How to Choose a Radiology Technician School near Tullahoma Tennessee
Congrats on your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Tullahoma TN in order to train to be a radiologic technologist. And now that you have made a decision to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you set about choosing the right college and program so that you will get the proper training to become a skilled professional? And because the majority of states do require that radiology techs become licensed, depending on where you subsequently practice you may need preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s essential that you assess each of the schools you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. A number of prospective students start by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and frequently settle on the most affordable cost. But while location and cost must be taken into account, there are other significant qualifiers also. For example, you must ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internships. These questions and others you should ask the colleges you are evaluating are provided later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a x-ray technician does and the credentials and training choices that are available.
Radiology Tech Career Description
There are multiple professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiology technicians or radiographers. Regardless of the name, they all have the identical 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 may also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some elect to work as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, for instance mammography. They may work in Tullahoma TN clinics, hospitals, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician 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 maintain their equipment plus regularly evaluate its functionality and safety. They are also required to retain complete records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As Tullahoma TN medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Available
The basic prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech program is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist pupils have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, normally takes 18 months to two years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to 4 years to finish and is more expansive in scope. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that may be appropriate as well. Something to keep in mind is that Tullahoma TN radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their curriculum. It can frequently be satisfied by participating in an externship program which many schools sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must abide by any licensing or certification mandates in Tennessee or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiographer Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech school, based on the state where you will be working you may need to become licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so contact 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 many provide additional alternatives for testing as well. Some states also require certification as part of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is optional. However, numerous Tullahoma TN employers favor hiring radiology techs that are certified so it might improve your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also calls for re-certification every 2 years, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Tech Degrees
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical 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 considerable portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a school lab or in an internship off campus. Practical training is typically carried out in regional hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online segment of the training may be attended in the comfort of your Tullahoma TN residence. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree often find that the online approach to learning is much more practical with their active schedules. Plus online programs are frequently more affordable than conventional alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenses for study materials and commuting can be reduced also. But just make sure that the online school you enroll in is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less structured style of training, then an online school may be the ideal choice for you.
What to Ask Radiology Tech Colleges
After you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to earn, you can initiate the process of finding and assessing Tullahoma TN x-ray tech colleges. You will also have to decide if you want to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be critical. The price of tuition and secondary expenses will be an important factor also. But in addition to location and cost, what else should you look at when reviewing colleges? Well, you need to ask if the colleges are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these crucial details prior to making your selection, we have put together a list of questions that you must ask the programs you are considering.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? A large number of xray technician schools have acquired some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it’s still crucial to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly regarded 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 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. In addition to guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And a number of Tullahoma TN health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry-level openings.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the Tennessee xray technician schools you are reviewing have relationships with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great means to get practical experience 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 Tullahoma TN health care community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will most likely wish to hit the ground running after graduation, but finding that first job in a new profession can be challenging without help. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are interviewing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good sign that the schools have sizable networks and great relationships with Tullahoma TN healthcare employers. It also confirms that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Tullahoma TN residence. Those who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Tullahoma TN colleges 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 ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the x-ray tech program as well.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the radiographer college you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in Tullahoma TN, confirm that they are offered. 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 need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Why Did You Decide to Be an Xray Technician?When preparing to interview for an X-Ray Tech position, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers frequently ask radiographer prospects is "What compelled you to pick radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the private reasons you may have for being an Xray technician, but additionally what qualities and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating specifically to radiography, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you need to organize some strategies about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional X-Ray tech and the perfiect choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but take down several ideas and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Enroll in the Best X-Ray Technician Program near Tullahoma TN
Enrolling in the best x-ray tech school is an important first step toward starting a fulfilling new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs frequently stand for the greater part of the day and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate an ability to pay strict attention to detail and to follow the safety requirements designed to protect both the medical team and the patient. Radiology technicians work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the doctors and radiologists. Possessing interpersonal skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and provide the best possible care to patients. As we have discussed in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each school you are assessing prior to making your final selection. This is just as true whether you decide on an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can assess and compare each college so you can focus your options before making your decision. And with the appropriate education and your commitment to succeed, you can realize your goal to work as a radiologic technologist in Tullahoma TN.
Some Background on Tullahoma Tennessee
Tullahoma is a city in Coffee and Franklin counties in the south-central part of the U.S. state of Tennessee. The population was 18,655 at the 2010 census. In 2014 the population was estimated to be 18,899. It is the principal city of the Tullahoma micropolitan area, which consists of Coffee, Franklin, and Moore counties and is the second largest micropolitan area in Tennessee.
Tullahoma was founded in 1852 as a work camp along the new Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad. Its name is derived from the Choctaw language, and means "red rock". An alternative explanation (see Sam Davis Elliott's Soldier of Tennessee and sources cited therein) of the name is that Peter Decherd, who donated the land for the railroad right-of-way (and was therefore given the right to name two stations along the line), named one station Decherd, and the other Tulkahoma (later changed to Tullahoma). Tulkahoma was the name of Decherd's favorite horse, which was itself named for an Indian chief who had been captured by Decherd's grandfather. Tullahoma originally shared its name with Tullahoma, Mississippi; that settlement later changed its name to Grenada.
Prior to Tullahoma or the railroad, the area was settled by farmers, mostly from Virginia and North Carolina. Early settlers were Moore, Deckerd, Anderson, Ragon, Montgomery, Ferrell, Stephenson, and Gunn. A spring known to the first settlers as Bottle Spring, and later as John Gunn's Spring, is today titled Big Springs. This spring provided water for the steam locomotives.
In April 1861, Company B, 1st Regiment of Tennessee Volunteers, formed Peter Turney's division in Tullahoma. The division joined Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia. The division fought in the battles of Bull Run, Fredricksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Petersburg, and surrendered to U.S. Grant at Appomattox. The town became highly significant during the Civil War and served as the headquarters for the Confederate Army of Tennessee in 1863. The campaign of that year, which ultimately delivered control of Middle Tennessee to the Union and led to the eventual capture of Chattanooga, is known as the Tullahoma Campaign.
Tullahoma was then little more than a rough outpost, with no paved streets. 1863 was a wet year, and the place became known to the bedraggled troops of both sides as a place of endless mud. An aide on Confederate General William Hardee's staff is said to have written his own account of the origin of the name: "It is from two Greek words - 'Tulla' meaning mud, and 'Homa,' meaning more mud." The selection of Tullahoma as a headquarters by Confederate General Braxton Bragg has been much criticized by military historians. Although the location was strategic with regard to the road and rail network, it had no strong natural defenses and little was done to fortify it during Bragg's occupation. Eventually the town was evacuated without a battle.
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