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The best x-ray tech online classes will give you a high quality education from an accredited educational facility, include a hands-on interactive element, allowing you to practice skills, and meet your budget and schedule requirements. Many colleges, vocational schools, and universities offer x-ray tech online classes, usually listed under the radiology department. These classes usually lead to a degree or certification in radiology.
Before you begin looking for x-ray tech online classes, you need to determine your schedule requirements and budget limitations. Even online classes have deadlines and class meetings which require that you complete assignments at predetermined times. In order to find out how much time you can devote to x-ray tech online classes, make a daily schedule of Monday through Sunday from seven in the morning until ten o'clock at night.
Block out all the time that you spend working, taking care of yourself or family, eating, and performing any other unavoidable tasks. The time left is what you can potentially use to complete a class, which usually requires the number of credit hours times three. Therefore if a class is three credit hours, you can expect to spend nine hours a week studying and completing assignments.
Next, decide how much money you can afford to spend on tuition, fees, and books per semester. Don't forget that many educational facilities require payment in full at the beginning of the semester. In any case, contact the financial aid office of the schools which you might attend, and speak to a counselor about your eligibility for student loans, grants, and scholarships. There are many types of student funding, and it is worth your time to look into the possibilities.
After you have determined your schedule and your budget, begin searching for schools which offer programs and classes in radiology. Most education facilities do not use the term "x-ray tech" in course listings. The school you choose should be accredited by a nationally recognized professional organization, such as the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT) in the US. It is important to choose an accredited school because many employers, institutions of higher education, and regional government licensing bureaus do not recognize coursework from unaccredited programs, which would render your education useless.
Once you have determined that an educational facility is accredited, find the course catalogue and view the course descriptions. Look for courses which not only cover basic topics through book work but also courses which have a lab or hands-on component. In some cases, the lab work and the coursework are listed as separate classes, but there should always be some type of opportunity given to practice radiology skills. Find out if the school has its own equipment or if it partners with a hospital or clinic for the lab component.
Look for courses on a variety of topics. Basic radiology terminology and skills application should be a major part of the coursework. You should also look for courses which delve into safety and health, ethical practices, and compliance with laws and standards.
If possible, contact the instructor for the course and request a syllabus. Typically, instructors are happy to share syllabi with prospective students. While you're talking to the instructor, ask him or her about his course and what is expected from the students. You can often get a feel for the instructor's educational methods, attitude towards students, and expectations through a short conversation. If an instructor seems to be rude or unhelpful, choose a different course.
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