What does a radiologic technician do? As a radiologic technician (x-ray tech), you will work directly under a radiologist using imaging techniques such as basic x-ray, magnetic resonance imaging, mammography, fluoroscopy, and computed tomography.
Radiologic Technician Responsibilities Include:
- instructing and positioning patients for accurate imagery
- keeping equipment in good working order
- obtaining images for areas requested by the physician or radiologist
- using radiation on the patient when necessary, managing work schedules
- keeping patient records organized
- assisting physicians and radiologists when needed
- preventing radiation exposure from particular areas of the patient’s body.
Steps to Becoming a Radiologic Technician
At the very least, you will need to get an associate’s degree. This can take up to two years. However, some facilities will only hire a radiography tech with a bachelor’s degree.
There are definitely certification programs to consider which can take anywhere from six months to a few years to finish. Programs usually consist of online, classroom, and clinical training.
- Enroll in a certificate or associate degree program accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology.
- Once you’ve completed the program, become certified through ARRT. This is an optional step, yet one preferred by most employers.
- Most states will require you to get your license, so you will need to do this before you can get a job working as a radiography (x-ray) technician.
- Get a job as an x-ray technician.
- Consider getting more certifications, which will increase your employment opportunities.
- Keep up with your continuing education requirements and renew your certification or license. Validity ranges 1-4 years depending on the state.
Salary & Job Outlook
The median salary of radiologic techs is more than $57K, which isn’t too shabby! But, after you’ve worked in your position for about ten years, you can expect to make in the low $80Ks. Roughly 231,000 jobs will be available through 2026, which is an employment outlook of 12 percent. With the population aging, more medical issues are arising which is what is accounting for this faster than average job growth.