What Can I Do with an Associate's Degree in Radiologic Sciences?

Radiologic sciences is a very technical field that deals with specialized medical equipment. Read on to find out more about what you can do with an associate's degree or certificate in radiologic sciences. Schools offering Cardiovascular Sonography degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Overview

Associate's degree and certificate programs in radiologic sciences train students to use diagnostic imaging equipment, such as X-rays and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines. Graduates of these programs work in hospitals, clinics and private medical offices.

Important Facts about this Occupation

RadiographerNuclear Medicine TechnologistDiagnostic Medical Sonographer
Median Pay (2014)$55,870$72,100$67,530
Job Outlook (2012-2022)21% growth (faster than average)20% (faster than average)46% (much faster than average)
Certificaton/LicensingRequired in some statesRequired in some statesPreferred by employers
Key SkillsAttention to detail, technical skills, aptitude for math, interpersonal skills, physical staminaGood with technology, analytical, compassion, physical staminaInterpersonal, technical skills, attention to detail, hand-eye coordination

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Radiographer

Many graduates of an associate's degree program in radiologic sciences find work as radiographers, or X-ray technicians. Radiographers administer X-rays to injured patients. These X-rays produce images of the body that doctors use to diagnose the patients and determine the best treatment. Radiographers also give instructions to patients and modify radiologic procedures as needed for each patient.

Nuclear Medicine Technologist

Some schools offer an Associate of Science in Nuclear Medicine Technology. This specialty of radiologic science involves the use of radioactive substances to diagnose and explore certain diseases and injuries. According to the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT), nuclear medicine technologists use state-of-the-art equipment to trace the parts of the body to which the substances were directed (www.asrt.org). Much like an X-ray, the images taken from that part of the body are then transferred onto computer equipment.

Other Careers in Radiologic Sciences

In addition to radiography and nuclear medicine technology, graduates of a certificate or associate's degree program can work in other radiologic science specializations. One such specialization is magnetic resonance imaging, which involves using special magnetic field-generating equipment to capture images of the body. Another specialization in is mammography, in which the radiologic technologist uses advanced imaging equipment to help with the diagnosis of breast cancer or other diseases. Certificate and associate's degree programs are available in these additional specializations:

  • Cardiovascular-interventional technology
  • Sonography
  • Computed tomography technology

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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