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X Ray Technician Programs
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Xray Tech Training Programs
 How to Enroll in the Right One Near Dothan Alabama

Dothan Alabama x ray tech and physician reviewing x rayYou are about to start down a career path that will be satisfying both personally and economically as a medical professional when you enroll in an X-ray tech school near Dothan AL. And now that you have decided to go into the gratifying field of healthcare, how do you go about picking the ideal college and program to ensure that you will get the appropriate training to become a skilled professional? And considering that the majority of states do mandate that radiology technicians become licensed, based on where you subsequently work you might need training to pass a licensing test. So it’s critical that you compare the colleges on your short list by evaluating the pros and cons of each of their X-ray technician programs. Many potential students begin by looking for technical schools or colleges that are within driving distance of their homes. Next, they compare tuition and usually gravitate toward the most affordable cost. But while expense and location need to be taken into consideration, there are other critical qualifications as well. As an example, you should ask if the schools sponsor internship programs, or if the radiology technician schools have earned any accreditations. Later in this article we will provide a detailed list of questions that you should ask the X-ray Tech colleges you are evaluating prior to making your ultimate selection. But first, let's explore what a x-ray tech does and the credentials and education options that are available.

It Only Takes a Few Minutes to Begin Your Career in Radiology

Radiology Tech Job Summary

X-ray technicians are a kind of radiologic technologist, which is a healthcare professional specializing in using diagnostic imagery equipment. X-ray techs can be found preparing patients for imaging procedures, operating and maintaining equipment, and collaborating with physicians to analyze the results of an imaging scan. More than half of all radiologic techs work in hospitals, however X-ray technicians are important providers in many types of Dothan AL medical facilities, including clinics, diagnostic labs and urgent care centers. Depending on the facility, some X-ray techs may need to work holidays, weekends or overnight to care for patients in emergency situations. An X-ray technician’s job environment also has some impact on their daily job duties. They can work at clinics where they may ask health background questions, take patient’s vital measurements and perform basic lab procedures. In a large facility, they may assist during surgical procedures with the use of fluoroscopy. There are a number of options for X-ray techs to work in medical facilities that meet their scheduling needs, interests and specialties.

Radiology Technician Degree Options

Dothan Alabama radiology technician reviewing x rayThe primary requirement for attending an x-ray tech school is to have earned a high school diploma or equivalent. 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, normally takes 18 months to 2 years to complete based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor's Degree will take more time at up to four years to complete and is more extensive in nature. Most students opt for a degree major in Radiography, but there are other similar majors that are acceptable also. Something to keep in mind is that radiographer colleges have a practical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can frequently be satisfied by participating in an internship or externship program which a large number of schools offer through local hospitals and clinics in Dothan AL or their area. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you will need to abide by any certification or licensing requirements in Alabama or the state you will be working as applicable.

Radiologic Technologist Licensing and Certification

Once you have graduated from an X-Ray tech program, based on the state where you will be practicing you may have to become licensed. Most states do mandate licensing, and their prerequisites vary so check with your state. Currently, all states that do mandate licensure will accept The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification exam for the licensing application, but many provide other options for testing as well. Several states also call for certification as part of the licensing procedure, if not it is optional. However, many Dothan area employers favor hiring radiology techs that have earned certification so it may enhance your career options in and around Dothan AL to earn certification. ARRT's certification program involves graduation from an accepted program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also calls for re-certification every other year, which may be fulfilled with 24 credits of continuing education, or by passing an exam.

Online Radiology Technologist Schools

Dothan Alabama female student enrolled in online radiology tech classesAs a part of every degree program, x-ray tech colleges will have practical 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 degree online, a substantial amount of the training will be satisfied either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Clinical training is usually provided in Dothan AL hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. But the online segment of the training can be accessed in the privacy of your Dothan home. Students who continue working while obtaining their degree often discover that the online approach to learning is far more practical with their hectic schedules. Plus online programs are generally less expensive than on-campus options. Along with lower tuition, expenses for study materials and commuting may be lessened as well. But just be sure that the online program 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 school may be the best choice for you.

Questions to Ask X Ray Tech Colleges

As soon as you have chosen the type of degree that you would like to obtain, you can start the process of searching for and assessing x-ray tech schools near Dothan AL. You will also need to determine if you prefer to attend classes online or travel to a nearby campus. If you opt for the latter, then obviously the location of the school will be critical. The cost of tuition and secondary expenses will be a determining variable also. But along with cost and location, what else should you consider when evaluating colleges? Well, you need to check out if the colleges are accredited, and if they sponsor internship or externship programs. To help you find out some of these crucial details before you make your selection, we have assembled a list of questions that you must ask the colleges you are assessing.

Are the Radiology Tech Colleges Accredited? The majority of radiology tech colleges have acquired some form of accreditation, whether regional or national. Even so, it's still imperative to make sure 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). Schools receiving accreditation from the JRCERT have undergone an extensive assessment of their teachers and educational materials. If the program is online it might also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. All accrediting organizations 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 help in securing financial assistance and student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited programs. Accreditation may also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And numerous Dothan AL health facilities will only hire graduates of an accredited program for entry-level jobs.

Are Internships Provided? Find out if the xray technician schools you are assessing have partnerships with area clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a great way to obtain hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a way to satisfy the practical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Dothan AL health care community and assist with obtaining employment.

Is Job Placement Help provided? You will undoubtedly want to hit the ground running after graduation, but finding that initial job in Dothan AL in a new profession can be difficult without support. Ask if the x-ray tech programs you are interviewing have job assistance programs and what their placement rates are. High and rapid placement rates are a good sign that the schools have large networks and good relationships with Alabama healthcare employers. It also confirms that their graduates are highly regarded and sought after.

Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the school they pick will have to be within travelling distance of their Dothan AL home. Individuals who have opted to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that don't reside within their districts.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the Dothan AL schools you are considering what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the xray technician program as well.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the radiographer  school you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Dothan AL area, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.

More Info on How to Become an X-Ray Tech in Dothan

Choose the Right Dothan Radiology Technician Program

Picking the ideal x-ray technician degree program is a critical first step toward starting a rewarding new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiographer should be in good physical condition. Radiology techs frequently stand for the greater part of the day and move and at times lift the patient to obtain the correct image. Prospects must also demonstrate an ability to pay close attention to detail and to follow 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 doctors and radiologists. Possessing social skills is a must in order to have a productive work environment and furnish the best available patient care. As has been addressed in this post, there are several questions that you should ask each school you are looking at prior to making your final selection. This is similarly true whether you enroll in an online program or drive to classes on-campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can assess and compare each school so you can narrow down your options before making your final choice. And with the right training and your commitment to succeed, you can accomplish your goal to work as a radiology tech in Dothan Alabama.




 

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