X-Ray School Options in Los Angeles
The Los Angeles area has several options available for people interested in x-ray courses through certificate and associate's degree programs in radiologic technology and diagnostic medical imaging. This article looks at three schools, none more than 25 miles from the city center, and the programs they offer. There's also a table of information about each school, such as enrollment and tuition, that can help individuals choose which is their best option. A list of some other area schools with x-ray training is at the end of this article.
- Mt. San Antonio College, about 22 miles from Los Angeles in Walnut, California, offers an associate's degree program in radiologic technology.
- Pasadena City College offers an associate's degree program in radiologic technology that also includes a certificate of achievement. This school is about 13 miles from downtown.
- Long Beach City College, also about 13 miles from downtown Los Angeles, has an associate's degree program in diagnostic medical imaging (radiologic technology).
Comparison of Schools
The following table displays information about each school that a prospective student should consider.
|Mt. San Antonio College||Pasadena City College||Long Beach City College|
|School Type||Two-year; public||Two-year; public||Two-year; public|
|Total Enrollment (2017)*||29,960||27,324||24,658|
|Campus Setting||Large suburb||Midsize city||Large city|
|Tuition and Fees (2017-2018)*||$1,349 in-state; $8,741 out-of-state||$1,348 in-state; $7,004 out-of-state||$1,188 in-state; $7,500 out-of-state|
|% of First-Year Students Receiving Any Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017)*||70%||61%||74%|
|Acceptance Rate (2017)*||N/A - open admissions policy||N/A - open admissions policy||N/A - open admissions policy|
|Retention Rate (2016-2017)*||79% of full-time students; 59% of part-time students||74% of full-time students; 55% of part-time students||71% of full-time students; 48% of part-time students|
|Graduation Rate (Students who Began in 2014)*||32%||36%||19%|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics.
Mt. San Antonio College
Mt. San Antonio College, which first opened in 1946, is one of the largest community colleges in the state. Mt. San Antonio College's 421-acre campus serves several communities in the San Gabriel Valley. Its x-ray program is offered through the school's Technology and Health Division. The following program is approved by the Joint Review Commission on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT).
Associate in Science in Radiologic Technology
The radiologic technology program focuses on training students to operate x-ray equipment and assist medical staff in the diagnosis of diseases. The program consists of a combination of classroom lectures and practical experience in hospitals affiliated with the college.
Prior to applying to the program, students must pass an elementary algebra and chemistry course or provide transcripts showing completion of equivalent courses in high school. Students must also meet additional admission requirements, such as passing a drug screening, completing a physical examination and passing a background check.
The radiologic technology program is made up of 70 credits and consists of a fairly intensive schedule, with each semester's weekly course load (classroom and hospital time). Students can expect to take courses in medical terminology, fundamentals of radiologic technology, radiographic positioning, digital imaging in radiology and radiographic pathology. Upon completion of the associate program, students are eligible to take the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and California Certification of Radiologic Technology exams.
Pasadena City College
Pasadena City College first opened in 1924. The college offers two programs in radiologic technology via its Health Sciences Division. The associate and certificate programs are accredited by JRCERT.
Associate of Science in Radiologic Technology
This program in radiologic technology prepares students to take the ARRT examination upon completion. Students interested in this program should note that several prerequisites must be fulfilled before gaining admission, including courses in physics, anatomy, physiology, chemistry, algebra and medical terminology. Once in the program, students can expect to take courses in radiologic technology, medical procedures for technologists, anatomy and positioning, radiologic protection and special radiographic procedures. This program also includes multiple clinical experiences throughout a student's studies.
To earn an associate's degree in radiologic technology, students are required to complete all of the college's general education requirements as well as the courses and clinical experiences that are found in the radiologic technology certificate program. Although this program also confers a certificate of achievement, it should be noted that beginning January 2015, all applicants for the ARRT certification will be required to have associate degrees.
Long Beach City College
Long Beach City College originally opened in 1927 and serves the communities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Avalon and Signal Hill. Its radiologic technology program is offered through the School of Health and Science.
Associate of Science in Diagnostic Medical Imaging
The diagnostic medical imaging/radiologic technology associate program can prepare students to take the ARRT exam. This program begins in the spring semester each year and takes 30 months to complete. Prospective students should note that there are several prerequisites before they can be accepted into this program. Within five years before applying, students must pass math and reading proficiency exams or complete equivalent math and reading courses. They must also complete a medical terminology course, a patient care course and an anatomy/physiology course. All of these prerequisites must be met before a student applies to the program. Upon acceptance, students must also submit to a criminal background check.
The associate degree program provides a mix of classroom work and clinical experience. Required courses include cross-sectional anatomy, radiologic physics, positioning for radiographic diagnosis, radiation biology and protection and venipuncture. Beginning in the second semester, students also spend time working in hospital radiology departments to gain clinical experience.
Other School Options
In addition to the above programs, radiologic technology programs are also available at Los Angeles City College, Cypress College and El Camino College.