Missouri Radiology Tech Careers and Degrees
Receiving your Radiologic Technologist Training in Missouri
Radiologist technicians or radiology techs, interested in working in Missouri must have graduated from an accredited radiologic technology program, typically a two-year program. While you can still become a radiology tech by completing a certificate program in radiologic technology, this will change in 2015, according to the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). As of that time, aspiring radiologic technologist will be required to complete at least an associate degree program.
Radiologic technician programs include a blended curriculum of general education courses, radiologic technology courses, lab studies and clinical education. You will take courses in medical terminology, radiation physics, radiographic procedures, sectional anatomy and pathology, among others. Through clinical rotations in various approved medical sites, you can gain experience doing actual radiologic procedures under the supervision of experienced radiologic technologists. You have about 20 radiology technician schools in Missouri from which to choose, including universities, community colleges and career centers. Radiology technician programs generally have a selective admissions process, with preference given to students who meet all requirements and have high academic scores.
Radiology Technician Licensing in Missouri
Although 41 states require their radiologic technologists be licensed, Missouri does not, according to the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT). However, students must complete an accredited training program and pass the ARRT certification examination. To be eligible for ARRT certification, candidates must meet the following three requirements:
- Education – Candidate must have completed an ARRT-approved radiologic technology program within the past three years. As part of the training, the student must pass didactic courses and show documented proof of successfully performing a series of radiologic procedures as set by the ARRT.
- Ethics – Candidate must show he or she is of good moral standing and able to pass a criminal background check.
- Certification – Candidate must pass the ARRT certification examination, a multiple-choice, computer-based test.
Many of the radiologic technology programs include a review at the end of the program to help you prepare for the certification exam. When you successfully meet all requirements, you will have the Registered Technologist in Radiology (R.T. (R) credential. To maintain certification as an RT, you must complete 24 hours of continuing education every 24 months.
Missouri Radiologic Technology Association
Career Outlook for Radiology Tech Jobs in Missouri
The career outlook is promising for radiology techs in Missouri. In 2012, there were about 4,780 radiologic technologists employed in Missouri, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS also indicated that employment of radiologic technologists could increase nationwide by 28% between 2010 and 2020. Factors contributing to this growth are the aging population’s increasing need for radiology procedures due to medical issues, as well as more medical facilities performing medical imaging, increasing the need for qualified radiology techs.
In the 2013 ASRT Wage and Salary Survey, the average salary for radiologic technologists was reported at $63,763 – a 1.7% increase from what it was in 2010. The average starting wage in Missouri is around $17 per hour. The BLS reported that as of May 2012, the mean annual wage for radiologic technologists nationwide was $56,450, while RTs in Missouri earned slightly less at $50,080.
Graduates of radiology tech programs may begin their careers or advance their education in other related areas. While not necessarily an employment requirement, obtaining additional certifications can improve employment opportunities. For example, a radiologist technician may complete training and obtain certification in additional areas of radiologic technology, such as magnetic resonance, mammography, computed tomography and sonography. Some schools offer accelerated options for registered radiologic technologists interested in earning a bachelor’s degree in radiologic science; some courses may be offered online.