How to Choose the Right Xray Technician Program near Guntersville Alabama
So you have made the decision to enroll in an X-ray tech school near Guntersville AL in order to become a radiologic technologist. And now that you have decided to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you go about choosing the right school and program to ensure that you will obtain the proper training to become a qualified professional? And since the majority of states do mandate that radiology technicians become licensed, based on where you ultimately work you might require training to pass a licensing examination. So it’s important that you assess each of the X-ray technician schools you are looking at so that you can compare each program. Most prospective students start by searching for technical schools or colleges that are within commuting distance of their residences. Next, they check tuition and typically gravitate toward 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 find out whether or not the radiology tech schools are accredited, or if they sponsor internships. These inquiries and others you should ask the X-ray Tech schools you are examining are provided later in this article. But first, let’s explore what a x-ray technician does and the degrees and training options that are offered.
Radiology Technician Occupation Description in Guntersville AL
There are several professional designations for x-ray techs (technologists or technicians). They may also be called radiologic technologists, radiologic technicians, radiology technicians or radiographers. No matter what the name, each has the same principal job description, which is to use imaging machines to internally view patients for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists might also provide radiation therapy for treating cancer. Some choose to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialization, for instance mammography. They may work in Guntersville AL hospitals, clinics, family 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 have to care for their equipment and also frequently evaluate its performance and safety. They are also required to keep detailed records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As health practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
X-Ray Technician Degrees Available near Guntersville AL
The basic requirement for attending an x-ray tech school is to have received a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist pupils have the choice to earn either an Associate Degree or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most typical among technicians, generally takes 18 months to 2 years to complete depending on the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take longer at up to four years to finish and is more comprehensive in nature. Most students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate also. Something to consider is that radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It may frequently be fulfilled by taking part in an internship or externship program which many schools sponsor through local clinics and hospitals in Guntersville AL or their region. Once 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 working as applicable.
X-ray Technician Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an X-Ray tech school, based 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 get in touch with your state. At present, all states that do mandate licensing will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but a number provide other options for testing as well. Some states also require certification as part of the licensing process, otherwise it is voluntary. Having said that, many Guntersville area employers would rather hire radiology techs that have earned certification so it may improve your career options in and around Guntersville AL to become certified. 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 two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an examination.
Online X-Ray Technician Degrees
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their course of study. This is no different for online degree schools. So although you can still obtain your degree online, a considerable portion of the training will be satisfied either in a school lab or in an externship off campus. Practical training is usually conducted in Guntersville AL hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the colleges. But the online segment of the training can be attended in the privacy of your Guntersville residence. Students who continue working while earning their degree typically find that the online approach to education is far more convenient with their active schedules. Plus online colleges are often more affordable than traditional alternatives. In addition to lower tuition, costs for study materials and commuting can be reduced also. But just make certain that the online college you pick is accredited (more on the benefits of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured style of training, then an online degree may be the best option for you.
Topics to Ask Radiology Tech Schools
Once you have chosen the type of degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of looking for and evaluating x-ray tech colleges near Guntersville AL. You will also need to determine if you prefer to attend online classes or travel to a local campus. If you opt for the latter, then naturally the location of the school will be critical. The price of tuition and ancillary expenses will be a determining factor as well. But along with cost and location, what else should you factor in when reviewing colleges? Well, you should find out if the schools are accredited, and if they provide internship or externship programs. To help you learn some of these crucial details prior to making your decision, we have put together a list of questions that you should ask the schools you are considering.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? The majority of xray tech schools have obtained some type of accreditation, whether regional or national. Nevertheless, it’s still crucial to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly regarded 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 assessment of their instructors and educational materials. If the college is online it might also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online education. All accrediting agencies should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides ensuring a quality education, accreditation will also assist in securing financial aid and student loans, which are many times not offered for non-accredited colleges. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for certification and licensing as required. And numerous Guntersville AL health facilities will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry level jobs.
Are Internship Programs Offered? Inquire if the xray technician colleges you are assessing have associations with regional hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent manner to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are also a means to fulfill the practical training requirement for most programs. As a secondary benefit, they may help graduates and students develop professional connections in the Guntersville AL health care community and help with job placement.
Is Job Placement Assistance provided? You will probably wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but getting that first job in Guntersville AL in a new field can be challenging without support. Ask if the radiographer programs you are considering have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. High and rapid placement rates are an excellent sign that the schools have sizable networks and good relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their students are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the School Located? For a number of students, the school they pick will have to be within travelling distance of their Guntersville AL residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing 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 have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges usually charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that likes to sit way in the back of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Guntersville AL schools you are looking at what the typical student to teacher 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 converse with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the radiology technician program also.
Does the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the xray tech program you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Guntersville AL area, check that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. 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 Guntersville AL?
If you are considering attending a radiologic technologist school near Guntersville AL, following is some interesting background information regarding the location of your future campus that may assist you in making your final decision.
Guntersville (previously known as Gunter's Ferry and later Gunter's Landing) is a city and the county seat of Marshall County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census, the population of the city was 8,197. Guntersville is located in a HUBZone as identified by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 42.4 square miles (109.9 km2), of which 25.4 square miles (65.8 km2) is land and 17.0 square miles (44.1 km2), or 40.14%, is water.
Guntersville is located at the southernmost point of the Tennessee River on Lake Guntersville, formed by the Guntersville Dam (built by the Tennessee Valley Authority). Geologically, the lake occupies a southern extension of Sequatchie Valley, which continues south as Browns Valley.
Guntersville was founded by John Gunter (1765–1835), the great-grandfather of American humorist Will Rogers. John's own great-great-grandfather, of Welsh-English descent, had emigrated to the New World in 1644. John Gunter was the wealthy owner of a salt mine in the early 19th century. In order to obtain more land to mine, John struck a deal with the Cherokee tribe that inhabited the area to use in his household as servants. As part of the deal, John married the daughter (Ghe-No-He-Li, aka Katy and Cathrine) of the tribe's chief (Chief Bushyhead of the Paint Clan) and agreed to give salt to the tribe. A town sprung up next to the mine and was named after Gunter. The town of Guntersville puts on a festival every July to celebrate Will Rogers, this festival involves many activities of interest to Will Rogers.
Find the Right Radiography Tech Programs Guntersville AL
Selecting the best radiology tech school is an important first step toward beginning a rewarding 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 day and position and at times lift the patient to obtain the proper image. Candidates must also show a capability to pay close attention to detail and to comply with the safety guidelines developed to protect both the patient and the medical team. Radiology techs work very closely with patients, other technicians as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a good work environment and provide the best available patient care. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Radiography Tech Programs. However, as has been discussed in this post, there are a number of questions that you need to ask each school you are assessing prior to making your ultimate decision. This is equally true whether you decide on an online program or travel to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can evaluate and compare each school so you can narrow down your choices before making your decision. And with the right education and your commitment to succeed, you can realize your goal to work as a X-ray tech in Guntersville AL.
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