How to Select a Radiologic Tech Program near Des Plaines Illinois
Best wishes regarding your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Des Plaines IL so you can learn to be a radiologic technician. But now that you have decided to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you tackle choosing the right college and program so that you will receive the proper training to become a qualified professional? And since most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you ultimately practice you may need training to pass a licensing test. So it’s imperative that you assess each of the schools you are looking at so that you can compare each program. Many potential students start by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within driving distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually settle on the most affordable cost. But while expense and location must be taken into account, there are additional critical qualifications as well. For example, you should find out whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the colleges you are reviewing are provided later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a radiologic tech does and the credentials and training options that are available.
Radiology Technician Occupation Description
There are multiple professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be referred to as radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. Irrespective of the name, each has the identical primary job function, 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 the treatment of cancer. Many opt to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, such as mammography. They can practice in Des Plaines IL 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 have to take care of their equipment plus regularly analyze its functionality and safety. They are additionally expected to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Des Plaines IL health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Technician Degrees
The standard prerequisite for attending a radiology tech school is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among techs, generally takes 18 months to two years to finish based upon the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional related majors that are appropriate as well. One thing to bear in mind is that Des Plaines IL radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as part of their curriculum. It may typically be satisfied by taking part in an externship program which a large number of colleges offer through local clinics and hospitals in their region. After you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any licensing or certification mandates in Illinois or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Certification and Licensing
When you have graduated from an Radiologist school, based on the state where you will be working you may have to be licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their requirements differ so contact your state. Presently, all states that do mandate licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many offer additional options for testing as well. Several states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Des Plaines IL employers prefer to hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it might increase your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also requires re-certification every other year, which can be satisfied with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technician Programs
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have clinical 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 completed either in a school lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is often carried out in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. But the online section of the training may be accessed in the comfort of your Des Plaines IL residence. Students who keep working while earning their degree usually find that the online approach to education is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online schools are generally less expensive than traditional alternatives. Along with reduced tuition, costs for commuting and study materials may be reduced as well. But just make certain that the online program you pick is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online degree may be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Radiologic Tech Colleges
When you have decided on the kind of degree that you would like to obtain, you can begin the process of locating and evaluating Des Plaines IL x-ray tech colleges. You will also have to determine if you want to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then of course the location of the college will be important. The price of tuition and secondary expenditures will be an important variable as well. But along with location and cost, what more should you look at when comparing schools? Well, you need to find out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these crucial details before you make your decision, we have put together a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Tech Schools Accredited? Most radiology tech schools have received some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it’s still important to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly respected accrediting organizations 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 an extensive examination of their instructors and educational materials. If the program is online it can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a premium education, accreditation will also help in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Des Plaines IL health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry level positions.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Ask if the Illinois radiology technician colleges you are assessing have associations with regional hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent manner to receive hands on training in a clinical setting, they are also a means to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Des Plaines IL healthcare community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will most likely wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that initial job in a new field can be challenging without assistance. Find out if the radiographer schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent sign that the schools have substantial networks and great relationships with Des Plaines IL healthcare employers. It also confirms that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the school they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Des Plaines IL home. Students who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing 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 need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly 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 likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Des Plaines IL schools you are reviewing 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 decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the x-ray tech school you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Des Plaines IL, check that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Want to Be a Radiologic Technologist?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask radiographer candidates is "What drove you to pick radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a radiology technician, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to radiography, as well as a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare a number of strategies about how you want to answer them. Considering there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you along with the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the leading choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Right Radiology Tech Program near Des Plaines IL
Choosing the appropriate radiology tech school is an important first step toward initiating a gratifying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the greater part of the workday and move and in some cases lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show an ability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray techs 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 provide the best possible patient care. As has been covered in this article, there are several questions that you should ask each program you are reviewing before making your final decision. This is similarly true whether you enroll in an online program or drive to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can evaluate and compare each college so you can focus your options before making your final choice. And with the proper training and your commitment to be successful, you can achieve your goal to work as a radiographer in Des Plaines IL.
Some Background on Des Plaines Illinois
Des Plaines, Illinois
Des Plaines /dɪs ˈpleɪnz/ is a city in Cook County, Illinois, United States. Its population was 58,364 at the 2010 census. The city is a suburb of Chicago and is located just north of O'Hare International Airport. It is situated on and is named after the Des Plaines River, which runs through the city just east of its downtown area.
Potawatomi, Ottawa, and Ojibwe (Chippewa) Native American tribes inhabited the Des Plaines River Valley prior to Europeans' arrival. When French explorers and missionaries arrived in the 1600s in what was then the Illinois Country of New France, they named the waterway La Rivière des Plaines (English translation: "River of the Plane Tree") as they felt that trees on the river resembled the European plane trees. The first white settlers came from the eastern United States in 1833, after the Treaty of Chicago, followed by many German immigrants during the 1840s and '50s. In the 1850s, the land in this area was purchased by the Illinois and Wisconsin Land Company along a railroad line planned between Chicago and Janesville, Wisconsin. In 1852, the developers built a steam-powered mill next to the river to cut local trees into railroad ties. Socrates Rand then bought the mill and converted it into a grist mill, which attracted local farmers. The Illinois and Wisconsin Railroad made its first stop in the area in the fall of 1854.
In 1857, the Chicago, St. Paul, and Fond du Lac Railroad began running its route, stopping near the mill on the Des Plaines river, where a small business section had grown up. The railroad platted the prospective town of Rand at the site. In 1859, the Chicago and North Western Railway purchased the rail line, giving the train station the name "Des Plaines". In 1869, the Rand subdivision's name was changed to Des Plaines, and the village of Des Plaines was then incorporated.
In 1925, village residents voted to convert to a city form of government and annexed the village of Riverview to the south. Subsequent annexations included the Orchard Place area in 1956. The city experienced rapid growth after World War II and with the opening of nearby Chicago-O'Hare International Airport.
Des Plaines was the site of Ray Kroc's first McDonald's franchise, which opened in 1955. The restaurant was demolished in 1984, and a replica was built on the site as a museum dedicated to McDonald's history. In 2017, McDonald's announced plans to demolish the building due to repeated flooding. The building has since been demolished.
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