How to Select an X-Ray Tech School near Denver Colorado
Congratulations on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Denver CO in order to become a radiology technologist. But now that you have chosen to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you go about picking the right college and program to ensure that you will receive the proper training to become a skilled practitioner? And considering that 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 essential that you assess each of the schools you are considering so that you can compare each program. A number of prospective students begin by looking for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and frequently gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while expense and location must be taken into account, there are additional critical qualifiers also. For example, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are considering are provided later in this article. But first, let’s talk about what a radiologic tech does and the degrees and training options that are available.
Radiology Technician Work Summary
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the same fundamental job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many choose to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for instance mammography. They can work in Denver CO clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist may utilize 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 routinely evaluate its performance and safety. They are additionally required to keep detailed records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Denver CO medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Offered
The standard 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 techs, generally takes 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at as much as four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are appropriate as well. Something to consider is that Denver CO radiographer schools have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It can typically be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which many schools offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any licensing or certification requirements in Colorado or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-Ray Tech Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an x-ray technician college, based on the state where you will be employed you may have to be licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so contact your state. At present, all states that do require licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but many accept other options for testing as well. Some states also call for certification as part of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Denver CO employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it might enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive examination. ARRT also calls for re-certification every other year, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technician Classes
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 programs. So although you can still obtain your degree online, a significant amount of the training will be completed either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Practical training is typically conducted in local hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. But the online portion of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Denver CO residence. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically discover that the online style of learning is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online colleges are often more affordable than conventional options. Along with reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials can be decreased as well. But just make certain that the online program you enroll in 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.
What to Ask Radiologic Tech Colleges
After you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of looking for and assessing Denver CO x-ray technician colleges. You will also have to determine if you prefer to attend online classes or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then naturally the location of the college will be important. The price of tuition and ancillary expenses will be a determining variable also. But along with cost and location, what else should you look at when reviewing schools? Well, you need to ask if the schools are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these essential details before you make your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you should ask the programs you are considering.
Are the Radiology Tech Colleges Accredited? A large number of radiology technician colleges have acquired some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Nevertheless, it’s still important to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly regarded 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 a rigorous review 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 distance or online learning. All accrediting organizations 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 assist in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And a number of Denver CO employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level positions.
Are Internships Sponsored? Inquire if the Colorado xray tech colleges you are reviewing have relationships with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific way to obtain practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a way to fulfill the practical training requirement for most programs. As an ancillary benefit, they can help graduates and students establish professional connections in the Denver CO medical community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help provided? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduating, but getting that first job in a new profession can be challenging without help. Find out if the radiographer schools you are considering have job placement programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have substantial networks and great relationships with Denver CO healthcare employers. It also confirms that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the school they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Denver CO home. Students who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble 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 program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges generally charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Denver CO colleges you are reviewing what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the x-ray technician program also.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the x-ray tech school you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Denver CO, confirm that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Radiology Technician?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's a good idea to consider questions you may be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask radiographer applicants is "What made you choose radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not merely the personal reasons you may have for being an X-Ray tech, but also what qualities and skills you have that make you good at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you should ready some approaches about how you would like to address them. Because there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you have that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the leading choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down a few concepts and topics that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Select the Right X-Ray Tech Program near Denver CO
Selecting the best x-ray tech degree program is a crucial first step toward starting a gratifying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist should be in good physical condition. Radiology techs typically stand for the majority of the working day and position and in some cases lift the patient to get the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate a capability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and deliver the best possible patient care. As has been addressed in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each school you are considering prior to making your final selection. This is equally true whether you decide on an online program or commute to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can examine and compare each program so you can narrow down your options before making your decision. And with the proper training and your dedication to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Denver CO.
Some Background on Denver Colorado
Denver (/ˈdɛnvər/), officially the City and County of Denver, is the capital and most populous municipality of the U.S. state of Colorado. Denver is in the South Platte River Valley on the western edge of the High Plains just east of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. The Denver downtown district is immediately east of the confluence of Cherry Creek with the South Platte River, approximately 12 mi (19 km) east of the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Denver is nicknamed the Mile High City because its official elevation is exactly one mile (5280 feet or 1609.3 meters) above sea level, making it the highest major city in the United States. The 105th meridian west of Greenwich, the longitudinal reference for the Mountain Time Zone, passes directly through Denver Union Station.
Denver is ranked as a Beta- world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. With an estimated population of 693,060 in 2016, Denver is the 19th-most populous U.S. city, and with a 15.48% increase since the 2010 United States Census, it has been one of the fastest-growing major cities in the United States. The 10-county Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area had an estimated 2016 population of 2,853,077 and is the 19th most populous U.S. metropolitan statistical area. The 12-city Denver-Aurora, CO Combined Statistical Area had an estimated 2016 population of 3,470,235 and is the 16th most populous U.S. metropolitan area. Denver is the most populous city of the 18-county Front Range Urban Corridor, an oblong urban region stretching across two states with an estimated 2016 population of 4,833,260. Denver is the most populous city within a 500-mile (800 km) radius and the second-most populous city in the Mountain West after Phoenix, Arizona. In 2016, Denver was named the best place to live in the United States by U.S. News & World Report.
In the summer of 1858, during the Pike's Peak Gold Rush, a group of gold prospectors from Lawrence, Kansas established Montana City as a mining town on the banks of the South Platte River in what was then western Kansas Territory. This was the first historical settlement in what was later to become the city of Denver. The site faded quickly, however, and by the summer of 1859 it was abandoned in favor of Auraria (named after the gold-mining town of Auraria, Georgia) and St. Charles City.
On November 22, 1858, General William Larimer, a land speculator from eastern Kansas Territory, placed cottonwood logs to stake a claim on the bluff overlooking the confluence of the South Platte River and Cherry Creek, across the creek from the existing mining settlement of Auraria, and on the site of the existing townsite of St. Charles. Larimer named the townsite Denver City to curry favor with Kansas Territorial Governor James W. Denver. Larimer hoped the town's name would help make it the county seat of Arapaho County but, unbeknownst to him, Governor Denver had already resigned from office. The location was accessible to existing trails and was across the South Platte River from the site of seasonal encampments of the Cheyenne and Arapaho. The site of these first towns is now the site of Confluence Park near downtown Denver. Larimer, along with associates in the St. Charles City Land Company, sold parcels in the town to merchants and miners, with the intention of creating a major city that would cater to new immigrants. Denver City was a frontier town, with an economy based on servicing local miners with gambling, saloons, livestock and goods trading. In the early years, land parcels were often traded for grubstakes or gambled away by miners in Auraria. In May 1859, Denver City residents donated 53 lots to the Leavenworth & Pike's Peak Express in order to secure the region's first overland wagon route. Offering daily service for "passengers, mail, freight, and gold," the Express reached Denver on a trail that trimmed westward travel time from twelve days to six. In 1863, Western Union furthered Denver's dominance of the region by choosing the city for its regional terminus.
The Colorado Territory was created on February 28, 1861,Arapahoe County was formed on November 1, 1861, and Denver City was incorporated on November 7, 1861. Denver City served as the Arapahoe County Seat from 1861 until consolidation in 1902. In 1867, Denver City became the territorial capital. With its newfound importance, Denver City shortened its name to Denver. On August 1, 1876, Colorado was admitted to the Union.
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