Associate of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technician: Degree Overview

Oct 10, 2019

Programs such as the Associate of Applied Science in Magnetic Resonance Imaging focus on topics such as radiologic technology, anatomy and pharmacology. Explore the common courses offered and job prospects after graduation.

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Essential Information

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technicians operate MRI scanners, see to a patient's comfort, explain the MRI process and make certain that quality images are being produced. Once accepted to an MRI associate program, students may engage in coursework that is supplemented with clinical training. After earning a degree in MRI technology, students might be prepared to take exams and become registered MRI technicians. The degree program sometimes leads to entry-level employment in the field of radiology.


Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Associate's degree program students may learn how to take images of internal organs as well as bones. Applicants need a GED or high school diploma, as well as standardized test scores. These 2-year programs typically encourage the development of critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. Program coursework might include the following:

  • Public speaking
  • Pathophysiology
  • Anatomy
  • Radiologic technology
  • Pharmocology

Employment Outlook & Salary Info

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that, from 2018-2028, employment of radiologic technologists, including MRI technicians, is expected to see a 9% increase, which is faster than the average rate among all U.S. occupations (www.bls.gov). In 2019, Payscale.com cited a salary range for the majority of MRI technologists of $41,000-$86,000 annually. They also report a median annual salary of $66,500 per year at that time.

Continuing Education & Certification Information

After earning an associate's degree, graduates could continue on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in magnetic resonance imaging. Courses can instruct students on subjects such as chemistry, psychology, diseases and MRI technologies. For supervisory positions, an MRI professional may consider earning a master's degree in health administration or business.

In order to become certified, individuals must attend an institution approved by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and successfully pass an exam. In order to remain certified, technicians take additional courses every two years. Licensure varies by state, and certification is optional, but ARRT certification can satisfy licensure requirements in some cases.

Students wanting to become magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technicians can enroll in associate degree programs to develop their knowledge of radiologic technology and patient care. Graduates can pursue further education and/or certification.

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