How to Enroll in the Right Radiology Tech Program near Alexander City Alabama
So you have decided to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Alexander City AL in order to train to be a radiologic technologist. But now that you have made a decision to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, just how do you tackle choosing the ideal school and program to ensure that you will get the proper training to become a qualified professional? And because most states do require that radiology techs become licensed, based on where you subsequently work you may require preparation to pass a licensing test. So it’s important that you research each of the X-ray technician schools you are considering so that you can evaluate each program. A number of students begin by searching for colleges or technical schools that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually settle on the most affordable cost. But while cost and location need to be taken into consideration, there are other critical qualifications also. For example, you must ask if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internship programs. These questions and others you must ask the X-ray Tech schools you are examining are presented later in this article. But first, let’s discuss what a x-ray tech does and the degrees and training options that are offered.
X-Ray Tech Career Description in Alexander City AL
There are several professional designations for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They may also be referred to as radiologic technicians or technologists, radiographers or radiology techs. No matter what the name, they all have the same primary job description, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally visualize patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some choose to practice as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialization, for example mammography. They can practice in Alexander City AL hospitals, clinics, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technologist may 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 and also frequently analyze its functionality and safety. They are also required to retain detailed records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As medical practitioners, they are held to a high professional standard and code of conduct.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Available near Alexander City AL
The standard requirement for enrolling in a radiology tech college is to have earned 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 common among techs, normally requires 18 months to two years to complete 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 comprehensive in scope. Most students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional similar majors that may be acceptable also. One thing to keep in mind is that radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as a component of their course of study. It can typically be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which a large number of colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in Alexander City AL or their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any certification or licensing mandates in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiographer Licensing and Certification
When you have graduated from an Radiologist college, based on the state where you will be practicing you might need to become licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites differ so contact your state. Presently, all states that do require licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many accept additional alternatives for testing as well. Several states also require certification as part of the licensing process, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, many Alexander City area employers will only hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it could increase your career options in and around Alexander City AL to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program calls for graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their rigorous examination. ARRT also requires re-certification every two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an examination.
Online Radiology Tech Programs
As a part 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 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 often conducted in Alexander City AL family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. However the online portion of the training can be attended in the privacy of your Alexander City home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree often find that the online style of learning is much more convenient with their hectic schedules. Plus online colleges are frequently more affordable than traditional options. In addition to lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting can be lessened as well. But just confirm that the online program you pick is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are motivated enough to learn with this less formalized style of training, then an online degree may be the best option for you.
Points to Ask Radiologic Tech Programs
After you have decided on the kind of degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of locating and assessing x-ray tech colleges near Alexander City AL. You will also need to decide if you want to attend classes online or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then of course the location of the college will be critical. The cost of tuition and secondary expenses will be a determining factor also. But along with location and cost, what more should you consider when comparing schools? Well, you need to find out if the colleges are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these essential details before you make your selection, we have compiled a list of questions that you need to ask the programs you are assessing.
Are the X-Ray Tech Schools Accredited? A large number of radiology tech schools have earned some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. However, it’s still crucial to confirm that the school and program 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 obtaining accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a rigorous evaluation of their instructors and course materials. If the school 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 recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Along with ensuring a premium education, accreditation will also help in securing financial aid and student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Alexander City AL health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry-level positions.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the xray technician schools you are assessing have relationships with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships an excellent way to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist graduates and students establish professional relationships in the Alexander City AL medical community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will probably wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that initial job in Alexander City AL in a new field can be difficult without assistance. Ask if the radiographer programs you are assessing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have sizable networks and good relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are well regarded and sought after.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will need to be within driving distance of their Alexander City AL home. Individuals who have opted to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry 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 decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Alexander City AL schools you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the xray tech college you ultimately choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Alexander City AL 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 have to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family obligations.
Radiologic Technology Program Alexander City AL
Selecting the best radiology tech degree program is an important first step toward launching a gratifying new career providing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer must be in good physical shape. Radiology techs often stand for the majority of the working day and position and sometimes lift the patient to get the proper image. Prospects must also demonstrate an ability to pay strict attention to detail and to observe the safety requirements developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology techs 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 good work environment and furnish the best possible patient care. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Radiologic Technology Program and wanting more information on the topic X Ray Technician Certification Schools. However, as we have discussed in this report, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each school you are considering before making your ultimate decision. This is equally true whether you participate in an online school or drive to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can evaluate and compare each program so you can focus your options and make your final choice. And with the proper training and your motivation to be successful, you can reach your goal to practice as a radiologic technologist in Alexander City AL.
Other Alabama Diagnostic Locations
Alexander City, Alabama
Alexander City, known to locals as "Alex City", is a city in Tallapoosa County, Alabama, United States, with a population of some 14,875. It has been the largest community in Tallapoosa County since 1910. It is known for Lake Martin with its 750 miles (1,210 km) of wooded shoreline and 44,000 acres (18,000 ha) of water. Lake Martin stands on the Tallapoosa River and offers boating, swimming, fishing, golfing, and camping. Many neighborhoods and luxury homes are located on the lake.
Alexander City was incorporated in 1872 as Youngsville, after its founder James Young. In 1873, the Savannah and Memphis Railroad came to the city. The city was renamed in honor of the railroad's President Edward Porter Alexander, hero of the Battle of Gettysburg for the Confederate States.
On June 13, 1902, at 1 pm, a fire broke out in the Alexander City Machine shop and destroyed much of the town. At the time, Alexander City did not have a water system and all buildings, including the telegraph office, post office and three banks were burned.