How Do I Get a Radiologic Technologist Certification?

Amy Rodriguez

Earning a radiologic technologist certification requires specific education, ethics, and a passing grade on the certification exam. In fact, many states within the United States use this certification to determine qualified candidates for radiologic licensing. The certification exam is normally taken just after earning an undergraduate degree.

A radiologic technologist looking at an X-ray.
A radiologic technologist looking at an X-ray.

Most students earn an associate's or bachelor's degree prior to taking the radiologic technologist certification exam. It is also possible for you to attend a trade school that offers a certificate of completion for radiology. The certification exam cannot be taken by those without any schooling; in fact, if a student graduated from an accredited school more than five years ago, he or she cannot take the exam. The education must be fresh in the student's mind.

In the US, before taking the radiologic technologist certification exam, you must adhere to the ethics clause mandated by the federal government. People who have a criminal past, such as a felony, cannot receive certification. Any past charges must be stated on the exam application.

Although the radiologic technologist certification exam is voluntary, a majority of employers prefer to hire a certified worker. A passing grade on the exam is imperative; however, you should keep in mind that the exam administrators do not offer any form of study guide or textbook reference for studying. You must apply all of the knowledge you have obtained through your schooling for the exam. The certification is meant to reward those who have studied and applied their schooling to real life situations.

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If you are eligible to take the radiologic technologist certification exam, the administrators will send you a package that details various testing centers and exam dates. Typically, the dates are within a 90 day period; you must choose a date within this calendar range. Proof of identity is mandatory to take the exam; the administrators will confirm the type of approved identification within the package, such as a driver's license or passport.

An applicant who does not pass the exam on the first try can take the test again; however, a total of only three exams can be taken over three years. If an applicant does not pass within three attempts, he or she cannot be certified. Some students may find it helpful to study with a group of technologists prior to the exam. Those students who have taken the test before can give the others an idea of the types of questions asked.

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