How to Pick the Right Xray Technician Degree Program near Florence Alabama
So you have made the decision to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Florence AL so you can learn to be a radiologic technician. But now that you have decided to enter the satisfying field of healthcare, exactly how do you go about picking 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, based on where you ultimately work you may require training to pass a licensing test. So it’s imperative that you research each of the X-ray technician schools you are looking at in order to compare each program. Many prospective students begin by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and usually settle on the most affordable cost. But while expense and location need to be taken into consideration, there are other significant qualifications also. For instance, you should ask if the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they offer internships. These questions and others you should ask the X-ray Tech schools you are examining are presented later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a radiologic technician does and the credentials and education choices that are offered.
Radiology Tech Career Description in Florence AL
There are a number of professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, they all have the same principal 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. Some elect to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for instance mammography. They may practice in Florence AL clinics, hospitals, private practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician 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 and also routinely assess its performance and safety. They are also expected to keep complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As health practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Available near Florence AL
The primary requirement for enrolling in an x-ray tech program is to have earned 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 prevalent among techs, normally takes 18 months to 2 years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at as much as four years to complete and is more comprehensive in scope. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that may be appropriate as well. Something to consider is that radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can frequently be fulfilled by taking part in an externship program which many schools offer through local clinics and hospitals in Florence AL or their region. Once you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you must comply with any licensing or certification mandates in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Licensing and Certification
Once you have graduated from an x-ray technician college, depending on the state where you will be employed you might need to be licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their requirements vary so contact your state. Presently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the licensing application, but a number approve additional options for testing also. Some states also require certification as part of the licensing process, otherwise it is optional. However, numerous Florence area employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it might increase your career options in and around Florence AL to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also requires re-certification every other year, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technician Programs
As a component of any degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have clinical or lab training included in their course of study. This is the same for online degree programs. So although you can still obtain your degree online, a substantial portion of the training will be completed either in a school lab or in an internship off-campus. Clinical training is often conducted in Florence AL family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training can be accessed in the privacy of your Florence home. Students who keep working while obtaining their degree typically find that the online style of education is far more practical with their active schedules. Plus online programs are generally more affordable than conventional alternatives. Along with reduced tuition, expenditures for commuting and study materials can be lessened also. But just be sure 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 formalized style of training, then online classes may be the right choice for you.
Questions to Ask Radiographer Colleges
When you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of searching for and evaluating x-ray tech schools near Florence AL. You will also have to determine if you want to attend online classes or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then naturally the location of the school will be critical. The cost of tuition and secondary expenses will be an important factor also. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you factor in when evaluating schools? Well, you should find out if the schools are accredited, and if they provide externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these essential details before you make your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you need to ask the programs you are assessing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Programs Accredited? Most radiology technician colleges have obtained some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, 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 undergone a rigorous review of their teachers and course materials. If the program is online it can also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online learning. All accrediting organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a premium education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not offered for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Florence AL health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited school for entry-level positions.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Inquire if the xray technician colleges you are evaluating have relationships with area hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Florence AL healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will probably wish to secure employment quickly after graduating, but finding that first job in Florence AL in a new profession can be difficult without help. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are reviewing have job placement programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent sign that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their students are well regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the college they select will have to be within travelling distance of their Florence AL home. Those who have decided 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. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might 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 live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Florence AL colleges you are considering 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 ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the xray technician program also.
Does the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the xray tech college you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Florence AL area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check 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 might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an X-ray Tech Program near Florence AL?
If you are considering attending a radiologic technologist school near Florence AL, following is some interesting background information regarding the location of your future campus that may assist you in making your final decision.
Florence is the largest and principal city of the Florence-Muscle Shoals Metropolitan Statistical Area (which includes Muscle Shoals, Sheffield, and Tuscumbia metropolitan areas in Colbert and Lauderdale counties). Florence is considered northwestern Alabama's primary economic hub.
Annual tourism events include the W. C. Handy Music Festival in the summer and the Renaissance Faire in the fall. Landmarks in Florence include the Rosenbaum House, the only Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home located in Alabama.
Florence and Lauderdale County have one hospital, Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital. ECM is a 358 bed facility owned by RCCH HealthCare Partners in Brentwood, Tennessee. In 2010 RCCH HealthCare Partners announced that they would build a new hospital in Florence. The hospital is due to be completed in December 2018.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Florence has a total area of 25.0 square miles (65 km2), of which 24.9 square miles (64 km2) is land, and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) (0.40%) is water. Florence is located on Wilson Lake and Pickwick Lake, bodies of water on the Tennessee River dammed by Pickwick Dam and Wilson Dams. Pickwick Lake was created by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), one of several alphabet agencies of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal. Wilson Dam (currently operated by the TVA) was authorized by President Woodrow Wilson in 1918 and was the first dam constructed on the Tennessee River.
Find the Right Schools For Radiology Technician Near Me Florence AL
Enrolling in the right radiology tech degree program is a crucial first step toward initiating a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer should be in good physical condition. Radiology techs often stand for the greater part of the workday and position and at times lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Candidates must also demonstrate a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to follow 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 doctors and radiologists. Having interpersonal skills is a necessity in order to have a productive work environment and deliver the best possible care to patients. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Schools For Radiology Technician Near Me. However, as we have covered in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each college you are looking at before making your final selection. This is similarly true whether you participate in an online program or commute to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can examine and compare each program so you can focus your options and make your decision. And with the appropriate education and your dedication to be successful, you can accomplish your goal to practice as a radiographer in Florence AL.
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