How to Select a Radiology Tech College near West Memphis Arkansas
Best wishes on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near West Memphis AR in order to train to be a radiologic technician. But now that you have decided to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, how do you set about selecting the ideal school and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified practitioner? And considering that most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you ultimately practice you might require training to pass a licensing examination. So it’s essential that you research each of the schools you are considering in order to compare each program. Many potential students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and often gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while cost and location should be taken into consideration, there are other important qualifications as well. For instance, you should ask whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are reviewing are provided later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a radiologic technician does and the degrees and training options that are available.
X-Ray Tech Occupation Description
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. Irrespective of the name, they all have the identical primary job description, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some choose to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialty, for instance mammography. They can work in West Memphis AR hospitals, clinics, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist might utilize include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to maintain their equipment plus routinely analyze its functionality and safety. They are also expected to keep complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As West Memphis AR medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Available
The basic requirement for enrolling in an x-ray tech program is to have earned a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist pupils have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, usually takes 18 months to two years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as 4 years to complete and is more extensive in scope. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that may be appropriate also. Something to bear in mind is that West Memphis AR radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may often be fulfilled by participating in an externship program which many colleges offer through local clinics and hospitals in their region. Once you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any certification or licensing mandates in Arkansas or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an Radiologist college, based on the state where you will be working you may need to be licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites differ so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do mandate licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but a number approve additional alternatives for testing as well. Some states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is optional. Having said that, numerous West Memphis AR employers would rather hire radiology techs that are certified so it might enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program as well as a passing score on their rigorous exam. ARRT also calls for re-certification every other year, which can be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technician Degrees
As a component of every 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 even though you can still earn your online degree, a substantial portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Clinical training is often provided in area hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online segment of the training can be attended in the comfort of your West Memphis AR home. Students who keep working while obtaining their degree typically discover that the online approach to learning is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online schools are frequently less expensive than traditional options. In addition to lower tuition, expenses for commuting and study materials may be decreased as well. But just be sure that the online school you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less formalized type of training, then online classes may be the right choice for you.
Points to Ask Radiographer Programs
Once you have chosen the type of degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of locating and evaluating West Memphis AR x-ray technician schools. You will also have to determine if you prefer to attend online classes or commute to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be critical. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenses will be a determining variable as well. But along with location and cost, what more should you factor in when evaluating colleges? Well, you need to find out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you uncover some of these crucial details before you make your selection, we have compiled a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are looking at.
Are the X-Ray Technician Colleges Accredited? A large number of xray tech schools have earned some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still crucial 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). Schools receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous review of their teachers and educational materials. If the school is online it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to guaranteeing a superior education, accreditation will also assist in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of West Memphis AR employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry-level openings.
Are Internships Provided? Find out if the Arkansas radiology technician colleges you are evaluating have relationships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent manner to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a way to satisfy the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a secondary benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional relationships in the West Memphis AR healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will probably wish to hit the ground running after graduating, but finding that initial job in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Find out if the radiographer programs you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good indication that the schools have large networks and great relationships with West Memphis AR healthcare employers. It also confirms that their students are highly regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their West Memphis AR home. Students who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the West Memphis AR schools you are researching what the typical 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 several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the radiology tech program as well.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the radiographer school you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in West Memphis AR, check 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 carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Radiologic Technologist?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's advantageous to review questions you might be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers often ask radiographer applicants is "What drove you to decide on radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the private reasons you might have for being an X-Ray tech, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you should ready a number of approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you along with the talents you have that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down a few concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Choose the Ideal X-Ray Tech College near West Memphis AR
Selecting the ideal x-ray tech school is a critical first step toward launching a satisfying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs regularly stand for the majority of the day and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Prospects 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 techs as well as the doctors and radiologists. Possessing social skills is a must in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best possible patient care. As we have addressed in this report, there are several questions that you should ask each college you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection. This is equally true whether you opt for an online program or commute to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can evaluate and compare each program so you can narrow down your choices and make your final choice. And with the proper training and your motivation to succeed, you can achieve your goal to work as a radiology tech in West Memphis AR.
Some Background on West Memphis Arkansas
West Memphis, Arkansas
West Memphis is the largest city in Crittenden County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 26,245 at the 2010 census, ranking it as the state's 18th largest city, behind Bella Vista. It is part of the Memphis metropolitan area, and is located directly across the Mississippi River from Memphis.
Native Americans lived in the Mississippi River Valley for at least 10,000 years, although much of the evidence of their presence has been buried or destroyed. The Indians of the Mississippian Period were the last native inhabitants of the West Memphis area. Mound City Road, located within the eastern portion of the West Memphis city limits, has a marker indicating that the villages of Aquixo (Aquijo) or Pacaha were in the area. Several mounds are still visible.
Explorers from both Spain and France visited the area near West Memphis. Among those explorers were Hernando de Soto and his men from Spain and Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet from France. By the time French hunters and explorers entered the region, the Mississippian towns and other settlements had been abandoned. The original site of West Memphis came from Spanish land grants issued during the 1790s. Grants were given to Benjamin Fooy, John Henry Fooy, and Isaac Fooy in the Hopefield (Crittenden County) area and to William McKenney in the Bridgeport-West Memphis area.
In the summer of 1541, Spanish explorer Hernando De Soto crossed the Mississippi River into what is now Crittenden County with an army of over 300 conquistadors and almost as many captured Native American slaves. The Spanish found the land to be the most densely populated that they had seen since starting their journey on the Florida coast, two years earlier. The Spanish expedition departed Arkansas two years later, leaving behind numerous Old World diseases. It was 130 years before Europeans visited this region again. The French expedition of Joliet and Marquette in 1673 found none of the towns or people that the Spanish had documented; all that remained were the many mounds that still dot the landscape along the rivers and creeks. The original inhabitants, like the later settlers, were drawn to this region because of its fertile river bottom soil, abundant game, and thick forest.
The earliest recorded immigrant to the area was Benjamin Fooy, a native of Holland who was sent in 1795 by the Spanish governor of the large area claimed by Spain to establish a settlement on the Mississippi River. He chose a location across the river from present-day Memphis. In 1797, the Spanish established Campo de la Esperanza which was a small fort along the Mississippi River. The Spanish abandoned the fort in 1802 and the area took its English translation "Field of Hope" which eventually became known as Hopefield shortly after the United States took possession of the Louisiana Territory.
More Cities of Interest in Arkansas