Online Associate of Applied Science in Radiography programs are available at a few schools nationwide. Students are expected to have a solid foundation of health science courses before enrolling, as well as passing math, reading, and writing tests and being CPR certified. Because states require a clinical portion in radiography training, only the didactic portion of an associate's degree program can be completed online. The internship requirements may be fulfilled at an approved healthcare facility. Students take courses in radiographic anatomy, physiology, imaging, physics, and applied math. Graduates are usually qualified to take the radiography examination offered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT), so they can achieve necessary licensure as a radiographic technologist.
Associate's Degree in Radiography
After the completion of an online radiography associate's degree program, students are eligible to take the national certifying examination administered by the ARRT. Typical prerequisites include pre-health science core coursework and completion of applicable math, reading, and writing tests. Certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) may also be a prerequisite or a component of the program.
Program Information and Requirements
These programs take approximately 20-24 months to complete and consist of 66-77 total required credit hours. Clinical practicum education and internship credits are a portion of each semester. Courses available online vary by school and require access to a personal computer and the Internet to complete.
List of Common Online Courses
Radiography studies focus on the science of the field and include topics in biology, anatomy, physiology, and physics. Math, communications, and medical terminology are also common focuses of online associate's degree programs in this area. Online offerings in these courses vary by school.
This class studies the language of medicine used in healthcare professions. Basic terms and word structure topics, including plural and singular forms, prefixes, suffixes, and roots are also taught in the class. Additional learning focuses on terminology related to body systems, as well as standard abbreviations and acronyms.
Physiology and Anatomy
The human body structure and functions of the skeletal, joint, nervous, and muscular systems are the concentrations of this course. Emphasis on basic concepts of cells and chemistry, tissues, and the integumentary are also studied.
Applied Science and Technology Mathematics
Basic scientific math concepts, including scientific notation, logarithms, statistics, and graphing, are covered in this course. The course also teaches the English and metric measurement systems along with the fundamentals of trigonometry and geometry. Students use calculators to solve problems and applications throughout the coursework.
Principles of Exposure in Radiography
This course addresses the general radiographic techniques and exposure factors. Radiographic definition, contrast and quality, film exposure, and exposure table composition are also explored, along with the characteristics of imaging media and quality.
Career Information for Graduates
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage of radiologic and MRI technologists was $56,670 in May of 2015. Overall employment in the field is expected to grow by 9% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov).
Continuing Education Information
Bachelor's degree programs are available to those who wish to continue their education in radiography. Also, ARRT offers voluntary certification to radiologists who have passed the necessary examination and have graduated from an accredited program.
Associate's degrees in radiography are available entirely online, save for clinical internship requirements, and mix fundamental medical and science courses with the study of radiation protocols in a healthcare setting. Graduates may wish to enroll in a bachelor's program in the field and earn ARRT's certification to further their education and increase their employability.