A few bachelor's degree programs in radiologic sciences are for students with no experience in this field, but many are designed for students who are already registered radiologic technologists. Courses teach students how to position patients in order to obtain the best images as well as formulas for calculating the right dosage of radiation. Students gain extensive clinical experience by working under supervision at healthcare facilities.
Some bachelor's degree programs in the radiologic sciences allow students to specialize in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), women's imaging, or cardiovascular-interventional technology. Graduates are prepared to take professional certification exams, which are required to work in some states and may help with gaining employment in others.
Bachelor's Degree in Diagnostic Radiology
The curriculum of a bachelor's degree program in the radiologic sciences focuses on general education courses during the first year of enrollment. In the following years, students build on their existing knowledge of radiologic sciences. Some possible courses include:
- Theory of medical imaging
- Anatomy and physiology
- Patient assessment
- Medical law and ethics
- Radiographic exposure and positioning
- Patient psychology
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov), employment of radiology technologists is expected to increase by 9% for the 2014-2024 decade. The median annual salary of a radiology technologist was $56,670 in 2015, also according to the BLS.
Certification for radiologic technologists and associated professionals is offered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). To certify an applicant must have graduated from a program whose accreditation is recognized by the ARRT. Once certification has been awarded, it must be kept current by completing continuing education courses every two years.
Bachelor's degree programs in diagnostic radiology are typically designed for current radiologic technologists who are seeking to earn a degree or advance their skills performing imaging procedures; some programs allow them to specialize in a specific type of imaging and prepare for certification from the AART.