Alabama Radiology Tech Careers and Degrees
Receiving your Radiologic Technologist Training in Alabama
Also known as radiographers and radiology technicians, radiologic technologists are medical professionals who have undergone the necessary training to perform imaging tests to use in the diagnosis and treatment of health issues. If you undergo the necessary radiology training in Alabama, you study a variety of disciplines, including radiology, pathology, biology and physics. Specifically, you learn the skills necessary to carry out radiography, mammography, sonograms, MRIs, fluoroscopy, CT scans and radiotherapy. While learning the basic skills necessary for each, most programs allow or encourage you to specialize in one of these areas.
You can find work in this field after acquiring a four-year, two-year or certificate program, and there are plenty of schools throughout Alabama to service your needs. In Birmingham, the University of Alabama offers a four-year bachelor’s degree program, and Jefferson State Community College offers a two-year associate’s degree program. The Carraway Methodist Medical Center School of Radiologic Technology in Birmingham offers a two-year certificate program. In Mobile, the University of South Alabama operates a four-year program with a pre-professional program that includes a clinical component during the junior and senior years of the program.
Radiology Technician Licensing in Alabama
The state of Alabama does not require you to have any special type of license to work as a radiologist or radiologic technician. However, certification through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists can provide you with credentials that individual employers prefer or value. To pursue certification through ARRT, you must have earned an academic degree within the past three years through an accredited institution. You must agree to adhere to certain rules, regulations and a code of ethics, and you must pass a standardized examination. To maintain your certification, you must demonstrate the completion of 24 continuing education credits or the completion of certain additional certificate programs every two years.
Even in the absence of state requirements, there are also professional associations, such as the Alabama Society of Radiologic Technologists, that you can join. To be a full active or associate member with voting privileges, you must possess ARRT certification, but the ALSRT also offers inactive and student memberships. Membership gives you access to professional development resources and networking opportunities.
Career Outlook for Radiology Tech Jobs in Alabama
While the mean salary of radiology technician jobs in Alabama falls short of the national average, the general outlook for employment in this field is positive. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average salary for radiologists is $56,450. In Alabama, however, the average salary is $44,940.
In terms of employment security, however, the overall outlook of the radiology field is positive. By 2018, the BLS expects demand for positions in this field to grow by 17 percent in Alabama. This can be attributed to the increase in demand for radiology services to a significant elderly population, which accounts for 15 percent of Alabama’s total population.
Whether through private offices, clinics or hospitals, employment opportunities for radiologic technologists in Alabama are growing. By pursuing radiology training through accredited radiology technician schools, you are preparing yourself to enter a stable career.