Programs for aspiring MRI technicians can be found at community colleges, technical schools and 4-year colleges and universities; many schools offer degree programs in radiologic science with MRI specializations, which prepare graduates for professional certification. Certificate and diploma options are typically for certified radiologic technicians who are already working in the field.
MRI Technician Schools
MRI technician degree and certificate programs are offered at a number of institutions, including those listed here.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition (2015-2016)*|
|University of Nebraska Medical Center||Omaha, NE||4-year, public||Bachelor's, Post-baccalaureate Certificate||In-state $8,897; Out-of-state $26,477|
|University of Iowa||Iowa City, IA||4-year, public||Bachelor's||In-state $8,104; Out-of-state $27,890|
|Xavier University||Cincinnati, OH||4-year, private not-for-profit||Associate's, Advanced Certificate||$35,080|
|Washburn University||Topeka, KS||4-year, public||Bachelor's, Advanced Certificate||In-state $6,350; Out-of-state $14,222|
|Saint Louis University||Saint Louis, MO||4-year, private not-for-profit||Bachelor's||$39,226|
|Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences||Boston, MA||4-year, private not-for-profit||Bachelor's, Advanced Certificate||$30,530|
|Lake Michigan College||Benton Harbor, MI||4-year, primarily associate's, public||Certificate, Associate's||In-district $4,140; In-state $5,685; Out-of-state $5,685|
|St. Luke's College||Sioux City, IA||4-year, primarily associate's, private||Advanced Certificate||$19,360|
Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
School Selection Criteria
There are several things to consider when selecting an MRI technician program:
- Students should select accredited programs that will allow them to meet the education and experience requirements necessary to earn state licensure and/or professional certification from organizations like the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.
- Prerequisites could also play a role in school choice. Some programs only admit students who are already licensed or certified as radiologic technologists.
- Students who need scheduling flexibility might consider programs offering distance education options for one or more courses within the MRI technology program.
Diploma or Certificate Programs
Diploma and certificate programs in MRI technology range from a single semester to one year. Some schools offer limited acceptance into the program, and applicants often must have a degree and certification in a related field. Part-time clinical practicums are typically required.
Associate's degree programs for MRI technicians often take two years, combining general education, core professional studies and clinical rotations. MRI procedures and techniques are covered extensively, and some programs may offer specialization in body, spine or cranial radiology. Students must often participate in supervised practicums within a campus clinic or affiliated medical center.
Bachelor's degree programs in radiologic science and technology often include training in MRI applications and procedures. A few even offer concentrations in MRI technology. Clinical experience is generally a standard in a bachelor's program. Graduates of an accredited program generally meet eligibility requirements for state licensure and certification.
Several colleges and universities offer accredited MRI degree and certificate programs that can prepare graduates to enter the workforce as MRI technicians. It is important to select a recognized program with clinical training that meets state licensing requirements.