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Associate of Radiologic Technologist: Degree Overview

Learn about associate's degree programs for radiologic technologists. Get information about program types, coursework, salary prospects and certification to make an informed decision about your education.

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Associate's Degrees for Radiologic Technologists

An associate's degree program in radiologic technology trains students to work with patients, produce X-ray images and limit exposure to radiation. Training to be a radiologic technologist typically involves study of human anatomy, patient care and radiography. Students also complete hands-on clinical training. Some specific programs that aspiring radiologic technologists may want to pursue are an Associate of Applied Science in Radiography, an Associate of Science in Radiography or an associate's degree in radiologic technology.

Education Prerequisites

Universities and community colleges typically require applicants to have a high school diploma or its equivalent to enter degree programs. Some colleges may recommend students to take courses in math, chemistry, physics and biology before beginning a radiology associate's degree program.

Course Topics

Classes provide knowledge about radiation principles and training in the specifics of using equipment radiation. Students may also learn how to develop their communication skills and learn how to deal with medical emergencies. Common course topics may include:

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Medical terminology
  • Radiography equipment and maintenance
  • Radiographic procedures
  • Radiation protection

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for radiologic technologists is predicted to grow 21% between the years 2012 and 2022 (www.bls.gov). In May 2012, the median annual salary for radiologic technologists was $54,620, according to the BLS.

Licensure, Certification and Continuing Education Information

Most states require that radiologic technologist be licensed to ensure that they have the necessary qualifications for their jobs. In addition to licensure, radiologic technologists may choose to pursue voluntary certification through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). In some cases, ARRT certification is used as state licensure. Certification lasts for two years and must be maintained through continuing education.

Some universities offer bachelor's degrees in radiologic technology or radiography. A bachelor's degree program builds upon the same coursework of an associate's degree program concerning X-rays and radiographic procedures. A bachelor's degree program may also require students to take more liberal arts classes like English, social sciences and psychology.

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