-grant university and was renamed as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama. In 1892, it became the first four-year coeducational school in Alabama, and in 1899 was renamed Alabama Polytechnic Institute (API) to reflect its changing mission. In 1960, its name was changed to Auburn University to acknowledge the varied academic programs and larger curriculum of a major university. In 1964, under Federal Court mandate, AU admitted its first African American student.
Auburn is among the few American universities designated as a land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant research center.
The Alabama Legislature chartered the institution as the East Alabama Male College on February 1, 1856, coming under the guidance of the Methodist Church in 1859. Its first president was Reverend William J. Sasnett, and the school opened its doors in 1859 to a student body of eighty and a faculty of ten.
Auburn's early history is inextricably linked with the Civil War and the Reconstruction-era South. Classes were held in "Old Main" until the college was closed due to the war, when most of the students and faculty left to enlist. The campus was a training ground for the Confederate Army, and "Old Main" served as a hospital for Confederate wounded.
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