How to Find the Right Radiology Tech Program near Montgomery Alabama
So you have decided to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Montgomery AL in order to become a radiologic technician. And now that you have chosen to enter the rewarding field of healthcare, how do you go about choosing the right school and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a qualified practitioner? And considering that most states do mandate that x-ray techs become licensed, depending on where you ultimately practice you might require training to pass a licensing test. So it’s essential that you investigate each of the X-ray technician schools you are considering so that you can compare each program. Many prospective students start by looking for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their homes. Next, they check tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while location and cost need to be taken into account, there are additional significant qualifiers as well. For example, you should find out if the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internship programs. These inquiries and others you should ask the X-ray Tech schools you are examining are provided later in this post. But first, let’s talk about what a x-ray technician does and the degrees and training options that are available.
X-Ray Tech Work Summary in Montgomery AL
There are a number of professional titles for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). 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 principal job function, which is to utilize imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also provide radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Some choose to work as generalists, while there are those that have chosen a specialty, such as mammography. They may practice in Montgomery 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 care for their equipment and also frequently evaluate its functionality and safety. They are also expected to keep detailed records of all of their diagnostic procedures. As health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Tech Degrees Offered near Montgomery AL
The standard prerequisite for enrolling in a radiology tech college is to have received a high school diploma or equivalent. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most common among technicians, usually takes 18 months to two years to finish depending on the program and course load. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. The majority of students select a degree major in Radiography, but there are additional similar majors that are acceptable as well. One thing to bear in mind is that radiographer programs have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can often be fulfilled by taking part in an externship program which a large number of colleges offer through local hospitals and clinics in Montgomery AL or their region. After you have graduated from one of the degree programs, you will need to comply with any certification or licensing requirements in Alabama or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
Radiologic Technologist Licensing and Certification
Once you have graduated from an Radiologist school, depending on the state where you will be employed you may need to become licensed. The majority of states do mandate licensing, and their criteria vary so check with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensure will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the licensing application, but several approve other options for testing as well. Several states also require certification as a component of the licensing procedure, if not it is voluntary. Having said that, many Montgomery area employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it might increase your career options in and around Montgomery AL to earn certification. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program in addition to a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also requires re-certification every other year, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Technologist Colleges
As a component of every degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is the same for online degree programs. So even though you can still obtain your online degree, a considerable amount of the training will be completed either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Practical training is typically performed in Montgomery AL family practices, medical clinics or hospitals in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online portion of the training may be accessed in the privacy of your Montgomery home. Students who keep working while obtaining their degree typically find that the online style of education is much more practical with their busy schedules. Plus online programs are often less costly than traditional alternatives. Along with lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting can be reduced also. But just confirm that the online college you pick 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 online classes may be the right choice for you.
Subjects to Ask X Ray Tech Programs
After you have decided on the type of degree that you would like to obtain, you can start the process of finding and assessing x-ray tech schools near Montgomery 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 naturally the location of the school will be relevant. The cost of tuition and secondary expenses will be a determining variable as well. But along with cost and location, what more should you factor in when comparing schools? Well, you should check out if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you learn some of these essential details prior to making your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you need to ask the schools you are considering.
Are the X-Ray Technician Colleges Accredited? The majority of xray tech schools have acquired some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. However, it’s still crucial 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 earning accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through a detailed review of their teachers and course materials. If the school is online it can also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. All accrediting organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. In addition to guaranteeing a superior education, accreditation will also assist in acquiring financial aid and student loans, which are many times not offered for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Montgomery AL health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited program for entry-level positions.
Are Internships Sponsored? Find out if the radiology tech schools you are reviewing have partnerships with area hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Not only are internships a great manner to get hands on experience in a clinical setting, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for most programs. As an ancillary benefit, they can assist graduates and students form professional relationships in the Montgomery AL healthcare community and help with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will probably want to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that first job in Montgomery AL in a new profession can be difficult without help. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are considering have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are a good indication that the schools have substantial networks and great relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also corroborates that their graduates are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the school they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Montgomery AL residence. Individuals who have chosen 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 choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of 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 hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Montgomery AL schools you are reviewing what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the xray tech program as well.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the radiographer school you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Montgomery AL area, make certain that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an X-ray Tech Program near Montgomery AL?
If you are considering attending a radiologic technologist school near Montgomery AL, following is some interesting background information regarding the location of your future campus that may assist you in making your final decision.
Montgomery is the capital city of the U.S. state of Alabama and the county seat of Montgomery County. Named for Richard Montgomery, it stands beside the Alabama River, on the coastal Plain of the Gulf of Mexico. In the 2010 Census, Montgomery's population was 205,764. It is the second most populous city in Alabama, after Birmingham, and is the 118th most populous in the United States. The Montgomery Metropolitan Statistical Area's population in 2010 was estimated at 374,536; it is the fourth largest in the state and 136th among United States metropolitan areas.
The city was incorporated in 1819 as a merger of two towns situated along the Alabama River. It became the state capital in 1846, representing the shift of power to the south-central area of Alabama with the growth of cotton as a commodity crop of the Black Belt and the rise of Mobile as a mercantile port on the Gulf Coast. In February 1861, Montgomery was chosen the first capital of the Confederate States of America, which it remained until the Confederate seat of government moved to Richmond, Virginia, in May of that year. In the middle of the 20th century, Montgomery was a major center of events and protests in the Civil Rights Movement, including the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the Selma to Montgomery marches.
In addition to housing many Alabama government agencies, Montgomery has a large military presence, due to Maxwell Air Force Base; public universities Alabama State University, Troy University (Montgomery campus), and Auburn University at Montgomery; two private post-secondary institutions, Faulkner University and Huntingdon College; high-tech manufacturing, including Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama; and many cultural attractions, such as the Alabama Shakespeare Festival and the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts.
Prior to European colonization, the east bank of the Alabama River was inhabited by the Alibamu tribe of Native Americans. The Alibamu and the Coushatta, who lived on the west side of the river, were descended from the Mississippian culture. This civilization had numerous chiefdoms throughout the Midwest and South along the Mississippi and its tributaries, and had built massive earthwork mounds as part of their society about 950–1250 AD. Its largest location was at Cahokia, in present-day Illinois east of St. Louis.
Find the Right Radiography Technician Schools Montgomery AL
Choosing the appropriate x-ray tech degree program is a critical first step toward launching a satisfying new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The suitable radiographer must be in good physical shape. X-Ray techs typically stand for the majority of the day and move and sometimes lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Prospects must also demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and to adhere to the safety guidelines developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. X-Ray technicians 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 productive work environment and provide the best available care to patients. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Radiography Technician Schools. However, as has been discussed in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each college you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision. This is equally true whether you enroll in an online program or travel to classes on campus. By asking the right questions you can assess and compare each school so you can focus your choices before making your decision. And with the appropriate education and your commitment to be successful, you can realize your goal to practice as a radiology tech in Montgomery AL.
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