How to Pick an Xray Tech School near Whittier California
Congrats on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Whittier CA in order to learn to be a radiologic technologist. And now that you have decided to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you tackle picking the ideal school and program so that you will receive the appropriate training to become a skilled professional? And because most states do require that x-ray technicians become licensed, depending on where you subsequently work you may require preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s important that you research each of the colleges you are considering so that you can compare each program. A number of potential students start by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within driving distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and typically settle on the most affordable cost. But while expense and location should be taken into consideration, there are additional critical qualifications as well. For example, you should find out whether or not the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internship programs. These questions and others you must ask the schools you are examining 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.
X-Ray Tech Occupation Description
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiology technicians or radiographers. Irrespective of the name, each has the same principal job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many choose to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, for example mammography. They may work in Whittier CA clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist might work with include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers must take care of their equipment and frequently analyze its performance and safety. They are also required to keep complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Whittier CA medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Tech Degrees Offered
The basic requirement for attending a radiology tech program is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the choice to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, normally requires 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as four years to finish and is more extensive in nature. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are acceptable also. One thing to consider is that Whittier CA radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may often be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which a large number of colleges sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any licensing or certification mandates in California or the state you will be working as applicable.
X-ray Technician Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an Radiologist college, depending on the state where you will be working you may have to be licensed. The majority of states do require licensing, and their prerequisites differ so contact your state. Currently, all states that do require licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but a number provide other alternatives for testing also. Several states also call for certification as a component of the licensing process, if not it is optional. Having said that, many Whittier CA employers will only hire radiology techs that are certified so it may enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also calls for re-certification every other year, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technologist Colleges
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their course of study. This is the same for online degree colleges. So although you can still obtain your degree online, a significant portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a school lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is often provided in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online section of the training may be attended in the privacy of your Whittier CA home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree usually find that the online style of learning is much more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online schools are generally more affordable than conventional alternatives. In addition to lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting may be lessened as well. But just confirm that the online program you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less formalized type of training, then an online school may be the right choice for you.
Topics to Ask X Ray Tech Colleges
Once you have selected the type of degree that you would like to obtain, you can initiate the process of finding and assessing Whittier CA x-ray tech schools. You will also have to determine if you prefer to attend online classes or drive to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the school will be critical. The price of tuition and ancillary expenditures will be a material variable also. But along with location and cost, what more should you look at when reviewing colleges? Well, you should check 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 decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the colleges you are considering.
Are the X-Ray Tech Programs Accredited? The majority of xray tech schools have earned some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still imperative to make sure that the program and school are accredited. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools earning accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their teachers 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 agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also help in obtaining financial aid and student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And many Whittier CA health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry level positions.
Are Internships Provided? Inquire if the California xray tech schools you are interested in have associations with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Whittier CA healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will probably want to hit the ground running after graduation, but finding that first job in a new field can be challenging without support. Ask if the radiographer schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good sign that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with Whittier CA healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their graduates are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the school they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Whittier CA residence. Students who have decided to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges typically charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Whittier CA colleges you are researching what the average 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 a chance to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the x-ray technician program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the x-ray tech college you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in Whittier CA, verify that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Radiologic Technologist?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's a good idea to consider questions you might be asked. One of the things that interviewers typically ask radiographer candidates is "What drove you to pick radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming an Xray technician, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you good at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to radiography, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you need to ready a number of strategies about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, aim 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 ideal candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but take down some ideas and talking points that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Select the Ideal X-Ray Technician School near Whittier CA
Selecting the ideal x-ray tech degree program is an important first step toward launching a gratifying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist must be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs regularly stand for the greater part of the working day and position and at times lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to adhere to the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray techs work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and provide the best possible patient care. As we have addressed in this report, there are several questions that you need to ask each program you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection. This is similarly true whether you enroll in an online school or travel to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can evaluate and compare each college so you can narrow down your options before making your final choice. And with the proper training and your motivation to be successful, you can reach your goal to practice as a radiographer in Whittier CA.
Some Background on Whittier California
Whittier (/ˈwɪtiər/) is a city in Southern California located within Los Angeles County, California. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city had a population of 85,331, reflecting an increase of 1,631 from the 83,680 counted in the 2000 Census, and encompasses 14.7 square miles (38.0 km2). Like nearby Montebello, the city constitutes part of the Gateway Cities. Whittier was incorporated in February 1898 and became a charter city in 1955. The city is named for the poet John Greenleaf Whittier and is home to Whittier College.
Whittier's roots can be traced to Spanish soldier Manuel Nieto. In 1784, Nieto received a Spanish land grant of 300,000 acres (1,200 km2), Rancho Los Nietos, as a reward for his military service and to encourage settlement in California. The area of Nieto's land grant was reduced in 1790 as the result of a dispute with Mission San Gabriel. Nonetheless, Nieto still had claim to 167,000 acres (680 km2) stretching from the hills north of Whittier, Fullerton and Brea, south to the Pacific Ocean, and from what is known today as the Los Angeles River east to the Santa Ana River. Nieto built a rancho for his family near Whittier, and purchased cattle and horses for his ranch and also planted cornfields. When Nieto died in 1804, his children inherited their father's property.
At the time of the Mexican–American War, much of the land that would become Whittier was owned by Pio Pico, a rancher and the last Mexican governor of Alta California. Pio Pico built a hacienda here on the San Gabriel River, known today as Pio Pico State Historic Park. Following the Mexican–American War, German immigrant Jacob F. Gerkens paid $234 to the U.S. government to acquire 160 acres (0.6 km2) of land under the Homestead Act and built the cabin known today as the Jonathan Bailey House. Gerkens would later become the first chief of police of the Los Angeles Police Department. Gerkens' land was owned by several others before a group of Quakers purchased it and expanded it to 1,259 acres (5 km2), with the intent of founding a Quaker community. The area soon became known as a thriving citrus ranching region, with "Quaker Brand" fruit being shipped all over the United States. Later, walnut trees were also planted, and Whittier became the largest walnut grower in the United States. In addition to walnuts and citrus, Whittier was also a major producer of pampas grass.
For many years, the sole means of transport from this area to Los Angeles was on foot, or via horse and wagon over rough dirt roads, impeding settlement, development, and the export of agriculture. Thus in 1887 "enterprising and aggressive businessmen" contracted with the Southern Pacific Railroad to build the first railroad spur to Whittier, including a depot. The businessmen covered the $43,000 construction cost for the six-mile spur, which branched off from the Southern Pacific mainline at a junction near what is now Studebaker Road between Firestone Boulevard and Imperial Highway. By 1906, 650 carloads of oranges and 250 carloads of lemons were shipped annually by rail. In 1904, the Pacific Electric opened the trolley line known as "Big Red Cars" from Los Angeles to Whittier. In the first two decades, over a million passengers a year rode to and from Los Angeles on the Whittier line. Groves of walnuts were planted in 1887 and eventually Whittier was known as the primary walnut growing town in the United States. After World War II Whittier grew rapidly and the sub-dividing of orange groves began, driven by housing shortages in southern California. In 1955 the new Civic Center complex was completed and the City Council met in new chambers for the first time on March 8, 1955. The city continued to grow as the City annexed portions of Whittier Boulevard and East Whittier. The 1961 annexation added over 28,000 people to the population, bringing the total to about 67,000.
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