How to Select a Radiology Tech School near Thomasville Alabama
Best wishes on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Thomasville AL in order to train to be a radiology technician. And now that you have decided to go into the satisfying field of healthcare, just how do you go about selecting the ideal school and program to ensure that you will obtain the appropriate training to become a qualified professional? And because the majority of states do require that radiology technicians become licensed, depending on where you subsequently practice you may require training to pass a licensing examination. So it’s important that you research each of the colleges you are looking at so that you can compare each program. A number of prospective students begin by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and frequently settle on the most affordable cost. But while location and cost must be taken into consideration, there are other important qualifications as well. For example, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internship programs. These questions and others you should ask the colleges you are evaluating are presented later in this post. But first, let’s discuss what a radiologic tech does and the degrees and training options that are available.
X-Ray Technician Job Description
There are several professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be called radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Irrespective of the name, each has the same major job function, which is to employ imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer 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 can work in Thomasville AL clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist may work with 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 frequently analyze its performance and safety. They are additionally required to retain in-depth records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Thomasville AL medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Tech Degree Options
The basic prerequisite for attending a radiology tech school is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among techs, normally takes 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 four years to finish and is more comprehensive in scope. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional related majors that may be acceptable also. One thing to consider is that Thomasville AL radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as a component of their curriculum. It can frequently be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which a large number of schools offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must comply with any certification or licensing mandates in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-ray Technician Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech college, based on the state where you will be employed you may need to become licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so get in touch with your state. Presently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many approve additional options for testing as well. Some states also require certification as part of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. However, many Thomasville AL employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it might improve 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 two years, which can be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online X-Ray Tech Classes
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have clinical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree schools. So although you can still obtain your degree online, a large portion of the training will be satisfied either in a school lab or in an externship off campus. Practical training is usually provided in regional family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. However the online section of the training can be attended in the comfort of your Thomasville AL home. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically find that the online approach to learning is much more convenient with their busy schedules. Plus online colleges are often less costly than on-campus options. In addition to reduced tuition, expenses for commuting and study materials may be lessened also. But just confirm that the online school you pick is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less formalized style of training, then an online school may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask X Ray Tech Schools
When you have selected the kind of degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of searching for and assessing Thomasville AL x-ray technician colleges. You will also need to decide if you want to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then naturally the location of the school will be important. The price of tuition and ancillary expenditures will be an important factor also. But along with cost and location, what else should you look at when reviewing colleges? Well, you need to find out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you learn some of these essential details prior to making your decision, we have put together a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are reviewing.
Are the Radiology Technician Programs Accredited? The majority of radiology tech colleges have earned some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Nevertheless, it’s still imperative to confirm 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 earning accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a detailed review of their teachers and course materials. If the school is online it might also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. All accrediting organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a superior education, accreditation will also assist in obtaining financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Thomasville AL employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry level openings.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Find out if the Alabama radiology technician schools you are reviewing have partnerships with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific means to obtain hands on training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Thomasville AL medical community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will most likely want to hit the ground running after graduating, but finding that first job in a new field can be challenging without support. Find out if the radiographer 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 Thomasville AL healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their graduates are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the school they select will need to be within driving distance of their Thomasville AL residence. Individuals who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you decide 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 typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Thomasville AL colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher 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 a chance to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the radiology technician program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the x-ray tech school you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Thomasville AL, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Want to Be an X-Ray Tech?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers frequently ask radiographer applicants is "What drove you to select radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming an Xray technician, but additionally what qualities and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to radiography, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to ready some ideas about how you want to answer them. Given that there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you along with the strengths you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down a few concepts and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Select the Ideal Radiology Tech Program near Thomasville AL
Picking the best radiology tech degree program is an important first step toward starting a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs often stand for the majority of the workday and move and sometimes lift the patient to get the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and to adhere to the safety requirements developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. X-Ray technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having social skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and furnish the best available patient care. As has been discussed in this post, there are several questions that you need to ask each program you are assessing before making your final decision. This is just as true whether you enroll in an online school or travel to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can examine and compare each program so you can focus your choices and make your decision. And with the appropriate training and your dedication to be successful, you can realize your goal to practice as a radiographer in Thomasville AL.
Some Background on Thomasville Alabama
Thomasville is a city in Clarke County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census the population was 4,209. Founded as a late 19th-century railroad town, it has transitioned over the course of more than a century into a 21st-century commercial hub. It is the childhood hometown of author and storyteller Kathryn Tucker Windham.
Thomasville was founded in 1888 and incorporated on November 24 of that year. The former community of Choctaw Corner, dating back to the antebellum period, was a settlement west of what would become Thomasville, but when the merchants there learned that a railroad was going to bypass their town to the east, they decided to move their stores to be near the railroad. The former community is now inside the city limits. The tracks between Mobile and Selma were completed the same year that Thomasville began. First referred to as "Choctaw", the town was named after railroad financier and former Union Civil War general, Samuel Thomas, after he donated $500 for the construction of Thomasville's first school. The town had expanded by the end of the 19th century with numerous stores, several hotels and boarding houses, and a depot station. In 1899, what is now downtown was destroyed by a fire that burned several blocks of the wood frame buildings. Thomasville quickly rebuilt, this time in brick, and was once again flourishing by the start of World War I.
Over the next century, Thomasville continued to grow and expand. Over the years, many businesses came and others left. These included garment factories, sawmills, and cotton gins. The railroad discontinued its use of the town's depot by the 1950s, but that time also saw the opening of Thomasville's FPS-35 radar base, part of the Air Defense Command's Semi Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) system, bringing in servicemen and their families. The prototype for the FPS-35 radar was developed at the Thomasville Aircraft Control and Warning Station. The 1950s also saw the planting of roses along Highway 43, the main highway through Thomasville, earning it the nickname of The City of Roses. The 1960s and 1970s saw the opening of numerous paper mills in the area, an industry that continues to be important to the economy of Thomasville today. This time also saw businesses begin to relocate from downtown to the main highway. The Thomasville Historic District was designated in 1999 by the National Register of Historic Places.
Thomasville is located at coordinates 31°55′15″N 87°44′24″W / 31.92084°N 87.74008°W / 31.92084; -87.74008Coordinates: 31°55′15″N 87°44′24″W / 31.92084°N 87.74008°W / 31.92084; -87.74008. It is the northernmost incorporated settlement in Clarke County and is situated on an elevated area between the Tombigbee and Alabama rivers. The elevation is 381 feet (116 m). The terrain is gently rolling hills, covered primarily in pine forest. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.8 square miles (23 km2), all land.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Thomasville has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
More Cities of Interest in Alabama