It can be overwhelming when first deciding what x-ray technician school to apply to. There are hundreds, and it is important to make sure that what you do is the right thing for you, as you will be putting years of time and effort into it. I will hopefully be able to help you make some sense of how to go about making your decision.
Before we look at what certifications are on offer from the various x-ray technician schools, let’s look at who exactly is able to attend. Living far from an x-ray technician school may make it hard for you to travel there and back every day. An easy and viable solution to this problem is to take an online course. They offer greater flexibility over how you spend your time, and can be far cheaper than actual institutions. As with anything on the internet, it is vital to do a background check.
Background checks should really be done for whatever schools you are considering, online or otherwise. Besides making sure the x-ray technician school you choose has proper accreditation, it is also a good idea to look up things like the schools cost and find out what kind of hours you will be expected to put in. Looking up the teachers that are on offer is also worth doing, as is checking the career statistics from the previous year’s graduating class.
Whether you choose to study online or at a school, it is important to know that you can do in the evening and weekend. Of course, online you go at your own pace for a lot of the time, but at a good school will offer classes on weekends and weekday evenings to help students catch up. This is a huge help and an important perk you should look out for if you are someone who will have to work while you study.
Another benefit to the best x-ray technician schools is the opportunity for scholarships, bursaries and financial aid programs. These will help ensure that your education will not be compromised by financial difficulties. X-ray schools can be very expensive and for most of us who will not be able to attend proper universities, a school that offers any kind of financial assistance is one worth paying a little attention to.
With regards to what certification is available, you will most often find any of these at x-ray technician schools: a certificate, an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree. For most people still new to the profession a common choice is to get the associate degree. In radiography, an associate’s degree will open far more career advancement opportunities, whereas the bachelor’s degree generally leads to higher paying entry-level jobs. It is good to know though that you can do a special bachelor’s program to earn your bachelor’s degree once you have already gotten the associate degree.
When choosing the right x-ray technician school for you, you not only need to choose the right degree, but you must make sure that the school has the proper accreditation. What you need to find out is if the school is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on education in Radiologic Technology. This will, to an extent, guarantee the quality of the training you will receive at the school. Moreover, it will make you eligible to be one of the students who can take the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) exam. Taking this ARRT exam is required for getting your professional certification.
Although you will be primarily concerned with your radiological studies, it is worth trying to find a school where you will be able to enroll in classes like anatomy and physiology. Radiation physics, imaging and protection. This will provide a more rounded education, helping you wrap your head around the bigger picture, the human body!
I hope it is clear from this that the choice is not going to be an easy one. There are tons of factors to consider and no one single aspect of a school will swing it. Only a few of us will be able to go to expensive and famous universities. For most of us who have so many x-ray technician schools to choose from, the search can be a daunting one. I hope this article has helped to clarify some of the more important things to keep in mind during your search.