Are you interested in a doctorate, master’s, bachelor’s, or associate in medical imaging?
The vast healthcare industry has many specializations crucial to optimal patient care.
One of those is medical imaging. Here, medical imaging is obtained using ultrasound and x-ray technology to diagnose ailments or conditions.
Degree programs in medical imaging help equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to become full-fledged healthcare providers.
So, if you care about patients and desire to balance cutting-edge technology with human compassion, then a medical imaging degree program might be for you.
Diagnostic Medical Imaging Career Paths
One of the primary considerations for taking a degree in medical imaging involves available career paths.
Everyone needs to know what they’re getting into and the prospects such a field of study offers. Career paths in medical imaging include diagnostic medical sonographer and cardiovascular technologist.
Other career paths include radiologist or MRI technician, radiation therapist, medical medicine technologist, computed tomographer, and vascular interventional radiographer.
Each of these career paths can be highly rewarding, especially for those who find them exciting.
What Medical Imaging Degree Programs Offer
If you’re wondering what a degree program in medical imaging will offer you, there are several benefits to earning such a degree.
First, you get to learn critical skills involving using high-tech imaging equipment. Such equipment is essential for the diagnosis and treatment of patients.
What more? Through the well-structured academic curriculum of the radiologic technology program, you’re adequately prepared to be a competent professional and a compassionate health care provider.
The admission requirements for medical imaging degree programs may vary from one program to the next.
The mode of study also matters. For an online bachelor’s degree completion program, specific basic requirements apply.
These include a completed associate’s degree in a related discipline, clinical experience at an accredited site, and professional credentials.
Bachelor of Science
Persons having no prior knowledge or training in medical imaging are required by some programs to have a minimum of 56 semester hours.
These cover courses like English composition, anatomy & physiology I & II with lab, college algebra or pre-calculus or calculus, and general physics with lab.
Other courses covered under the required semester hours include psychology, sociology, English, and liberal arts electives. There may be variations in requirements from one program to the next.
You’ll have to find out the need for a specific program.
Post-Primary Certificate Candidates
The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) announced changes to the requirements for registering for its certification exam.
To register for the ARRT certification exam, you’re expected to have completed 16 hours of structured education that must be relevant to your area of interest.
Examples include bone densitometry, magnetic resonance imaging, mammography, and computed tomography.
Others include cardiac-interventional radiography and vascular interventional radiography.
Having completed this requirement, you’re expected to sit for the board examinations within 24 months from the time of completion.
Types of Medical Imaging Degrees
Before choosing or joining a medical imaging degree program, you need to understand the different types of degrees being offered.
These include associate degrees, bachelor’s options, certificates, and self-paced medical imaging courses.
i. Associate Degree
Under this medical degree program, a complete classroom-based curriculum is offered.
This includes clinical experiences that equip you with the essential skills required for success in radiography. You get to earn an associate of science in radiography upon completion.
The study duration or length of the program is about six semesters or 24 months.
Under this program, you acquire hands-on experience within high-fidelity labs to prepare you for a successful and rewarding career adequately.
ii. Bachelor’s Degree
You can advance your career by pursuing a bachelor’s degree in medical imaging. This can be done on either a full or part-time basis. Typically, the program duration is about six semesters.
This program provides a proven curriculum while benefiting from an experienced faculty that adequately prepares you for post-primary certification.
iii. Dual Degree Options
As the name suggests, dual degree options mean you get to earn multiple degrees after completion of the program. Examples include radiography & community health, and radiography & medical imaging.
This significantly boosts your career advancement as you have more options to work with.
As a registered technologist seeking to advance your career, you can take certificate courses in specialized areas like leadership in medical imaging and informatics.
Others include computed tomography, medical 3D printing specialist, magnetic resonance imaging, etc.
Post Graduate Medical Imaging Degree Programs
There are varieties of postgraduate degree programs you can go for.
These mainly involve specializations such as a Master of Health Sciences, a Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Health Sciences.
Here, the areas or courses of study may include research methods in health, professional issues in medical imaging, ultrasound, MRI & nuclear medicine technology.
Other study areas include image evaluation and fundamentals of ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) & nuclear medicine imaging.
Image evaluation and CT imaging are more study areas covered under medical imaging degree programs. Your choice of post-graduate degree program will determine what courses you’ll take.
Following this point, you should better understand the various medical imaging degree programs.
Having obtained primary certification or medical imaging degree, you can advance your career by pursuing further medical imaging certifications.
This increases your marketability within the medical field. You can add certifications that include bone densitometry, mammography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and computed tomography (CT scan).
So, do you seek to pursue a career in medical imaging? You’ll need to know what degree programs to go for. There are also basic qualifications required to attend such.
You can determine what best serves your needs by identifying your specific interests.