How to Pick a Radiology Technician Degree Program near New Canaan Connecticut
Congratulations on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near New Canaan CT in order to train to be a radiology technologist. But now that you have made a decision to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, exactly how do you tackle choosing the right college and program so that you will obtain the appropriate training to become a skilled practitioner? And considering that most states do require that radiology technicians become licensed, based on where you ultimately practice you might require preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s essential that you assess each of the schools you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. A number of potential students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and typically gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while location and cost must be taken into account, there are additional critical qualifiers as well. For instance, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the colleges you are reviewing are presented later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a radiology technician does and the credentials and education options that are available.
Radiology Technician Job Summary
There are several professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be called radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, they all have the identical major job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some elect to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialty, for instance mammography. They may work in New Canaan CT clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray tech might 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 plus frequently assess its performance and safety. They are also expected to keep detailed records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As New Canaan CT health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Tech Degrees Available
The primary requirement for attending an x-ray tech program is to have received a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the opportunity to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, normally requires 18 months to two years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at as much as four years to complete and is more extensive in scope. Most students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are acceptable also. One thing to bear in mind is that New Canaan CT radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which many colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any certification or licensing requirements in Connecticut or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
Once you have graduated from an x-ray technician college, based on the state where you will be practicing you may have to be licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their requirements vary so check with your state. Presently, all states that do require licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but many approve additional alternatives for testing as well. Several states also call for certification as part of the licensing process, otherwise it is voluntary. However, many New Canaan CT employers would rather hire radiology techs that are certified so it could enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program calls for 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 exam.
Online X-Ray Technologist Classes
As a part of any 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 colleges. So while you can still earn your degree online, a significant portion of the training will be completed either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is often conducted in regional hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online section of the training may be attended in the privacy of your New Canaan CT residence. Students who keep working while earning their degree usually discover that the online approach to education is far more convenient with their active schedules. Plus online programs are frequently less costly than conventional alternatives. In addition to lower tuition, expenditures for study materials and commuting may be lessened as well. But just be sure 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 structured type of training, then an online degree may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask X Ray Tech Schools
When you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to obtain, you can initiate the process of looking for and evaluating New Canaan CT x-ray tech schools. You will also need to decide if you want to attend classes online or drive to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then of course the location of the school will be important. The price of tuition and ancillary expenditures will be an important variable as well. But in addition to location and cost, what else should you look at when comparing colleges? Well, you should find 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 put together a list of questions that you need to ask the schools you are assessing.
Are the Radiology Tech Schools Accredited? Most xray tech schools have received some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. Nevertheless, it’s still important to make sure 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 obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a detailed assessment of their instructors and course materials. If the college is online it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on 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 quality education, accreditation will also help in obtaining financial aid and student loans, which are many times not available for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of New Canaan CT health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry level jobs.
Are Internship Programs Offered? Ask if the Connecticut xray technician colleges you are interested in have relationships with local clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may help graduates and students form professional relationships in the New Canaan CT healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance available? You will undoubtedly want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in a new profession can be challenging without help. Ask if the radiographer programs you are assessing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have substantial networks and great relationships with New Canaan CT healthcare employers. It also confirms that their graduates are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their New Canaan CT residence. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose 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 frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the New Canaan CT colleges you are considering what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program also.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the x-ray tech school you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in New Canaan CT, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Desire to Become an Xray Technician?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's helpful to review questions you could be asked. One of the things that interviewers frequently ask radiographer prospects is "What compelled you to decide on radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a radiology technician, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to radiography, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must ready several ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Because there are numerous variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the talents you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the ideal choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
Select the Best Radiology Tech College near New Canaan CT
Picking the best x-ray tech degree program is a crucial first step toward starting a satisfying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist must be in good physical condition. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the majority of the working day and move and in some cases lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having social skills is a necessity in order to have a productive work environment and furnish the best available care to patients. As has been covered in this post, there are a number of questions that you should ask each program you are assessing prior to making your final decision. This is similarly true whether you enroll in an online school or travel to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can examine and compare each program so you can narrow down your choices and make your final choice. And with the proper education and your dedication to succeed, you can reach your goal to practice as a x-ray tech in New Canaan CT.
Some Background on New Canaan Connecticut
New Canaan, Connecticut
New Canaan /nuː ˈkeɪnən/ is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States, 12 miles (19 km) northeast of Greenwich, 36 miles (58 km) west of New Haven and 48 miles (77 km) northeast of New York City. The population was 19,738 according to the 2010 census. In 2008 New Canaan had the highest median family income in the country.
Considered part of Connecticut's Gold Coast, New Canaan is known for its excellent Connecticut public school system, its wide range of architecture from the Harvard Five modern homes to historic New England colonials and farms, as well as many stately mansions and tended estates, plus a signature town center with premiere shopping, classic boutiques, an elaborate display of lights for the Holidays.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.5 square miles (58 km2), of which 22.1 square miles (57 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), or 1.56%, is water. New Canaan is the only municipality on the Connecticut Panhandle that does not border the coast. Such proximity to New York City proved worthy of its own connection to the New Haven Railroad, being the only town to do so. New Canaan station and Talmadge Hill station are both on the New Canaan Branch of the New Haven Line, and transfer is possible in Stamford south to Manhattan. Many New Canaan residents commute to New York regularly, with travel time to Grand Central Terminal approximately 70 minutes. New Canaan is also heavily served by the historic Merritt Parkway, as the third municipality when driving to Connecticut from New York City.
The downtown area consists of many fine restaurants, an old Bow Tie Cinemas movie theater, library, the Victorian train station, antique shops, a book store, a saddlery boutique and various fine clothing and interior decorating shops. In addition to the many local boutiques and businesses, many national chains stores can be found in the downtown area, including Ralph Lauren and Ralph Lauren Children, Ann Taylor, J. McLaughlin, Papyrus, Vineyard Vines, Le Pain Quotidien, and Starbucks, among others. There are also several churches in town (Catholic and various Protestant denominations) as well as the historic Roger Sherman Inn, established in 1740. Most major banks and many wealth managements firms have a presence in New Canaan, including J.P Morgan, Merrill Lynch, Wells Fargo, UBS, Citibank and Bank of America, among others. Several hedge funds are also based in New Canaan.
The town is bounded on the south by Darien, on west by Stamford, on the east by Wilton, on the southeast by Norwalk and on the north by Lewisboro and Pound Ridge in Westchester County, New York.
More Cities of Interest in Connecticut