Top X-Ray Technician Schools in Virginia

To those who would like to take steps to become a certified x-ray technician in the state of Virginia, they need to attend an accredited program at an institution that offers the right training. Schools that offer these classes include Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond; Riverside School of Health Careers in Newport News; ACT College in Arlington; ECPI College of Technology in Roanoke; Everest College in MacLean; Richmond School of Health and Technology in Richmond; Northern Virginia Community College in Annandale; Wytheville Community College in Wytheville; Tidewater Community College in Norfolk; Southwest Virginia Community College in Richlands; Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke; Central Virginia Community College in Lynchburg; and Stratford University in Falls Church.

How to Get Certified in Virginia

Virginia requires most practicing x-ray technicians to hold a valid license. To obtain a license, first the student needs to successfully complete a minimum of a two-year degree by taking approved courses. Once graduated, they are eligible to sit for a licensing exam given through the ARRT, or American Registry of X-Ray Technicians. Upon passing, the individual should then submit the appropriate fee and application to the Virginia Board of Medicine, along with proof of registration with the ARRT. A license needs to be renewed biennially, and 24 hours of continuing education documented by the ARRT must also be completed, 12 of which must be in Category A.

The Steps To Become An X-Ray Technician

There are certain things that you need to follow in order to become an x-ray tech. Here is the steps you should take:

Finish A Postsecondary Program

The first order of business is to make sure you go through a course that’s accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). If that’s not an option, choose another one that’s accredited by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists(AART). You can go through several paths to becoming an x-ray tech and that includes either a certificate, associates, or bachelor’s degree programs. However, the most common is the associates degree. There’s not a huge difference in the classwork in each course. Generally, you will leaen radiation pathology, medical terminology, infection control, anatomy, and patient positioning within every degree program.


After you’re done with the x-ray tech program, students can obtain certification through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. You don’t have to be certified to land a job, but most employers prefer that their techs have certification. Some states require certification as a step towards a licensure. The students who go for certification are required to graduate from an accredited course and pass a written exam. In Virginia, the license and the AART certification needs to be renewed every couple of years. To do so, students must finish 24 continuing education credits or complete an exam every two years to maintain an x-ray tech certification. This process ensures that all technicians are up to speed on readiological technology and are committed to the profession.

Obtain A Licensure

Virginia requires that anyone who practices radiologic technology to have a license, except for employees who work at licensed hospitals. When it’s time to renew the license, you must get it done within your birth month. The cost of the license is $135 and it’s mailed within 10 business days.

Get A Job

Licensed x-ray technicians can find employment in imaging centers, rehab centers, physicians offices, and hospitals. The generally work 40 hours a week and go to various facilities to perform x-ray duties

Career Advancement

If you want to advance your career, the AART offers certification to become a radiologist assistant or classes on how to learn how to operate a CT scanner or MRI machine. Furthermore, there are opportunities to become a commnunity college professor.

The Coursework For X-Ray Technician Programs

If you don’t know what to expect from X-ray tech programs, here is some of the coursework:

 Pathology For Radiographers Class

This course covers the process of disease in its relation to radiology. Students learn about conditions regularly seen in radiology and how to spot the symptoms of illnesses through radiographic pictures. The program also teaches how diseases require the x-ray technician to perform various imaging techniques.

Radiology Biology and Protection Course

Safety is a priority within radiography, and a radiation protection course explains the ways to shield against exposure. X-ray students also learn how radiation is measured and created and how it hinders the human body. Furthermore, they study the state and federal rules for dosing and exposure limits.

Introduction To Radiography Class

Within this course, aspiring techs are introduced to basic imaging procedures, radiation safety, and medical terminology. The class also teaches the importance of patient care and the ethical responsibilities that are expected of medical professionals.

Radiographic Procedures Course

In most radiologic technology programs, students are taught how to position patients for x-ray exams of various areas of the body such as the chest, spine, skull, and abdomen. They also learn about anatomy and how to position patients to get the best snapshots by practicing on lab simulations.

Introduction To Radiography Class

Within this course, aspiring techs are introduced to basic imaging procedures, radiation safety, and medical terminology. The class also teaches the importance of patient care and the ethical responsibilities that are expected of medical professionals.

What Is An X-Ray Technician’s Job Duty?

An x-ray tech is often referred to as a radiologic technologist, and their job descriptionsis to created x-ray images of a patient’s body. The photos help other medical professionals to diagnose or prescribe medication for the patients. It takes between one to four years to go through training to become an x-ray tech depending on the program of study. Not to mention, x-ray technicians can pick a specialty for their job, such as MRI testing, computer tomography, or mammography .

The Everyday Responsibilities Of An X-ray Tech

The main function of a radiologic techn is to take radiologic images of a patient’s body. It’s also their duty to speak to the patient about the procedure. Plus, they have to prepare the patient prior to the X-ray and also have them take off any items that can potentially damage the scan. Not to mention, the tech must clear the area before the exam starts, and ensures there aren’t any items around that could be damaged by radiation exposure.

The Benefits Of Being An X-Ray Technician

Surprisingly, there are several benefits to being an x-ray tech. Not only is it great career option, but it also includes other advantages. Here are a few reasons why this career is a good choice:

Varying Work Schedule

Unlike most jobs, being a radiologic technologist isn’t dull nor will your every day job function be identical. Your day will go by quickly and you’ll be done with your shift in no time. The are some standard duties that you will do on a regular basis, but there will always be something exciting to do throughout the day. You will have different patients, with varying illnesses that will need special treatment. Luckily, you can count on having an exciting shift each time you work.

Various Work Environments

If you work in an office environment, you can expect the same. However, an x-ray tech doesn’t have those issues. There are a few different places where x-ray techs can find work that fit various lifestyles. Some people like to work in hospitals where they can perform various schedules; others prefer the calm atmosphere of a diagnostic testing center or medical office. Fortunately, if you work in one environment and don’t like it, you can try o a different one.

Short-term Certification

Unlike some jobs in the medical industry, it doesn’t take a long time to obtain a degree as a radiological technologist. Depending on where you study, you can get certified within two years. Plus, most courses that are short term are less expensive. That is an great option for those who want to start a career in a short amount of time.

Good Compensation

Most people know that almost every career in the medical industry receive a pretty decent income. Some workers earn more, but each one position provides a good wage, and the same goes for an x-ray techs. It doesn’t take much for radiological tech students to start earning livable income shortly after becoming certified.

Things To Think About Before Starting Classes

After learning more about this career, you might beging to think this profession is right got you. However, there are pros and cons, and certain attributes are needed to be successful. Here are a few things to consider prior to becoming an x-ray technician:

The Ability To Work With Various People

As a radiologic tech, there will be numerous patients who come into your presence. They will be various ages, races, and backgrounds. Plus, some of them may not feel the best if they are in pain—so they may not be themselves. Also, it takes a calm demeanor and a kind heart to meet the needs of each person who comes in your officce. It takes social skills so that you can connect with each patient. Being an x-ray tech is more than doing exams, it’s about making sure every person feels safe and comfortable.

Knowing The Human Body

It takes skill to do well in the career. You will learn a lot of things while you’re in school. However, it might take several years in the profession to completely become comfortable in your job position. You must understand the skeletal, respiratory, and muscular system, and the name and location of certain organs. It requires you to understand the diseases and other conditions so that you can properly read the x-ray images. 


Safety is a big part of taking a successful radiological image. You must understand exposure time, shooting, and distance. Plus, you should know what will give the best protection for you and the patient. While you are in class, you will learn how to give an exam and how to follow safety procedures. 

Salaries For Certified X-Ray Technicians In Virginia

Salary ranges for a certified x-ray technician practicing in Virginia are as follows: the lowest end of the pay scale falls between $37,763 and $53,688, with a median salary of $45,249. The middle range for salary is between $42,751 and $60,780, with a median salary of $51,226. The upper pay scale range is from $47,070 to $66,920, with a median salary of $56,402. The actual salary for an x-ray technician will vary based on several factors. These factors include they type of radiology the technician practices, the level of education they’ve undergone, the amount of experience they have in the field, and whether they are working at an urban or rural location.

Job Outlook For X-Ray Technicians In Virginia

The job outlook is excellent for those who are in the radiology field. An x-ray tech is likely to find quick employment upon graduation and licensure. Demand for these jobs is expected to increase, as the growth in this field continues on an upward trend. The majority of techs will find employment in hospitals and medical offices. Other common positions that open include those in chiropractic offices, labs and dental offices.

Final Thoughts On X-ray Tech Schools

Hopefully, this information helps you to learn more about x-ray tech schools. It doesn’t take much to get certified and start a career in the rewarding profession. Now that you know more about this career, do you think it’s right for you?

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