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Online Colleges for Radiologic Sciences

Radiologic science is the study of medical imaging. Medical imaging is used in procedures as routine as the X-ray of a broken toe or as complex as oncological radiation therapy.

Online radiological science degree and degree completion programs allow medical imaging professionals to pursue further education and specializations within their field. OnlineColleges.com has compiled information about the top online radiological science programs in the country. Read on to find out more about degree options, specializations and the career outlook for graduates of radiological science programs.

Best Online Colleges for Radiologic Sciences

Our rankings take the guesswork out of choosing an online program in radiologic science. OnlineColleges.com developed a unique methodology to evaluate programs in radiologic sciences based on factors that matter to real students -- like graduation rates and tuition costs.

Below are the ten top schools for online radiologic science programs.

1

Midwestern State University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$7,760
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
37.33%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
11
School Type
4-year
Located in Wichita Falls, Texas, Midwestern State University offers fully online and hybrid programs in radiological science. Midwestern State University earns first place by achieving all around solid scores in our rankings. The university has a strong commitment to its online student body. Online students can take advantage of all the university's services through the program's online portal. They also get a dedicated faculty advisor who follows them through the completion of their degree program. The online Bachelor of Science in radiologic sciences degree is a completion program designed to provide advanced study to American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) registered or registry-eligible technologists. Midwestern State University also offers a hybrid Master of Science in radiologic sciences with three separate degree pathways: radiologic administration, radiologic education or radiologic assistant, which aims to prepare students for advanced clinical care positions. The master’s is a hybrid course delivered online with a limited amount of on-campus time required.

Accreditation:

  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology

Location:

3410 Taft Blvd.
Wichita Falls, Texas 76308
2

Oregon Institute of Technology

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$8,838
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
26.10%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
13
School Type
4-year

In addition to placing No. 2 overall, Oregon Institute of Technology came in second place in the prominence metric according to the methodology.

The school offers an online radiologic science degree completion program designed for students who are currently working as registered radiologic technologists. This program includes a 15 credit externship component. Therefore, students must have access to a fully equipped radiology imaging site or laboratory. Prospective students should be graduates of an associate program or hospital training program. Oregon Institute of Technology’s program includes general education courses, such as English composition and communication, alongside courses specific to radiology such as radiographic pathology and magnetic resonance.

Accreditation:

  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

Location:

3201 Campus Drive
Klamath Falls, Oregon 97601
3

Adventist University of Health Sciences

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$13,030
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
32.71%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
4
School Type
4-year
For nearly a century, the Adventist University of Health Sciences has delivered top-notch healthcare training in a faith-affirming environment. The university ranks first in both prominence and accessibility out of 30 schools.

Affiliated with the Adventist Health System, the school's program is built on a solid foundation of math and sciences. However, general education requirements also round out the curriculum. Adventist University of Health Sciences offers two fully online bachelor degrees: radiologic sciences and diagnostic medical sonography. Prospective students must have an associate degree or have graduated from a certified diploma or certificate program. Students should also hold current registration and certification in radiology, radiologic technology, nuclear medicine, sonography or cardiovascular technology. Both programs are bachelor's degree completion programs.

Accreditation:

  • Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology
  • Joint Review Committee on Educational Programs in Nuclear Medicine Technology
  • Licensed by the State Board of Independent Colleges and Universities Department of Education

Location:

671 Winyah Drive
Orlando, Florida 32803
4

Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$13,418
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
54.10%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
20
School Type
4-year
First established in 1891, Nebraska Methodist College ranks sixth for the prominence metric. Ranked seventh for accessibility, the college offers two bachelor’s degree completion programs entirely online. Prospective students must be currently registered and certified in radiologic technology. The online bachelor’s degree program in imaging sciences offers students the opportunity to specialize in MRI and CT technology. The online bachelor’s degree program in women's imaging focuses on the health needs of women including breast cancer and high-risk pregnancy.

Alternatively, students with no prior experience can take advantage of hybrid programs that combine online and campus-based learning. The school also offers online certificate programs in computer tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for those with ARRT certification. Credits from both programs can be applied to the Bachelor of Science in imaging science program.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology
  • Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs

Location:

720 N. 87th St.
Omaha, Nebraska 68114
5

Fort Hays State University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$4,654
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
77.06%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
38
School Type
4-year
Fort Hays State University tops OnlineCollege.com's rankings for the lowest tuition out of the best schools for radiologic sciences. In addition to that first place score, the university came in fourth out of 30 schools for accessibility. Strong evidence of the school’s accessibility is found in their online offerings in radiologic sciences. Fort Hays State University offers a fully online program for a Bachelors of Science in medical diagnostic imaging. It also has three fully online certificate programs that can lead to ARRT certification: cardiovascular intervention technology (CVIT), computer tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The fourth certificate option is a women's imaging certificate, and it includes a one week on-campus component.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission

Location:

600 Park St.
Hays, Kansas 67601
6

Clarkson College

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$12,168
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
91.31%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
17
School Type
4-year
Ranking third out of 30 schools for the prominence metric is Clarkson College. Clarkson boasts a well-established online program, with over 90 percent of their students taking at least one online course per semester. A 25-to-1 student-teacher ratio allows for individual attention from faculty. Clarkson has a fully online Bachelor of Science in medical imaging program. Students study CT, MRI, mammography, bone density and angiography procedures. The bachelor's degree program requires 180 externship hours per semester. Clarkson also has an associate degree program in radiologic technology that allows certain courses within the program to be completed online.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission
  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology

Location:

101 S. 42 St.
Omaha, Nebraska 68131
7

Clarion University of Pennsylvania

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$10,190
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
44.65%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
20
School Type
4-year
Clarion University is a member of Pennsylvania's state system of education. Clarion offers a fully online bachelor's degree completion program in medical imaging. Prospective students must be fully credentialed technologists in radiology, diagnostic medical sonography, nuclear medicine, radiation therapy, or medical dosimetry.

Ranked third for accessibility, Clarion University has been offering online degree programs since 2007. All online students participate in a well-crafted online orientation. Clarion also offers online tutoring and writing support. With over 90 percent of their students receiving some form of financial aid, Clarion University ranks 10th out of 30 schools for affordability.

Accreditation:

  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Location:

840 Wood St.
Clarion, Pennsylvania 16214
8

University of Louisiana at Monroe

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$7,658
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
33.36%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
39
School Type
4-year
For over 30 years, the University of Louisiana at Monroe has provided advanced radiologic training. Earning third place for low tuition out of 30 schools, the university is an affordable option for a bachelor’s degree program in radiologic technology. Prospective students must be credentialed graduates of an accredited associate degree or hospital-based training program. Self-paced and fully online, this program covers advanced radiographic and imaging procedures. The university also offers a registered technologist education plan. This offers a pathway for registered technologists to enter the bachelor's degree program.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology

Location:

700 University Ave.
Monroe, Louisiana 71209
9

Siena Heights University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$23,750
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
46.29%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
29
School Type
4-year
Siena Heights University allows working professionals to earn a bachelor’s degree of applied science entirely online. Graduates of an accredited associate degree program build an individualized bachelor's degree curriculum around the technical background they already have. Common majors include diagnostic medical sonography, nuclear medicine, radiation therapy and radiologic technology. Prospective students without an associate degree can enter the program as long as they have the ARRT credentials, have completed a hospital-based training program, and have at least two years of work experience. The 'inverted major' program uses a cohort model. Online students start as a group, or cohort, and progress through the program together. Siena Heights University also offers a hybrid program that combines on-campus and online learning.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission

Location:

247 E. Siena Heights Drive
Adrian, Michigan 49221
10

La Roche College

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$26,250
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
33.36%
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
3
School Type
4-year
La Roche College offers its online students a wide range of support services. Online students can access technical help from the Student Help Desk. Academic and career advising is available along with financial aid support. Online students can access an online bookstore and electronic resources from the college's library.

Accreditation:

  • Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology

Location:

9000 Babcock Blvd.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15237
Want to see additional online colleges for radiologic sciences?
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Interview with an Expert
We even provide support after graduation. I've run study sessions and helped prepare
students for their registry exams. There is not much we won't do for our students.

Beth L. Vealé, PhD., RT(R)(QM)

Professor, Radiologic Sciences

Midwestern State University

Interview with an Expert
Beth L. Vealé, PhD., RT(R)(QM)

Beth L. Vealé, PhD., RT(R)(QM)

Professor, Radiologic Sciences

Midwestern State University

Q: What qualities make Midwestern State University's online radiologic sciences program so outstanding?

A: There are several factors that contribute to this. To begin with, Midwestern State University is very supportive of online programs. Our online students really matter. We make sure we are available for our students. Our online students comment that when they call, we are there.

Class size is another factor. With 30 students in each course, we can ensure each one receives individualized attention. When our students raise concerns, we listen. In fact, the transition from an entry-level associate degree to baccalaureate degree program grew out of a request from our students. They were spending four years of study only to come out with an associate degree. The degree itself has really transformed from a vocational, technical degree to a research-based bachelor's degree.

Our professors are another factor. All of our professors are registered radiological technicians. Several professors still practice. They serve on national boards. They work with national and state legislatures to address concerns related to radiology programs and to stay at the forefront of the industry. Our professors serve as expert consultants and are active in publishing and research. Our professors make sure our courses stay up-to-date on current research and practice. When students take our courses, they bring back to their own practice what they have learned. This has lead not only to positive changes in their practice, but also to promotions and new job opportunities.

Finally, the nature of our online program means we are not bound by walls. We make connections all over the country and all over the world.

Q: What support does Midwestern State University offer their online student body?

A: Our online students get the same support that our on-campus students get. The online program actually allows for more one-on-one interaction between students and professors. Our online students have access to all the same opportunities as our on-campus students. If they are in the area, their student ID can get them into university activities and concerts.

As far as our online courses, the university provides an online orientation. Then, there is an online orientation specific to our program. Once you are in our program, we provide easy access to all our university services. Using the D2L portal, students can access services including financial aid and our online bookstore. Even the library has online support that connects students directly with librarians. We have tried to make things as accessible as possible, so that students reach the services they need in as few clicks as possible.

We offer online advising. Students are connected with one advisor who stays with them throughout the course of the program. When students first apply, they receive a degree plan. We believe all of our students are important and we will even help them access resources in their own community -- not just within our university program. Our support system is great. Our secretaries are so knowledgeable and able to help if, for instance, a degree plan goes missing. They can provide a new copy and connect the student to their advisor to make sure things stay on track.

We even provide support after graduation. I've run study sessions and helped prepare students for their registry exams. There is not much we won't do for our students. We have high standards and we hold our students to them. But, we are flexible, too.

Q: How does the online program differ from the on-campus program?

A: The online program is a completion program for technicians already working in the field. Whereas, the on-campus program is an entry-level baccalaureate program and includes lab classes be completed at the university. Online students are able to complete their lab courses by observing and practicing with registered technologists in their own facilities at work.

In some ways, our online students have it better than our on-campus students. Online courses are capped at 30 students, as opposed to 50 or 60 on campus. And, I have noticed that online students are often more willing to ask questions of me than their on-campus counterparts. Online courses allow me to pinpoint students who are having issues and offer targeted support. Online students also have the flexibility to schedule how and when they take the course. They are not bound by the university's hours or vacation schedules. With our online proctoring program, our students can take exams at any time of day or night. And, they know they can always reach me if they have any trouble.

Finally, I feel like teaching online has made me a better teacher. The nature of online courses means my materials and course must be highly organized. It makes me more specific and more proactive.

Degree Overview: Radiologic Science

Online colleges for radiologic sciences engage students in a wide variety of learning opportunities to help them build skills for this allied health care field. Students may want to look for radiologic sciences programs that incorporate curriculum set by the American Society of Radiologic Technologists and that also help students to prepare for the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists examination.

Online Radiologic Science Courses

Students can pursue online education for radiologic sciences from the certificate to the bachelor's degree level. Program requirements vary depending on the the specific type of program that is pursued, with longer programs often having more clinical components and general education requirements.

  • A certificate program is meant to introduce students to the very basics of radiologic science, such as ethics and law, medical terminology and patient care. Human structure and function is important as is understanding radiographic procedures and imaging and processing. Additionally, students may learn about radiographic pathology and pharmacology.
  • In a diploma program, students usually cover many of the same topics as in a certificate program, but in more depth. Students in diploma programs may also explore technologies, such as fluoroscopy live motion X-ray (which is typically used for the digestive system) or computed tomography (which offers cross-sectional views of the body).
  • Students interested in online radiologic science degrees at the associate degree level can learn about the different types of high-tech equipment that are used. Typically, in the first year of a program, students have the opportunity to gain understanding into basic radiographic principles, followed by a second year that focuses more on radiographic procedures and pathology.
  • Most online bachelor's degree programs in radiologic sciences are designed for students who have an associate degree. In fact, applicants may be required to already be registered radiographers in order to enroll in a bachelor's degree completion program. Online students also may need to have access to a local lab to complete the clinical components of this degree.
  • A master's degree program in radiologic science may give students the opportunity to specialize in specific areas, including administration or education. Even for a master's degree program that is offered online, clinical courses may still be offered or required at a physical location in order to help students develop even more nuanced radiological skills.
  • A radiological PhD program helps students to delve deeper into learning about the connection between radiologic testing and diagnosis and treatment of disease. Concentrations may be available in a PhD program, including in human imaging, medical physics, radiation biophysics or neuroscience imaging.

Career-Related Skills to Develop

Radiologic technologists may need vastly different skill sets based on the type of equipment they use, but generally speaking, the following list of skills are beneficial for radiologists regardless of the machinery they utilize.

    • Attention to detail: Radiologic technologists work with specific types of equipment and tools, including image storage systems and scan converters, and being able to carefully use them -- and not damage them -- is important. This is a key component of most radiologic science programs, and graduates should be both more informed and more secure in their understanding of many of these tools.
    • Communication: Patients will be coming in for scans and images to check on their health and to seek any diagnoses. Making sure that patients are comfortable in a room and understand any imaging or X-ray procedures they are about to undergo is important for creating a caring environment.
    • Physical stamina: A minor but important detail to this allied health care field is that radiologic technologists often need to spend a long part of their day on their feet. Clinical experiences in campus and online radiologic sciences degrees may help to prepare students for this, but being in good shape and being well-rested may provide a greater benefit.
    • Technical knowledge: It is not regularly said that radiologic science is a technical field, but many of the instruments that radiologic technologists use are both technical and complex in nature. For this reason, technologists should be comfortable using technical machinery as well as the various computer applications and software that are part of their job.

Radiologic Science Specializations

Radiologic technologists are the third largest group of people working in health care, followed only by physicians and nurses, according to the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (AART). Certification in a specific radiologic technology field can assure working professionals, employers and patients that a person is capable of providing high levels of care, also according to the AART.

Certification may be necessary to obtain licensure and work in a state. The AART reports that 75 percent of states have licensing requirements, some of which include certification or test scores. After certification, technologists may be able to list a recognizable, professional credential after their name, such as "CNMT" for anyone certified as a nuclear medical technologist through the Nuclear Medical Technology Certification Board (NMTCB).

Certification requirements vary depending on the certificate being pursued, but most require applicants to obtain a specific type of education, such as an associate degree from an accredited institution, and to pass a qualifying examination. Often, radiologic technologists start their careers by seeking certification in a field such as:

  • Sonography: Diagnostic medical sonographers use ultrasound machines to take pictures of the soft tissues and organs inside the body. Sonography is used to detect masses such as tumors or cysts within the body; evaluate blood flow through the veins; or even to check the growth and development of a baby.
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI): MRI technologists operate machines that use powerful magnets and radio waves to produce very detailed images of the soft tissues within the body. It is commonly used to diagnose aneurysms, tumors, diseases in organs such as the liver, and injuries to muscles, tendons and ligaments.
  • Mammography: Mammograms use X-rays to examine breast tissue. This is used both as a routine cancer screening tool and as a specific diagnostic tool.
  • Computed Tomography (CT): Also known as a CT or CAT scan, this process is used to produce highly detailed cross-section images of the body, allowing for diagnosis of heart and vascular diseases, tumors and cysts, malformations of skeletal structures and organs, and injuries to bone or soft tissue.
  • Radiation Therapy: Commonly used to destroy cancer cells and shrink tumors, radiation therapists use concentrated doses of radiation, delivered via X-ray, CT, MRI or brachytherapy (implanting radioactive material within or adjacent to a tumor).
  • Nuclear Medicine: A fascinating branch of medicine, nuclear medicine uses safety-approved radioactive drugs (called "tracers") and specialized cameras in order to assess bodily functions as well as diagnose and treat disease.

As time passes, radiologic technologists may want to pursue certification in additional or more advanced fields, such as computed tomography, cardiac vascular radiography or bone densitometry. Continuing education is required to stay certified, often through more coursework.

Radiologic Sciences Completion Programs

Degree completion programs offer working professionals a bridge to a college degree, allowing them to use the experience they have previously earned as the foundational learning for a shorter, more focused program. This can be an easy way to advance your education without letting your hard work at an associate degree, a certification program or a relevant career go to waste, making your resume more attractive to possible employers and opening the door to certain specialties within your field.

Radiologic science education requires hands-on skills practice. Therefore, most degree completion programs require prospective students to have a solid background in radiology prior to applying. In some cases, lab courses and practice are completed at the student's work site under the supervision of a fully credentialed, registered technologist. Occasionally, online degree completion programs will require students to participate in a formal externship as well.

From a Certificate... to an Associate Degree

Associate degree completion programs offer a degree pathway for professionals holding limited practice certificates or who are graduates of non-degree granting hospital programs. As of 2015, ARRT requires at least an associate degree to be eligible for primary certification and registration in many of the radiologic sciences fields.

From a Bachelor of Science... to a Master of Science

A master’s degree is appropriate for professionals interested in advanced practice, administration or radiologic science education. While not technically a completion degree, some programs will allow radiologic professionals to apply continuing education credits toward their master's degree.

From Radiologic Technologist... to a Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences

Prospective students of a bachelor's degree completion program should have completed an associate degree or hospital-based training program. Radiologic technologists may use degree completion programs in order to specialize their practice into women's imaging, MRI, or a similar area; move into senior positions; or transition into management or administration.

From Radiologic Technologist... to a Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography

This completion program is specifically geared towards radiologists interested in becoming diagnostic medical sonographers. As with the more generalized radiologic sciences bachelor's program, students will generally need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be registered or registry-eligible
  • Be a graduate of an associate degree or hospital-based program

Radiologic Sciences Career Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2015, strong overall job growth is predicted for radiologic science careers over the next decade. This trend is driven by the increased availability of healthcare coverage that stems from the Affordable Care Act and the expansion of Medicare. Furthermore, as the baby boomer generation ages there will be an increased need for medical imaging to both diagnose and treat their ailments.

There are a number of specialties within the radiologic sciences. Each requires specialized skills and training. Below you can see the career outlook for several jobs in this field.

Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$57,100
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
21,400
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
22.2
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Associate degree
Cardiovascular technology focuses on the function of the heart. Most cardiovascular technologists work in hospitals. Some may work in an individual physician's office or medical laboratory. Medicare and many insurance companies only cover tests and procedures performed by licensed and certified cardiovascular technologists. As a result, most employers require full credentialing in addition to formal education.

There are a number of specializations within cardiovascular technology including echocardiographers, EKG technicians and cardiovascular technologists. Each of these professionals perform different tests to the heart to help diagnose and treat patients.

Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$71,750
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
27,500
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
26.4
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Associate degree
Sonography is increasingly on the front lines of diagnosing disease. It is also used in routine examinations such as obstetric sonograms that track fetal development. Diagnostic medical sonographers mainly work in hospitals. Some work in doctor's offices or laboratories.

The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography offers certification in a number of specialties in addition to the Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer (RDMS) credential. Sonographers need a combination of formal education and clinical experience to be eligible to take the certification exams. Employers generally prefer to hire certified sonographers. The BLS notes that job prospects are strongest for sonographers holding multiple certifications.

Nuclear Medicine Technologist
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$75,960
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
4,200
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
1.5
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Associate degree
Nuclear medicine technologists use radioactive pharmaceuticals to help doctors diagnose and treat disease such as cancer. Technologists follow strict protocols to prepare and administer the radioactive drugs to patients. They operate equipment -- such as rotating gamma cameras, digital ratemeters and dose calibrators -- to create the images of body tissues or organs and ensure precise delivery of radiopharmaceuticals. The majority of nuclear medicine technologists work in hospitals. Nuclear medicine technologists typically need an associate or bachelor's degree in nuclear technology. Alternatively, professionals may pursue a nuclear medicine certificate with a bachelor's degree in an area such as radiologic science or medical imaging.
Radiation Therapist
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$84,980
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
6,200
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
14
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Associate degree
Radiation therapy is most commonly used to treat cancer. Using linear accelerators, radiation therapists deliver targeted doses of radiation (x-rays) to destroy cancerous cells and shrink tumors. Following treatment plans created by radiation oncologists, radiation therapists may also be responsible for ensuring the correct dosage of radiation. They may also monitor patients for side effects.

Radiation therapists work in hospitals, outpatient clinics or physician's offices. Most states require additional certification from ARRT for radiation therapists. Radiation therapists may further advance their careers with additional education and a certification as a medical dosimetrist.

Radiologic and MRI Technologist
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$59,260
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
54,400
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
8.7
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Associate degree
Radiographers use X-ray and computer tomograpy (CT) scans to examine and assist in diagnosis of injuries, illness and disease. Radiographers may administer special dyes that help them image soft tissue. They may also take a patient's medical history, keep medical records and maintain the equipment. Radiographers can pursue medical imaging specialties such as mammography. Some radiographers go on to pursue certifications and credentials in order to specialize in MRI.

The majority of radiographers and MRI technologists work in hospitals. Others work in medical laboratories or outpatient clinics. While not all states require certification, most employers prefer to hire technologists certified by ARRT or the American Registry of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists.

Methodologies and Sources

Methodology

To be included in these rankings, all colleges had to meet the following criteria for the specific subject being ranked:

  1. Offer at least one degree or certificate in that subject online
  2. Have awarded at least one degree or certificate in that subject in 2014-15

Once we had our list of schools for each subject, we ranked them on six criteria, using the weights specified:

  1. In-state tuition, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 20%
  2. Graduation rate, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 10%
  3. Accessibility, based on the admissions rate, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 10%
  4. Program prominence, based on how many of the degrees and certificates awarded by the school in 2014-15 were in this particular subject, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 30%
  5.  Related subjects, based on the number of similar programs that the school offers at any level, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 15%
  6. Variety of degree levels, based on the number of degree and certificate levels out of a possible nine that the school offers in this particular subject, National Center for Education Statistics, 2014: 15%

Methodology Sources

  • Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2014-15, National Center for Education Statistics, Accessed January 2016, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/

Sources:

  1. Academic Degree Requirement effective 2015 for Primary Certification and registration, The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, https://www.arrt.org/Certification/Academic-Degree-Requirement
  2. Academic Programs in Allied Health, Fort Hays State University, https://www.fhsu.edu/alliedhealth/academic-programs/
  3. ADU Online, Adventist University of Health Sciences, http://online.adu.edu/
  4. American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers, http://www.ardms.org/Pages/default.aspx
  5. American Registry of Magnetic Imaging Technologists, http://www.armrit.org/
  6. American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, https://www.arrt.org/
  7. Bachelor of Science in Medical Imaging, Clarkson College, http://catalog.clarksoncollege.edu/academic-catalog/bachelor-science-medical-imaging
  8. Bachelor of Science in Medical Imaging: Concentrations in Radiologic Technology and Sonography, Clarion Online, Clarion University of Pennsylvania, http://clarion.edu/academics/degrees-programs/hsrhss/medical-imaging/index.html#b.s.-medical-imaging-sciences
  9. Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Technology, eULM, University of Louisiana Monroe, http://www.ulm.edu/onlinedegrees/bs_rt.html
  10. Bachelor of Science, Radiologic Technology, Siena Heights University, http://www.sienaheights.edu/PreviewNewsAcademics/tabid/74/NewsArticleID/4946/MajorID/INV/Default.aspx
  11. Diagnostic Medical Sonographers and Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians, Including Vascular Technologists, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/diagnostic-medical-sonographers.htm
  12. Mammograms, National Cancer Institute, http://www.cancer.gov/types/breast/mammograms-fact-sheet
  13. Medical Imaging, La Roche College, http://www.laroche.edu/Academics/Academic_Divisions/Natural_and_Behavioral_Sciences_Division/HEALTH_SCIENCES/Degrees_and_Certificates/?pid=186
  14. Nebraska Methodist College, http://www.methodistcollege.edu/
  15. Nuclear Medicine Technologists, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nuclear-medicine-technologists.htm
  16. Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board, https://www.nmtcb.org/
  17. Online Radiologic Science, Oregon Tech Online, http://www.oit.edu/online/degrees/radiologic-science
  18. Radiation Therapists, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/radiation-therapists.htm
  19. Radiologic and MRI Technologists, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/radiologic-technologists.htm
  20. Radiologic Sciences, Robert D. & Carol Gunn College of Health Sciences & Human Services, Midwestern State University, http://mwsu.edu/academics/hs2/radsci/index
  21. Radiological Society of North America, http://www.radiologyinfo.org/
  22. Associate of Science in Radiologic Technology, Clarkson College, Accessed July 2017, http://catalog.clarksoncollege.edu/academic-catalog/associate-science-radiologic-technology
  23. Bachelor of Science in Radiologic Sciences, ECPI University, Accessed July 2017, http://catalog.clarksoncollege.edu/academic-catalog/associate-science-radiologic-technology
  24. Certificate in Radiography, UNC School of Medicine, Accessed July 2017, https://www.med.unc.edu/ahs/radisci/ed-programs/radiography/courses
  25. Radiologic and MRI Technologists, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Accessed July 2017, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/radiologic-technologists.htm#tab-4
  26. Radiologic Science, Oregon Tech Online, Accessed July 2017, http://www.oit.edu/online/degrees/radiologic-science
  27. Radiologic Sciences, Midwestern State University, Accessed July 2017, https://mwsu.edu/academics/hs2/radsci/index
  28. Radiological Sciences, UT Health San Antonio, Accessed July 2017, http://gsbs.uthscsa.edu/graduate_programs/radiological-sciences
  29. Radiologic Technologists, O*NET OnLine, Accessed July 2017, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/radiologic-technologists.htm#tab-4
  30. Requirements for Earning AART Credentials, American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, Accessed July 2017, https://www.arrt.org/about-the-profession/arrt-certification-and-registration/requirements
  31. Types of AART Credentials, American Registry of Radiologic Technologists, Accessed July 2017, https://www.arrt.org/about-the-profession/arrt-certification-and-registration/types-of-credentials
  32. Why Get Certified by the NMTCB? Nuclear Medical Technology Certification Board, Accessed July 2017, https://www.nmtcb.org/
  33. Nuclear Medicine Technologists, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016-17 Occupational Outlook Handbook, Dec. 17, 2015, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nuclear-medicine-technologists.htm
  34. Summary Report For Nuclear Medicine Technologists, O*NET OnLine, 2016, https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/29-2033.00
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Methodologies and Sources