How to Choose a Radiology Tech College near Alexandria Kentucky
Congratulations on your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Alexandria KY so you can train to be a radiologic technologist. But now that you have made a decision to enter the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you undertake choosing the right school and program so that you will receive the appropriate training to become a skilled professional? And since the majority of states do require that x-ray technicians become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you might require preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s imperative that you assess each of the colleges you are considering so that you can compare each program. Most potential students begin by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and typically settle on the lowest cost. But while expense and location need to be taken into account, there are other critical qualifiers also. For instance, you should find out if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they offer internships. These questions and others you must ask the schools you are examining are presented later in this article. But first, let’s explore what a radiologic technician does and the degrees and education choices that are offered.
Radiology Tech Work Summary
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Irrespective of the name, each has the same fundamental job description, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some opt to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, such as mammography. They may work in Alexandria KY hospitals, clinics, private 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 must maintain their equipment and also regularly assess its performance and safety. They are additionally expected to keep complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Alexandria KY health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
Radiology Tech Degrees Available
The standard prerequisite for enrolling in an x-ray tech college is to have attained 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 techs, generally takes 18 months to two years to finish depending on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to four years to finish and is more comprehensive in scope. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional similar majors that are appropriate as well. Something to consider is that Alexandria KY radiographer programs have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It can typically be fulfilled by taking part in an externship program which a large number of schools offer through local hospitals and clinics in their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any licensing or certification requirements in Kentucky or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiographer Certification and Licensing
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech program, based on the state where you will be employed you might need to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so get in touch with your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many provide additional alternatives for testing as well. Some states also call for certification as part of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is optional. However, many Alexandria KY employers favor hiring radiology techs that have earned certification so it could 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 rigorous exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technician Colleges
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 programs. So even though you can still earn your degree online, a significant amount of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Clinical training is usually conducted in area hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training may be attended in the privacy of your Alexandria KY home. Students who keep working while earning their degree typically discover that the online approach to learning is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online programs are generally cheaper than on-campus options. Along with reduced tuition, costs for study materials and commuting may be lessened also. But just make sure that the online college you select is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online school may be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Radiographer Programs
After you have decided on the kind of degree that you want to obtain, you can begin the process of locating and evaluating Alexandria KY x-ray tech colleges. You will also need to determine if you want to attend online classes or drive to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be critical. The price of tuition and supplementary expenses will be an important variable also. But in addition to location and cost, what more should you look at when reviewing schools? Well, you need to find out if the schools are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these essential details prior to making your decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the colleges you are assessing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? A large number of radiology tech colleges have received some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it’s still important to confirm that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly respected accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Programs earning accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a rigorous examination of their instructors and educational materials. If the program is online it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online learning. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also help in getting financial aid and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Alexandria KY health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level openings.
Are Internships Offered? Find out if the Kentucky xray technician colleges you are assessing have partnerships with regional hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific way to receive hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As an ancillary benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Alexandria KY medical community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will probably want to hit the ground running after graduation, but finding that first job in a new profession can be difficult without support. Find out if the x-ray tech schools you are considering have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good indication that the schools have substantial networks and good relationships with Alexandria KY healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the college they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Alexandria KY home. Students who have decided to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Alexandria KY schools 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 decision. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the radiographer school you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Alexandria KY, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Radiology Technician?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters typically ask radiographer applicants is "What made you pick radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a radiology technician, but also what qualities and abilities you have that make you good at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to radiography, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you need to organize a number of ideas about how you want to address them. Given that there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the talents you possess that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the leading candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but jot down a few concepts and talking points that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
Select the Right Radiology Technician School near Alexandria KY
Selecting the right x-ray technician degree program is a crucial first step toward starting a satisfying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the greater part of the working day and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show an ability to pay strict attention to detail and to observe the safety guidelines 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. Having social skills is a necessity in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best possible care to patients. As we have discussed in this report, there are several questions that you should ask each college you are looking at prior to making your final decision. This is equally true whether you opt for an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can analyze and compare each school so you can narrow down your options and make your decision. And with the proper education and your motivation to be successful, you can accomplish your goal to work as a x-ray tech in Alexandria KY.
Some Background on Alexandria Kentucky
Alexandria is a home rule-class city in Campbell County, Kentucky, in the United States. Along with Newport, it is one of the dual seats of the county. The population was 8,477 at the 2010 census.
It is believed that the area that is now Alexandria was first settled by Frank Spilman and his family c. 1793. The Spilman family was from King George County, Virginia, and they may have named their settlement after Alexandria, Virginia. The family had begun developing and selling lots in the settlement by 1819, the year the first post office was established. On February 22, 1834, Alexandria was formally established by an act of the state assembly.
When the Kentucky General Assembly formed Kenton County from part of Campbell County in 1840, they moved Campbell's county seat from Newport to Alexandria, which was closer to the center of the redrawn county. The citizens of Alexandria quickly constructed a county courthouse but, because the majority of the county's population lived in Newport, the move was not a popular one and it took a court order and a visit from the sheriff to get the county clerk to move.
The city of Alexandria was formally incorporated by act of the state assembly in 1856.
In 1883, Newport successfully lobbied for its own Court House District, allowing it to retain a Court House Commission with taxing authority and various county offices in addition to those maintained at Alexandria. A new courthouse was established in Newport in 1884, and the county's fiscal court and judicial offices operated out of this while other administrative offices remained in Alexandria. Nonetheless, the county was not dual seated until 2010.
More Cities of Interest in Kentucky