How to Pick the Right Xray Technician College near Columbiana Alabama
So you have made the decision to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Columbiana AL in order to train to be a radiology technician. And now that you have made a decision to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, just how do you set about picking the ideal school and program so that you will get the appropriate training to become a skilled practitioner? And considering that the majority of states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently practice you might need preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s important that you investigate each of the X-ray technician schools you are looking at so that you can evaluate each program. A number of prospective students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and usually settle on the lowest cost. But while cost and location must be taken into account, there are other critical qualifiers also. For example, you need to ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they offer internship programs. These inquiries and others you must ask the X-ray Tech schools you are examining are presented later in this article. But first, let’s explore what a x-ray tech does and the degrees and education choices that are available.
X-Ray Technician Job Summary in Columbiana AL
There are multiple professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They can also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. Regardless of the name, each has the same fundamental job function, which is to use imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists might also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Many opt to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialty, such as mammography. They can practice in Columbiana AL 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 have to take care of their equipment and also regularly assess its functionality and safety. They are additionally required to retain in-depth 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 Offered near Columbiana AL
The basic requirement for attending a radiology tech school is to have received a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the option to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among technicians, normally requires 18 months to two years to complete depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at as much as 4 years to finish and is more expansive in nature. The majority of students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are appropriate as well. Something to consider is that radiographer colleges have a clinical training or lab component as part of their curriculum. It may frequently be satisfied by participating in an internship or externship program which a large number of schools offer through local clinics and hospitals in Columbiana AL or their area. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any licensing or certification requirements in Alabama or the state you will be working as applicable.
Radiographer Licensing and Certification
Once you have graduated from an Radiologist school, depending on the state where you will be practicing you might have to be licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their requirements differ so get in touch with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the purpose of licensing, but many offer other alternatives for testing as well. Some states also call for certification as part of the licensing procedure, if not it is optional. Having said that, numerous Columbiana area employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could increase your career options in and around Columbiana AL to become certified. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online X-Ray Technologist Schools
As a component of every 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 while you can still earn your online degree, a considerable portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is usually provided in Columbiana AL hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. However the online section of the training can be accessed in the privacy of your Columbiana home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree often discover that the online approach to learning is much more convenient with their hectic schedules. Plus online colleges are often less costly than traditional alternatives. In addition to reduced tuition, expenses for commuting and study materials can be reduced as well. But just be sure that the online program you select is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are disciplined enough to learn with this less formalized type of training, then an online school may be the best option for you.
What to Ask X Ray Tech Schools
As soon as you have decided on the kind of degree that you want to obtain, you can start the process of locating and evaluating x-ray technician schools near Columbiana AL. You will also need to decide if you want to attend classes online or commute to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be critical. The price of tuition and ancillary expenditures will be a determining factor as well. But in addition to cost and location, what else should you look at when reviewing colleges? Well, you need to ask if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these important details prior to making your decision, we have compiled a list of questions that you should ask the colleges you are looking at.
Are the Radiology Tech Colleges Accredited? Most xray tech schools have received some type of accreditation, whether national or regional. However, it’s still important to confirm 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). Programs receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a rigorous evaluation of their teachers and course materials. If the school is online it may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets online or distance learning. All accrediting organizations should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides guaranteeing a premium education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial aid and student loans, which are many times not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation can also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Columbiana AL employers will only hire graduates of an accredited college for entry level openings.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out if the radiology technician colleges you are evaluating have associations with local clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to obtain hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a means to satisfy the practical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a secondary benefit, they may assist students and graduates form professional relationships in the Columbiana AL healthcare community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance available? You will most likely want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that first job in Columbiana AL in a new field can be challenging without help. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are assessing have job placement programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent sign that the schools have large networks and great relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they select will have to be within commuting distance of their Columbiana AL residence. Students who have chosen to attend online classes 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 keep in mind is that if you choose 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 for those students that don’t reside within their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? 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 want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Columbiana AL schools you are looking at what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the xray tech program also.
Does the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the radiographer college you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Columbiana AL area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.
Enrolling in an X-ray Tech Program near Columbiana AL?
If you are considering attending a radiologic technologist school near Columbiana AL, following is some interesting background information regarding the location of your future campus that may assist you in making your final decision.
Columbiana, originally called Columbia, was selected as the county seat of Shelby County in 1826 over rivals Calera and Montevallo. After the selection as the county seat, Columbiana celebrated by drilling holes in a large pine tree and packing it with gunpowder. The tree was blown up and the sound could be heard for miles. Later in 1826, the courthouse was moved to an old school building in Columbiana.
An act of the Alabama Legislature officially changed the name of Shelby County's county seat to Columbiana on January 13, 1832. Columbiana was incorporated on December 5, 1837 with corporate limits one-quarter of a mile in each direction from the public square.
In 1854, the decision was made to build a larger courthouse at the south end of “Silk Stocking Road”, now Main Street. From 1854 to 1908 several additions and changes were made to the courthouse. During the American Civil War, Columbiana was connected to the nearby town of Shelby by the Shelby Iron Company Railroad, which connected the Shelby Iron Works to the Alabama and Tennessee River Railroad. The Iron Works supplied iron to the C.B. Churchill and Company foundry, which moved to Columbiana in 1862 after the fall of Corinth, Mississippi. The Churchill foundry made eight and ten pound shot, eight and ten pound shells, and shells for Blakely rifles. The C.B. Churchill and Company foundry, Shelby Iron Works and the railroad were destroyed by Union forces on March 31, 1865, as part of Wilson's Raid.
Moving the courthouse to Columbiana was not necessarily popular in 1826 and there have been numerous attempts to relocate the county seat over the years. In 1901, the Alabama Constitutional Convention addressed the issue by including Section 41 in the new state constitution. Section 41 prohibited a move of the Shelby County seat from Columbiana unless a vote of the people was held, the only county in Alabama with such a designation.
Find the Right X Ray Technician Programs Near Me Columbiana AL
Picking the best radiology tech college is a critical first step toward launching a fulfilling new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiologic technologist should be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs typically stand for the greater part of the workday and position and at times lift the patient to get the proper image. Prospects must also show a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to comply with the safety guidelines designed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a good work environment and provide the best available care to patients. You originally came to this website due to an interest in X Ray Technician Programs Near Me. However, as has been addressed in this article, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each program you are assessing prior to making your final decision. This is just as true whether you participate in an online program or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can analyze and compare each school so you can focus your choices and make your final choice. And with the proper education and your motivation to succeed, you can reach your goal to work as a radiology tech in Columbiana AL.
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