Radiation therapy programs prepare students for careers in areas of the health care field that are concerned with improving the treatment of cancer through use of the latest technology. Professionals with a radiation therapy degree work closely with radiation oncologists during patients’ treatment sessions, using a variety of equipment to pinpoint and shrink cancerous tumors. A radiation therapy certificate also demonstrates ability to understand and follow all safety precautions related to protection from high amounts of radiation.
Online radiation therapy programs are a viable option for busy health care professionals who are already working in the fields of radiology or sonography. Some schools offering this type of radiation therapist program even give preference to these candidates, since many skills from these areas easily transfer to completing the curriculum required for a radiation therapy degree. In addition to the training in a radiation therapist program, graduates also need to have excellent communication skills and bedside manner when working with patients.
Prospective students can earn either an Associate degree or Bachelor’s degree in radiography, followed by a one-to-two year radiation therapy certificate program. The majority of states require licensure by successfully passing a certification exam administered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT).
Curriculum offered in online radiation therapy programs is comparable to that offered in a classroom setting. Common online coursework includes college level mathematics, science, and writing. Online students in radiation therapy programs are often required to attend a certain number of hands-on training workshops per semester in order to gain the needed experience with the different types of radiation therapy equipment. This machinery can include linear accelerators, cobalt units, and CT scanners.
If radiation therapy seems to be a good career fit, begin today by researching radiation therapy programs both online and on-campus. Request more information from chosen schools and meet with a program advisor to get started.