Hospitals rely on radiography technicians for the preparation of x-rays to be used in diagnosis of patients. Prospective radiography technicians require to possess an associate degree and must satisfy licensure norms to be able to practice their profession. Every state has its own regulations governing the educational qualification and licensure norms required to be satisfied by prospective radiography technicians. In this article, we will look at the career path of a radiography technician and discuss what an aspiring radiography technician must do in order to pursue their career.
An associate degree is the most commonly held qualification among radiography technicians. Such associate degree can be either an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) or an Associate of Science (A.S.). Radiography technicians can seek to attain the training and knowledge necessary for their profession by enrolling in certificate programs. Such certification courses take up to two years duration. Radiography technicians need to meet licensure norms in a majority of states, each of which has its own regulations for the purpose. They can aim to obtain a certificate awarded by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) as many employers give preference to certified radiography technicians. To receive such certification, they have to complete a postsecondary program that has AART approval after which they can take the exam.
In fulfilling their job responsibilities, a radiography technician has to prepare x-rays along with all the associated tasks that this entails and their work will be reviewed by another medical professional. In the associated tasks, the radiography technician has to prepare the patient and position them, produce the x-ray, and ensure that there is no excessive exposure to radiation. Diagnostic imaging centers, private practices of physicians and hospitals are the most common settings in which radiography technicians can find jobs.
Wage Potential of a Radiography Technician
In 2010, a radiography technician earned an average annual salary ranging from $31,000 to $49,000 (source: Payscale.com). During the same year, the average hourly wage paid to radiography technicians ranged between $16 and $25, depending on their experience, location of employment and tenure of employment; some radiography technicians were paid a higher wage.
Job growth Potential
In an optimistic job growth scenario for radiography technicians, jobs are projected to grow at seventeen percent during the decade from 2008 to 2018 (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) (www.bls.gov)). Employment opportunities are expected to be even higher for radiography technicians with knowledge and experience in various imaging fields other than radiography, such as mammography, CT and MR. There is room for advancement in a radiography technician career who can expect to rise to the level of manager or chief technologist with greater experience in the field (source: BLS).