Radiography

Radiography

About the Program

A student in the two-year Radiography Program attends lectures and practices the skills being taught in lab settings at the Coleman Health Science Center College.

AWARD TYPES: Associate of Applied Science, Enhanced Skills Certificate

AREA OF STUDY: Health Sciences

Health Sciences

This program is part of the

Health Sciences Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Center of Excellence

 
 

The Health Sciences Center of Excellence is a leading health science community college in the nation and the only one of its kind residing in the world-renowned Texas Medical Center.

Degrees and Certificates

Program Information

A Career in Radiography

 
 
 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of 2007 says, “Radiographers produce x-ray images of the human body for use in diagnosing medical problems. They prepare patients for radiologic examinations by explaining the procedure, removing articles such as jewelry, through which x rays cannot pass, and positioning patients so that the parts of the body can be appropriately radiographed. To prevent unnecessary radiation exposure, technologists surround the exposed area with radiation protection devices, such as lead shields, or limit the size of the x-ray beam.

Radiographers position radiographic equipment at the correct angle and height over the appropriate area of a patient’s body. Using instruments similar to a measuring tape, technologists may measure the thickness of the section to be radiographed and set controls on the machine to produce radiographs of the appropriate density, detail, and contrast. They place the x-ray cassettes under the part of the patient’s body to be examined and make the exposure. They develop or process the images.

For fluoroscopic exams, radiographers prepare a solution of contrast medium for the patient to drink, allowing the radiologist, a physician who interprets images, to see soft tissues in the body. Radiologic technologists must follow physicians ’orders precisely and conform to regulations concerning use of radiation to protect themselves, their patients, and coworkers from unnecessary exposure. In addition to preparing patients and operating equipment, radiologic technologists keep patient records and adjust and maintain equipment. They may also prepare work schedules, evaluate equipment purchases, or manage a radiology department.”

Working Conditions

Most full-time radiologic technologists work about 40 hours a week; they may have evening, weekend, or on-call hours.Physical stamina is important, because technologists are on their feet for long periods and may lift or turn disabled patients. They work at diagnostic machines but may also do some procedures at patients’ bedsides. Some radiologic technologists travel to patients in large vans equipped with sophisticated diagnostic equipment. Although potential radiation hazards exist in this occupation, they are minimized by the use of lead aprons, gloves, and other shielding devices, as well as by instruments monitoring radiation exposure. Technologists wear badges measuring radiation levels in the radiation area, and detailed records are kept on their cumulative lifetime dose.

Employment

Radiologic technologists held about 196,000 jobs in 2006. More than half of all jobs were in hospitals. Most of the rest are in physicians’ offices and clinics, including diagnostic imaging centers; and outpatient care centers.

Salary

Median annual earnings of radiologic technologists were $48,170 in 2006. The middle 50 percent earned between $39,840 and $57,940. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $32,750, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $68,920. Median annual earnings in the industries employing the largest numbers of radiologic technologists in 2006 were:

  • Medical and diagnostic laboratories $51,280
  • Hospitals 48,830
  • Offices and clinics of medical doctors 45,500

Certification

Graduates of the HCCS Radiography Program may apply to take the ARRT certification exam. To practice in Texas, radiographers must also hold a certificate from the Texas Department of State Health Services. Any individual with a previous felony conviction should contact the ARRT for a Pre-Certification Application at (651) 687-0048 Ethics Division concerning eligibility requirements.

Accreditation

 
 
 

The HCC Coleman College Radiography Program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT), 20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 2850, Chicago, IL 60606-3182. Phone: 312-704-5300. www.jrcert.org or email us at mail@jrcert.org.

Houston Community College (HCC) is accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the regional accrediting body. www.sacscoc.org.

Program Effectiveness

This information is published on the JRCERT website at www.jrcert.org

Program Effectiveness 2013–2017

 

Five-Year Average Job Placement Rate Six Months Post Graduation

 
Year # of Students Employed/Seeking % Job Placement
2013 22/24 91.66%
2014 26/30 86.66%
2015 35/36 97.22%
2016 30/31 93.63%
2017 23/24 95.38%
Average 136/145 93.63%
 

Five-Year Annual Program Completion Rate*

 
Year

# of Students (Finish/Start)

% Completion
2011-13

26/45

57.77%
2012–14

30/50

60.00%
2013-15

36/46

78.26%
2014-16

31/46

67.39%
2015-17

29/41

70.73%
Average

152/228

66.66%

 *Completion rate averages are based on the number of students who begin
the program and remain past the last day to drop with a “W” during the first semester.

 

 

 

Mission Statement

 
 
 

Consistent with the mission of Houston Community College, the faculty of the Radiography Program is committed to providing quality instruction to educate competent entry level radiographers to meet the needs of the ever changing, diverse, and multi-cultural health care community. The Program strives to develop within all students, an appreciation and desire for the continued quest for knowledge, lifelong learning, integrity and community-mindedness.

Student Goals and Outcomes

 
 
 

Goals

The goals of the program include:

  1. Upon completion of the program the graduate will satisfactorily demonstrate the following entry-level skills in radiography:
    1. Clinical competency
    2. Communication kills
    3. Problem solving
    4. Professional development and growth
  2. Upon completion of the program, a minimum of 90 percent of the graduates will be successful on the national credentialing examination
  3. 75 percent of the students admitted to the program will complete the two-year curriculum
  4. 80 percent of the graduates seeking employment in Radiography will be employed within six months

Program Benchmarks

The program has set the following benchmarks:

  1. A pass rate on the ARRT exam of 90% for first time test takers.
  2. A graduation rate of 75% over a three year period.
  3. A job placement rate of 80% within six months of graduation.

The Radiography Program at Houston Community College is quite intense and requires many hours of study to be successful.  All radiography courses are scheduled Monday through Friday during daytime hours.  At designated times within the program, and with proper evaluation and approval by the clinic coordinator, students may be scheduled on limited evening clinical rotations.

In order to assure patient safety in the clinical area student radiographers must possess the following characteristics:

  1. Read and write at college level.  The student must be able to communicate effectively in verbal and written aspects of the English language.
  2. Perform basic mathematical functions.
  3. Be able to function within a high stress hospital environment and in emergency situations be able to move rapidly and accurately.
  4. Be able to use independent judgment in decision making with patient care and technical procedures.
  5. Demonstrate many interpersonal skills in getting along with other students and especially the staff of clinical education centers.
  6. Be clean and neat in personal appearance for dress and personal hygiene.
  7. Demonstrate self-motivation in accomplishing personal goals within the program.
  8. Follow college and program policies and procedures as outlined in Student

Program Outcomes

The radiographer is an important member of the health care team. The Radiography Program at Houston Community College has identified the following expected outcomes which represent entry-level skills for the radiologic technologist. Upon completion of the program, the graduate should be able to meet the following:

  1. Use verbal and written communication
  2. Apply knowledge of anatomy, physiology, positioning, techniques and imaging
  3. Calculate and determine exposure factors to achieve optimum radiographic techniques with minimum radiation exposure to the
  4. Evaluate radiographic images for appropriate positioning and
  5. Apply the principles of radiation protection for the patient, self and
  6. Provide quality patient care, safety and
  7. Recognize emergency patient conditions and respond
  8. Evaluate the performance of radiographic systems, recognize understand the safe limits of equipment operation and report malfunctions  to the proper
  9. Apply critical thinking skills to adapt the technical performance of radiographic procedures to patient ability and
  10. Process radiographic images using the automatic processor and/or digital
  11. Apply principles of proper body mechanics while positioning and transferring
  12. Demonstrate knowledge and skills relating to quality assurance of images and
  13. Demonstrate professional working standards with patients, hospital staff and administrators.

A Career in Computed Tomography

 
 
 

The Computed Tomography program is a one-semester evening program leading to an Enhanced Skills Certificate (ESC) or, in some cases, Continuing Education Units (CEUs). Courses have both theory and a competency-based clinical component. All CT courses must be enrolled in concurrently. Those who are accepted into the program will be required to pay a liability insurance fee, which protects the student against losses resulting from malpractice claims. Accepted students must also pay a radiation monitoring badge fee. The badge is required in all clinical education courses.

Licensure/Certification Exam Results

2017 Third-Party Licensure/Certification Exam Results
Occupational licensure and/or certification pass rates on first attempt reported by calendar year (Jan. 1 – Dec. 31).
Results for the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 calendar years are provided for comparison.

Program/Aligned AwardAgency StandardHCC Standard

2013
Pass Rate

(#Taken 
# Passed)

2014
Pass Rate

(#Taken
#Passed)

2015
Pass Rate

(#Taken
#Passed)

2016
Pass Rate

(#Taken  #Passed)

2017 Pass Rate

(#Taken
#Passed)
 

2017 Results2013–2017 Pass Rate Average (#Taken 
# Passed)
Radiography AAS: ARRT 75% 75% 92%(24/26) 86%(25/29) 100%(36/36)  97%(30/31)  89%(25/28) Exceeds Standards 93%(140/150)

Employment

 
 
 

There are 3,169 Radiographers employed in the Greater Houston Area. This number is expected to increase by 16.0% over the next four years.

  • The estimated annual job openings is 195 jobs a year.
  • Median Wages - $26.29 hourly, $55,000 annually

Resources

Search for a Radiography Professor or request more information

Get in touch

Roger Bumgardner

Radiography