How to Choose the Right X-Ray Tech School near Stillwater Oklahoma
So you have decided to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Stillwater OK in order to become a radiologic technologist. But now that you have decided to enter the satisfying field of healthcare, how do you undertake picking the ideal college and program to ensure that you will get the proper training to become a skilled professional? And because the majority of states do require that x-ray technicians become licensed, based on where you subsequently work you might need preparation to pass a licensing exam. So it’s important that you research each of the X-ray technician schools you are looking at so that you can evaluate each program. Most potential students begin by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while expense and location must be taken into account, there are additional important qualifications as well. For example, you must ask whether or not the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internships. These questions and others you must ask the X-ray Tech schools you are reviewing are presented later in this article. But first, let’s talk about what a radiologic technician does and the degrees and training choices that are offered.
Radiology Tech Job Description in Stillwater OK
There are multiple professional designations for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be referred to as radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the identical primary job description, which is to employ imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. Some radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for treating cancer. Many choose to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, such as mammography. They can practice in Stillwater OK hospitals, clinics, private 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 must take care of their equipment plus routinely analyze its performance and safety. They are also required to retain complete records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Technician Degrees near Stillwater OK
The basic prerequisite for attending an x-ray tech school is to have received a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among techs, generally takes 18 months to two years to finish based upon the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at as much as four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are acceptable also. Something to bear in mind is that radiographer schools have a clinical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It may typically be fulfilled by participating in an externship program which a large number of colleges offer through local clinics and hospitals in Stillwater OK or their area. Once you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any licensing or certification mandates in Oklahoma or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-Ray Tech Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an X-Ray tech program, depending on the state where you will be practicing you might need to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their requirements vary so contact your state. At present, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but several provide other options for testing also. Some states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is voluntary. Having said that, numerous Stillwater area employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it might improve your career options in and around Stillwater OK to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program requires graduation from an accepted program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every other year, which can be satisfied with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Technician Degrees
As a part of every 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 programs. So even though you can still obtain your online degree, a substantial portion of the training will be completed either in a school lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is usually performed in Stillwater OK family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. However the online portion of the training can be accessed in the comfort of your Stillwater home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree usually find that the online style of learning is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online colleges are often less costly than traditional alternatives. Along with lower tuition, costs for commuting and study materials can be decreased also. But just be sure that the online college you select is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then online classes may be the right option for you.
Points to Ask Radiographer Schools
When you have chosen the kind of degree that you want to obtain, you can initiate the process of locating and assessing x-ray tech schools near Stillwater OK. You will also have to decide if you want to attend classes online or travel to a nearby campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the school will be important. The price of tuition and supplementary expenses will be a determining variable also. But in addition to 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 internship or externship programs. To help you uncover some of these crucial details before you make your decision, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the colleges you are reviewing.
Are the X-Ray Technician Programs Accredited? A large number of radiology technician colleges have obtained some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. However, it’s still imperative to confirm that the school and program 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). Programs obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone an extensive examination of their instructors and course materials. If the college is online it may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. All accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides guaranteeing a quality education, accreditation will also help in getting financial assistance and student loans, which are many times not available for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And a number of Stillwater OK employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited college for entry level jobs.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the radiology tech colleges you are reviewing have associations with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to get practical training in a clinical environment, they are additionally a way to satisfy the clinical training requirement for the majority of programs. As a secondary benefit, they may assist students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Stillwater OK medical community and assist with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance offered? You will most likely wish to secure employment quickly after graduating, but finding that initial job in Stillwater OK in a new field can be difficult without help. Find out if the x-ray tech programs you are assessing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good sign that the schools have sizable networks and good relationships with Oklahoma healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they pick will need to be within driving distance of their Stillwater OK home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps 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 often charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Stillwater OK 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 several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program as well.
Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the radiographer college you ultimately select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Stillwater OK area, check that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an X-ray Tech Program near Stillwater OK?
If you are considering attending a radiologic technologist school near Stillwater OK, following is some interesting background information regarding the location of your future campus that may assist you in making your final decision.
Stillwater is a city in northeast Oklahoma at the intersection of US-177 and State Highway 51. It is the county seat of Payne County, Oklahoma, United States. As of 2012, the city population was estimated to be 46,560, making it the tenth largest city in Oklahoma. Stillwater is the principal city of the Stillwater Micropolitan Statistical Area which had a population of 78,399 according to the 2012 census estimate. Stillwater was part of the first Oklahoma Land Run held on April 22, 1889 when the Unassigned Lands were opened for settlement and became the core of the new Oklahoma Territory. The city charter was adopted on August 24, 1889. Stillwater is home to the main campus of Oklahoma State University as well as Northern Oklahoma College - Stillwater, Meridian Technology Center, and the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education.
Stillwater has a diverse economy with a foundation in aerospace, agribusiness, biotechnology, optoelectronics, printing and publishing, and software and standard manufacturing. The city operates under a council-manager government system. The city's largest employer is Oklahoma State University. It was one of the 100 Best Places to Live in 2010, according to CNN Money Magazine.
The north-central region of Oklahoma became part of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. In 1832, author and traveler Washington Irving provided the first recorded description of the area around Stillwater in his book A Tour on the Prairies. He wrote of “a glorious prairie spreading out beneath the golden beams of an autumnal sun. The deep and frequent traces of buffalo, showed it to be a one of their favorite grazing grounds.”
According to one legend, local Native American tribes — Ponca, Kiowa, Osage, Pawnee — called the creek “Still Water” because the water was always still. A second legend states that cattlemen driving herds from Texas to railways back east always found water "still there". A third legend holds that David L. Payne walked up to Stillwater Creek and said, “This town should be named Still Water”. Members of the board thought he was crazy, but the name stuck.
Find the Right Radiology Technician Course Stillwater OK
Enrolling in the right x-ray technician 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 shape. X-Ray techs typically stand for the greater part of the working day and position and in some cases lift the patient to get the proper image. Candidates must also demonstrate a capability to pay close attention to detail and to adhere to the safety guidelines designed to protect both the patient and the medical team. X-Ray techs work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Possessing social skills is a necessity in order to have a pleasant work environment and provide the best possible patient care. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Radiology Technician Course. However, as we have discussed in this report, there are several questions that you should ask each school you are assessing before making your final selection. This is similarly true whether you participate in an online school or commute to classes on-campus. By asking the right questions you can examine and compare each college so you can narrow down your options and make your final choice. And with the proper education and your commitment to succeed, you can realize your goal to work as a radiographer in Stillwater OK.
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