How to Become an XRay Tech or Technician

x-ray of the jaw

Types of X-Ray Technician Degrees

Working in a health care field is lucrative due to higher than average salaries and an assortment of benefits along with numerous job opportunities. Becoming an X-ray technician is a great option but does require specialized education after receiving a high school diploma. While in high school, attending science and mathematic classes is a good way to gain basic knowledge before attending a community college or university. X-ray technicians must complete at least an associate degree before taking a state examination that verifies a student has a sufficient understanding of using medical equipment. Many students attend a longer educational program to receive a bachelor’s degree instead that offers more job opportunities with additional pay and benefits. While in high school, students should begin looking for an X-ray or radiology technician education program in their geographic area.

Must Attend Science Classes

school of x-ray

Older students are also welcome to apply to many schools as long as they have achieved a general equivalency or high school diploma. Occasionally, students are required to finish prerequisite courses before entering an X-ray technologist’s program. Prerequisite classes might include algebra, biology or chemistry along with completing laboratory training to understand how to use equipment such as microscopes. An accredited radiology or X-ray training program requires students to learn about human anatomy in order to know how to assist injured or ill patients in clinics and hospitals. Working with traumatized patients is often difficult due to serious medical conditions that include broken bones, lacerations and burns. Patients undergoing an X-ray procedure are of various ages, including infants and the elderly who are frequently frightened and combative.

Maintain Certification after Graduating

Students in high school can contact a dean or counselor to learn where there are training programs in X-ray technology. Mature adults interested in beginning a new career should contact several radiology technician schools to determine the entrance requirements. Most community colleges and universities will require students to attend classes full-time on weekdays before studying at night and on weekends. In addition to attending laboratory and lecture classes, a student learns in practical settings with patients under the supervision of experienced X-ray technicians, physicians and surgeons. While in school, students have the opportunity to join professional associations to network concerning jobs and updating education after graduating. Continuing education courses are necessary for many health care careers, including X-ray technicians to maintain certification.