Radiology Schools in New Jersey
Radiologic technologists, in the simplest terms, do diagnostic imaging on patients, most often through the use of X-rays, the Bureau of Labor statistics (BLS) reports. They are healthcare professionals who have many other responsibilities on the job, including taking care of and maintaining equipment, protecting patients from exposure by shielding exposed areas not in need of imaging, and helping track patient information and maintaining records.
As is true across the country, radiologic technologists in New Jersey play a major role in the health care industry. The images they take of the inside of the body can be used by physicians and other doctors to help diagnose illness and injury and to develop a plan of treatment. According to May 2013 information from the BLS, there were 5,400 radiologic technicians employed in New Jersey who had mean annual wages of $64,800. Jobs for Radiologic Technologists are expected to grow at an annual rate of 12%, while related positions such as Diagnostic Medical Sonographers are expected to grow by 17% through 2016. Becoming a radiology technologist often takes two years or less, and could lead to a financially rewarding career given the relatively small investment in education needed.
How to Become a Radiologic Technologist
The BLS reports that an Associate degree is typically needed to enter the radiologic technologist field. However, there are a variety of undergraduate programs available, ranging from certificates up to a four-year Bachelor's degree. An Associate degree typically takes two years to complete and may provide students with coursework in:
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Radiographic Exposure
- Radiographic Procedures
- Clinical Health Informatics
Students also generally need to complete clinical practicums during their studies, which can provide them with insight into the occupation, as well as hands-on experience working with patients. Students may want to complete a program accredited through the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JFCERT), which accredits radiologic technologist programs anywhere from 18 months to eight years.
This accreditation is important since many states require graduation from an accredited program as part of the process to becoming licensed or certified within that state. Often, students need to pass a state exam or a national one given through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). As the ARRT points out: "Certification is the initial recognition of an individual who satisfies certain standards within a profession." The ARRT also provides a list of state contacts, including phone numbers and websites, to obtain more information about state licensing requirements. According to its website, 37 states use its exam for state licensing purposes. In New Jersey, applicants seeking licensing also need to be at least 18 years of age, submit an application, graduate from a 24-month accredited program and complete the ARRT exam with a minimum passing rate of 75 percent.
List of Schools in New Jersey with Radiologic Technology Programs
Students looking for radiologic technologist schools in New Jersey may want to look at the programs offered at the following:
- Bergen Community College, Paramus: One-to-two-year certificate and Associate degree
- Brookdale Community College, Lincroft: Associate degree
- Burlington Community College, Pemberton: Associate degree
- County College of Morris, Randolph: Associate degree
- Cumberland County College, Vineland: Associate degree
- Essex County College, Newark: Associate degree
- Fairleigh Dickinson University-Metropolitan Campus, Teaneck: Associate degree
- Mercer County Community College, West Windsor: Associate degree
- Middlesex County College, Edison: Associate degree
- Passaic County Community College, Paterson: Associate degree
- Union County College, Cranford: Associate degree
* As supplied through the National Center for Educational Statistics
- ARRT Certification, The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, https://www.arrt.org/Certification
- College Navigator, National Center for Educational Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=NJ&p=51.0907+51.0911&l=92&id=187198 - programs
- Curriculum - Radiologic Technology, Drexel University, http://www.drexel.edu/radtech/programs/radiologicTech/curriculum/Radiologic and MRI
- Diagnostic Radiologic Technology, State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection, http://www.state.nj.us/dep/rpp/tec/diagrt.htm
- Find a JRCERT Accredited Program, Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology, http://www.jrcert.org/
- May 2013 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates - New Jersey, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nj.htm - 29-0000
- Technologists, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/radiologic-technologists.htm