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Certificate Degree Facts
Time To Complete
6 to 18 Months
Common Degree Names
Limited Medical Radiologic Technologist
Certificate in Radiology
Cert in Computed Tomography
Cert. in MRI
HS Diploma (foundation), or Associates (adv.).
Certificate X-Ray Technician Degree
Broadly speaking, there are two types of x-ray tech certificate programs. The first, called a foundational certificate program, is designed for students with no previous experience or education with radiography, but who already have an associates or bachelors degree. Obtaining a foundational x-ray tech certificate, provides the student with the education they need to pass their state licensing test or ARRT licensing test, where applicable. The second type of x-ray tech certificate program is designed for experienced x-ray technicians, and enables them to further their professional skills by focusing on a specific modality, type of equipment, or specific population (e.g. children or senior citizens).
To be admitted into a foundational x-ray technician program, most colleges and universities require that the individual already have a high school diploma or GED. Some x-ray tech certificate programs require that the student have already completed foundational college level courses in math, and science before enrollment. For experienced x-ray technicians seeking a certificate program, typically ARRT or state licensure is required, along with having previously completed an accredited associates or bachelors degree.
The curriculum of x-ray tech certificate programs varies significantly, because some certificate programs are foundational in nature, whereas others provide advanced education for experienced x-ray technicians. Speaking broadly, however, certificate programs often include:
- Foundations of Radiology
- Radiographic Exposure Safety
- Medical Ethics
- Patient Care and Positioning
- Image Analysis
- Digital Imaging Techniques
- Radiographic Physics
Online X-Ray Technician Certificate Options
Foundational online x-ray tech certificate programs often offer students the option to complete all or almost all of their coursework online. Most foundational certificate programs, however, require that clinical work be completed in-person. By contrast, advanced certificates for individuals who are already ARRT or state certified, are commonly 100% online, particularly when the certificates focus is on leadership and administration.
The average salary for individuals with a x-ray tech certificate vary significantly depending on whether the certificate is foundational or for an advanced modality. For foundational, the median annual salary for all x ray techs was $61,980 in 2021 which translates to $29.80 per hour. The highest paid 10% of x-ray technicians earned over $100,870, whereas the lowest paid 10% earned $59,110. Hourly, that translates to an hourly pay range of $28.42 to $48.50 for the lowest and highest 10% of xray techs. For certificates for an advanced modality, the median average wage is $80,680 or $38.79 per hour for Ultrasound Techs, and $77,360 or $37.19 per hour for MRI Techs, for instance. (BLS.gov – 2021)
Certificate Common Career Paths
Depending on whether the certificate sought is foundational or advanced, determines much of the career options available to x-ray tech certificate holders. Speaking broadly, however, certificate students may have careers as the following:
- Radiologic Technologists,
- X-Ray Technician
- Ultrasound Tech
- CT Technologist
- Mammography Tech
- X-Ray Machine Operator, and
- Radiology Technician
- MRI Technician
- Nuclear Medicine Tech
Best Online X-Ray Tech Programs
X Ray Tech programs include certificate, associates, and bachelors degree programs. For students interested in pursuing an online x-ray tech degree program, the following accredited schools offer such options: