How to Choose a Radiologic Technician Degree Program near Granite City Illinois
Congratulations on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Granite City IL so you can become a radiologic technician. And now that you have made a decision to go into the satisfying field of healthcare, how do you go about choosing the right college and program so that you will receive the proper training to become a qualified practitioner? And since the majority of states do mandate that radiology technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately practice you might 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. A number of students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and often gravitate toward the lowest cost. But while expense and location must be taken into consideration, there are additional significant qualifications also. For example, you should ask whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the schools you are considering are provided later in this article. But first, let’s explore what a x-ray technician does and the credentials and education options that are offered.
Radiology Tech Work Description
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They may also be referred to as radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. Irrespective of the name, they all have the identical primary job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many choose to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, for example mammography. They may practice in Granite City IL hospitals, clinics, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist might utilize include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to maintain their equipment plus regularly assess its performance and safety. They are also required to retain complete records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Granite City IL health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Tech Degree Options
The standard requirement for attending a radiology tech school is to have received 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 common among technicians, generally requires 18 months to two years to finish depending on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to 4 years to complete and is more expansive in nature. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate as well. One thing to keep in mind is that Granite City IL radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as part of their curriculum. It may frequently be fulfilled by participating in an internship or externship program which a large number of colleges sponsor through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you must comply with any certification or licensing requirements in Illinois or the state you will be working as applicable.
X-ray Technician Certification and Licensing
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech college, based on the state where you will be employed you may need to be licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites vary so check with your state. Presently, all states that do mandate licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many approve other options for testing as well. Several states also require certification as part of the licensing process, otherwise it is optional. However, numerous Granite City IL employers favor hiring radiology techs that are certified so it may increase your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive examination. ARRT also calls for re-certification every 2 years, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technician Programs
As a part of every degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is no different for online degree schools. So while you can still earn your degree online, a substantial amount of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Practical training is typically conducted in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. But the online segment of the training can be accessed in the privacy of your Granite City IL home. Students who keep working while earning their degree typically find that the online approach to learning is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online schools are generally cheaper than conventional options. In addition to reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials can be lessened as well. But just confirm that the online program you enroll in is accredited (more on the advantages 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 best choice for you.
Points to Ask Radiology Tech Schools
As soon as you have decided on the kind of degree that you would like to obtain, you can start the process of looking for and evaluating Granite City IL x-ray technician schools. You will also need to decide if you prefer to attend classes online or commute to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then of course the location of the school will be important. The cost of tuition and ancillary expenses will be an important factor also. But in addition to location and cost, what more should you factor in when comparing colleges? Well, you need to ask if the schools are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you learn some of these crucial details prior to making your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are considering.
Are the X-Ray Tech Schools Accredited? The majority of radiology tech schools have received some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. However, it’s still important to verify 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 obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a rigorous review of their instructors and educational materials. If the school is online it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with guaranteeing a superior education, accreditation will also assist in obtaining financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not available for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Granite City IL health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry level jobs.
Are Internships Offered? Find out if the Illinois radiology tech schools you are reviewing have partnerships with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to receive hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are also a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Granite City IL health care community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance available? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduation, but getting that initial job in a new field can be challenging without support. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are assessing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good indication that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with Granite City IL healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their graduates are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the school they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Granite City IL home. Individuals who have opted 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 choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Granite City IL schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the x-ray technician program as well.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the radiographer program you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Granite City IL, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Radiology Technician?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers often ask radiographer candidates is "What drove you to decide on radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming an Xray technician, but additionally what characteristics and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to radiography, along with 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 so many variables 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 profession interests you along with the strengths you have that make you an excellent X-Ray tech and the perfiect candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
Select the Right Radiology Technician Program near Granite City IL
Choosing the best radiology tech degree program is a crucial first step toward starting a rewarding new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs regularly stand for the greater part of the working day and position and in some cases lift the patient to get 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. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and furnish the best available care to patients. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of questions that you should ask each college you are considering prior to making your ultimate decision. This is equally true whether you enroll in an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can evaluate and compare each program so you can focus your choices before making your decision. And with the right training and your commitment to succeed, you can accomplish your goal to work as a radiology tech in Granite City IL.
Some Background on Granite City Illinois
Granite City, Illinois
Granite City is a city in Madison County, Illinois, United States, within the Greater St. Louis metropolitan area. The population was 29,849 at the 2010 census, making it the second largest city in the Metro East and Southern Illinois regions, behind Belleville. Officially founded in 1896, Granite City was named by the Niedringhaus brothers, William and Frederick, who established it as a steel making company town for the manufacture of kitchen utensils made to resemble granite.
The area was settled much earlier than Granite City's official founding. In the early 19th century, settlers began to farm the rich fertile grounds to the east of St. Louis. Around 1801, the area saw the establishment of Six Mile Settlement, a farming area that occupied the area of present-day Granite City, six miles (10 km) from St. Louis. Soon after, around 1806, the National Road was to be constructed through the area, but it was never completed. By 1817, the area became known as Six Mile Prairie, to distinguish it from Six Mile Township. By 1854, the first railroad was built. In 1856, the area known as Six Mile would be changed to Kinder.
Granite City was founded in 1896 to be a planned company city similar to Pullman, Illinois, by German immigrant brothers Frederick G. and William Niedringhaus for their Granite ware kitchen supplies factory.
Since 1866, the brothers had been operating the St. Louis Stamping Company, an iron works company, that made kitchen utensils in St. Louis, Missouri. In the 1870s, William discovered an enamelware process in Europe whereby metal utensils could be coated with enamel to make them lighter and more resistant to oxidation. At the time, most enamelware was usually just one color as the additions of any colors to the process was inefficient. On June 1, 1878, William applied for Patent 207543 to improve the efficiency whereby a pattern could be applied to enamelware while the enamel was still wet simply by placing a thin piece of paper with an oxidized pattern on top of it. The paper would fall off in the drying process and the pattern was embedded. The brothers' pattern made the utensils resemble granite. The resulting product was enormously popular.
The brothers opened the Granite Iron Rolling Mills in St. Louis to provide tin (imported from Wales) to its prospering kitchen supplies manufacturer. The imported tin had a $22 per ton tariff.
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