Those who wish to have a career as a radiographer or x-ray technologist may seek an Associate of Applied Science or an Associate of Science degree in x-ray and radiologic technologies. Through coursework, internships and clinical experience, students learn how to properly apply radiographic technology and protection practices while providing patient care during imaging procedures for diagnosis. They receive an in-depth understanding of how to calibrate machinery to produce effective and useful x-ray images for physicians, surgeons and other medical professionals. Applicants may have to take prerequisite courses like algebra, physics and biology prior to enrolling.
Associate's in X-ray and Radiologic Technologies
Although specific courses may vary slightly by institution, the curriculum in an x-ray and radiologic technologies program ensures that students understand the fundamentals of radiology protocols and patient care, according to industry standards. Common courses include:
- Anatomy and physiology
- Image production
- Radiation physics and protection
- Radiographic equipment operation and maintenance
- Medical terminology
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment growth for radiologic technologists was expected to increase at a rate of 9% between 2018 and 2028 (www.bls.gov). In May 2018, radiologic technologists earned a mean annual salary of $59,520.
Licensure and Certification
Graduates who pass a licensing exam are eligible for work as x-ray technologists or radiographers in hospitals, clinics, extended care facilities, nursing homes and other organized health care settings. Licensing for x-ray technologists is required by most states. Holders of a degree from an accredited program can pursue national certification and state licensure from the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) by passing an exam. In order to maintain certification, technologists must fulfill continuing education requirements.
Associate's degree programs in x-ray and radiologic technologies prepare students for a career as a radiographer or x-ray technologist. Common courses include anatomy and physiology, as well as radiation physics and protection.