What Does It Take to Become a X-Ray Tech?

A successful X-Ray Technician is someone who is passionate about helping others and has a strong desire to work in the medical field.

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General Requirements

The path to becoming an X-Ray Technician is not as difficult as one might think. Although there are many steps and prerequisites, most of which vary by state, the process can be completed relatively quickly. The first step is to complete a Certificate III in Health Science (Medical Imaging Technology), which can be done online or at a variety of schools.

Must be at least 18 years of age

All applicants must meet the minimum age requirement of 18 years old.

Must have a high school diploma or GED

In order to become an X-ray technician, you must have a high school diploma or GED. You will also need to complete an accredited X-ray tech program. After you have completed your training, you will be required to take and pass a state licensing exam.

Education and Training

Becoming an X-Ray Technician usually requires an Associate’s degree from an accredited program. Some schools offer certification, which can be completed in about a year. You can also earn a Bachelor’s degree in about four years.

Complete an accredited program

To become an X-ray technician, you must complete an accredited program that typically lasts two years. These programs are offered by community colleges and technical schools, and they lead to an associate’s degree in radiography. Alternatively, you could complete a four-year bachelor’s degree program in radiologic technology. Some employers may prefer or require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree.

Pass the ARRT certification exam

ARRT credentials are earned by passing an examination in the specific radiography modality in which you wish to work. The ARRT offers examinations in several modality specific disciplines, including computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), mammography, nuclear medicine technology (NMT), radiation therapy (RT), sonography, and vascular-interventional (VI) radiography. Candidates must successfully complete an accredited educational program before they can sit for the ARRT examination. Once you have completed your program and passed the examination, you will be credentialed by the ARRT.

Job Outlook and Salary

Becoming an X-ray tech requires completing an accredited radiology program and passing an exam to become licensed in most states. Some employers may require certification in addition to licensure. The median annual wage for X-ray techs was $60,070 in May 2019, and the job outlook is expected to grow by 7% from 2019-2029, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Get into the nitty-gritty of the X-ray tech profession here.

Job outlook is favorable

Prospects for X-ray techs are expected to be good, with a 14% projected growth in employment opportunities between 2018 and 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That’s faster than the average for all occupations. The median annual wage for X-ray techs was $61,240 in 2018, the BLS reports.

Salary is competitive

The average salary for a X-ray Technician is $33.43 per hour in the United States. Salary estimates are based on 4,760 salaries submitted anonymously to Indeed by X-ray Technician employees, users, and collected from past and present job advertisements on Indeed in the past 36 months. The typical tenure for a X-ray Technician is 1-3 years.

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