Becoming a Radiologic Technologist and Gaining Certification by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists
In the allied health professions, the process of becoming a radiologic technician and gaining certification by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) is one of the most rigorous. Part of the reason for the strenuous academic and clinical requirements is that technicians deal with radiation and for the protection of both the radiological technologist and the patients. Admission in the radiology tech school can be quite competitive; partially due to the fact, the radiology tech salary is one of the highest in the allied health professions.
Completing the Radiologic Technologist Certification Offered by American Registry of Radiologic Technologists
The first step in becoming a radiological technologist certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists is to complete a program of study at a radiology tech school that covers the curriculum mandated by the ARRT. The program of study must have been completed within five years of applying for certification. Starting January 1, 2015, the candidate for certification must have earned at least an Associate’s Degree prior to applying for certification. Although the ARRT does not require the applicant have a degree in a certain major, the course requirements outlined in the curriculum must be met in addition to those specified by the degree program. Additionally, the candidate must complete the coursework at an educational institution approved by the ARRT.
In addition to fulfilling the academic requirements, the candidate must also demonstrate their competence in several different areas including the following:
- patient care (CPR, venipuncture, collecting vital signs, ect);
- successfully completing 31 imaging procedures mandated by the ARRT;
- successfully completing one head image of the candidates choice from the ARRT list of accepted procedures;
- successfully completing two fluoroscopy images from the ARRT list of accepted procedures.
Once the candidate submits the documentation related to academic competence, clinical competence and ethical competence and it is accepted by the ARRT, the next step for the candidate is to take the certification exam.
The Radiological Technologist Salary and Employment Prospects
According to the US Department of Labor, the number of job openings for a radiological technologist will increase by 17 percent through 2018. The chances of being hired in this field increase with knowledge of multiple procedures. Approximately 61 percent of these jobs will be hospital-based, with the others located in doctor’s offices, outpatient clinics, and mobile. The radiological tech salary ranges from $42,000 to $63,000 for those who have completed radiological teach school and are certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.