2 Online Bachelor Degree Programs Available in Radiology & Imaging Sciences

Advantages of a Bachelors Degree in Radiology

If you are looking to pursue a career in radiologic science, you may want to consider studying at the bachelor degree level. Different schools offer different "rad science" programs, including the Bachelor of Science (BS) in Radiology or the Bachelor of Radiologic Science and Imaging. Some schools also offer specialized... bachelor degrees in radiology subfields, like magnetic resonance or radiation therapy. Although a bachelor degree is not necessarily required to earn state licensure as a radiologic technologist, the advanced preparation is often a distinguishing factor in the job market and a potential bridge to graduate studies, if you eventually choose to pursue a master degree.

If you are already a radiologic science professional, earning a bachelor degree in the field may help you advance your career toward a teaching or managerial role. Degrees that emphasize the administrative aspects of radiology services help students combine their clinical knowledge with the academic knowledge that schools and healthcare facilities need. Unlike radiology certificate programs, bachelor degrees are rounded out with a series of liberal arts and general education requirements. These courses may be useful to all types of working professionals.

Focusing your bachelor-level studies on radiation therapy may put you on the front lines of the war against cancer. After earning your degree and any certifications required by your state, you may be qualified to work with a medical radiation oncology team. In such a role, your job would be pinpointing the exact location of a tumor in a cancer patient and administering radiation treatment. Much of your job would also involve communicating with physicians and other team members, explaining treatment to patients, and answering questions from patients or family members (who may be scared or upset). Thus, you would need excellent communication skills, patience, and a basic understanding of human psychology.

At the bachelor degree level, general radiologic programs should be accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). This specialized accreditation helps graduates meet national certification requirements and individual state licensing requirements for radiologic technology practice. Specialized programs, like those emphasizing radiation therapy, may also be accredited by JRCERT or by a similar organization, recognized by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT).

Concentrating your degree on a specific area of radiologic science may prepare you to work as a radiology specialist. You may learn to perform one or all of the following procedures: x rays, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), sonography, or mammography. Students also learn to manage patient records, work as a team member, and support people who may be suffering both physically and emotionally. In addition, your bachelor degree studies may prepare you to take the optional certification exam administered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. Employers often prefer to hire candidates who have this national certification, so passing the exam may help you secure a better position.

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