Students in Illinois interested in studying radiology have a wide range of schools from which to choose. Programs lead to the award of primarily associate's degrees, which can be completed in two years or so, although at least one bachelor's degree in radiology is also available. Some radiology programs are limited admission and competition for entrance can be tough. All radiology programs incorporate practicum or clinical requirements.
City Colleges of Chicago Wilbur Wright
Chicago's City Colleges of Chicago offers an Associate of Applied Science in Radiography with competitive admission. The program requires 58-credit hours in radiography-focused courses like introduction to radiation science and four semesters of clinical experience. Other courses also include patient care, radiologic management and imaging.
College Of DuPage
Glen Ellyn-based College of DuPage offers both an Associate of Applied Science in Radiography and several certificates including the Certificate in Diagnostic Medical Imaging Radiologic Technology. In the Associate of Applied Science in Radiography program, students take courses in radiographic equipment and procedures, image formation and evaluation, radiology-related ethics and law, radiation protection and biomedical terminology. The Diagnostic Medical Imaging Radiologic Technology certificate program is a 3-semester program requiring completion of 39 credit hours. Courses include radiation therapy physics, biology and protection, operational issues in radiation therapy and three semesters of clinical practice.
College of Lake County
In Greyslake, the College of Lake County offers an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Imaging. Admission to this program requires a drug test, background check and a prospective student's attendance at an information session for the medical imaging program. Students must submit scores from the NLN Pre-Admission Exam. Students learn about radiographic exposure, anatomy and positioning and begin clinical practice in the second semester. In each of the three summer sessions, students take courses in anatomy, clinical practice and advanced radiological procedure.
Elgin Community College
Elgin-based Elgin Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science in Radiography. The six-semester program requires completion of courses in medical ethics and law, pharmacology and five clinical practice semesters. Students learn anatomy, radiologic physics, and radiologic procedures in this 72-25 semester hour program.
William Rainey Harper College
Palatine's William Rainey Harper College offers an Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology. The program has selective admission requirements. An aspiring radiologic technology student must attend an information session and submit a program application with a valid National League for Nursing (NLN) Pre-Admission Registered Nurse (RN) exam score report in addition to the application and fees for Harper College. This 2-year program includes clinical and didactic training. Students must take courses in radiologic principles and procedures, pharmacology and radiobiology. Clinical experience begins in a student's second semester and continues through the next four semesters, including two summers.
Illinois Central College
At East Peoria-based Illinois Central College, students can earn an Associate in Applied Science in Radiography. The 73-credit hour program includes two summer sessions and four semesters of directed practical experience, each building on the previous experience.
Joliet Junior College
At Joliet Junior College in Joliet, students can receive an Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology. Prospective students must apply to the college as well as the radiologic technology program. Applicants must also attend an information session. Students learn the fundamentals of radiology, radiographic physics and engage in both directed practice and clinical practice.
Southwestern Illinois College
Belleville-based Southwestern Illinois College offers an Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology. This program includes a summer session where students complete the third of five clinical experiences. Required courses include computations for radiologic technology, positioning, physics for x-rays and pathology during this 73-credit hour program.
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Carbondale'sSouthern Illinois University Carbondale offers a Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences. Undergraduate radiologic sciences students may select from several specialization options, although they follow the same curriculum during the first three years. Specializations in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT), medical sonography, radiology management/education, and radiation therapy are available. Freshman year students complete general education requirements. Fundamental radiography courses are introduced during the sophomore and junior years; these include anatomy and posturing, radiographic physics, pharmacology, radiation biology and special procedures in radiology. During senior year, students pursue courses in their chosen specialty. Two semester-length internships and a seminar are also included in the requirements for all radiologic sciences students. In the diagnostic radiology residency program, students spend the first year of this 5-year program as internal medicine residents before moving on to become Department of Radiology residents. Clinical rotations take place at two teaching hospitals and cover pediatric radiology, body CT and MRI, neuroradiology and interventional radiology. Radiology residency training is based in Springfield, Illinois.
At River Grove's Triton College, an aspiring radiation technologist can complete the Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology in six semesters. The radiologic technology program has special enrollment requirements. The program admits just 40 individuals each year and students must apply for admission to the radiologic technology program as well as the college itself. This program includes training in patient care, IV administration and supervised clinical experience in radiologic settings, beginning in the first semester. Each semester's clinical experience focuses on radiography techniques for a different area of the body.
In the state of Illinois, to work as a Radiologic Technician or Radiologist, one must have a license. The state offers six categories of licensing for professionals who work with radiologic equipment, including radiation therapists and radiologists, according to the Illinois Emergency Management Association.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Radiology Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)*|
|City Colleges of Chicago Wilbur Wright College||2-year, public; large city||Associate of Applied Science in Radiography|| $3,504 (in-district)
|College of DuPage||2-year, public; large suburb|| Associate of Applied Science in Radiography,
Certificate in Diagnostic Medical Imaging Radiologic Technology
| $4,080 (in-district)
|College of Lake County||2-year, public; large suburb||Associate of Applied Science in Medical Imaging|| $3,948 (in-district)
|Elgin Community College||2-year, public; midsize city||Associate of Applied Science in Radiography|| $3,179 (in-district)
|William Rainey Harper College||2-year, public; large suburb||Associate of Applied Science in Radiologic Technology|| $3,684 (in-district)
|Illinois Central College||2-year, public, large suburb||Associate of Applied Science in Radiography|| $4,500 (in-district)
|Joliet Junior College||2-year, public; large suburb||Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology|| $4,380 (in-district)
|Southwestern Illinois College||2-year, public large suburb||Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology|| $3,660 (in-district)
|Southern Illinois University Carbondale||4-year public; small city||Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences|| $14,704 (in-state)
|Triton College||2-year public; large suburb||Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology||$4,170 (in-district)
Source: *NCES College Navigator.