How to Choose an Xray Technician School near Cumberland Kentucky
Congrats on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Cumberland KY so you can learn to be a radiology technologist. But now that you have decided to go into the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you tackle choosing the right school and program to ensure that you will obtain the proper training to become a qualified professional? And since most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently work you might need training to pass a licensing exam. So it’s important that you investigate each of the schools you are considering so that you can compare each program. Most students start by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and typically gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while expense and location need to be considered, there are other significant qualifications also. For instance, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internships. These questions and others you must ask the schools you are reviewing are provided later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and training options that are offered.
X-Ray Tech Occupation Description
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the identical principal job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Many elect to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, for instance mammography. They can practice in Cumberland KY clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician may 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 and also frequently evaluate its performance and safety. They are also expected to retain in-depth records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Cumberland KY health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Tech Degrees Offered
The basic prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech program is to have attained a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among technicians, normally takes 18 months to two years to finish based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at as much as four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. Most students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that may be acceptable as well. Something to consider is that Cumberland KY radiographer colleges have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may typically be satisfied by participating in an internship or externship program which many schools sponsor through local hospitals and clinics in their region. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must abide by any licensing or certification requirements in Kentucky or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-ray Technician Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an x-ray technician school, depending on the state where you will be working you may need to become licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their criteria differ so get in touch with your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but many offer additional alternatives for testing as well. A number of states also require certification as a component of the licensing process, otherwise it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Cumberland KY employers favor hiring radiology techs that are certified so it might enhance your career options to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive examination. ARRT also demands re-certification every two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Technologist Schools
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have clinical or lab training included in their course of study. This is no different for online degree schools. So even though you can still earn your online degree, a significant portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is usually carried out in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. However the online segment of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Cumberland KY residence. Students who keep working while earning their degree usually find that the online approach to education is far more practical with their active schedules. Plus online colleges are frequently cheaper than traditional alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenditures for study materials and commuting may be lessened as well. But just make certain that the online program you select is accredited (more on the advantages 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 ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Radiologic Tech Schools
Once you have selected the kind of degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of finding and evaluating Cumberland KY x-ray tech colleges. You will also need to decide if you prefer to attend online classes or drive to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then of course the location of the school will be important. The cost of tuition and ancillary expenditures will be a material factor as well. But in addition to cost and location, what more should you consider when reviewing schools? Well, you need to check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these crucial details before you make your selection, we have put together a list of questions that you should ask the colleges you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Programs Accredited? A large number of radiology technician schools have acquired some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, it’s still crucial to make sure that the program and school are accredited. One of the most highly respected accrediting agencies in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools earning accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a detailed assessment of their teachers and course materials. If the program is online it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets online or distance 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 premium education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Cumberland KY health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry-level openings.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the Kentucky xray tech colleges you are assessing have partnerships with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific way to obtain hands on training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Cumberland KY health care community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Help available? You will undoubtedly wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that initial job in a new profession can be challenging without help. Ask if the radiographer programs you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good indication that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Cumberland KY healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their graduates are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the school they choose will need to be within driving distance of their Cumberland KY home. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges normally charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit way in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Cumberland KY schools you are reviewing what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology tech program as well.
Does the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the x-ray tech school you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in Cumberland KY, verify 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 carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family obligations.
Why Did You Choose to Become an Xray Technician?When getting ready to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's helpful to review questions you may be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask radiographer applicants is "What drove you to pick radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for being a radiology technician, but additionally what attributes and talents you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to radiography, as well as a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should prepare a number of ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Because there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the abilities you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down some ideas and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
Choose the Ideal X-Ray Tech School near Cumberland KY
Enrolling in the appropriate x-ray tech school is a crucial first step toward beginning a gratifying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist must be in good physical condition. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the greater part of the workday and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and to observe the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having interpersonal skills is a necessity in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best available care to patients. As we have addressed in this post, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each program you are reviewing before making your final decision. This is just as true whether you decide on an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can assess and compare each college so you can narrow down your options and make your decision. And with the appropriate education and your dedication to succeed, you can achieve your goal to work as a radiographer in Cumberland KY.
Some Background on Cumberland Kentucky
The Cumberland River is a major waterway of the Southern United States. The 688-mile-long (1,107 km) river drains almost 18,000 square miles (47,000 km2) of southern Kentucky and north-central Tennessee. The river flows generally west from a source in the Appalachian Mountains to its confluence with the Ohio River near Paducah, Kentucky, and the mouth of the Tennessee River. Major tributaries include the Obey, Caney Fork, Stones, and Red rivers.
Although the Cumberland River basin is predominantly rural, there are also some large cities on the river, including Nashville and Clarksville, both in Tennessee. In addition, the river system has been extensively developed for flood control, with major dams impounding both the main stem and many of its important tributaries.
Its headwaters are three separate forks that begin in Kentucky and converge in Baxter, KY, located in Harlan County. Martin's Fork starts near Hensley Settlement on Brush Mountain in Bell County and snakes its way north through the mountains to Baxter. Clover Fork starts on Black Mountain in Holmes Mill, near the Virginia border, and flows west in parallel with Kentucky Route 38 until it reaches Harlan. Clover Fork once flowed through downtown Harlan and merged with Martins Fork at the intersection of Kentucky Route 38 and US Route 421 until a flood control project began in 1992 diverted it through a tunnel under Little Black Mountain from which it emerges in Baxter and converges with Martins Fork. Poor Fork begins as a small stream on Pine Mountain in Letcher County near Flat Gap, Virginia. It flows southwest in parallel with Pine Mountain until it merges with the other two forks in Baxter.
From there, the wider, now named Cumberland River continues flowing west through the mountains of Kentucky before turning northward toward Cumberland Falls. The 68-foot (21 m) falls is one of the largest waterfalls in the southeastern United States and is one of the few places in the Western Hemisphere where a moonbow can be seen.
Beyond Cumberland Falls, the river turns abruptly west once again and continues to grow as it converges with other creeks and streams. It receives the Laurel and Rockcastle rivers from the northeast and then the Big South Fork of the Cumberland River from the south. From here it flows into the man-made Lake Cumberland, formed by Wolf Creek Dam. The more than 100-mile (160 km) reservoir is one of the largest artificial lakes in the eastern US.
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