How to Select an X-Ray Technician School near Colfax Louisiana
Congratulations regarding your career choice to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Colfax LA so you can learn to be a radiologic technologist. And now that you have made a decision to enter the gratifying field of healthcare, exactly how do you set about choosing the right school and program so that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified professional? And considering that the majority of states do mandate that radiology techs become licensed, depending on where you subsequently practice you may need preparation to pass a licensing examination. So it’s imperative that you investigate each of the schools you are considering so that you can compare each program. Many students begin 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 location and cost should be considered, there are additional significant qualifications also. For example, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they offer internships. These questions and others you must ask the colleges you are considering are presented later in this article. But first, let’s explore what a radiologic technician does and the credentials and education options that are available.
Radiology Tech Job Description
There are several professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the same fundamental job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many elect to perform as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, such as mammography. They may practice in Colfax LA clinics, hospitals, private 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 must maintain their equipment plus regularly assess its functionality and safety. They are also required to retain in-depth records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Colfax LA medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
Radiology Technician Degree Options
The standard prerequisite for attending a radiology tech college is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among techs, generally 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 opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are acceptable also. Something to keep in mind is that Colfax LA radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may often be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which a large number of colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in their region. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any licensing or certification requirements in Louisiana or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Licensing and Certification
Once you have graduated from an X-Ray tech school, depending on the state where you will be employed you may have to become licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their requirements vary so check with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but a number accept other alternatives for testing also. Several states also call for certification as a component of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Colfax LA employers would rather hire radiology techs that are certified so it could increase your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also demands re-certification every 2 years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technician Degrees
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their course of study. This is the same for online degree schools. So although you can still earn your online degree, a considerable amount of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an internship off-campus. Practical training is typically provided in local family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the schools. But the online portion of the training can be attended in the comfort of your Colfax LA residence. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree typically discover that the online approach to education is much more convenient with their active schedules. Plus online programs are generally less expensive than on-campus options. In addition to lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting can be reduced as well. But just make certain that the online program you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then online classes may be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Radiographer Colleges
When you have chosen the type of degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of looking for and evaluating Colfax LA x-ray tech colleges. You will also have to decide if you want to attend online classes or drive to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the school will be important. The cost of tuition and ancillary expenses will be an important factor also. But along with location and cost, what more should you look at when comparing schools? Well, you should check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these essential details before you make your decision, we have compiled a list of questions that you should ask the programs you are looking at.
Are the X-Ray Tech Schools Accredited? Most xray tech schools have acquired some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still important to make sure 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 receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone a detailed assessment of their instructors and course materials. If the college is online it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets online or distance education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also help in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And many Colfax LA health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited college for entry level positions.
Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the Louisiana xray technician schools you are reviewing have associations with local hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific way to receive practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a means to fulfill the clinical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Colfax LA healthcare community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Help offered? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduation, but finding that first job in a new profession can be challenging without assistance. Find out if the x-ray tech programs you are reviewing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have substantial networks and good relationships with Colfax LA healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their graduates are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a lot of students, the college they select will have to be within commuting distance of their Colfax LA residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Colfax LA schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student 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 an opportunity to talk with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the x-ray tech college you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in Colfax LA, make sure 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, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family obligations.
Why Did You Want to Become an X-Ray Tech?When prepping to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's important to consider questions you may be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask radiographer applicants is "What drove you to select radiography as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not merely the private reasons you may have for being an X-Ray tech, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should ready some ideas about how you would like to address them. Since there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an excellent X-Ray tech and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to develop your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Select the Ideal X-Ray Tech Program near Colfax LA
Enrolling in the right radiology tech college is a critical first step toward launching a gratifying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs regularly stand for the majority of the workday and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to follow the safety requirements developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. X-Ray technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a good work environment and deliver the best available care to patients. As has been discussed in this report, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each college you are looking at prior to making your final selection. This is equally true whether you decide on an online school or travel to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can evaluate and compare each college so you can focus your choices before making your decision. And with the appropriate training and your motivation to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Colfax LA.
Some Background on Colfax Louisiana
Colfax is a town in, and the parish seat of, Grant Parish, Louisiana, United States, founded in 1869. Colfax is part of the Alexandria, Louisiana metropolitan area. The largely African American population of Colfax counted 1,558 at the 2010 census.
Colfax was settled by European Americans as a Red River port within Rapides Parish. It is named for the vice president of the United States, Schuyler M. Colfax, who served in the first term of U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant, for whom the parish is named. Prior to the Civil War, it was known as "Calhoun's Landing", named for the cotton and sugar planter Meredith Calhoun, a native of South Carolina. who published the former National Democrat newspaper in Colfax.
During the Reconstruction Era, Colfax was the scene of the Colfax massacre on Easter, April 13, 1873. Some three white attackers and about 150 African Americans were killed in one of the most egregious acts of terrorism during Reconstruction. A white militia was led against freedmen by Christopher Columbus Nash, elected sheriff on a Fusionist/Democratic slate. Freedmen were defending Republican officials at the county courthouse and had gathered there as tensions rose in a post-election dispute. A contemporary report by the U.S. military documented the three white fatalities and 105 black victims by name, with 15-20 unidentified blacks found in the Red River. Because of the disproportionate number of deaths between whites and blacks, and documented accounts that at least 50 black prisoners were executed while under control of the white militia, 20th-century historians redefined the "riot" as a "massacre". The event is significant because blacks, who comprised the majority in the county, organized to defend themselves and their political rights.
The riot arose from the disputed gubernatorial election of 1872, finally determined in the favor of the Republican William Pitt Kellogg by the federal government. Both the Fusion-Democrats and the Republicans held inaugurations and certified their own slates of local officers. Kellogg had not recognized Nash's election as sheriff. A native of Sabine Parish, Nash had been a Confederate army officer, held as a prisoner of war at Johnson's Island in Ohio from 1863 to 1865. Following the events of 1873, in 1874 Nash gathered many of the same men to establish the White League, a white supremacist paramilitary organization that operated on behalf of Democrats and eventually had chapters in many areas of Louisiana. It worked to intimidate and attack black voters, to run Republicans out of office, and to suppress black voting.
On April 13, 1921, the white citizens of Colfax unveiled a 12-foot (3.7 m) marble obelisk that read, "In Loving Remembrance, Erected to the Memory of the Heroes, Stephen Decatur Parish, James West Hadnot, Sidney Harris. Who fell in the Colfax Riot, fighting for White Supremacy, April 13, 1873."
More Cities of Interest in Louisiana