Associate Degrees in Radiologic Technology with Career Information
Radiologic technology uses radiation and other diagnostic methods to produce medical images such as x-rays and computed tomography (CT) scans. Radiologic technologists work in hospitals, medical centers and physician's offices and usually work under the supervision of a physician or radiologist.
Associate of Science in Radiologic Technology
An associate's degree in radiologic technology prepares students to work in hospitals, clinics and labs as radiologic technicians. Radiologic technicians and technologists are responsible for taking x-rays and other medical images using radiation and radio wave technology. A 2-year radiologic technology program may also include internship or externship opportunities in hospitals, urgent care centers and medical imaging clinics.
To enroll in an associate's degree program in radiologic technology, students must have a high school diploma. Most programs do not require students to submit SAT or ACT scores, though placement exams for core classes may be required.
In an associate's degree program, students take life science and medical courses covering biology, anatomy, physiology and health care communication. Although some programs take place in classrooms, many courses are conducted in medical labs. Students learn to produce accurate medical images using advanced radiological technology equipment. Common courses include:
- Radiographic procedures
- Patient care in radiologic technology
- Medical terminology
- Radiologic pathology
- Cross-sectional anatomy
- Radiographic positioning
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
There were approximately 194,790 radiologic technologists in 2012, reported the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). Most radiologic technologists worked in hospitals, while others were employed by physicians' offices, medical labs and medical imaging centers. Employment opportunities for radiologic technologists are expected to increase by about 28% from 2010-2020. The median annual salary for radiologic technologists was $54,620 in 2012, per the BLS.
Continuing Education and Certification Information
For students interested in pursuing supervisory or management positions in radiologic technology, a bachelor's or master's degree in radiologic technology may be suitable. Radiologic technologists with bachelor's degrees may advance to supervisory positions, and those with master's degrees may be hired for teaching and research positions.
Radiologic technologists can seek voluntary certification through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). A majority of states use an ARRT-regulated exam to grant licensure to radiologic technologists. To increase career advancement opportunities, students can also specialize in a certain area of radiologic technology, such as angiography or CT scanning.
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