How to Land a Radiology Job: Your Complete Guide

After studying radiology at a four-year university, students can hit the ground and get a good job out of school. Other people take a certification course to get a radiology job as a tech or assistant. Radiologists are required to complete eight years of school to become a physician in the clinical setting, but their salaries reflect that extra work.

Are you interested in getting a job working as a radiologist? Here’s what you need to know!

Find The Right School

You’re going to need to go to a strong four-year university with a strong pre-med program to be a competitive candidate. Search through for schools in your state and go to a top-rated one. The better the school you go to, the easier it will be to get into the medical school of your choice.

Once in school, it’s vital to maintain a high GPA and to score highly on the Medical College Admission Test. The MCAT tells schools how prepared you are to become a radiologist.

While in school, make sure you collect letters of recommendation, volunteer in your community, and get exposure to clinical research. This will help your application to medical school and ensure you land in a top radiology program.

Go To Medical School

In order to get into the best medical schools, you need to be prepared for four years of rigorous studies. Medical school is about more than just surviving, but also it’s important that you’re able to thrive and get to the head of your class.

You’ll learn anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and pathophysiology relevant to becoming a graduated physician. Following this, all students need to take the USMLE. These national medical licensing exams are challenging but vital to applying for a post-grad residency.

Radiologists should be looking for residencies that feel relevant to where they want to be and what they want to be doing.

Complete Internship and Residency

After graduating and getting your degree, you could immediately apply for a limited medical license and call yourself a physician. However, in the absence of hands-on training, you won’t be ready to do the important work ahead of you.

That’s why radiologists are required to spend their first year working as a resident intern. During this time, they practice general medicine, surgery, or sometimes both. Interns will get experienced working with inpatient and outpatient visitors and even spend time understanding the work of the emergency department.

During this time, trainees get introduced to radiology. During their first four years in the field, they’ll be training. Residents are expected to spend long hours interpreting imaging studies by the thousands.

They’ll get hands-on experience talking to patients about the results and talking to other clinicians on what can be done following the findings. Radiologists will perform image-guided procedures and interventions on patients who need their help.

At the end of the four years, residents will take and pass exams to show that they’ve learned enough to move on from their studies.

Some Radiologists Attend Fellowships

Most graduating residents apply to fellowships after completing their first four years in the field. There are one-year and two-year programs within a specialty of radiology.

There are a number of choices for fellowship applicants ranging from neuroradiology to musculoskeletal, interventional radiology, and more.

During these fellowships, radiology fellows go through the final steps of their training, becoming experts in the field. They’ll learn advanced imaging and procedural techniques within each of these specialties. At the other end of the fellowship, they can join a practice or even start their own office with other radiologists.

Achieving Certification and Licenses

After fellowships, radiologists are ready to work independently. They can apply their skills within their specialty once they’ve gotten state licensure. This is a mandatory step for any kind of practicing doctor or physician, including anyone working in radiology.

If you’re applying for a job, employers are going to want their applicants to have board certification. This entails taking exams that cover all the aspects of the job ahead of radiologists. The exam covers medicine, imaging, physics, and anatomy.

Keeping Up With Continued Education

It’s vital for radiologists to stay on top of the latest changes in their career. Since radiology is so dependent on technology, radiologists have a duty to pay attention to the changes coming down the pipe. In fact, it’s common for radiologists to consider changes in direction during their careers.

Even though radiologists make a solid living, starting in the mid-$100k range and climbing much higher, the field is competitive. Gaining new skills and expertise is important and most employers require their radiologists to take continuing education credits. This helps both physicians and patients alike by introducing radiologists to cutting-edge procedures.

This training, such as that provided by x-ray ceu, not only gives them access to new tools and methods, but also provides opportunities for better roles. Radiologists looking to get into research or community outreach roles are better served by moving out of the clinical setting. After some years, many radiologists consider taking on different positions.

Some leave practice to get into education or research. Others pursue healthcare administration outside of the clinical setting. While working in the clinical setting fits some better than others, most radiologists get fatigued with clinical work after a few decades.

A Radiology Job is a Great Career Choice

Deciding to get a radiology job means preparing for a long but rewarding course of study. However, those interested in working underneath a radiologist have much lower educational requirements and can get a job with just a one- or two-year course. These certifications allow you to get a good career and even be an introduction to the field before committing to medical school.

Check out our guide for medical jobs that you may have never heard of.

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