How to Pick a Radiologic Tech College near Burlington Illinois
Congrats on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Burlington IL in order to train to be a radiology technologist. But now that you have chosen to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, exactly how do you tackle picking the right school and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified practitioner? And considering that the majority of states do mandate that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently work you may need training to pass a licensing exam. So it’s important that you research each of the colleges you are considering in order to compare each program. A number of students start by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while cost and location need to be taken into consideration, there are other significant qualifications as well. For example, you should find out if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internship programs. These inquiries and others you should ask the schools you are considering are provided later in this article. But first, let’s talk about what a radiologic technician does and the degrees and training choices that are available.
Radiology Technician Job Description
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They may also be referred to as radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. Regardless of the name, each has the same primary job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some opt to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, for instance mammography. They may practice in Burlington IL clinics, hospitals, private 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 have to take care of their equipment plus frequently analyze its functionality and safety. They are also required to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Burlington IL health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Tech Degrees Available
The standard requirement for attending a radiology tech college is to have received a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the option to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among techs, usually requires 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 4 years to complete and is more expansive in scope. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are appropriate as well. Something to bear in mind is that Burlington IL radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It may often be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which many schools sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their region. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must comply with any licensing or certification requirements in Illinois or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
When you have graduated from an Radiologist program, based on the state where you will be employed you may need to be licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so contact your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but many provide other options for testing also. A number of states also require certification as part of the licensing process, if not it is optional. However, many Burlington IL employers would rather hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Tech Programs
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have clinical or lab training included in their course of study. This is no different for online degree schools. So while you can still earn your online degree, a substantial amount of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an internship off campus. Practical training is typically conducted in regional hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. However the online portion of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Burlington IL home. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically discover that the online approach to education is much more convenient with their busy schedules. Plus online programs are often less costly than on-campus alternatives. Along with lower tuition, expenditures for study materials and commuting may be reduced also. But just be sure that the online program you enroll in is accredited (more on the benefits 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 best choice for you.
Subjects to Ask Radiologic Tech Schools
After you have decided on the kind of degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of searching for and evaluating Burlington IL x-ray tech schools. You will also need to determine if you want to attend online classes or travel to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be relevant. The price of tuition and ancillary expenses will be an important variable also. But along with cost and location, what more should you look at when evaluating colleges? Well, you should check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you find out some of these important details prior to making your decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you need to ask the colleges you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? The majority of xray technician schools have acquired some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still imperative to make sure that the school and program 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). Schools receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their teachers and course materials. If the college 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. In addition to ensuring a superior education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Burlington IL employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level jobs.
Are Internships Offered? Inquire if the Illinois radiology technician schools you are interested in have partnerships with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to receive practical experience in a clinical setting, they are also a way to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist graduates and students establish professional connections in the Burlington IL medical community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help offered? You will undoubtedly want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in a new field can be challenging without support. Find out if the radiographer schools you are considering have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Burlington IL healthcare employers. It also confirms that their graduates are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Burlington IL home. Students who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area 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 even out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often 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.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Burlington IL schools you are considering what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the radiology technician program also.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the radiographer school you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in Burlington IL, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Radiology Technician?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's important to review questions you may be asked. Among the things that hiring managers frequently ask radiographer prospects is "What drove you to select radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a radiology technician, but also what attributes and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to radiography, along with a significant number of general interview questions, so you need to prepare some strategies about how you would like to address them. Because there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Pick the Best X-Ray Tech Program near Burlington IL
Choosing the ideal radiology tech school is a critical first step toward initiating a gratifying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer should be in good physical shape. Radiology techs regularly stand for the greater part of the working day and position and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show an ability to pay close attention to detail and to observe the safety requirements designed 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. Possessing interpersonal skills is a necessity in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best possible care to patients. As we have covered in this article, there are several questions that you need to ask each program you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection. This is just as true whether you opt for an online school or travel to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can examine and compare each program so you can focus your options and make your final choice. And with the proper education and your dedication to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Burlington IL.
Some Background on Burlington Illinois
Burlington is a city and the county seat of Des Moines County, Iowa, United States. The population was 25,663 in the 2010 census, a decline from the 26,839 population in the 2000 census. Burlington is the center of a micropolitan area including West Burlington, Iowa, and Middletown, Iowa, and Gulfport, Illinois. Burlington is the home of Snake Alley, once labelled the crookedest alley in the world.
Prior to European settlement, the area was neutral territory for the Sac and Fox Indians, who called it Shoquoquon (Shok-ko-kon), meaning Flint Hills.
In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson organized two parties of explorers to map the Louisiana Purchase. The Lewis and Clark Expedition followed the Missouri River, while Lt. Zebulon Pike followed the Mississippi River. In 1805, Pike landed at the bluffs below Burlington and raised the United States Flag for the first time on what would become Iowa soil and recommended construction of a fort. The recommendation went unheeded.
The American Fur Company of John Jacob Astor established a post in the area in 1829. Settlement began in 1833, shortly after the Black Hawk Purchase, when Samuel (aka Simpson) White, Amzi Doolitle, and Morton M. McCarver crossed the Mississippi River from Big Island and staked claims there. According to an account A.T. Andreas wrote in 1875, White erected a cabin in the area later platted to be Front Street between Court and High streets. Andreas called White and Doolittle the Romulus and Remus of their settlement, referring to the mythic heroes who founded Rome, a city surrounded by hills. A few weeks later, William R. Ross joined them and established a general store. In November and December, he surveyed the settlement for White and Doolittle.:145
More Cities of Interest in Illinois